There are many communities across the country that have reacted negatively to the idea of windmills 'blighting' their landscape. Why people see it that way is beyond me, they should be seeing them as a monument to a long lasting future, the same future they usually want to protect for their children's sake. When you see a windmill, you should get the same feeling in your chest as a person lost in the desert would have upon finding an oasis. It is a sign of LIFE.
So I have been thinking of ways to minimize their visual impact on the landscape and a couple of ideas come to mind:
1. I keep seeing articles on 'invisibility suits' all over the web. These suits use some sort of fiber optic technology to bring the image behind the suit to an array of miniature monitors on the front of the suit. This would create see-thru windmills that people would probably not even notice. I am not sure if this technology actually works yet, but it does show promise.
2. Painting the windmills would probably go a long way toward camouflaging them from public view. In the Nantucket Sound case below, simply painting the windmills the average color of a summer sky would probably make them completely invisible, as they are miles offshore and already difficult to see. Maybe it is that bright white color that has people seeing red.
3. For mountainous areas perhaps we can disguise them as trees, much in the same way many cellphone masts in California are disguised as palm trees. Putting a large green plastic cage over the blade area and painting the 'trunk' brown would probably make these pretty hard to spot on a tree covered mountain. As a side bonus, the cage would help prevent bird injuries from the windmill blades. If some illustrator out there wants to comp idea this up, I'll give you a top-notch shout out.
4. Involving artists in the process of designing windmills would make them into unique works of art. Instead of seeing 'crappy windmills' ruining the view, people would be excited to point out the original Christo (or other artist) they can see from their front porch.
5. Get professional magicians involved in designing windmills. An important part of the magician's toolkit includes misdirection and camouflage. You may have heard stories about how magician Jasper Maskelyne contributed to the war effort in WWII, camouflaging everything from tanks to entire islands for his beloved England. If not, you can find a primer here. Chriss Angel recently did a stunt where he levitated above a Las Vegas casino. If he can convince people that this was an act of unassisted levitation, he could probably come up with some cool ways to make you NOT notice windmills.
See what I'm saying?