Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ten Green Googles

Vinod Khosla, the billionaire Silicon Valley venture capitalist, told Bloomberg TV in October of 2010 that "there'll be ten Googles in the next ten years in energy." 

When I was a young child my father would sing a lullaby to me that was “ten green bottles hanging on the wall and if one green bottle should accidently fall there’ll be nine green bottles hanging on the wall”.  It then continued that if there were nine green bottles and one should fall there would be eight green bottles.  This continued till there were no bottles hanging on the wall.  Here is a youtube link that sings the lullaby to you.

Vinod is the VC who brought us the green companies of Kior (Condi is on the board), Range Fuels, Cello, Calera, and several other green bottles that could not hang on the wall of the laws of thermodynamics.

I suggest that readers watch the two videos.  The lullaby first and then Vinod’s fairytale interview with Bloomberg back in 2010.  Here is the link to that interview

Talking of utter thermodynamic failures our old friends at A123 asked the SEC to accept a name change for the company.  It will now be called B 456.  Here is the SEC link to this effect.

 B456 used to supply batteries to Al Gore's wonder car company Fisker.  Fisker is on its last legs.  It furloughed all of its workers and has engaged a bankruptcy lawyer just in case Al Jazeera cannot save the struggling company that took almost $200 million in loans from Chu Chu in the name of we the American people.  Here is a link on the latest from Fisker that is hanging onto the wall by a whisker.

I don't think fiction could be as crazy as this.  Khosla claims the oil companies think "linearly".  At least the oil companies know that thermodynamics rules.  Khosla should have stuck to something simple like knitting.  Thermo was way over his head.  Al Gore should have stuck to counting hanging chads rather than hanging green bottles.


  1. We ought not wait for new technologies or presume that existing technologies are being applied most effectively. In terms of the energy used to heat and cool homes and buildings we can do far better and it is not something we need to wait for. It is maddening that we accept inferior methods and then use them as the energy standards with which we need to beat with some new technology. The current methods of using technology in the industry are not guided by thermodynamics and they are not much or a "bar" to beat. Better methods exist today and the industry standard is not representative of the best that can be achieved.