This week at TreeHugger: We find "the world's most energy efficient notebook," and it'll soon be for sale at Wal-mart. After 10 years of designing, developing and testing, Vectrix is ready to unleash its electric scooter on the world. Want to be a TreeHugger and have a cool ringtone? We've got an idea for you. Lastly, check out the Pterosail, the latest in our series of bicycles (well, it's a tricycle...close enough) that you don't have to pedal.
The "world's most energy efficient notebook," according to the manufacturer, will soon be for sale at Wal-mart, of all places. The computer is made by Everex Systems and Taiwanese chipmaker Via Technologies, and will go for less than $500. The Via microprocessor inside Everex's StepNote NC1500 provides 1.5GHz performance while sipping on just 12 watts, whic enables as much as 20 percent longer battery life than comparable systems. The StepNote C1500 also sports a 15.4-inch 1,280 by 800 (WXGA) LCD display driven by Via's Unichrome Pro with Chromotion CE Video Display Engine, 512 MB of RAM, a 60 GB hard drive and other power-sipping bells & whistles.
After 10 years of designing, developing and testing its electric scooter, Vectrix is finally ready to unleash it on the world. The company has announced they'll launch the Electric Maxi-Scooter at the 64th International Motorcycle Exhibition in Milan in November. The zippy scooter accelerates from 0-60 mph in 5.8 seconds, tops out at 62 mph and has a range of about 68 miles at 25 mph. We're waiting for the fuel cell version of the same bike, whose range will be closer to 155 miles.
"Anger is stupidity, fury is madness - if you don't succumb to anger, you won't succumb to stupidity and madness." Wise words, for sure; we think they're even wiser when they come from you cell phone. It's an example of a dhamma (or dharma) ring tone; dhamma is the Buddhist term for enlightened or authoritative teachings. The force behind these unique ringtones is the monk Phra Phayom Kalayano, who has recorded the dhamma doctrines and offered them free of charge to the mobile phone networks in Thailand. A good mantra for the modern world is already on his list: "Use the phone while practising mindfulness - don't let it use you."
Finally, this week we found Pterosail, a small start-up company that has designed a unique vehicle: a custom-made recumbent trike with a sail and an electric-assist motor. The sailing system can be used to fully power the trike, or in conjunction with pedaling, if you're into breaking a sweat. Additionally, the sailing system can convert wind energy into electrical energy to be stored into two 24-volt deep cycle marine batteries, which then be used to power a small electric-assist motor (no word on an iPod dock). The vehicle can achieve speeds upwards of 40 miles per hour and can be used wherever bikes can be legally used.
TreeHugger's EcoModo column appears every Tuesday on Gizmodo.