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New electric car conversion kit will charge your car (and wallet)

Carnegie Mellon students create an all-included electric car conversion kit as part of their ChargeCar project. This DIY alternative can convert your old, gas guzzling Honda Civic into a zero-emission battery operated car.

Read the full story here.

Surgical robots to take over operating theatres

Robots designed for exploration, search and rescue, and even a simple soccer match are now able to perform surgery.  

With a diameter smaller than the size of a dime, these snake-like robots can identify diseases and operate through just a small incision in the human body. 

Read the full story here.

PNC Park noted for best ball park food for Primanti's and Iron City

Travel and Leisure magazine cites PNC Park, along with 11 other stadiums, as having some of the best ball park food in the country, recognizing--what else?--the classic Primanti Brothers sandwiches and Iron City beer.

Read the full story here.

The Landscape of the Marcellus Shale

"Pittsburgh photographer Brian Cohen set out more than a year ago to lead a group of photographers to document the impact of gas drilling on communities  atop the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania," writes Sharon Walsh, editor of Pittsburgh-based PublicSource.

"The initial group of four photographers quickly grew to six.

"Gas drilling, regardless of one's feelings, is probably the biggest story that's happened in Pennsylvania in generations," Cohen said. "And people always want to know which side I'm on. It's very divisive.

"Everybody knows photographs don't tell the cold, unmediated truth," he said, but "there's a certain power that comes with photography."

Cohen and his group believed that photography could bring new light to a subject that has generated a great deal of heat because the images enable reflection and a multi-faceted approach.

Read the story and see his photos here.

Yes, Cleveland, there is lots to love about your sister city, Pittsburgh

Except for two days a year when our football teams face each other, there's no reason not to love their sister city Pittsburgh, say these two Cleveland authors. From walking Walnut St to stops at Eleven and Dish and a stay at the charming Morning Glory Inn, they find a weekend in Pittsburgh to be quite wonderful.

But what took them to Robinson Twp for the one thing they can't find in Pittsburgh?

Read the full story here.

Carnegie Speech helps international set better communicate in English--in the friendly skies, too

When speaking English poses a problem, as it does in flight communication, Carnegie Speech can greatly improve speech patterns, diction and pronunciation to avoid sometimes big problems. Take their recent partnership with the Pan Am Flight Academy.

Read the full story here.

Latest Dark Knight Rises trailer reveals more

View the latest and some say best Dark Knight Rises trailer here.

In search of crossaints in Pittsburgh

Who's up for a croissant tour? Join the iheartpgh team as they take stock of the best in the city (with more to come).
Rated by butteriness, flakiness, and ripability!

Read the blog and see the tempting photos here.

Evive launches campus kiosks with filtered water, washing system

With colleges moving to or actually banning bottled water, a Pennsylvania-based startup, called Evive Station, has developed an innovative, ergonomic solution for providing campuses (and beyond) with a better alternative, reports Tech Crunch. "Evive has decided to go with the kiosk approach to the bottled water problem. With design help from Daedalus, the startup developed its “stations” to provide campuses with the world’s first on-site bottle cleaning and filtered water-dispensing service.
That doesn’t sound that cool, says the 16-year-old cynic in you. And you’re right, plenty of universities and organizations provide what are known as “sinks” and “dishwashers” and “hydration stations” often called “water fountains.” Fair enough. But even if you buy a plastic water bottle and use it once, it can get filthy pretty quickly, and sticking it in the dishwasher isn’t a workable solution.
So, what’s cool about Evive is that they offer users double-walled stainless steel reusable bottles, which means no more plastic, and lower carbon footprints. In turn, their kiosks filter municipal water, offer unlimited re-filling and cleaning of those steel bottles by way of a patent-pending process that only takes a minute. And everything other than the bottles are free.

Read the full story here.

Can runners have too many miles on the tires?

Can runners burn out if they start too young? Is there such a thing as having too many miles on the tires? The New York Times asked Dr. Vonda Wright, an orthopedic surgeon and exercise researcher at the University of Pittsburgh. There are no definitive data on this question, but there are some suggestive findings, she said.

"Dr. Wright’s study of senior Olympians — athletes age 50 and older who participated in the National Senior Olympic Games, a track and field event — found what she considers a surprisingly small rate of decline in performance until age 75: just a few percent a year in their times. After that, though, the athletes slowed down considerably."

Read the full story here.

Rust Belt Chic: Young people moving in more than out in Cle, Pittsburgh, Detroit

We knew that more young people were moving to Pittsburgh as opposed to leaving. This welcome trend is not only affecting our city but other so-called Rust Belt cities such as Cleveland and Detroit.

"What’s more, the majority of the growth occurred in the 22-to-34-year-old demo, those coveted “knowledge economy” workers for whom every city is competing," reports salon.com.  Pittsburgh, too, has unexpectedly reversed its out-migration of young people. The number of 18-to-24-year-olds was declining there until 2000, but has since climbed by 16 percent."

Read the full story here.

Pittsburgh: a model for addressing child homelessness

In 2010, there were 31,386 homeless children in Pennsylvania, writes Ralph da Costa, president of the Institute for Children, Poverty and Homelessness. "To put this number in context, that is more than the entire University of Pittsburgh student body.

"Some of these homeless families are living in shelters. Many more are in motels, and doubled up, living two or more families in an overcrowded apartment. This instability would make it hard for anyone to learn.

"And though the nation is technically in recovery, the numbers of homeless children have risen. In Pennsylvania, there was a 46 percent increase in the number of children and youth experiencing homelessness from the 2008-09 school year to the 2009-10 school year.

The good news, he reports, is that in Pittsburgh and throughout Alleghany County, HCEF has inspired a coalition that includes U.S. Attorney David Hickton and many other passionate stakeholders. "Sadly, in most of the country, this community-wide buy-in has not yet happened."

Read the full story here.

Kids and the Pipeline: A Marcellus Shale Tale

From PublicSource, an indepth news service based in Pittsburgh:

Farmer Jeanne Williams and her 116 goats are waiting for their Greene County hillside to be returned to green pasture.
After two months of upheaval as workmen from Precision Pipeline dug a seemingly endless trench, a layer of mud covered the freshly installed pipeline that will ultimately ferry natural gas being extracted from Marcellus Shale deposits.

The pipeline plan has a cheery name, the Sunrise Project, but for landowners like Jeanne, the relationship with the pipeline builders has been physically and emotionally draining.

Read the story and see the photo slide show here.

Kevin Sousa has a plan for food trucks in Pittsburgh

The problem with doing food trucks in Pittsburgh, writes chef Kevin Sousa in his blog, is that you can't locate them near competitive businesses due to zoning. What if there was parking lot for them all to converge? Could it work? Read more about his plan.

How did Pittsburgh do it? Cleveland wants to know as FitzGerald meets Fitzgerald

Cleveland's County Executive, Ed FitzGerald, came to town recently to meet with Allegheny County Executive, Rich Fitzgerald, to learn about Pittsburgh's remarkable turnaround.

Pittsburgh's Allegheny County has so far outpaced Cuyahoga County's efforts, reports the Cleveland Plain Dealer, "in no small part due to a sleek reform government that replaced a slate of elected officials with one executive. Voters approved a county charter there in 1998, 11 years before Cuyahoga adopted its own.

"This is a one-stop shop," said Allegheny Executive Rich Fitzgerald. "When businesses are having trouble they know they can come here and get things done. This office has the ability to convene all the partners."

Read the full story here.
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