Climate Challenge: the game


Now here's a game you can play while claiming you're just doing some virtuous homework. Climate Challenge is a strategy game from the BBC in which you play a European leader who must balance climate issues against voter response. While intended to be fun, it's also loaded with real science, so you can say it's good for you. [GT]

Climate Challenge [via MetaFilter]

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January 24, 2007 in Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Call for proposals for six art gardens in Quebec City


Quebec City's 400th anniversary occurs in 2008, and part of the celebration involves six Contemporary Ephemeral Gardens. Each garden will be designed by a living artist, to be established in the heart of the festivities, and to live only so long as the celebration does, from June 10 to September 28, 2008. Each garden should address the three major themes of the festival:

Where the river narrows;
Your history, my history, our history ;
and Sowing the seeds of culture.

A Call For Creation Of Contemporary Ephemeral Gardens [via Land+Living]

Related stories: Iota garden decor | Joan Baez braves bulldozers for LA organic garden | Barnet Garden Project provides chemical-free veg and a hand up

January 14, 2007 in Design & furniture, Outdoors & games, Plants & gardens, Shows & events | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

LightCap takes the Firefly one step beyond


My main gripe with the GuyotDesigns Firefly was that inserting the batteries involved a special little (highly lose-able) tool and three AAA batteries. The LightCap Solar Powered LED Light & Water Bottle addresses that neatly by putting a panel right on top of the bottle. It ends up being a little on the heavy side (in the 300 gram vicinity without water) but gives off a bright white light after a four hour sunlight charge. $20 USD. [GT]

LightCap - Solar Powered LED Light & Water Bottle [via PopGadget]

Related stories: 2006 roundup #41: GuyotDesign's Gription, Firefly and water bottles | Review: GuyotDesigns Firefly, Bottles, Gription | Solar Crystal Ball Garden Lights

January 2, 2007 in Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Squirrels guess the future of their food


Squirrels may not be psychic as such, but they do know how plentiful food will be in the coming months, and give birth accordingly.  Not only that, but to try to outsmart the squirrels, trees use a boom-and-bust seed production strategy, trying to starve the squirrels in lean years so that even when they do overbreed, the trees will still survive.  "It's a little bit tougher when things are unpredictable like seed production years, but the squirrels obviously figured out a cue," said Stan Boutin, a University of Alberta biologist.  Given that us humans have trouble figuring out the seeding cycle, we would do well to observe the squirrel population more closely.  [GT]

Squirrels are great gamblers on nature's unpredictable seeding seasons

Related stories: Grass armchair from Purves & Purves | Moto's biodegradable mobile | Grow your own herbal beauty products

December 29, 2006 in Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

2006 roundup #29: Patagonia wants your underwear


In 2006, everything is up for recycling grabs, from old soda bottles (but we'll talk more about Terracycle later) to your very underwear.  Hippy company Patagonia put out a call for your old Capilene base layers to be returned to their stores for stripping, dissolving and reuse in brand-new hiking gear - but only if it's really, really too worn for any human to reasonably wear again.  The other message: don't buy new if what you've got already does it.  [GT]

Original stories: Patagonia wants your underwear | TerraCycle sells your garbage back to you - as compost

December 25, 2006 in Green News, Outdoors & games, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

2006 roundup #30: Maplin portable shower makes Glastonbury smell sweeter


If you particularly want a wash every day, even when you're in the woods or hanging at Glastonbury, you may think you're stuck staying at a hotel instead of roughing it under the stars.  Hippy gadgets to the rescue!  Maplin's portable shower (one of the many nifty Maplin eco-gadgets) plugs into your car adapter to heat up the water stored in the jug, so you can be gloriously hair-slicked and content but still frolic with Nature the other 97% of the time. [GT]

Original stories: Maplin Electronic Portable Shower | Top 5 eco-presents from Maplin

December 25, 2006 in Green News, Outdoors & games, Transport & travel | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Global Warming Smack'em Game


Like Eco-Worrier, I keep whacking David Attenborough by mistake (I do hope the voodoo is fine-tuned on this game) but the basic premise of Stern Climate Skeptic Smack'Em Game is to smite the eco-evil-doers with a rolled-up copy of the Stern Report.  (A Stern fate indeed considering that's 700 pages.)  Given Bertie Wooster holds spot 7 in the top 10 surely some aspiring Hippyshopper can do better?  [GT]

Stern Climate Change Smack'Em Game [via Eco-Worrier]

Related stories: The Earth Dinner card game | Better than Monopoly: Bioviva, the green board game | CO2FX: global warming game

December 15, 2006 in Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Google Earth adds environmental content


You can now, with the click of a mouse, add layers to your Google Earth showing 100 areas of the world which have experienced significant man-made depredations (such as sub-Saharan Africa and the British Columbian rainforests). With the before-and-after, you can get a really good feel for just how much obnoxiousness we've commited over the last thirty years. Then you can cheer yourself up by virtually visiting Jane Goodall's chimpanzees in Tanzania's Gombe reserve. [GT]

Google Earth Adds Environmental Content [via Emagazine]

Related stories: The Google Pedometer | Have a Green Summer with Google and Earth Day Network | I can annotate my house from here with Platial: the People's Atlas

September 25, 2006 in Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Green Board Games Company


Green Board Games focuses on board games that use recyclable or recycled materials plus wood from managed forests. All games conform to safety standards from Europe in general and Britain in particular, so you know if your baby chews on one that the most she'll get is a board game with a couple of teeth marks. Games range from science themed products like Aquasaurs to Wikki Stix in neon and with alphabet games. [GT]

Green Board Games

Related stories: Solar aircraft construction kit | The Earth Dinner card game | Recycled cardboard fort from Ecotopia

July 23, 2006 in Kids stuff, Outdoors & games | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Bike Friday folding bicycles


Bike Friday is a comfortable, full-size bike. Also, in 30 seconds, the Bike Friday folds down to fit in an airline-size suitcase, so you can very easily take it with you, on planes, on trains, even into your office. No oversize expensive weird luggage that they charge you an arm and a leg for (if they even let you take it on). Plus they're hand-made in Eugene, Oregon (where I ex-lived with the ex-Mr Taylor, who is delightful in his own way but not my adorable John) so you can feel entirely good about owning one. But why trust me when you can test-drive one?

A wide variety of Bike Friday dealers allow you to test before buying, in Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Germany, Canada and the US. In the UK, you want to contact the Avon Valley Cyclery in Bath where they'll be totally delighted to let you tool around on one. And more information in general about the Bike Friday in the UK is available at - until their UK-specific site is online. [GT]

June 17, 2006 in Energy saving, Green gadgets, Outdoors & games, Renewables, Transport & travel | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack