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Start-up automaker V-Vehicle Co. received news Wednesday that its bid for $321.1 million in federal loans was denied. The loans were considered crucial to getting the company on its feet.

Marcelo da Luz and his team, world record holders for the furthest distance traveled in a solar-powered car, have had their share of ups and downs on their journey across North America in the Xof1 (Power of One) solar car. At one point, the car was even mistaken for a flying saucer with little green men aboard. Sadly, after making it all the way to New Orleans, Louisiana, driver Marcelo da Luz was robbed of passports, laptops, credit cards, cash, a digital camera and a portable hard drive.

Click image above for high-res gallery by the author and guest photog Jason Thorgalsen

The following is an excerpt from an excellent post by Matt Robinson we ran across on our sister-site BloggingNewOrleans.

Blogging New Orleans, another new blog from Weblogs, Inc., posted this haunting video of New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S. post Hurricane Katrina. The 20 minute show, uploaded to Google via Dean Bonner, shows remains of the city barely touched by the media. Unlike the similar Cleveland drive from BloggingOhio, Bonner’s drive, which is accompanied by music playing in his car at the time he video-taped New Orleans, evokes a decidingly different Zen-feeling.