When you train your dog to bring you the morning paper, that is a neat trick. When you train your computer to bring you news you want to read, that is an RSS feed.
I never fully appreciated RSS feeds for what they can do until I started reading the book We the Media by Dan Gillmor. The underlying idea is that you don’t need to search the Internet for the things that interest you but that they come to you through your RSS subscriptions and preferences.
This is useful for you when you want to be kept up to date on certain topics. Anytime there is an article, your RSS feed is updated to show it. I currently use Google Reader to keep track of blogs, job postings, and news.
Gillmor discusses another way to use RSS, which is to follow what is being said about yourself. This is a good way for popular bloggers and organizations to know what is going on in their realm and connects with their readers on a different level.
Honestly, I haven’t used RSS feeds enough in the past but I’m starting to really appreciate what they do. It could particularly be very helpful for my current job search!
Every LEED project needs to fulfill all prerequisites and Minimum Program Requirements. These do not get the project any points towards certification. To get points, the project must include many different strategies in the different categories to add up to the threshold number of points. Read through this website for details on the process: GBCI.
Here are the different certification levels:
- LEED certified – 40-49 points
- LEED Silver – 50-59 points
- LEED Gold – 60-79 points
- LEED Platinum – 80+ points
Strategies that are used to fulfill credits are very diverse. The LEED project should be using more strategies than needed so that if some are not awarded points, then others that do get points will still count towards making it to the certification threshold.
USGBC is very careful to NOT condone specific products for LEED buildings, but instead they promote overall strategies such as low-flow showerheads and faucets. Therefore, there is nearly never a case where a product or material can be for-sure used on a LEED project to gain points. The only exception is that, as things are now, Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) certified wood is approved for LEED (there is some controversy over this and there is talk of USGBC making their own label for wood products).
For example, the new Nintendo building will be building a green roof and including composting bins towards gaining points for LEED Silver certification. Strategies may contribute towards credits in more than one category (i.e. Energy & Atmosphere in addition to Materials & Resources).
Other strategies might include:
- Bicycle and shower facilities
- Light shelves in windows and shell
- Natural ventilation
- Constructed wetlands
This entry will focus on how the LEED rating systems are set up and the basic categories of credits. For a basic introduction to LEED, check this website.
The LEED Rating Systems are the sets of credits and categories that a LEED project team is aiming for. They are specific for the type of construction, like a new building would go for LEED for new construction, a school would go for LEED for Schools, a home would go for LEED for Homes.
Every rating system has the same set of categories, though the credits within them may be different.
The categories are:
- Sustainable Sites
- Water Efficiency
- Energy & Atmosphere
- Materials & Resources
- Indoor Environmental Quality
- Locations and Linkages
- Awareness & Education
- Innovation in Design
- Regional Priority
The different credits in each category may be weighted to be worth more points than other credits. Some credits allow for incremental points to be earned by how much is accomplished by the building. For example, a certain percentage decrease in water usage could result in 1 point, but by decreasing water usage by then next threshold percentage could result in 2 points.
The Energy & Atmosphere category’s credits have the most potential points to be earned.
That’s it for now. I’ll be posting more on this since I’m almost done with graduate school applications, but for more advanced notes, see my previous post.
So I am sick, possibly with the flu, and I remembered looking at Google Trends for the flu a while back so I though I’d post about it. Here is a video explaining it:
It is interesting to me how they use search terms data to put together these models. It makes me think about what else could be graphed like this that they haven’t done yet or how Google Trends can be used for research and gathering a sense of what the public is thinking and doing.
Specific links to pages of interest:
So today I took and passed the LEED Green Associate examination! I can now add the LEED GA credential to add to my resume!
While studying, I pulled together this basic outline of study tips and resources. These are meant for people who are also in the process of studying for the LEED GA exam. If you know nothing about LEED, check out this website first.
Hopefully these notes will help others study for the exam. U.S. Green Building Council is the nonprofit organization that releases the rating systems and standards, and Green Building Certification Institute is the organization that does the certification and accreditation.
Image Credit: Flickr user quapan
- Many things are calculated by area and cost so pay attention to those ratios and things. Know what types of data go into the ratios. For example, recycled materials used is calculated using proportion of costs.
- I had difficulty differentiating minimum occupancy rate and full time equivalent occupancy. Minimum occupancy rate is just for LEED O&M and has to do with how many permanent tenants are in the building, which needs to take up 75% of the floor area for at least 12 months continuously prior to registration of the project. Full time equivalent occupancy has to do with the actual amount of time the people spend in the building, and this is calculated using person-hours per day divided by 8. For example, an 8-hr shift worker is equal to 1 FTE.