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May 10, 2014

Glacier Skywalk

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Not to be outdone by the Grand Canyon Skywalk, our neighbor to the north has just opened a new attraction in the Canadian Rockies.

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Below, excerpts from Rachel Lee Harris's May 5 New York Times story.

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A new attraction in Jasper National Park... is offering travelers a different world view this spring — one that will take them quite literally over the edge of a cliff.

The Glacier Skywalk experience was created to educate visitors about the formation of glaciers and their environmental impact, but for most the true thrill will be stepping out onto the glass-floored observation deck, 918 feet above the ground.

Visits begin at the Columbia Icefield Glacier Discovery Center,  on the border of the Jasper and Banff National Parks in western Alberta, Canada.

From there, visitors will be shuttled to a trail — which can also be described as a cliffside walkway — dotted with interactive exhibits highlighting the formation, ecosystems and hydrological history of the Columbia Icefield and the eight glaciers it feeds, the runoff of which eventually finds its way into the Arctic, Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

But the climax is the transparent horseshoe platform jutting out of the rock over Sunwapta Canyon. (The Glacier Skywalk does not actually extend over a glacier, but rather offers views of several glaciers on the surrounding mountains.)

Made of glass, wood and Corten steel, which oxidizes without rust damage, the structure was designed to have almost no impact on the surrounding environment. It does not require the use of paint or other toxins for upkeep, runs on solar energy and is meant to mirror the natural landscape rather than distract from it.

The Skywalk is open daily from May through October. A visit to the platform is 24.95 dollars for adults, 12.50 dollars for those 6 to 16 and free for children 5 and younger (glacierskywalk.ca, 800-760-6934).

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Videos here.

The Glacier Skywalk blog is here.

May 10, 2014 at 08:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Piñata Cake Pan

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From the website:

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Create the perfect cake for a BIG surprise.

This pan is fun, fun, fun — the only pan of its kind!

Just like the name implies, when you "break" into a Piñata Cake, there is a surprise!

This cake is baked hollow so you can fill the center with your favorite treats — candy, nuts, fruit or a special gift!

Then when you cut it open, all the delicious treats fall out.

Perfect for birthdays, baby shower "reveals" and everything in-between — the options are endless.

Aluminum pan comes with a special insert to form the hollow middle — you just bake two cakes, fill the center and "glue" them together with frosting, then decorate.

Finished cake is 8-1/2" diameter.

Special recipe and instructions included on packaging or use with 2 standard cake mixes.

5 cup liquid capacity.

Nordic Ware®.

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$24.95.

May 10, 2014 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Does the printer work?

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[via Cheezburger]

May 10, 2014 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Phone Sanitizer — "One of the most common contaminants of mobile devices is fecal matter"

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So wrote Larry Hester in a May 5 USA Today story about OZY's new Phonesoap charger.

It "...looks like a miniature sun-tanning bed and holds a wide variety of smartphones... and uses ultraviolet rays to zap bacteria."

Charges while it's in its little compartment.

$64.95 (phone not included).

May 10, 2014 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Mars Panorama Selfie — Curiosity Rover — Martian Solar Day 613 (April 27, 2014)

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From Andrew Bodrov:

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Curiosity Rover's Self Portrait at "Windjana" Drilling Site

Everybody's doing selfies: Curiosity's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) took frames on Sol 613 (April 27, 2014).

Windjana is a possible target for drilling on a sandstone outcrop at Mount Remarkable.

The rover's robotic arm is not visible in the mosaic. MAHLI, which took the component images for this mosaic, is mounted on a turret at the end of the arm. Wrist motions and turret rotations on the arm allowed MAHLI to acquire the mosaic's component images. The arm was positioned out of the shot in the images or portions of images used in the mosaic. Please check video explanation by NASA.

The images for full panorama obtained by the rover's 34-millimeter Mast Camera. The mosaic, which stretches about 30,000 pixels width, includes 138 images taken on Sol 610.

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[Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech MSSS]

May 10, 2014 at 04:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

SmileSaver — "Never worry about your smile again"

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From the website:

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One of the biggest fears in a social setting is getting something stuck between your teeth.

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With this handy credit card-sized mirror with toothpicks you can check your smile anytime you want.

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No more pesky pieces you can't get rid of, and never any reason to fear showing your fabulous smile again.

SmileSaver includes an unbreakable steel mirror, one stainless steel toothpick, and 10 plastic toothpicks in a drawer.

The ultrathin design and steel mirror means that it fits perfectly in your wallet.

The regular toothpicks can be refilled.

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€7.90.

May 10, 2014 at 12:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

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