Sunday, August 14, 2011

Energy (and Other) Events - August 14, 2011

Energy (and Other) Events is a weekly mailing list published most Sundays covering events around the Cambridge, MA and greater Boston area that catch the editor's eye.

Hubevents is the web version.

If you wish to subscribe or unsubscribe to Energy (and Other) Events email


Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by the Women in SNCC


Monday, August 15, 2011
300 of the world's best design theses on view at SA+P: Archiprix
Time: 9:00a–8:00p
Location: MIT, 7-431, On the 4th floor above Lobby 7, at 77 Massachussets Avenue
A major exhibit on view throughout the summer at the School of Architecture + Planning is presenting 300 of the world's best thesis projects in architecture, urban design and landscape architecture.

Sponsored by Archiprix International, the biennial exhibit is the largest such presentation in the world -- more than 1,400 universities were invited to nominate their best graduating students -- and offers a rare opportunity for assessing current trends in design education around the world and architecture in general.

Hosted by SA+P's Platform for Permanent Modernity, a research program in the Department of Architecture, the exhibit opened May 30 as part of a two-week international event that also features intensive six-day workshops for about 100 of the students represented in the show, conducted at MIT by prominent designers from leading architecture schools in the United States.

Web site:
Open to: the general public
This event occurs daily through August 31, 2011, except May 30, 2011 and June 6, 2011.
Sponsor(s): School of Architecture and Planning, Arts at MIT
For more information, contact:
Alexander D'Hooghe
617 308 7386


Pitch Fest 2011: Minute to Pitch It
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (ET)
Boston, MA

Be ahead of the game. Be wow'd by 1-minute pitches from the teams working to change the world at MassChallenge.
Oh, and have a couple of beers and snacks, on us.

When: Tuesday, August 16 2011 @ 6-9pm
Where: MassChallenge, Inc. Accelerator Space
ONE Marina Park Drive, 14th Flr
55 Northern Ave
Boston, MA 02210

Register at


Harvard/Cambridge Walk for Peace
WHEN Wed., Aug. 17, 2011, 12 – 12:20 p.m.
WHERE John Harvard Statue
GAZETTE CLASSIFICATION Ethics, Social Sciences, Special Events, Support/Social, Working@Harvard
NOTE Nearly 10 years of war. Thousands of American lives, hundreds of thousands of Iraqi and Afghani lives, trillions of dollars. Come remember, mourn, and protest.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011 1:00 pm

Eastern Daylight Time (Indiana, GMT-04:00)
Cut the Crap: how to Develop Greener, Lower-Cost Products Webinar

register at


Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Worlds Beyond: The Search for Life in the Universe
Time: 1:00p–6:00p
Location: MIT, 32-100
Is there life beyond Earth? This is a question that has fascinated humankind for millennia. The science of astrobiology seeks to answer this question by exploring the possibilities of life elsewhere in the universe. This temporary exhibit, created by local teenagers and young adults, combines results from scientific investigations and current events in astrobiology with the enthusiasm and creativity of its designers. In the process, the exhibit leads visitors on an interactive experience to learn how we can search for life beyond our own planet, expanding our concept of what it means to be human.

Web site:
Open to: the general public
This event occurs daily through August 19, 2011.
Sponsor(s): Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research, MKI in NE80, MIT NASA Astrobiology Team
For more information, contact:
Irene Porro


Android Tablet Wars: An Overview
Wednesday, August 17, 2011 from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm
MIT Building E-51, Room 335
Presenters: Brian DeLacey - bdelacey gmail com,Jerry Feldman, Associate Director, Boston Linux & Unix - gaf blu org, Richard Pieri - richard.pieri gmail com, Tom Sohmers - trsohmers mit edu, Kurt Keville, Systems Administrator, MIT Clinical Research Center - kkeville alum mit edu, Matt Wendorf - mwendorf surrex com


We explore the various Android tablet devices that just hit the market


Jerry Feldman will showcase the Barnes & Noble Color Nook, hacked to run unlocked Android OS. Matt Wendorf will cover the Motorola Xoom. Brian DeLacey will demonstrate the Vizio tablet, from apps to changing TV channels and solar recharging. Tom Sohmers will present the HP Touchpad. Kurt Keville will showcase a stealth tablet. Richard Pieri will talk about Android as an appliance operating system, and tablets as one possible platform.The presenters will touch on the following areas for several Android Tablets:
Android Version / Platform Customizations
Hardware Specs (RAM, SSD, Processor / Speed, Sensors, Battery Life, Screen size etc.)
Price / Purchase experience
Usage Scenarios and Application Demonstration
Surprises and Wish Lists
We will also have a "Tablet Show-and-Tell" discussion for any attendees who would like to show off their Android tablets.


How Much Is Enough: Our Values in Question
A play exploring our relationship to money from The Foundry Theater and ArtsEmerson.
Written by Kirk Lynn with artistic direction from Melanie Joseph.
How Much Is Enough cannot be rehearsed without a live audience! Community groups and organizations all over Boston are needed to start the conversation.
"Okay. Now raise your hand if you feel like:? The way I make my money is a reflection of my values.
All right. Now raise your hand if you feel like: The way I spend my money is a reflection of my values. Okay. Now, if you're willing to answer a few questions, please keep your hands raised as everyone opens their eyes."
Be a part of the Foundry's first ever audience performance company and help deepen our inquiry and find the structure of this unusual interactive theatrical event.

How Much is Enough: The Rehearsals (Free!)
August 18, September 11 (start times vary, runtime approx. 2 hrs)
Paramount Center
559 Washington Street
Sign up here:?

If you would like to attend a performance, please visit for details or call the Box Office at 617.824.8400.


The Future of Government - Civic Innovation Delivering Transformative Services
Thursday, August 18, 2011 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (ET)
Boston, MA

Workshop and Discussion

Featured Speakers:
Nigel Jacob, Co-Chair, Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics
Chris Osgood, Co-Chair, Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics

ONE Marina Park Drive at FAN PIER
55 Northern Ave
Boston, MA 02210

Register at


Thursday, August 18th
MassChallenge Headquarters

Boston GreenFest 2011
Boston City Hall Plaza
Thursday, Aug 18 5 pm - 9:30 pm (Performers/Food)
Friday, Aug 19 noon - 9:30 pm (Exhibitors/Food/Vendors/Performers)
Saturday, Aug 20 11 am - 8 pm (Exhibitors/Food/Vendors/Performers)
The EcoParty Continues Every Night at the Hard Rock Café Presented by Afrodesiacity!


- Native American Drum Ceremony
- Green Fireworks and Light Show
- Transportation Tomorrow Today!
- Over 200 Exhibitors
- 200 Live Performances
- GreenSouleStage
- Great Escape with Alexanderia!
- EcoSalsa Fashion Show
- Jambalaya and Samba Dancers
- YMAA Kung Fu Demonstration
- NESA Gymnastic Presentation
- Tap Off with Boston Tap Company
- Green Entrepreneur Small Biz Forum
- EcoCafé, EcoGallery, EcoBazaar
- GreenFilmFest
- EcoFashion Pop-Up Shop
- One Gallon ChallengeTM
- EcoTimeTunnel
- BPS EcoPhoto Contest
- EcoPoetry with Seitu
- Boston GreenFest Quilt
- Fun for Kids!

Editorial Comment: Your editor will be doing a Solar IS Civil Defense demo on Friday and Saturday.


Don't miss Boston's annual bike tour showcasing the work of many to strengthen Boston's local food system.

The 2011 Tour de Farms is Saturday, Aug 20, leaving from Franklin Park and visiting Allandale Farm, Newton Community Farm, The Neighborhood Farm, Brookwood Community Farm and the Roslindale Farmers Market.

For more information and to register, see:


Boston Social Impact Potluck #III
Saturday, August 20, 2011 from 7:00 PM to 10:30 PM (ET)
36 Sciarappa Street, Roofdeck
Cambridge, MA 02141

Come mingle with other social entrepreneurs. Bring your friends who would be interested as well or want to hang out with other cool people trying to save the world [or at least make a lasting impact]!

It's a potluck but you don't have to bring a feast. So bring something light eatery or baked goods... or beer.... or wine - what ever your heart desires.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact the two co-organizers:

Adrian Wong
mobile 626-607-6029
Justin Kang

Please take our survey to make our potlucks more fun and your social impact experience now and for the future better:

Register at




MIT SDM Systems Thinking Webinar Series
Ricardo Valerdi, Associate Professor, University of Arizona

Date: August 22, 2011

Time: Noon - 1 p.m.

Open to all

Register at

About the Presentation
Competence in systems thinking is implicitly assumed among the population of engineers and managers — in fact, most technical people claim to be systems thinkers. But this competence is not as prevalent as these assertions might lead one to assume. Controlled experiments show that systems thinking performance, even among highly educated people, is poor. This presentation provides a set of systems thinking competencies and demonstrates how these are not as common as advertised. We also discuss how these competencies can be measured.
The main thesis is that systems thinking is not a natural act because (1) evolution has favored mechanisms tuned to dealing with immediate surface features of problems and (2) the Western education system tends to emphasize reductionist approaches. We discuss the implications of the current state and provide recommendations for closing the gap between the demand and supply of systems thinking through the use of systems thinking flight simulators. Finally, key takeaways are provided for the application of systems thinking across a variety of scenarios.

About the Speaker
Now an associate professor at the University of Arizona, Ricardo Valerdi was formerly a research associate in the Lean Advancement Initiative in the Engineering Systems Division at MIT.
Dr. Valerdi is a two-time recipient of the Best Thesis Advisor Award in the MIT Technology & Policy Program, the Best Article of the Year Award in theSystems Engineering Journal, and Best Paper Awards at the INCOSE Symposium, Conference on Systems Engineering Research and International Society of Parametric Analysts.

His research focuses on systems engineering metrics, cost estimation, test & evaluation, human systems integration, enterprise transformation, and performance measurement. His research has been funded by Army Test & Evaluation, Navy Acquisition Research Program, Air Force Office of the Surgeon General, Air Force Acquisition Chief Process Office, BAE Systems, and the IBM Center for the Business of Government.

Dr. Valerdi is the co-editor-in-chief of the Journal of Enterprise Transformation, served on the Board of Directors of the International Council on Systems Engineering, and is a senior member of the IEEE. He received his BS/BA in electrical engineering from the University of San Diego in 1999, and his MS and PhD degrees in systems architecting and engineering from the University of Southern California in 2002 and 2005.

About the Series
The MIT System Design and Management Program Systems Thinking Webinar Series features research conducted by SDM faculty, alumni, students, and industry partners. The series is designed to disseminate information on how to employ systems thinking to address engineering, management, and socio-political components of complex challenges.

Topic: Why Systems Thinking is Not a Natural Act
Date: Monday, August 22, 2011
Time: 12:00 pm, Eastern Daylight Time (New York, GMT-04:00)

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The Boston Women’s Heritage Trail, The Boston Parks and Recreation Department, The City of Boston Women’s Commission, and The Massachusetts Women’s Suffrage Celebration Committee
Invite you to attend

Women’s Equality Day

The 91st Anniversary of Women’s Right to Vote, The Release of Boston Women’s Heritage Trail's HerStory Map, & The Paget Family - Founders of the Public Garden Swan Boats, a Newly Dedicated Historic Boston Landmark

Friday, August 26, 2011
11:00 a.m. - Noon
Swan Boats Pavilion, Boston Public Garden

Info at:



Date: 8/26/2011 - 8/30/2011
Location: Microsoft New England R&D Center, One Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA 02142
Time: 9:00am - 7:00pm
Audience: Students and faculty from the Boston area and around the country working on ventures for the developing world
Description: Please note that this is a week-long workshop: August 26-30, 2011

VentureLab Sustainable Vision is a 5-day intensive workshop for students and faculty working on projects and ventures for the developing world. Students from Boston University, Northeastern, MIT (including Legatum fellows) Harvard and Tufts will meet and work with students from other programs around the country, to develop strong, sustainable business models that create products or services for the benefit of people living in poverty.



Event Details
Date: 9/7/2011
Location: Microsoft New England R&D Center, One Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA 02142
Time: 8:00am - 9:30am
Audience: Root Cause's 2011-2012 Social Innovation Forum semifinalists
Twitter: @RootCause

Description: The Semifinalist Information Session is an optional, but recommended session for all 2011-2012 semifinalists as we want to make sure that organizations understand both the process going forward and the expectations for those chosen as Social Innovators. We will focus on what we’re looking for in the second-round application and how those applications are evaluated. We will also bring in a 2011 Social Innovator to speak for a few minutes about his/her personal experience with the Social Innovation Forum.

Register at


Wednesday, September 21st, 2011, 7:00 p.m. Sustainability and Portland's 5 Ecodistricts: A Discussion with Garry Sotnik

Join us for a a round table discussion with sustainability economist, Garry Sotnik,visiting from the hub of environmental innovation, Portland, Oregon. Presenting his paper on Portland's five ecodistricts, an initiative launched in 2009 in Portland, OR, to catalyze the city’s transition process towards sustainable development, Garry will also share his analysis on adaptability: What does it mean to adapt? What is required for adaptation? And what can be done to assist human systems (e.g. households, communities, regions, etc.) in adapting? He will then open the floor for an open discussion on the role of community organizing within the environmental movement, the ideas of connectedness and resiliency in the face of climate change, what could movements in Boston learn from the large-scale and well-subsidized efforts in Portland, similarly, what can the Ecodistrict Initiative learn from grassroots and multi-focus social change organizing?

encuentro 5
33 Harrison Avenue
5th Floor
Boston, MA 02111
Close to Chinatown, Downtown Crossing, and Boylston T stops


Join us for the Greater Boston Slow Money Entrepreneur Showcase!
Thursday, September 22
6pm – 9pm
Non-Profit Center
89 South Street, Boston
South Street Conference Center

We will be bringing together investors, sustainable food entrepreneurs and leaders working together to rebuild our local food system. Learn about investment opportunities and how you can participate in rebuilding local economies based on the principles of soil fertility, sense of place, care of the commons and economic, cultural and biological diversity.

For investors: The Entrepreneur Showcase will provide access to sustainable food and farming businesses at different stages of development from start-up to expansion of existing businesses. The businesses and initiatives are also seeking different levels of financing — from small loans to major capital, as well as donations. Greater Boston Slow Money encourages investors of all resource levels to attend including institutional, individual, accredited, and unaccredited investors. This showcase event is not an offer to sell securities or a solicitation of an offer to buy securities.

For Entrepreneurs: The Showcase is a tightly produced event. Each entrepreneur will have five minutes and 6 slides to tell their stories, followed by 5 minutes of Q&A from the audience. Presenters will also benefit from the networking opportunity specifically designed to encourage and elevate investor dialog. Throughout the event, your collateral will be available for attendees, and you will be mentioned in all promotional materials for the event.

The Entrepreneur Showcase offers all the advantages of a traditional venture fair and many more. Because of the shared vision that brings us all together, it is an unparalleled opportunity for you to build relationships with investors and entrepreneurs from all over the region. We are confident that, if chosen to participate, you will have opportunities to make important connections that add value to your enterprise.

Given the relatively short time horizon, please submit your application no later than Wednesday, August 31, 2011. Demand for participation in the Showcase is high; spots will fill up.

To apply: send an email to and we will send you the application. It is free to apply, but costs $25 to present and take advantage of this exciting opportunity.




AC Swap – The Cambridge Energy Alliance’s window air conditioner swap program is in progress. Residents can obtain a voucher for $125 if they swap an inefficient window AC unit for an Energy Star rated model This is a limited time offer. Go to the CEA website for participation details:


Free Solar Panels for Houses of Worship

From a recent Mass Interfaith Power & Light ( email
"We've recently been talking with DCS Energy ( who has an unbeatable offer: if your site qualifies, they design and install the panels at no cost, don't charge you for any electricity, and donate the system to your house of worship after five years. Your only costs will be for a building permit, possibly a structural engineer to verify that your roof can support their weight, and any preparatory work such as roof work or tree removal. If solar panels are so expensive how can anyone give them away for free? First, there is a federal grant program that is only available until November that pays for 30% of the cost of the system. Then there is an accelerated depreciation option that gives certain kinds of investors another tax advantage. Finally, the state awards a special allowance called a "Solar Renewal Energy Credit" (SRECs) to owners of solar electricity systems which are sold at auctions to utilities who buy them to meet their requirements under the Massachusetts' renewable portfolio standard. DCS is betting that the price of these SRECs will remain high. Jim Nail, president of MA IP&L, has talked to DCS Energy and is currently having them prepare a proposal for his church, St. Dunstan's Episcopal in Dover. Jim says, "The references I've talked to have been quite positive about the program and the company has been very responsive. "If you think your site might qualify, contact Peter Carli,, with the address of your house of worship and your contact information. He'll take a preliminary look at your site and advise you if it meets their criteria."


Young World Inventors ( has started a Kickstarter campaign ( to fund insider web stories of African and American innovators in collaboration, whom Diane Hendrix will be following with her camera from June 23 to August 2 in Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania. They are building a community and raising funds for production and editing.

One of the people she will be following is Bernard Kiwia, a Tanzanian inventor who teamed up with MIT grad Jodie Wu to start Global Cycle Solutions in Arusha, near the foot of Mt. Kilimanjaro. They are starting with ten insider stories of innovators (high and low tech) in East Africa on a new interactive site, with collaborators who'll help distribute stories, such as AITI, who who led us to some fascinating projects (see our intro to AITI on YouTube).

Editorial Comment: I too have met Bernard Kiwia and am deeply impressed by the variety of projects and collaborations happening between Africa and the USA. Bernard's bicycle cell phone charger is only one of the many innovative ideas coming out of young African and American imaginations and expertise these days.


What you need to know: The Staples Youth Social Entrepreneur (YSE) Competition is a global competition created by Staples Foundation and Ashoka to recognize exceptional young people using innovation and technology to advance social change and improve their community and the world.

Who’s eligible?: Young people (age 12-24), living anywhere in the world, are eligible to apply.

Dates and details: Apply online between June 22 and September 19, 2011.

For more information:
Laura Sampath
MIT International Development Initiative
77 Mass Ave, 10-110
Cambridge MA 02139

Sign up for the 2011 Yunus Challenge Facebook page:




Massachusetts Attitudes About Climate Change – An opinion survey of Massachusetts residents conducted by MassINC and sponsored by the Barr Foundation found that 77% of respondents believe that global warming has “probably been happening” and 59% of all respondents see see it as being at least partially caused by human pollution. Only 42% of the state’s residents say global warming will have very serious consequences for Massachusetts if left unaddressed. The 18 to 29 age group is more likely to believe global warming is appearing and caused by humans compared to the 60+ age group. African-American (56%) and Latino residents (69%) are more likely than white residents (40%) to believe global warming will be a very serious problem if left unaddressed. The MassINC report, titled The 80 Percent Challenge: What Massachusetts must do to meet targets and make headway on climate change (, contains many other findings.


The presentations from the recent Affordable Comfort National Home Performance Conference are available online at

Lots of good information from what some call the best energy conference in the USA on Deep Energy Retrofits to Community Energy Challenges with details on insulation, heat flow, energy metering, ducting, hot water, and many, many other topics. If you are a practical energy wonk, this should make your eyes light up.


Free Monthly Energy Analysis

CarbonSalon is a free service that every month can automatically track your energy use and compare it to your past energy use (while controlling for how cold the weather is). You get a short friendly email that lets you know how you’re doing in your work to save energy.


Boston Food System

"The Boston Food System [listserv] provides a forum to post announcements of events, employment opportunities, internships, programs, lectures, and other activities as well as related articles or other publications of a non-commercial nature covering the area's food system - food, nutrition, farming, education, etc. - that take place or focus on or around Greater Boston (broadly delineated)."

The Boston area is one of the most active nationwide in terms of food system activities - projects, services, and events connected to food, farming, nutrition - and often connected to education, public health, environment, arts, social services and other arenas. Hundreds of organizations and enterprises cover our area, but what is going on week-to-week is not always well publicized.

Hence, the new Boston Food System listserv, as the place to let everyone know about these activities. Specifically:
Use of the BFS list will begin soon, once we get a decent base of subscribers. Clarification of what is appropriate to announce and other posting guidelines will be provided as well.

It's easy to subscribe right now at


Artisan Asylum

Sprout & Co: Community Driven Investigations

Greater Boston Solidarity Economy Mapping Project
a project by Wellesley College students that invites participation, contact

------------------------'s Guide to Boston


Links to events at 60 colleges and universities at Hubevents

Thanks to

Fred Hapgood's Selected Lectures on Science and Engineering in the
Boston Area

Boston Area Computer User Groups

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