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October 25, 2009

Stone House

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It's in Nas Montanhas de Fafe, Portugal and it's as real as you are.

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See it from space on Google Maps.

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See Jsome1's photo set — from which those above and below originate — on flickr. 

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Wrote Sebrina Smith on greenopolis, "Not much has been published about the house itself. Although it appears to be built completely out of stone, it is actually a house nestled between two giant boulders."

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"I can’t tell you who built it or why, or how long it took to complete."

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"Seems to be livable enough, if you don’t mind being surrounded by cold stone and the apparent lack of cable TV. It has windows and a door and a tin roof that may be starting to rust, not unlike many other houses."

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Jsome1 is Feliciano André Sequeira Guimarães, a child and adolescent psychiatrist in Guimarães, Portugal.

[via Milena]

October 25, 2009 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Spend/Save Coin Bank — 'Win/Win' for once no hype

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"Spend/Save Coin Bank is like a slot machine that never loses, making an exciting game of collecting your change by rewarding you one way or another with every deposit."

True.

"The unpredictable pivoting tray collects, deflects and randomly deposits coins into either the 'Save' or 'Spend' section. It's a win, win!"

7.75"H x 3.5"W x 6"L.

Plastic.

$19.98.




October 25, 2009 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Can people eat acorns the way squirrels do?

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Above, the question addressed by C. Claiborne Ray in her "Q&A" column last Tuesday in the New York Times Science section.

Brief answer briefer: Yes — and no.

The full story follows.

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Mighty Acorns

Acorns can be eaten by humans, but not raw, the way squirrels do, said Dr. Rui Hai Liu, a physician and an associate professor of food science at Cornell. Because of the tannins they contain, they can be very bitter and astringent.

Acorns were part of the diet of many Native Americans, Dr. Liu said, and were also sometimes eaten as a last resort by Chinese and Koreans, especially in springtime, when other foodstuffs were scarce.

“They are not a poison, but they are not suitable to be eaten raw,” Dr. Liu said. “Ideally, the tannins should be removed by soaking and cooking in water.”

Tannins, chemicals classified as polyphenols, precipitate proteins and interfere with their digestion. They may cause constipation or diarrhea in susceptible people, Dr. Liu said. Squirrels and deer eat acorns, but horses cannot, he said.

Different species of oak have acorns with different levels of tannin, with the North American white oaks generally considered to have sweeter acorns and the red oaks considered to have more bitter acorns.

Southwestern tribes still relish the sweeter acorns of species like Quercus arizonica, which they eat with minimal processing, sometimes as a stew. Acorns are rich in nutritious oils, which some tribes extract by boiling.

October 25, 2009 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Cat Tree House

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From the website:

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Feline Tree House

This hand-crafted treehouse lets felines indulge their primeval jungle instincts.

Made from mature dragonwood trees harvested from sustainable forests in Florida and Georgia, the tree house is built during a 16-hour process that requires 1,000 individual cuts.

The tree is left in its natural state — gnarled branches, bark, lichen and all — and the platforms are custom-cut to fit its unique contours.

With cedar shutters, shaker shingles, and wall-to-wall frieze carpeting, the spacious 18" x 22" wood chalet offers a posh haven for weary or reclusive felines.

Carpeted 16" square and 16" x 24" perches and a carpeted cradle tucked among the branches let cats survey their surroundings from above, and are permanently attached to the trunk for stability.

All carpeting (except the cradle's) is held in place with Velcro fasteners, allowing easy removal for cleaning.

Realistic camilla silk foliage provides the concealment that felines naturally crave.

Due to the unique shape of each tree, platform positions may vary from those shown. 

Includes two hanging cat toys.

72"H x 19"W x 28"D. 

Minimal assembly.

92 lbs.

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$874.95.

October 25, 2009 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'These days, who carries a laptop unless you are a businessman?'

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I read the line featured in the graphic above this past Tuesday in Richard Waters' Financial Times article.

Then Wednesday came a USA Today story by Jon Swartz in which he wrote, "Forrester Research analyst Charles Golvin predicts that the next huge wave of Internet users... will predominantly use smartphones instead of PCs."

More: "'Lots of people, particularly younger ones, don't want to be tethered to a desktop or even a netbook,' says Michael Osterman, an independent analyst."

And the headline up top, a quote from Kevin Lomax, a 29-year-old singer/songwriter/producer in New York who "... uses an iPhone and Palm Pre to post songs on his MocoSpace page, where he has 4,000 fans."

Sounds like it's past time for me to hop on the iPhone cluetrain, what?

October 25, 2009 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Beer Scented Candle

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"Candles aren't just for gals, you know. Guys will love the fresh brewery fragrance that smells just like a cold one. Full scent concentration used throughout, so the candle smells just as good each time you burn it."

$16.98.

October 25, 2009 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

TED Talks Android App

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"TED Talks, the lectures from the well-known TED Conference, are now available on Google Android phones (the Mother TED app — [screenshots above and below]), free. On iPhones, look for the TED app."

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[via the New York Times]

October 25, 2009 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

One Gallon Car Mat

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Can your car mat absorb one gallon?

Didn't think so.

Should you care?

Probably not.

From the website:

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One Gallon Car Mat

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These rugged mats can absorb one gallon of liquid to protect your car's interior from rain, snow, sand, dirt, and the occasional overturned soda.

The mat's unique tread pattern distributes liquids over its entire surface to prevent pooling, while its ultra-absorbent polypropylene fibers soak up large spills.

The mats will not fade or mildew and a quick rinsing or vacuuming restores them to "like new."

A textured rubber kick plate on the driver's mat [top] reduces wear and prevents shoes from sliding.

The heavy commercial-quality rubber backing has cleats that hold the mats firmly in place. 

Driver - 24.5"L x 17.5"W; Passenger - 26.75"L x 16.25"W; Rear - 13"L x 16.75"W.

Set of four fits most cars.

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Top down: Grey, Charcoal, or Khaki.

$89.95.

October 25, 2009 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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