Friday, August 8, 2008

Les Miserables

I've just finished the book Les Miserables from Victor Hugo. Yeah, it's pretty late for me, for a 21-old boy(or should I say man)! In my childhood, this novel was tought to be tough for children, so hard to read. I even remember my mother saying "Look at her! She even read the Les Miserables" for somebody whom I don't remember. Maybe I was really too young and told my subconscious even not to attempt to read that book or forgot about it later.

By the way, it was pretty easy to read it now. Because it was the Penguin simplified edition(3000-words Advanced) which I had bought in High School by mistake. I just had misunderstood which reading books we had to buy and bought the ones for the English Language class, who study English in detail. So I did not attempt to read them, until now. Getting prerpared for the TOEFL exam, I see that I have weakness of speaking and vocabulary. So I tought this book could help some. Yes, I learned more than 20 words.

The book is very beautiful, indeed I think the writer has some sadistic side because I felt really bad in the first 4 chapters(how can people be so cruel!). But afterwards, it tended to make me so curious abot what would be the next pages that I read it too fast. As a result, I probably missed a lot of words to learn. I recommend this book to be read!

New electrolyzers open up the way to Solar Century

In the earlier days of this week, while watching CNN International, I run into a wonderful news. The visitor was a professor from MIT and they were going to talk about a recent invention on storing solar energy.

As you may know, solar energy is known to be unlimited as long as the sun lives but limited as it can't be used efficiently because not only the solar panels can't absorb all the energy but also the energy can be obtained only during the daytime. It seems that the absorption is still a problem but the recent news promise in storing the excess energy.

The scientists at MIT, have found a new method to store the excess energy by dividing the water into its ingredients, Hydrogene and Oxygene. Heey, this is already being done worldwide, you might say. But this operation needed high maintenance costs and abnormal operation conditions(temperature, pressure, etc.). This new method, inspired by the photosynthesis, uses a new catalyst consisting of cobalt metal, phosphate and an electrode to produce Oxygen and another catalyst like platinum to produce Hydrogen and does not require any special conditions for the reaction to start.

As this is an easy-implementing method of storing energy, it is tought to change the world, contributing to the works on solutions for the global warming problem. But as the proffessor says, it will take 8 years for us to have these sets on our roofs. I wish it was closer if it was that easy to implement but maybe the other (efficient absorption) problem needs to be solved in order these products to be more efficient.

By the way, I have finished my internship. Nowadays I'm preparing for my TOEFL exam and working on Python as usual. My Python presentation went very well and I saw that most of the aspects of Python could be introduced in 2 hours! Such a beautiful language...