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May 30, 2008

You just dropped your cellphone in the toilet — now what?

We'll assume for the sake of argument that it was an accident.

You aren't the first nor will you be the last to have this happen.

Lucky for you J.D. Biersdorfer, the inimitable New York Times all-things-computer columnist, is all over it and feels your pain enough to offer excellent advice that just might save your phone.

Here's what she had to say in her May 22, 2008 "Q&A" column.

    Tip of the Week: Saving Your Cellphone From Water Damage

    A bag of dry, uncooked rice can save your bacon if you accidentally drop your cellphone in a puddle or some other body of water. If your phone takes a splash, get it out of the water as soon as possible and take out the battery and SIM card (if it has one) immediately.

    Pat the phone parts as dry as possible with a paper towel and seal them in an airtight container full of dry rice for a day or two. The rice helps draw out the moisture. You can also substitute a desiccant like silica gel packets — which may work even better. A video [top] at www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7lR6HC8Akk demonstrates the process, and you can find more tips at www.wikihow.com/Save-a-Wet-Cell-Phone.

May 30, 2008 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Best cartoon of the month — by Sam Gross


May 30, 2008 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"Only 25% of web users see display ads placed 'below the fold'"


"Below the fold" in this context means users have to scroll down on their computer screens to see them.

The figure in the headline is from research by MarketingSherpa, cited by Dan Mitchell in his "What's Online" column in the April 19, 2008 New York Times Business section.

Turns out half of all display ads appear there, which means that about $1 billion annually is "wasted," according to Steve Rubel of micropersuasion.com.

He told Mitchell, "Advertisers are going to eventually wake up and recognize that unless its a highly visible placement, banners get you largely nowhere."

I'm reminded of the remark of department store merchant John Wanamaker, who said, "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half."

May 30, 2008 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Richard Evans is my new favorite tennis announcer


I just heard him do an hour of the excellent Patty Schnyder–Emilie Loit (above) French Open match on the Tennis Channel and enjoyed every minute of his droll, amusing and low-key observations and asides, delivered in a wonderfully wry British style.

"Richard Evans, the author of more than a dozen books on tennis and other sports, is the tennis correspondent for the London Sunday Times; writes for the New York publication Tennis Week and commentates on Wimbledon for BBC Radio's Five Live," according to Amazon.

More, please.

May 30, 2008 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

BehindTheMedspeak: 'The public has no idea of the extent of difference between top surgeons and bad ones'


Dr. Frederic H. Moll, founder of Intuitive Surgical — which now dominates the field of of robotic surgery — and CEO of Hanson Medical, a publicly traded robotics company focused on minimally invasive cardiac care, quoted by Barnaby J. Feder in a May 4, 2008 New York Times Business section front page story about the booming field of robotic surgery.

Moll continued, "Robots are good at going where they are supposed to, remembering where they are, and stopping when required."

For now, anyway.

Moll is spot-on about the range of surgical capability displayed by my colleagues on the other side of the drape.

Is there as much variability, say, in anesthesiology or radiology or general practice?

Probably — but the evidence is far less obviously and immediately evident.

May 30, 2008 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Niagara x Vans


Niagara is the first female artist ever chosen for Vans' flagship Vault series.

Above, one of her designs (there are four Classic Slip-On styles and two Sk8-Hi versions) for the just-released 2008 line.

Long story short: Niagara founded the punk band Destroy All Monsters in the late 70s and in 2006 was named one of Classic Rock and Rock & Folk magazines' "100 Greatest Frontmen."

According to the latest issue (June, 2008) of Juxtapoz magazine, she currently "... resides in suburban Detroit with her bodyguard, Colonel Galaxy, and her silver metalflake 1966 Cadillac Coupe de Ville...."

May 30, 2008 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Vocabula Review


Res ipsa loquitur.

May 30, 2008 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

80,000 Volt No-Contact Personal Protection Jacket


"Can't touch that."

No kidding.


From TechFresh.net:

No-Contact Jacket for Personal Protection

Powered by a 9V alkaline battery, this No-Contact Jacket is a wearable defensive jacket created to aid women in their struggle for protection from violence.


When activated by the wearer, 80,000 volts of low amperage electric current pulses just below the surface shell of the entire jacket.

Pretty cool, ain’t it?


Apply within.

Just in: Named Official First Date Jacket of Michelle Shocked.

May 30, 2008 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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