GigaOM’s top 10 green stories of 2011

Which stories dominated the green GigaOM clicks in 2011? This year was filled with smart thermostats, a dream of Apple getting into solar, the bankruptcy of Solyndra, the efficiency of cloud computing, Google’s green data centers and Tesla’s Model S.

PHOTOS: Inside Tesla’s Model S Alpha Workshop

Check out our photos of Tesla’s Model S Alpha build room, where engineers work on testing 20 Model S Alphas for things like safety, durability and electronics. In a couple of months, Tesla will start building 50 Betas, and by mid-2012, will start delivering the car.

The New Digg Is More Social But Less Unique

For more than a year, Digg has been working on a major redesign of the site, one that makes the social features of the site much more obvious. But the new look could actually make it harder for Digg to stand apart from the social crowd.

BumpTop for Mac is Now in Alpha

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Just as BumpTop 3D is coming into its own on the Windows platform (Multi-Touch support in 7), a private Mac alpha is being circulated. It’s in Alpha for a reason too, because in its current state, it does little more than look like its Windows counterpart. But the BumpTop Mac team is looking for input and feedback as they build it out, which is where those with an Alpha version come into play.

Immediately after downloading and installing the BumpTop Alpha, I was terribly underwhelmed. Despite the Alpha team’s email-based warning, I was expecting something akin to what I’ve seen on the Windows side of the fence. But as I’ve considered the situation, I’m taking the optimistic approach. Read More about BumpTop for Mac is Now in Alpha

Google Chrome Mac Developer Preview Works Like a Charm

Picture 22I still take it as a personal affront that Mac (s aapl) users have had to wait so long for a usable build of Google Chrome (s goog). Since I haven’t done any Windows-related work in a good while now, running Chrome was really my only reason for using any kind of OS virtualization. I barely even have cause to open MS Word anymore.

Finally, as Simon mentioned last week, we Apple fans have got a Chrome build near enough completion to get worked up about. It isn’t anywhere near a proper final build, but it does work well enough that I felt comfortable using it to compose this piece. It’s good enough for most web work that doesn’t involve using Flash (which is almost all of it, in my case, I’m realizing). Read More about Google Chrome Mac Developer Preview Works Like a Charm

Developer Preview of Google Chrome for OS X Available

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An early version of Chrome is now publicly available for Mac users, at least what there is of it. As the Chromium Blog glibly posted, this release is intended for developers who take “great pleasure in incomplete, unpredictable, and potentially crashing software.” Having caveated that, Chrome feels fast, faster than Safari, and that is saying something.

Something else to be said in favor of Chrome is that it’s stable. Not that this release doesn’t crash — it does, but it just dies gracefully. Unlike Safari, which upon crashing takes all your browser windows down to the grave, Chrome displays a “sad tab of death” for the single offending browser instance. Similarly, isolating browser instances benefits security, and security for Chrome is also boosted by periodically updated blacklists of malware and phishing urls. Read More about Developer Preview of Google Chrome for OS X Available