May 20, 2010:
Safety and productivity are first on my list of design considerations. Electricity generation requires knowledge of safety precautions because if your system is not "robust" -- that is, if the design doesn't take into account all the many ways the design could fail in the real world -- then the design may be worse than useless, for it could cause a fire and the whole house could go up in flames, God forbid (knock wood).
As I read in one book, your gizmo could still be producing electricity while it is damaged, and we can all imagine what excess electricity looks like when we think of lightening.... So, getting a grasp of electrical safety is a must. That is why I have created a separate page for Safety that will focus attention on this concern even though much of its information might also appear on other pages.
Yesterday I started on Tom Henry's Electrician Training Course, Learn to Be An Electrician, Module E-1: Electron Theory. This course helps people like me who are beyond the age limit for being admitted to Electrical Union pathways to certification, but still need to know how to protect their houses from fire caused by electrical hazards. Tom Henry's course is available for purchase on the web, btw. They are out of Winter Park, FLA. The first module demonstrates fire hazard due to improper design of electrical circuits, among other things. If you are not into correspondence courses, at least look at Tom Henry's Electricity in Motion DVD. It repeats much of Module E-1, but adds more demonstrations of fire hazards due to improper circuit design.