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GasBuddy News Article

Can Minor Vibrations Replaces Batteries in Power Sensors, Radio Transmitters and GPS Modules?

Science daily -- ScienceDaily (May 4, 2012) — Sensors, radio transmitters and GPS modules all feature low power consumption. All it takes is a few milliwatts to run them. Energy from the environment -- from sources such as light or vibrations -- may be enough to meet these requirements. A new measurement device can determine whether or not the energy potential is high enough.
The freight train races through the landscape at high speed, the train cars clattering along the tracks. The cars are rudely shaken, back and forth. The rougher the tracks, the more severe the shaking. This vibration delivers enough energy to charge small electronic equipment: this is how the sensors that monitor temperatures in refrigerator cars, or GPS receivers, can receive the current they need to run.

Vibration replaces batteri

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Submitted May 06, 2012 By: mastermariner
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Champion Author Appleton

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: May 7, 2012 6:34:46 PM

4 high-tech ways the federal government is spying on private citizens
By Tecca | Today in Tech – 5 hrs ago

Like it or not, the government is becoming increasingly watchful of everyone... even you
One of the running jokes in the 1980s was how the former Soviet Union spied on its private citizens. As comedian Yakov Smirnoff used to joke: "In Soviet Russia, TV watches you!" But here in America, we were all safe from the prying eyes of the government.
Fast forward to 2012, when the U.S. government actually has the tools and capabilities to spy on all its citizens. These eyes go well beyond red light cameras. Right now, the government is tracking the movements of private citizens by GPS, reading private citizens' emails, and possibly even reading what you're saying on Facebook. It does so all in the name of law enforcement and Homeland Security, of course — but whether or not that makes you feel safer is up to you.Does a new Utah facility really monitor your emails?
1. The NSA is building a massive data center in Utah to read every email you'll ever send.
Many of us are aware that little of what we say on social networks is really private. But you'd think your emails would be safe from prying eyes — especially those of your government. Not so, once the government completes work on a top-secret Utah data center reportedly built to spy on civilian communications.
The $2 billion facility, slated to be complete by September 2013, is allegedly designed to be able to filter through yottabytes (10^24 bytes) of data. Put into perspective, that's greater than the estimated total of all human knowledge since the dawn of mankind. If leaked information about the complex is correct, nothing will be safe from the facility's reach, from cell phone communications to emails to what you just bought with your credit card. And encryption won't protect you — one of the facility's priorities is breaking even the most complex of codes.
The good news (if there is any) is that the sheer volume of internet traffic and emails sent in a single day is far too much to be read by human eyes. Instead, the government will likely need to rely on complicated algorithms to assess each transmission and decide if they represent a security threat. So you're probably out of the government's earshot here... as long as you watch what you say.
2. The FBI maintains detailed files on numerous public, semi-public, and private figures.
Have you ever thought of taking a job with the government? If you value your privacy, think twice — the government runs incredibly extensive background searches on its high-profile applicants.
What kind of information does the government want from its applicants? Well, when former Apple CEO Steve Jobs was under consideration for a job with George H.W. Bush's administration in 1991, the FBI compiled a massive file on him. Included in that file: the fact that Jobs had a 2.65 GPA, his history of marijuana and LSD usage, and his tendencies to "distort reality" and to "twist the truth" in order to achieve his goals.
Of course, Jobs is far from the only figure with an FBI file. Other public personalities profiled by the FBI include John Lennon, Marilyn Monroe, Jimi Hendrix, and even Anna Nicole Smith. If you're curious about what goods the FBI has on you, you can always submit a request to view your own personal file. It is worth noting, of course, that the government doesn't profile everyone — just certain people of interest.

Is your data out there for the taking?
3. Homeland Security is reading your tweets and Facebook status messages.
Unless you play around with your Twitter and Facebook privacy settings, just about anything you say is public. So it might not come as a surprise that the Department of Homeland Security is seeking contractors to build software and hardware capable of reading through what it calls "publicly available social media." Essentially, the government wants to read through your tweets and status messages to see if there's any information that might help in detecting threats.
There are some ground rules to the project. The government won't pose as a Twitter follower and won't accept or send any Facebook friend requests. Still, even with those restrictions, there's a lot of information floating out there for the feds to read, even if most of it is nonsense about Justin Bieber.

4. Your ISP may soon be required to keep files on what sites you visit.
The idea sounds pretty far out there — a law that would require your internet service provider to keep constant tabs on you, along with detailed records of what websites you visited and when. But that's exactly what the Hawaii state legislature proposed this January with H.B. 2288 and companion bill S.B. 2530. The bill, sponsored by State Rep. John Mizuno (D), "requires internet service providers... keep consumer records for no less than two years." The bill then goes on to specify that these records must include "each subscriber's information and internet destination history information."
Thankfully, the bills' sponsors withdrew the offending legislation from debate. But the reason wasn't just public outcry. Also a factor was the fact that the U.S. House of Representatives is considering a similar bill titled Protecting Children From Internet Pornographers Act. That bill, sponsored and written by Texas Republican Representative Lamar Smith, would mandate that commercial ISPs create logs of customers' names, bank information, and IP addresses. That information could later be used by attorneys seeking to prosecute in a criminal trial or even in civil cases and divorce trials.

Not much is private anymore
Between private companies violating your privacy and now the government, is there any way to avoid prying eyes? Not really, unless you make significant changes in the way you use the web. So before you send that next tweet or post that next Facebook status message, think about whether or not you'd be okay with a complete stranger looking at it — because that's very well what may happen.

[Image credits: Hammer51012, brewbooks]
This article was written by Fox Van Allen and originally appeared on Tecca
More from Tecca:
Internet Security Guide: Resources to keep you safe online
Beginner's guide to Facebook privacy settings
Twitter Guide: Everything you need to know to tweet like a pro
Champion Author Detroit

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: May 7, 2012 11:47:04 AM

great use for technology!
Champion Author Philadelphia

Joined:Mar 2011
Message Posted: May 7, 2012 8:17:07 AM

Sophomore Author Hartford

Joined:Feb 2012
Message Posted: May 7, 2012 12:05:52 AM

Champion Author Cincinnati

Joined:Sep 2005
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 4:54:56 PM

Could have a place; just light mounting heat to electrical converters on the engine.
Champion Author Syracuse

Joined:Jul 2008
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 3:44:04 PM

In the future there is a new option - smooth ride or shaky ride which will increase power to the other options. *grin*
Champion Author Dallas

Joined:Apr 2004
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 3:41:35 PM

Sounds like the old "self-winding" watch technology updated.
Champion Author Las Vegas

Joined:Mar 2010
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 2:22:01 PM

I like this if it work great.
Champion Author Montgomery

Joined:Dec 2011
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 1:53:55 PM

I love science articles like this. "Look what wonders could be facing us in the future!" Sure, Minor Vibrations could replace batteries, but not in my lifetime.
Champion Author Cleveland

Joined:Apr 2005
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 12:44:03 PM

There are a lot of way of collecting energy from the environment and some have been known for hundreds of years. One example is perpetual clocks powered by changes in air pressure form weather variations. They are expensive to build but they will run until the metal parts literally wear out. self winding watches were popular until replaced by battery digital watched.

Traditionally, most of these systems have been too expensive to be practical but as the power demand of microelectronic drops, they may find niches.
Champion Author Anchorage

Joined:May 2009
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 12:28:07 PM

Hey, bring it on. I'm not a big fan of replacing all those little batteries anyway.

Another one should be on the list: hearing aid batteries. They ought to be able to power hearing aids from the movements of your head. Come on, people, let's get to work here!
Champion Author Seattle

Joined:Dec 2010
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 12:23:16 PM

Good thinking.
Champion Author Los Angeles

Joined:Dec 2005
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 12:22:47 PM

Well hurry b4 big gov taxex us on it.
Champion Author Orange County

Joined:May 2005
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 11:54:30 AM

The data logger is already in use in freight cars, trucks and machinery. Spies and his team are currently working to develop a complete tracking system that includes not only a GSM module and a GPS receiver but also a vibration converter that turns mechanical energy into electrical energy.
Champion Author Wisconsin

Joined:Feb 2006
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 11:52:48 AM

Now who would have thought? Interesting article, especially regarding the rail cars...
All-Star Author Vancouver

Joined:May 2012
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 11:09:52 AM

ok. not bad
Champion Author San Jose

Joined:Oct 2008
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 11:09:10 AM

sounds gr8
Champion Author Ohio

Joined:Jul 2009
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 10:56:32 AM

GET IT DONE.......
Champion Author Orange County

Joined:Jul 2008
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 10:25:17 AM

Every little bit helps.
Champion Author Greensboro

Joined:Jan 2009
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 10:19:03 AM

Still may not be economical or efficient.
Champion Author New Jersey

Joined:Sep 2009
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 10:14:15 AM

In the future we will find many ways to create electricity from sources that are currently (pardon the pun) ignored and/or disgarded.
Champion Author Atlanta

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 10:05:17 AM

How stupid! If they really takes so little power then put a damn battery in them and be done with it!

Besides if the device is vibrating that means the vehicle is moving down the road and the vehicle engine and battery can power them! DOH!
Champion Author Toledo

Joined:Mar 2006
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 9:59:00 AM

very doubtful
All-Star Author Delaware

Joined:Apr 2012
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 9:57:57 AM

Champion Author Cleveland

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 9:21:58 AM

Just as long as those vibrations dont cause earthquakes.........
Champion Author Toronto

Joined:Sep 2011
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 9:14:12 AM

Good luck with that
Champion Author New Jersey

Joined:Dec 2004
Message Posted: May 6, 2012 8:55:30 AM

Great excuse for all the highway depts to leave potholes as they are!
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