Tabs for Thursday

Nearly any material can be used to turn the energy in air humidity into electricity, scientists found in a discovery that could lead to continuously producing clean energy with little pollution.

Well, it sounds too good to be true, but if we ever hit a point at which humidity is the key to energy, the Deep South will be sitting pretty.

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Sleeping Dog says:

    but if we ever hit a point at which humidity is the key to energy, the Deep South will be sitting pretty.

    It will be determined that generating electricity from humidity will change the environment of the south, therefore we should continue to burn fossil fuels.

  2. Michael Cain says:

    Well, it sounds too good to be true, but if we ever hit a point at which humidity is the key to energy, the Deep South will be sitting pretty.

    It took some digging but the supplemental materials indicate that the power output is very small — call it five orders of magnitude smaller per square meter than a typical PV solar panel. If someone approached me about angel funding to attempt to commercialize this, I’d be a hard pass. There are lots of leading edge battery and solar panel techs that look much more practical.

  3. MarkedMan says:

    @Michael Cain: Concur. This isn’t even at the “We see a path from the lab to commercial viability and so will begin the 15 year march to an initial niche market”, much less the expansion into a mass market product.

  4. Kathy says:

    @Michael Cain:

    If they’re cheap enough to make and operate, they could serve as local supplemental power for small uses. If there are enough such, it could sell as a niche product.

  5. Scott says:

    Speaking of Tommy Tuberville, here is more evidence that he is a POS. I remember because two of my children went to Texas Tech. He was also a crappy coach.

    Tommy Tuberville left recruits at dinner to take Cincinnati job

    Tommy Tuberville was in such a rush to leave Texas Tech that he didn’t even have time to finish his dinner.

    Junior college offensive lineman Devonte Danzey, who was in Lubbock for an official visit last weekend, told the recruiting site that Tuberville stepped away from a dinner with several recruits and assistant coaches Friday night and never returned. Saturday morning, Tuberville surprised many by accepting an offer to become Cincinnati’s coach.

    Danzey told he asked Tuberville about his future plans at Texas Tech and how long he expected to remain with the program, but Tuberville tiptoed around the question.

    Moments later, Danzey said, Tuberville disappeared.

    “The waitress brought our food out, and we thought (Tuberville) went to the bathroom, but he never came back to dinner,” Danzey said. “Then next thing I know, the next day, he made an announcement that he’s going to Cincinnati.”

    The next morning, when Danzey and other recruits were set to take a tour of the campus, Texas Tech offensive line coach Chris Thomsen (also the team’s interim coach) told the group Tuberville was gone.

    “There’s always a next step,” Tuberville said Saturday.

    Think this is bad? It’s nothing compared to Tuberville’s exit from Mississippi in 1998. Less than a week after saying “They’ll have to carry me out of here in a pine box” – meaning he was locked in for life – Tuberville took the job at Auburn.

  6. Gavin says:

    Ken Paxton says he won Texas for Trump in 2020 by withholding mail-in ballots for Harris County – aka Houston.

  7. Gustopher says:

    From the Slate article on Alito:

    As Leah Litman pointed out on the Strict Scrutiny podcast, though, Kagan was never the problem: She has long complied voluntarily with the Judicial Code of Conduct, so much so that she once turned away a gift of free bagels and lox from high school friends.

    Either Kagan is a saint, or she knew they weren’t good bagels and was using ethics as an excuse to bow out of a poor bagel experience.

    Either way, but especially if the latter, my opinion of her rises.

  8. Kathy says:


    My mind instantly played back the scene in The Shawshank Redemption, where the road contractor gives Norton a box with a pie his wife made.