Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Pope Goes Solar

The Pope installs a solar roof:

The bottom line is...

How's that for setting a great example?

Monday, September 29, 2008

Proposition 7

Normally, I don't like to talk about politics because it is such a touchy subject; however, I had to point this out because it relates to solar energy. Prop 7 is something that we all should be paying attention to when November 4th rolls around.

I'm not going to tell you which way you should vote but here is some background information on Proposition 7:

According to the Legislative Analyst's Office,
This measure makes a number of changes regarding RPS (renewables portfolio standard) and the permitting of electricity generating facilities and transmission lines. Primarily, the measure:
  • Establishes additional, higher RPS targets for electricity providers.
  • Makes RPS requirements enforceable on publicly owned utilities.
  • Changes the process for defining “market price of electricity.”
  • Changes the cost cap provisions that limit electricity provider obligations under the RPS.
  • Expands scope of RPS enforcement.
  • Revises RPS-related contracting period and obligations.
  • Sets a lower penalty rate in statute and removes the cap on the total penalty amount for failure to meet RPS requirements.
  • Directs the use of RPS penalty revenues.
  • Expands Energy Commission’s permitting authority.
Hopefully this video will also help sum things up:

The bottom line is...

Do your research, and vote wisely.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Solar iPhone Cases in the Wild

Here, you'll see some photos of different solar iPhone cases that actually work well with the iPod Touch.

To have a closer look at the white case, click here.
For more photos of the two black cases, click here and here.

The bottom line is...

One of the perks of blogging for a company like Solar Arcadia is that I get to try out cool products.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

How It's Made - Solar

I recently started watching a new show on the Discovery Channel. It's called How It's Made, and it's basically a show that gives an in depth look at the process it takes to make some of the most random stuff.

I saw one episode where they featured mattresses and another episode where they featured boomerangs, so they pretty much cover everything under the sun. The episode that I'm sharing with you shows off solar panels. It's broken up into two parts.

In the first video, fast forward to 6:10.
The second video picks up where the first one left off. Enjoy:

The bottom line is...

There's a ton of work that goes into making these things.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Love the New iPod Touch

Apple is calling the new iPod Touch "the funnest iPod ever." I purchased the 32 GB version last week, and after playing with it for awhile, I'd have to agree with them. I use it to play music in my car, to play games at work, and to surf the web when I'm away from home. I use it so often that I struggle to keep it powered up.

The bottom line is...

Where would I be without my solar charger?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Unusual Solar Photos pt. 5

I'd say that this picture is the most unusual of all the Unusual Solar Photos.

Still don't know exactly what you're looking at? Well, here's the description:
"Imagine spending over twenty years coming up with new ways to put speakers on people in creative ways. Maybe you think that's crazy, maybe you think that's brilliant. In either case it makes for some funny pictures. Actually kind of inspiring actually. The above photo is of the "AUDIO BALLERINAS", which incorporated solar panels, along with speakers and samplers." - Via igargoyle.com

The bottom line is...

Maybe we should test out Cellular Ballerinas.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Saluting Safeway

A new series that you'll start seeing on the Solar Arcadia blog is the "Company Salute". Every week or so, we'll give props to different companies that are finding ways to utilize solar energy.

To start things off, we'll salute ourselves!

...Just kidding, the first company is Safeway.

Their main headquarters in Pleasanton, CA and a few of their stores are completely powered by wind and solar. Here's a photo of just one of the offices:

The bottom line is...

Keep up the good work, Safeway.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Facts about Renewables

We've taken a short break from environmental facts, but now we're back with some interesting information about renewables.
  1. Only 7.5 percent of total U.S. energy consumption came from renewable sources in 1998. Of that total, 94 percent was from hydropower and biomass (trash and wood incinerators). (U.S. Energy Information Administration)
  2. For the 2 billion people without access to electricity, it would be cheaper to install solar panels than to extend the electrical grid. (The Fund for Renewable Energy Everywhere)
  3. Within 15 years, renewable energy could be generating enough electricity to power 40 million homes and offset 70 days of oil imports.

The bottom line is...

The second fact blows my mind.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Unusual Solar Photos pt. 4

I picked this photo because I didn't think something like this would be possible. I found it on Amy Allcock's Flickr Photostream. Read her description:
While visiting the Floating Islands, I was really impressed how the Uros had used the resources available to them, mainly the abundant totora reed, to survive. At first I was surprised to see the solar panel, but given their their acute understanding of nature and the importance they placed on the sun as a deity, solar power seemed like a natural resource to harness. It's also a convenient way to power their TVs, which is pretty much the only electrical gadget they use.

The bottom line is...

If you can set up a solar panel here, you can set up a solar panel anywhere.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Yesterday, I told you that today would be a big day for Apple. Well, today is here!

Apple announced a brand new iPod Nano and revamped versions of the iPod Touch and the iPod Classic. Each of the mp3 players have new features that people will definitely be excited about.

After you head down to a local Apple Store or log into Apple.com to pick up an iPod Touch, be sure to visit Solar Arcadia. We've got plenty of accessories that will allow you to dress up your new iPod.

Note: All the chargers and accessories that work for the iPod Touch will also work with the iPhone.

The bottom line is...

Add a little flavor to your new device.

Monday, September 8, 2008


This is just a reminder that tomorrow is near. And with tomorrow comes a much anticipated announcement from Apple.

They changed the world with iPod, and then changed the world again with the iPhone.

Now, they look to shake up the world with another installment to the iPod Touch series. We'll have to wait to see what this one will be like.

The bottom line is...

Will Apple be able to do it again?

Friday, September 5, 2008

Unusual Solar Photos pt. 3

It's Friday, so I decided to keep the material light and show you another Unusual Solar Photo.

This time, we have unique set of solar panels. I found this on Gemma Grace's Flickr Photostream. Here's the description:
The Region of Peel, Ontario, Canada recently installed a unique aesthetic photovoltaic project at the Clarkson Water Treatment Plant in Mississauga. "Comprised of nine 1.2 kW pole mounted Solar Flares, the project encompasses structural, electrical, photovoltaic and monitoring aspects. This photovoltaic initiative is intended as a demonstration project in synergy with forthcoming neighbouring green energy projects."

The bottom line is...

Solar panels don't always have to be the ugly squares and rectangles that we're accustomed to. Some people are able to produce some visually stunning creations.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Solar Theremin

I made a routine stop at YouTube and found a video pertaining to solar energy. It features a guy playing a handmade Solar Theremin. Have a look:

This is a pretty cool video, but if you're like me, you're probably asking yourself, "What on earth is theremin?" According to the Wiktionary, a theremin is
An electronic musical instrument that generates sound of varying pitch and volume depending on the proximity of the musician's hands to two antennae mounted on the instrument.
At the top of the post, you'll see a modern version of a theremin.

The bottom line is...

You learn something new everyday.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

New iPod?

There's some big news coming from the good folks in Cupertino, CA. There appears to be a special Apple event scheduled for September 9, 2008 in San Francisco.

This can only mean one thing... Apple is planning on releasing something new. If the rumors are correct, it'll probably be a new iPod. Apple's iPod Touch has yet to be updated, so this is probably the product of choice.

Only time will tell. We'll revisit this story in about a week.

The bottom line is...

This will be yet another gadget that can be powered by our solar chargers.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Happy Labor Day

We hope everyone is enjoying the holiday.

Have a little fun in the sun.
By the way, the picture you see above is a solar-powered barbeque grill.

The bottom line is...

We'll see you tomorrow with more solar updates.