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Comment Central vacuum (Score 1) 557

It sounds ludicrously domestic, but I visited a co-worker's house once where they had central vacuum and it was cooler than shit. Little air outlets peppered around the house (on the stairs! Brilliant!) you plug a headed hose into and vacuum away. Filter in the basement gets cleaned out monthly.

If I had such a thing in my house, I'd live a much cleaner existence.

Comment Re:I blame the FDA (Score 2) 365

I tell you what, I quit smoking with vaping back in 2011 on gear that's now laughably obsolete. If I could send an inexpensive, modern rig back in time to myself to make the switch even easier, I'd send a 20-watt eLeaf iStick with a Nautilus Mini tank, and 24mg juice (to start) of a good, non-tobacco flavor.

The iStick is versatile, small, simple, and inexpensive. The Nautilus tank performs great, is simple to use and maintain, and looks pretty good sitting on top of an iStick. You may think the taste of tobacco is essential to converting but it really really isn't. There are no convincing tobacco vapes, they all fall into the close-but-no-cigar (pun intended) category. You won't miss the taste once you're getting all your other smoking fixes satisfied with banana pudding or mountain dew or whatever you end up with, and when your nose and tastebuds really come back to life in a week or two, you'll be amazed at how disgusting burning tobacco actually tastes and smells. You'll also find, unfortunately, that the rest of the world pretty much stinks as well, but it's still a great tradeoff.

This setup will cost you less than 70 bucks in total online, and less than a hundred if you buy at a local vape shop. It's not pen shaped, but it's efficiently sized for the amount of battery life you can pull out of it. Fits well in the hand and the pocket, and can be used while it's recharging which isn't the case with most pens.

Once you have a good rig with enough power and juice with enough balls, you'll find the vape is actually preferable to the smoke in every way imaginable, and switching becomes a matter of just not wanting to take a backwards step towards burning plants in front of your face again. Easy peasy.

Comment Re:just ban it (Score 2, Insightful) 365

The reality is that governments are addicted to the tax income. 11 billion a year in Australia.

Oh, it's not just tax income. Consider the hit to social programs and public services if all the smokers (10-20% of the population, generally) stopped dying early. Having a significant percentage of the population suddenly living 10 years longer gets really expensive really fast.

Comment I blame the FDA (Score 5, Interesting) 365

If the FDA wasn't so damn corrupt, smoking would be a thing of the past. Vaping works. Harm reduction works. It's only because the FDA's overlords, Big Pharma, can't compete with the technology that it isn't approved and pervasive in our society.

Openly accepted electronic cigarettes could make smoking as niche as, say, religious snake handling in a decade, but noooo. Gotta protect that status quo and the pharmaceutical industry's pocketbooks.


iPad Steering Wheel Mount 230

kevin7kal writes "The Apple iPad is the ideal automotive communications and entertainment device. It is sized perfectly to mount using the iPad Steering Wheel Mount without obscuring the driver's view. 'I don't think that I am exaggerating when I say that the iPad Steering Wheel Mount probably has saved my life...'"

Nintendo To Take On Piracy In 3-D 249

crimeandpunishment writes "Nintendo says when its new handheld game device with 3-D technology comes out, it will have beefed-up anti-piracy measures. For obvious reasons, the company is keeping tight-lipped on the specifics. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata says they're not only concerned about software piracy, but also a growing tolerance for it. He said, 'We fear a kind of thinking is become widespread that paying for software is meaningless.'"

Comment Re:Well, Yes (Score 1) 532

Actually, there were $90 videotapes, that was often the selling price of a movie that was only available as a rental. A lot of movies were $90 until the tape got re-released to the general public.

Sometimes, the rental movies never made it to general release, which is why my first copy of Bloodsucking Pharaohs in Pittsburgh cost $90. Totally worth it, though!


The Murky Origins of Zork's Name 70

mjn writes "Computational media researcher Nick Montfort traces the murky origins of Zork's name. It's well known that the word was used in MIT hacker jargon around that time, but how did it get there? Candidates are the term 'zorch' from late 1950s DIY electronics slang, the use of the term as a placeholder in some early 1970s textbooks, the typo a QWERTY user would get if he typed 'work' on an AZERTY keyboard, and several uses in obscure sci-fi. No solid answers so far, though, as there are problems with many of the possible explanations that would have made MIT hackers unlikely to have run across them at the right time."

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