GE Offering Thousands Of Its Patents In Exchange For Innovation
General Electric, the inventor of inventing, is reinventing inventing.
The company is teaming up with a crowdsourced social platform Quirky to release thousands of its patents to the public, starting next month with a few hundred searchable patents.
“People will be able to use GE’s technology in the creation of their own consumer product ideas,” the companies explained.
The move by GE follows in the footsteps of companies like Google, who recently contributed 10 patents to allow developers use. The Open Patent Non-Assertion (OPN) Pledge not only offers open source software, but also cuts down on the chances of lawsuits.
How Much Energy Do We Use While Watching the Super Bowl?
GE mashed up statistics from Nielsen, the Energy Information Administration, ABS Alaskan, and the U.S. Census to figure out that the energy used to power home televisions watching the Super Bowl (over 158.5 million TVs) could power all the homes in Green Bay, Pittsburgh, and Dallas for 10 hours. We’re not suggesting you turn off the game, but it is something to think about as you bask in the glow of your big screen.
As for the game itself? Renewable energy credits are offsetting power use at many NFL venues, and the recently implemented Super Grow XLV program (a partnership between the Texas Trees Foundation and the Texas Forest Service) planted over 6,500 trees in 12 north Texas communities, marking the biggest tree-planting effort in Super Bowl history. Cowboy Stadium (the site of this year’s game) also has targets to cut solid waste by 25%, water consumption by 1 million gallons, and energy use by 20% each year. Not a bad start.
The race to win GE’s “Powering Your Home” Ecomagination Challenge, a contest that invites entrants to design the green home of the future, is on. So far, all the entrants are impressive, but one stands out: a proposal for transit tunnels that power cities.
Submitted by Alessandra Rapaccini and Giacomo Sanna, the CitySpeed Turbine turns transit tunnels into modular turbines that harness wind power from passing vehicles. The potential for energy is impressive— according to the NY/NJ Port Authority, approximately 202,000 cars pass through the Lincoln and Holland Tunnels each day. Combine that with train tunnels, and the device could be a significant energy source.