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April 21, 2013

"The Machine Stops" — E.M. Forster (1909)


Wrote Paul Rajlich in an introduction to this story, published when Forster was 30, "Anybody who uses the Internet should read E.M. Forster's 'The Machine Stops.' It is a chilling short story masterpiece about the role of technology in our lives. Written in 1909, it's as relevant today as the day it was published. Forster has several prescient notions including instant messages (email) and cinematophoes (machines that project visual images)."

April 21, 2013 at 08:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Shark Socks


By Lisa Grossman

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.40.50 PM

aka the


Tsarina of Tsocks.


[via Boing Boing, Well Done Stuff! and Geekologie]

April 21, 2013 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Evolution of the New York Driver's License
















[via Blort and Wanderlust]

April 21, 2013 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Mizuno Bolt Sling Pack — A great bag


I won one yesterday for finishing first in my age group at the VIA 5K.

Oh, well, I thought, another useless item to toss in my trunk.

Just for the heck of it, though, I unzipped all the compartments to see what it could do: SURPRISE!

It's a great bag, with four (4) separate zipped compartments of different sizes suitable for my laptop, iPad, iPad mini, and iPhone, each in its own little private space where the screens won't get scratched.


Nice padded strap with a handhold if that's your preference.

My new everyday carry.



April 21, 2013 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Make your own sea salt


Tamar Haspel's recipe appeared in the April 9 Washington Post; below, her instructions.


"Make" isn't quite the right word. DIY salt is really EIY: Evaporate It Yourself.

When the water is gone from seawater, what's left is sea salt, and more than you might think: A four-gallon bucket of water will yield more than a pound of salt. The following steps work best if you have a wood stove or a radiator; it doesn't make financial sense to use the stove top. You also can evaporate the seawater in the sun in a shallow pan, which takes considerably longer, depends on how much sun you get,' and requires many consecutive dry days.

1. Get seawater. Strain it through a coffee filter to remove big impurities. Don't worry about microorganisms; nothing survives in salt.

2. Let the water evaporate. If you use a wood stove for heat, you can humidify your house and manufacture salt in one fell swoop. Heat the water in an enameled cast-iron baking dish or casserole (9 by 13 inches is good; you need a wide expanse of surface area). The process will take a couple of days or up to a week, depending on how much heat you use.

3. Harvest. Once the salt begins to form, stir every once in a while to break up clumps, but don't worry about being too vigilant because you can grind it later. The salt is done when it's dry to the touch. The consistency will be a little clumpy and moist-looking. Store in an airtight container; if you leave this DIY sea salt exposed to the air, it will return to a soupy, slushy state.


Washington Post back story by the same writer here.

April 21, 2013 at 04:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Cable IDs — Finally!


I've been wanting something like this pretty much since forever – or at least back to when I was in college and had my first encounter with cord craziness.


Beyond excited am I.

I'm getting two sets: that way I can put matching colors at each end of each cable so I have a clue which is which.

For decades I've wondered why companies don't offer cables and cords in a rainbow of colors so you don't have to add on your own labels: this looks to be as close as we'll ever get while we're stuck with physical connections.

Which won't be all that much longer, IMHO.

From the website:


Round up messy cables, cords, and plugs with our ingenious Cable ID.

Each of the eight differently-colored IDs provides space to label which cord is being tamed so identification is a snap.

Details and Features:

• Helix-like shape with thin, flexible construction

• Ballpoint pen or marker-compatible

• 4.5" x 0.25"


Set of 8: $7.99.

April 21, 2013 at 12:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

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