Monday, August 31, 2009

Down the Foxhole - FlashDen

Down the Foxhole - FlashDen

Link to Down the Foxhole

Last Week on Flashtuts+

Posted: 30 Aug 2009 09:01 PM PDT

Flashtuts+, the “sister” Web site of FlashDen, is part of the envato Tuts+ network, and features some of the best Flash, ActionScript and Flex tutorials on the Web in an easy-to-follow and engaging format.

Each week on FlashDen we will provide a roundup of all the previous week’s tutorials from Flashtuts+ as a reminder to brush-up on your Flash skills or to learn something new.

AS3 101: Arrays

August 28th in ActionScript, Novice by Dru Kepple

In this installment of AS3 101, we'll spend the entire tutorial exploring a single type of data available to most programming languages: the Array.

Arrays are ways to keep lists of values. Arrays are useful to keep an arbitrary number of related items grouped together, and can represent complex data structures though nesting. In ActionScript, Arrays have quite a bit of flexibility and functionality, as we'll see. After the usual abstract introduction, we'll apply what we've learned (whilst also learning some more along the way) by building a rather simple puzzle game.

Create a Responsive Image Scroller in ActionScript 3.0

August 26th in ActionScript, XML by Evan Mullins

This tutorial will demonstrate how to create a horizontally scrolling image viewer. It will cover xml parsing, loading and resizing external images, and creating intuitive and responsive scrolling!

Make Your Flash Logo Bling with Alpha Gradient Masking

August 24th in Effects by Karl Macklin

In this tutorial we'll look at how to create a logo which incorporates alpha gradient masking in its animation. I'll explain some tips and tricks on how to get it working and avoiding some common problems.

Latest From : CleanTechnica

Latest From : CleanTechnica

Spray On Solar Panels Could Be Here Soon

Posted: 31 Aug 2009 09:01 AM PDT

solar cells

University of Texas researchers have been working with nanoparticle ‘inks’ to create photovoltaics that could be sprayed onto surfaces to make solar panels. If functional, they could be used at one-tenth the cost of current technologies, it has been estimated.

The idea is that the inks could painted onto rooftops and building walls. The catch is right now the inks are only one percent efficient, whereas current solar panel technology can be 25% efficient.

The nanoparticle technology, however, has not hit its’ top efficiency and the researchers are optimistic. Brian Korgell who has been working on the project for two years stated, “If we get to 10 percent, then there’s real potential for commercialization, if it works, I think you could see it being used in three to five years.”

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For Base-Load Wind Cheaper than Fossil Fuels: CAES

Posted: 31 Aug 2009 06:19 AM PDT

As PG&E ramps up renewable power in response to the California RPS requirement that it get 33% of its electricity from renewables by 2020; it has been exploring ways to add that much renewable power to the grid while smoothing out the ups and downs of wind energy, which often peaks at night.

The utility needs a way to turn sometimes-too-much wind into anytime-always-there electricity.

The solution? Simple tech. Underground compressed air.

With compressed air energy storage; air is compressed and then pumped in natural underground reservoirs. The air is released later and converted into electricity. With enough storage, even fickle wind could actually supply base-load power.

So PG&E has applied for DOE smart grid stimulus funding under The Recovery Act; to build a compressed air energy storage project with output capacity of 300 megawatts. Cost? $25 million.

By comparison, building a plant to burn fossil fuels would cost around $850 million for the same 300 megawatts of fossil energy.

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Printable and Paintable Solar Cells Make Production More Affordable

Posted: 31 Aug 2009 05:39 AM PDT

Painted solar cells

A team of scientists from the University of Texas at Austin has developed a type of spray-on solar cells that could lower costs of production dramatically.

The concept of spray-on solar cells is by no means a new approach – the Australian National University has been working on one for the past three years. The University of Texas at Austin team led by engineer Brian Korgel uses copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) as the main component for the ink used to manufacture the solar cell. This nanoparticle ink allows manufacturers to completely deviate from the conventional expensive method of solar cell production. Using this ink, solar cells can be made through a roll-to-roll printing process, similar to how newspapers are printed. Plastic substrate and stainless steel are a couple of possible bases for the printing.

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One Atom Away from Clean Water

Posted: 31 Aug 2009 04:31 AM PDT

Breakthrough discovery at Sandia could lead to more affordable way to purify drinking water.A breakthrough discovery from Sandia National Laboratories could help keep a lid on the rising cost of chemical water treatment and make clean drinking water more affordable in “water challenged” areas of the world.  Working with researchers at the University of California, the Sandia team substituted one atom in aluminum oxide, a common chemical used to coagulate impurities in water.  The new compound promises a more sustainable way to decontaminate wastewater as well as purify drinking water.  Next step: Sandia has partnered with the award-winning water technology company Kemira to bring the new compound into commercial production.

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NanoBrane Calls Foul on Dirty Membranes for Water Treatment

Posted: 30 Aug 2009 03:36 PM PDT

Nanobrane offers a way to keep water-purifying membranes cleaner without chemicals.High-tech membranes are catching on as a lower cost, non-chemical and more sustainable water treatment process, but there’s a catch: they can quickly foul with dirt and other particles.  Enter NanoBrane, a nanotechnology company with a patent-pending breakthrough in membrane properties that prevents fouling.  That makes the treatment process run more efficiently and reduces the downtime needed to service the membranes, potentially reducing operating expenses by up to 20%.

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