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Thinking Outside The Bulb

A light bulb symbolizes a bright idea that solves a vexing problem or makes life better and easier.

This month Kentucky Living focuses on the creativity that makes those light bulbs flash on in our heads.

Our use of energy especially cries out for bright ideas. A complex tangle of concerns about efficiency, availability, affordability, and reliability cries out for innovative solutions.

Resolving all these competing demands can seem impossible. But an old joke offers some guidance: how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

Light bulbs serve up a first bite that hits close to home for all of us. The old bulbs we know and love waste a lot of energy, producing as much heat as light. Those new curly bulbs that last a lot longer and use a lot less energy have raised a raft of complaints, some justified, some overblown.

Efficiency standards are going into effect for light bulbs, much like the gasoline mileage standards for cars. Those standards, and the gripes against curly bulbs, are inspiring a lot of new ideas in bulbs that are coming to your local stores. You can read about the hot and cool light bulb developments in a special report in the Energy 101 column.

Creative learning
Appropriately, this year�s September education issue focuses on the kind of creative thinking we�re going to need to outsmart obstacles, from making better light bulbs to making world peace.

�Creativity + Learning = Fun� highlights formulas Kentuckians are using to bring new approaches to how we think and learn. �Peacemakers� shows how schools offering peace studies programs teach conflict resolution and helped at least one student �become an all-around better person.�

And we can�t forget where we came from. The feature about preserving one-room schoolhouses shines a light on our great progress of the past decades, as well as the human, community values that have sustained us through the decades.

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