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May 25, 2005

Chocolate Bar Mirror

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"Almost too realistic — don't be tempted to grab it out of your handbag and start gnawing on it — it's for external use only!"

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Mirror flips open for easy on–the–move use.

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£3 ($5.50) here.

May 25, 2005 at 05:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

BehindTheMedspeak: Gold nanoparticles may simplify cancer detection

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A report published in the May 11 edition of the journal Nano Letters by Mostafa El–Sayed and colleagues from the Laser Dynamics Laboratory at Georgia Tech suggests a powerful new approach to cancer surveillance.

Many cancer cells have a protein known as Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR) all over their surface; healthy cells typically do not express this protein as strongly.

The investigators bound gold nanoparticles to an antibody for EGFR and were then able to get the nanoparticles to preferentially attach themselves to cancer cells.

El Sayed said, "If you add this conjugated nanoparticle solution to healthy cells and cancerous cells and you look at the image, you can tell with a simple microscope that the whole cancer cell is shining. The healthy cell doesn't bind to the nanoparticles specifically. If you see a well–defined cell glowing, that's cancer."

The picture leading this post shows two cancer cells outlined by bound gold nanoparticles.

The photo below shows a field of noncancerous cells, to which the nanoparticles do not adhere nearly as well due to a much lower concentration of EGFR in normal cells.

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What makes this new technique so promising is that it doesn't require high–powered microscopes or lasers to view the results: all it takes is a simple microscope and white light — even a flashlight will work.

A second benefit is that the results are instantaneous.

Said El–Sayed, "If you take cells from a cancer–stricken tissue and spray them with these gold nanoparticles you can see the results immediately. The scattering is so strong that you can detect a single particle."

Translation: even a single cancer cell will light up.

Yet another advantage is that the technique is very simple and inexpensive to use.

Here's a link to the abstract of the journal article.

May 25, 2005 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

One–Time Use Camcorder — For Under $30

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What's he been smoking?

Hey, I just bring you the news.

In yesterday's Wall Street Journal Walter Mossberg wrote the following (no picture, alas) about a product said to be coming this summer:

    One-Time Camcorder

    If you don't want to shell out big bucks for a camcorder and all the paraphernalia associated with it, Pure Digital Technologies soon will have a product for you: a one-time-use camcorder that can shoot 20 minutes of video for less than $30.

    You buy this small device, shoot your video and return it to the store.

    You then pay an added fee for processing, and you get back a DVD with your video on it, as well as software that lets you view it, copy it to a personal computer or email it to friends.

    The camera has a view screen and simple controls.

    You can break the 20 minutes of video up into as many segments as you like, or shoot 20 minutes of continuous footage.

    After you get your DVD, the camera itself is wiped, cleaned up and rented to the next customer.

    This new camcorder will be available this summer.

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We'll see it when we believe it.

May 25, 2005 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

6–Pack Wetsuit

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For the Memorial Day weekend comes this ingenious device, meant to keep six 12–oz. bottles or cans icy cold until it's Miller — or whatever libation you use for horological purposes — time.

"Slip a pre–chilled 6–pack into our Clink–Proof Wetsuit."

Thick, lightweight neoprene keeps bottles and cans "separate, silent and ice–cold."

I've known girls like that. But I digress.

"No clinking, no breaking — and no warm beer!"

Cranberry or black.

$24.95 here (6–pack not included).

May 25, 2005 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

World's most expensive hot dog — but not close to the best

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That's NOT it above; rather, you're looking at the world's second–most costly frankfurter, a 15–bite dog that will set you back $13.50 at the Brooklyn Diner USA in Manhattan.

The winner and grand champion is the 11–oz. footlong at New York City's The Old Homestead — it goes $19 and is made from American–raised Kobe beef.

Ed Levine, who wrote today's great New York Times Dining Out section front–page story on New York's best hot dogs, said of the costly Kobe beef dog, "I found it mushy and bland, and not redeemed by the white truffle mustard, the Kobe beef chili, the Vidalia onion, the Dutch bell peppers and the Cheshire Cheddar sauce that accompanied it."

Who's Ed Levine and why should you believe anything he has to say?

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He's probably the world's greatest authority on New York City street food.

His books and articles are sui generis.

So I'm taking what he has to say with a squeeze of mustard.

The Times article also has an excellent sidebar headlined "Best in Show" with an alphabetical listing of the 17 finest hot dog emporia (you could say emporiums if you weren't a classically–inclined Latinist like me) in the New York metropolitan area, including addresses and telephone numbers.

But wait — there's more!

The online site features a slide show narrated by Levine himself of his three–month journey through the hot dog wilderness to gather the material for today's story.

Nnnn

Have two for me.

May 25, 2005 at 12:41 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Will Return Clock

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From the website:

    Never be late again with the "Will Return" clock.

    Place on your door, desk, wall or anywhere else to let people know you won't be back for a while!

6" x 5".

Requires one AA battery (whether or not it is included is not specified on the website; my guess would be no news = no battery. But I could be wrong).

$15 here.

Built–in fail–safe mode: will continue to function as a standard "Will Return" sign should the battery die or be removed.

Sometime "Better never than late" is preferable.

[via AW]

May 25, 2005 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

AntennaWeb.org — Get the right TV antenna

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Cool website: you put in your address and the site then guides you to precisely the right outdoor antenna for the particular type of TV you own, whether it be HDTV, a traditional analog set, or a set–up employing a home satellite system.

The site uses its library of geographic and signal strength maps to find the proper antenna.

Note: all you have to put in is your ZIP Code to get a rough guide — no need to fill out the whole form.

May 25, 2005 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Self–Defense Dress

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Designed by MIT assistant professor of architecture J. Meejin Yoon, it was inspired by the porcupine, surely an excellent model of built–in boundary protection.

The dress's fringes (above) are actually stiff piano wire controlled by proximity sensors.

The only think lacking is a speaker that plays "Don't Stand So Close To Me" when someone enters the red zone.

Ha.

May 25, 2005 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

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