At some point in the future we'll either talk about how dorky people looked fumbling with their slab phones all the time (I always have) or just think of them like pocket watches—a machine put in use before it was miniaturized. I suspect that in the old days glancing at your wristwatch during meetings was tolerated a lot better than pulling out your pocket watch.
The Pebble is definitely more attractive than most others, certainly more than what the Apple looks like so far. Surely the fans will buy Apples, but I'm guessing Apple won't dominate the market or even lead the way this time. Until we have some kind of I/O that displays stuff in our eyes or brain without Glass and reads thoughts, seems like the wristwatch is the least intrusive, most convenient device.
I want features that have already appeared in watches: time display, stopwatch, alarm, tides for anywhere not dependent on downloading, barometer/altitude, compass, glow-in-the-dark, survivability from shock/EM fields/water/heat/cold, good styling (very few smart watches are much less than ugly), programmable remote control, good battery life, and durability, all in one. Add to that rudimentary navigation (only signals from GPS satellites necessary, and maybe not even that), Bluetooth, an accelerometer, and a great programming environment for those not wanting the hassle of a ridiculous tool chain.
A fatter version should have something like FindMeSpot functionality—SMS to satellites.
Oh yeah, and a friendly price.
City and school buses are the perfect target for hybrid ICE/Electric propulsion (along with FedEx and UPS delivery trucks). They accelerate and decelerate a huge mass every block or so. Recapture as much of the energy as you can while slowing to speed up again. The power of the ICE needn't be anywhere close to what it is currently. Maybe not even electric—some mechanical means of storing energy for short periods would be helpful, and probably a lot cheaper. Just DO SOMETHING to avoid throwing away all that energy put into accelerating every block.
Since there's already a lot of experience using CNG for buses, use that and avoid much of the complicated emissions-control equipment. Buses are so big that putting a reformer on board and fueling them with methane but powering them with fuel cells might be feasible.
Yes. And if the frackers were required to incorporate the external costs, it would be more expensive still.
I take it you mean LPG liquefaction and liquid storage is cheaper/easier than LNG. CNG is certainly common and useful, just not very compact, even at 3,000 psi. LNG is arguably safer, however, as it's lighter than air, whereas a major LPG leak can leave a lot of gas at ground level. And LNG is cold enough to quench hot bullets if they penetrate the tank. LPG isn't particularly cold until you evaporate some of it.