|It is not a great leap from these toys to trash technology that can actually help those who must live on the ground:
Solar water disinfection with clear plastic bottles
solar cookers from cardboard, aluminum foil, and a clear plastic bag
can also be made from trash and are used around the world in homes and refugee camps.
More efficient cook stoves
and small solar electric systems
are also becoming available at prices not much more expensive when compared to the firewood, charcoal, kerosene, and candles which are what the poorest of the poor usually use.
Bicycle cell phone chargers and human-power take-offs
are also increasingly used.
The Internet, Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter were used to foment a social and political revolution that has overthrown dictators in Tunisia, Egypt, possibly Libya, maybe even Syria or Yemen. It may be that the same technologies can speed an economic revolution and build renewably powered, locally resilient economies as well.
I wonder if Arvind Gupta's materials are available in Arabic. Or Spanish.
Fastfood Containers as Solar Devices
Solar Is Civil Defense
Small-scale LED Lighting, Off-Grid Cell Phones
Notes on the Arab Spring at