March 30th, 2010

Look into the sun! Look into the sun!

Smart electricity meters come to Lawrence

This is an interesting development: Lawrence to become first city in Kansas to get smart electricity meters. Because federal law requires that local utilities provide "net metering" for citizens who ask for it, these meters will allow individuals who produce power at home (solar, wind, fuel cell, and so forth) to sell excess back to the utility. Considering that most wind and solar power is generated during the day when it gets hot in Kansas - and when electricity rates are at their highest - this looks like a good thing.

This bumps up my plan to re-roof the house using solar panels or solar shingles to next year. Join the home-power revolution!

John Crichton, Farscape

...and in other news, gene "patenting" begins to collapse...

Here's a trend I want to see continue: Judge Invalidates Human Gene Patent. Not only does patenting genes make no sense (What, those corporations invented the genes they've patented? Nonsense.), but it also limits scientific research and throws up all kinds of ominous portents. If a corporation owns the rights to specific genes you carry in your body, do you trust them to behave innocently and for the public good? Um.

Bravo, United States District Court Judge Robert W. Sweet! More of the same, the rest of you judges.