Thursday, March 24, 2011

Soccket Soccer Balls Shine!

Jessica Lin, Jessica Matthews, Julia Silverman, and Hemali Thakkar met in an engineering class at Harvard in 2008 and have since been developing and improving an energy-capturing soccer ball, the sOccket. Just ten minutes of play stores energy for three hours of light (and can recharge batteries and cell phones as well). They introduced it at the men's World Cup and tested it with children in South Africa, Liberia, and Nigeria last year where it could replace unhealthy kerosene lamps in areas with no electricity. When the balls soon become available for sale as fun gadgets here, the inventors are hoping to set up a buy one, give one system to be able to distribute balls at no cost to kids in developing nations.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Local Neighborhood Pirate Supply Shop

This Ted Talks by Dave Eggers, "Once Upon a School", is inspiring on many levels. Dave Eggers and friends started a tutoring center in San Fransisco to help kids with their English homework. The building was zoned commercial and they could not be non-profit, so they added a pirate supply shop in the front, complete with eye patches and ocean maps, which was also a big success. The idea has spread to cities all over the world with a Superhero Supply Shop and tutoring center in Brooklyn, a Time Travel Mart and tutoring center in Los Angeles, and more.