Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Governor's School of North Carolina

I spoke last night (and am speaking again tonight) to the best and brightest students in North Carolina who are attending a state funded summer program on two North Carolina campuses. To say that the experience has been (and I'm assuming will continue to be) overwhelming is a complete understatement. The reception that I received, their open minded approach and the intelligence I saw in these students gives me great hope. The Governor's School is truly shaping tomorrows leaders and I just wanted to throw a shout out to the incredible minds that I have been encountering and continue to encounter while here.

While the students have impressed me to no end, the faculty is equally if not more impressive! In the short time that I have been here I have seen a level of commitment that is fairly unparalleled. These are the bright minds that should be molding our future and it is my hope that they continue to do what they are doing for a long time coming. These are the folks that are doing it right!

Every state should have a program like this and every young mind should be challenged the way these kids are being challenged - to think, to explore, and to continue learning and evolving.

Thank you to everyone who has made my experience memorable.....you inspire me.


P.S. Ironically, the reason that I am here in the first place is because of Katherine T., a teacher who asked me come to speak to her class in California last year. One of her students who heard me speak sent me one of the greatest letter I have ever received, so I'm glad I was able to return the favor.


Ashcon L said...

I can't wait to hear you tonight, thank you so much for coming!

Kenny Brown said...

Dear Dave,

I want to thankyou for coming to GSW to speak to us. Your presentation was a lot of fun and very eye opening. This Saturday I am going to get one of those steel kanteens!

Thanks again,

Dave said...

My pleasure and I hope the buzz on campus today is positive. Throw me shout if you hear of people talking about what I discussed last night as I'm always interested in hearing what resonated.

Keep questioning!


Kat Stanton said...

Thank you so very much for speaking at GSE last night! You're definitely one of the best speakers we've experienced here so far. I've also heard people talking about the event last night all morning, and all are talking about how cool of an idea it is to have "a portable bowl that folds up" and "a toothbrush container with silverware in it" -- and most (I included) had no idea about vampire power and all the different little things that we pass by every day actually affecting our world as a whole! Not to mention the statistics you showed us about the plastic bags and showing us the giant plastic islands in the ocean... I know I had no idea of it, and it's a real eye-opener to learn of it! I'm so very thankful you could inform us so much of all these things we were so vague about before, and I hope that everyone else can soon have the honor of hearing you out!

Ashley said...

Thanks for coming to GSE last nigh! You were awesome!

Dave said...

Right on, glad to be a part and glad to do it. Keep on walking the walk and talk and things will soon change. It's the only way it is going to happen.


pete said...

I went to your Governors School talk last thursday. I am not a Governors school staff or student but my fiance told me about it and i loved it. i am in graduate school to be a high school physics teacher and like you i am excited about the opportunity to inject some independently researched facts into young students' minds. After listening to your talk it seemed like you might want some more detailed info on hydrogen cars and so I've done a little research for you.

this article gives a so-so depiction of what is going on but importantly states that the hydrogen fuel has to be made somewhere and there are just any many non-green places as there are green places to do that.

this link is best in terms of understanding how a fuel cell actually creates its energy. the most scientific thing i have put in this email but also the most important in understanding how hydrogen fuel cells work.

this link shows a picture from wikipedia about the efficiency of hydrogen energy use. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Battery_EV_vs._Hydrogen_EV.png)
Even if technology made hydrogen more energy efficient, in terms of source to use, you still have the infrastructure argument, which you did talk about. That is the biggest point. Hydrogen proponents have to explain why it makes sense to develop hydrogen fuel plants, hydrogen transport trucks, and finally hydrogen stations just so you can convert it all into electricity required to run the electric motor. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_vehicle)
Electric car people are saying, "screw hydrogen, just produce renewable electricity and charge car batteries at home overnight and then use electricity simply to power the electric motor." And they are right.

Another interesting article: http://ezinearticles.com/?Hydrogen-Fuel-Cell-Cars-vs-Electric-Cars---Which-Is-Really-The-Car-Of-The-Future?&id=555594
This guy makes pretty much the same argument (albeit more readably) about hydrogen production possibly coming from non-green sources.

All in all, my take it that you have to use a lot of energy to make hydrogen to make back electricity. So why not just never make hydrogen and use the energy we would have used to make the hydrogen to power our electric cars, which happen to be way more efficient anyways? But once we all have electric cars we still have to pressure the energy producers that the electricity we want is not electricity from coal/petroleum.

i hope this is helpful.

keep it up,

Ashcon said...

Hi Dave,

I just saw this article today and I thought it was interesting since this was one of the major topics you had talked about at your presentation...