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Demo goes green

Two start-ups hoping to reach the environmentally conscious make a debut at Demo.

Demo is trying to green itself and is even considering a green-only event for start-ups in the future. This time, though, there are two companies that hope to use tech to evoke environmental change.

Green Plug's CEO shows his motivation for a universal adapter: a mess of cords and plugs. Rafe Needleman/

Green Plug makes universal plugs for consumer electronics. Taking a duffel bag full of tangled cords and power adapters and dumping them on the Demo presentation stage, founder and Chief Executive Frank Paniagua declared, "The power model is broken, and we have to fix it." (See CNET's First Look video.)

His solution is Green Plug, a three-port DC hub that will recognize any device and charge it. Green Plug makes a chip that goes into a power supply, and the company gives away free software to any company that wants to put it on consumer devices. The chip, using technology they call Green Talk, will recognize exactly the amount of power each device needs, gives exactly that much, and then shuts off, eliminating wasted power.

The other start-up with world-saving ambitions at Demo is Celsias Projects. It's essentially a social network for groups trying to gather volunteers for climate change projects. Each project has its own profile page where volunteers can sign up or discuss the projects.

Thus far there are 80 projects from the U.S., U.K., New Zealand, and more already uploaded.