Monday, October 31, 2011

Powered By The People

It's such a simple idea: people can generate power. The Occupy movement grasps the concept. And when Mayor Bloombulbug took away the gas powered generators, bicycle generators fired up:

Having lost their gas-powered generators, the protestors at Occupy Wall Street are turning to a more eco-friendly alternative: pedal power.

Keegan Stephan, a bike mechanic and environmentalist at the Zuccotti Park site of the protest in New York, has been pedaling a stationary bronze Schwinn bicycle to provide energy for the protesters' encampment.

"People get really excited when they see these bikes," George Pingeon, a bike tour guide involved with the effort, told the New York Times.

How does the contraption work? The bike is connected to a flywheel, which in turn connects to a dynamo, the Times explains. That dynamo creates energy, which flows through a motor and a one-way diode to charge a black battery.

Generating electricity is really rather simple: spin the reverse of an electric motor, and electricity comes out. Spinning a generator by using a bicycle is not a new concept. But, hey, you've got a lot of people; let them make their own power.

Now all we need to do is translate this into the political process.