One Day Our Devices Will Self-Charge. This Technology Shows It's Possible.

A future of renewable energy can be ours.

An industry powered by renewables could be ours as early as 2050, according to researchers. This future depends on whether that industry is up to the task of developing the technology to support such a market. The Paris Agreement has helped show the world's commitment to supporting business decisions aimed at enhancing alternative energy solutions. Could this be the next step?

Smartwatch owners will be delighted to hear about this one: Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, have developed an organic solar cell that can be taped to the skin, like a bandage, and is about half the size of a credit card. It generates enough energy to run a smartwatch.

"These devices are still kind of clunky,” researcher Timothy O’Connor said in an interview with New Scientist. “We’re trying to make these electronics almost imperceptibly integrated with the user.”

They tested the wearable solar cell's ability to handle the day-to-day twisting and bending that the skin endures, as well as its ability to sustainably “power an LED and a digital watch.”

This solution is unconventional, and whether or not it would succeed in the market is questionable. Building a zero-emission future will require developers to create a market full of choice, and making renewable energy solutions the easier choice. Paul Droege did just that when he created the SunPort.

“We have also grown in the building trades in terms of how you build energy-efficient homes and buildings,” says EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “We have grown thousands and thousands of jobs. We are building the economy of the future by building in your considerations on environment into those decisions.”


Natalie has been writing professionally for about 6 years. After graduating from Ithaca College with a degree in Feature Writing, she snagged a job at where she had the opportunity to review all the latest consumer gadgets. Since then she has become a writer for hire, freelancing for various websites. In her spare time, you may find her riding her motorcycle, reading YA novels, hiking, or playing video games. Follow her on Twitter: @nat_schumaker

Photo Credit: Pablo Cuadra / Stringer / Getty

Compelling speakers do these 4 things every single time

The ability to speak clearly, succinctly, and powerfully is easier than you think

Former U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee rally at the Anaheim Convention Center on September 8, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Barbara Davidson/Getty Images)
Personal Growth

The ability to communicate effectively can make or break a person's assessment of your intelligence, competence, and authenticity.

Keep reading Show less

Antimicrobial resistance is a growing threat to good health and well-being

Antimicrobial resistance is growing worldwide, rendering many "work horse" medicines ineffective. Without intervention, drug-resistant pathogens could lead to millions of deaths by 2050. Thankfully, companies like Pfizer are taking action.

Image courtesy of Pfizer.
  • Antimicrobial-resistant pathogens are one of the largest threats to global health today.
  • As we get older, our immune systems age, increasing our risk of life threatening infections. Without reliable antibiotics, life expectancy could decline for the first time in modern history.
  • If antibiotics become ineffective, common infections could result in hospitalization or even death. Life-saving interventions like cancer treatments and organ transplantation would become more difficult, more often resulting in death. Routine procedures would become hard to perform.
  • Without intervention, resistant pathogens could result in 10 million annual deaths by 2050.
  • By taking a multi-faceted approach—inclusive of adherence to good stewardship, surveillance and responsible manufacturing practices, as well as an emphasis on prevention and treatment—companies like Pfizer are fighting to help curb the spread.
Keep reading Show less

Preserving truth: How to confront and correct fake news

Journalism got a big wake up call in 2016. Can we be optimistic about the future of media?

  • "[T]o have a democracy that thrives and actually that manages to stay alive at all, you need regular citizens being able to get good, solid information," says Craig Newmark.
  • The only constructive way to deal with fake news? Support trustworthy media. In 2018, Newmark was announced as a major donor of two new media organizations, The City, which will report on New York City-area stories which may have otherwise gone unreported, and The Markup, which will report on technology.
  • Greater transparency of fact-checking within media organizations could help confront and correct fake news. Organizations already exist to make media more trustworthy — are we using them? There's The Trust Project, International Fact-Checkers Network, and Tech & Check.
Keep reading Show less