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May 25, 2008

Flight of the Phoenix: Touchdown on Mars

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NASA's Phoenix Mars spacecraft will slam into the upper atmosphere of the Red Planet at 7:46 p.m. ET tonight, kicking off what Jet Propulsion Laboratory project manager Barry Goldstein calls "seven minutes of terror."

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"That's how long it will take the spacecraft to make its automated parachute- and rocket-powered descent to the frigid Martian surface," wrote William Harwood in yesterday's story on Spaceflight Now.

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Touchdown is expected at 7:53:52 p.m., Earth-receive time.

The actual landing will have occurred 15.3 minutes earlier, but it will take that long for radio signals, traveling at 186,000 miles per second, to reach flight controllers on Earth.

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At a news briefing last week, Ed Weiler, NASA's chief of science operations, after listing in detail past catastrophes involving Mars landers and the myriad things that could go wrong this evening, summed it up by saying, "I hope I've convinced you this is no trip to grandma's for the weekend."

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NASA TV coverage begins this evening at 6:00 p.m. ET.

Put me down for a front row seat.

May 25, 2008 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Clip-on Fan

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From the website:

    Clip Stik™ Ultra-Slim Fan

    So quiet you can use it next to the phone and it won’t take up a single inch of precious desk, table or counter space.

    Just adjust the swivel-action clip to direct the air flow where you need it, or away from paperwork.

    Clip it on a shelf or bookcase — or take off the clip and use it freestanding.

    Thanks to a slim "tower" design, this clip-on fan is easy to use anywhere.

    Two speeds — quick cooling or gentle breeze.

    11" x 4" x 3.5".

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$39.95.

May 25, 2008 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

What country is it in?

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Bonus question: What is it?

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Answers here this time tomorrow.

May 25, 2008 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Quick Tie

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"Just hook it around your neck and voila: Insta-tie! For men looking for something less stuffy and a bit different."

$24 CAD.

May 25, 2008 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

LEGO Heart

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Created by New York artist

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Nathan Sawaya (below) for the

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Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego, California.

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"It took me nearly 100 hours to create this heavy heart,

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weighing in at 35 pounds," said the artist.

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It's 32" high and measures 20" on each side.

[via Street Anatomy]

May 25, 2008 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Corn on the Cob Microwave Steamer

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"Make corn on the cob in minutes!"

Sounds good to me.

Beats putting a pot of water on to boil and then watching the corn.

This way all you have to do is put two tablespoons of water into the steamer along with an ear or two of fresh or frozen corn and then nuke it.

10" x 8" x 2.5".

Plastic.

$5.98.

And no — I haven't the faintest idea why the steamer, as pictured (top) in the catalog offering it for sale, appears to be resting on a carpet.

May 25, 2008 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

BehindTheMedspeak: Dr. Hendrix will see you now

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Who says the dead don't live?

True, he doesn't take insurance but the co-pay is only $8.99 — and you get a lifetime supply of meds.

Best psychotherapy value on the planet.

I was in a kind of funky, downcast mood when I decided it was time to address the issue head-on.

This fantabulous, supersensational album contains 20 of the master's greatest hits.

But I usually don't get past the first song — "Purple Haze," blasting at 10/10 on my über-boombox wit MegaBass™ (below)

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cranked to the max such that no one pounding on my front door offering me money, tree care, certified mail or a FedEx package that needs to be signed for has a chance of being heard — before a bout of treadmill dancing (below, demonstrated by the inimitable Kevin Bacon) breaks out.

That's just the way I like it.

Like I said last year, life would go so much better for so many people if only they could choose the soundtrack.

But I digress.

Crikey, it's so darned loud I can't even hear myself think and I have no idea what was supposed to come next.

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No matter.

May 25, 2008 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

eiCrate — Designer Dog House

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Designed by Peter Pracilio.

From the website:
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eiCrate

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There's no reason why a dog crate must be the horribly depressing jail cell that characterizes most of them out there.

The designer of eiCrate seems to have taken this perspective to create a space for your pet that does not need to be hidden away when company comes over.

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Ideal for pets between 4-40 lbs, it's the perfect solution for an untrained puppy or a dog who gets incredibly destructive while you're out.

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Each crate is handmade and easy to clean, with two secure locks and a removable leak-proof rubber liner.

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Crate: 36"W x 34"L x 24.5"H; Door height: 14.5".

Suitable for indoor and outdoor use.

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Powder-coated steel wire.
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Black, White or Silver.

Limited edition in 22.5k gold also available (P.O.R.).

$679.

May 25, 2008 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

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