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Author Archives: David Ponce

Alaska To Get World’s First Airborne Wind Turbine

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Did you know the air blows much stronger at higher altitudes? It therefore makes plenty of sense to put a wind turbine up there to harness the energy; that’s exactly what the residents of Fairbanks, Alaska, will be enjoying soon. The MIT startup Altaeros Energies has been given a $1.3 million grant by the Alaska Energy Authority to test the design over the course of 18 months. The turbine, known as BAT-Buoyant Airborne Turbine, will be filled with Helium and allowed to go up 1,000-2,000 feet where it’ll be able to generate twice as much power as a ground-based structure. While it’s up there, it’ll also serve as a WiFi hotspot, providing not only power but Internet connectivity to the families currently living off the grid in these remote areas.

VIA [ Inhabitat ]

Don’t Ever Google Your Medical Symptoms

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You have cancer. It’s always cancer. Heck, sometimes your cancer has cancer.

Just don’t do it.

And if you can’t afford to go see a doctor, please use some sense; the medical field is far and wide and you most likely don’t have the knowledge to do a proper differential diagnosis. You’ll only worry yourself sick.

VIA [ LikeCool ]

Emoji’s May Soon Be More Racially Diverse, Thanks To Apple

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If you’ve noticed your Emoji’s seem overwhelmingly white, it’s because they are (yes, even Miley Cyrus seems to think so). So MTV Act decided to do something about it and sent an email to Tim Cook. Apple’s vice president of worldwide corporate communications, Katie Cotton’s reply is as follows:

Tim forwarded your email to me. We agree with you. Our emoji characters are based on the Unicode standard, which is necessary for them to be displayed properly across many platforms. There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard.

Ok, so they’re working on it, although there’s no timeline for when the changes might be implemented. Still, it wouldn’t be so bad if the characters representing us in text messages, you know, actually represented us, and it’s good to know something’s being done about it.

VIA [ Gizmodo ]

Laser Engraved Rolling Pins Are Great Promotional Tools

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If you’re the proud owner of a pastry shop, you should seriously consider placing an order with Etsy seller ValekRollingPins. They’re able to laser engrave a standard 16.5″ beech rolling pin with the design of your choice. The pastries and pies that you make can then endlessly display your logo or message, Louis Vuitton-style. Prices start at roughly $45.

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Zap Your Muscles Into Shape With The SmartMio

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Remember those late night infomercials that sold gadgets to give you a six-pack without having to “do anything”? They’d just zap your muscles with current and these would contract and do all the work “by themselves.” The SmartMio is sort of like that, but there’s a smartphone involved. There’s also presumably a little more tech involved in order to make this more legit than the cheaper, older devices of the 90′s. The excessive quotation marks are there to denote that as much as the stimulation for muscle contraction is external, you will still feel tired after a while; you’re still doing the work, you just have less control over it. Anyway, with the SmartMio you can choose between 14 different muscle groups to work out, and isolate them exclusively, which is hard to do with traditional training.

As gimmicky as this sounds, there appears to be some scientific studies backing up the principle of ElectroMyoStimulation (EMS). You can read a few here and here. And if you want to get your own SmartMio, you’ll have to pledge $89.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ GadgetReview ]

BatteryBox Will Keep Your MacBook Air Running For 12 Hours

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Ever been on a 15 hour flight? It’s gruelling and having some kind of entertainment (besides whatever questionable selection of movies are on board) is essential to live through it. The MacBook Air, much as it does have stellar battery life, will run dry. But if you bring this BatteryBox, it’ll provide enough power for an additional 12 hours of runtime. If you pack a MacBook Pro, that’s still 6 hours extra. Note that it won’t actually charge your battery, but will power the laptop directly. BatteryBox does have a Magsafe2 output so you can plug it directly into the machines, though there’s a USB adapter if ever you need to power something that uses that.

Finally, this little 12,000mAh/50Whr box can go through 3,000 full charge cycles and still retain 96% of its capacity after 5 years. That’s some durability, which more than justifies the $139 asking price, in our opinion.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Geek.com ]

Silicone Power Glove For All Your Baking Needs

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Remember the Power Glove from Nintendo? No? Then you’ll have no use for this. For anyone else with a bit of nostalgia, the above Indiegogo project should help you bake cakes while reliving potentially embarrassing moments of your childhood. A $39 pledge will put you in line for one, but considering how far from their goal they are right now, this might all be a pipe dream in the end.

Pipe dream… get it? Because Mario? Nintendo?… No?

[ Project Page ] VIA [ Geekologie ]

MacGuyver Tool Is More Puzzle Than Useful

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That’s sort of the point of a MacGuyver Toolkit though, isn’t it? Of course this one isn’t called “MacGuyver Toolkit” for trademark reasons, but calling a little tin box containing seemingly unrelated and potentially useless things an ‘Action Hero Toolkit’ isn’t fooling anyone. You’ll probably spend more time trying to figure out how to use the items than doing anything useful with them, but that’s half the fun in this. So what does $10 buy you?

Bobby Pin – Pick locks or keep your mullet funky fresh with this heroic hair product.

Strike-Anywhere Match – Seven second campfire.

Rubber Band – Bazinga!

Bubble Gum – Not just for chewing.

Birthday Candle – Suitable for a “Happy Birthday MacGyver” cupcake. Or slow burning fuse.

Paper Clip – TPS reports should be stapled. Bombs should be defused with a paper clip.

Shoelace – Makeshift handcuffs. Makeshift shoe binder.

1¢ Stamp – Cover your laptop webcam to protect yourself from the NSA. Or send a postcard in 1873.

Duct Tape – Exactly as strong as MacGyver’s jawline.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Uncrate ]

Fellowes’ AutoMax Paper Shredder Is A Truly Hands-Free Experience

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Fellowes, Inc. . All opinions are 100% mine.

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Fellowes invented the personal paper shredder back in 1990, and have been innovating with new models and new features ever since.  We even reviewed one of their devices two years ago. Now the company has announced their latest innovation: the Fellowes AutoMax series of shredders, like the 500C and the 300C.  These are truly hands-free, auto-feed shredders that pretty much do all the work for you.  You simply have to drop your pile of papers, DVDs, CDs, paper clips, and other shreddables into the drawer and walk away.  A patented system of rotating paddles (SureFeed Technology) ensures that everything gets fed into the cross-cutting mechanism and gets turned into unrecognizable bits. No more standing around the machine, wasting company time and money.

The 500C has a 20 gallon bin, while the 300C can handle up to 16 gallons, which is large enough to ensure you don't have to keep coming back to refill it every two seconds. Also, a feature called JamGuard System prevents paper jams, which is an essential ability for a device that claims to be completely hands-free; after all what's the point of being able to walk away, if you keep having to come back?

There's even a feature called SmartLock that prevents anyone else from opening the drawer until that batch is completely shredded. This is to stop someone else from accessing your private documents after you've inserted them in (and walked away). Couple all these features with other innovations like SafeSense, which immediately halts shredding if your hand or fingers touch the paper opening, and you've got yourself some groundbreaking machines in the personal shredding space.  To find out more about these devices, follow the link below.

Fellowes AutoMax

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