In this video Rick Crammond demonstrates his Hauksbee Generator:
The idea is that a triboelectric (electrostatic) effect occurs from sliding hands on glass. The voltage generated ionizes the gases in the globe, creating a blue plasma glow inside.
Our rotating globe is a pyrex lab flask containing air under a partial vacuum, is mounted on a bicycle axle with skateboard bearings, and driven by a remote-control model aircraft electric motor at up to 8000 rpm…”
Via Hacked Gadgets.