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Cooking With Your USB Ports 188

tekgoblin writes "Wow, I would never have thought to try and cook food with the power that a standard USB port provides, but someone did. A standard port provides 5V of power, give or take a little. I am not even sure what it takes to heat a small hotplate, but I am sure it is more than 5V. It looks like the guy tied together around 30 USB cables powered by his PC to power this small hotplate. But believe it or not, it seems to have cooked the meat perfectly."
PlayStation (Games)

Best Buy Unapologetic About Charging For PS3 Firmware Updates 454

donniebaseball23 writes "After discovering that electronics retailer Best Buy was charging ignorant customers $30 for the 'service' of installing updated firmware on PS3s, IndustryGamers got word from the company on its policy. Best Buy sees no problem with charging for this convenience, even though it's something Sony provides to PS3 owners completely free. 'While many gamers can handle firmware upgrades easily on their own, those customers who do want help can get it from Geek Squad, and we continue to evaluate this offering to ensure it meets their needs. The service goes beyond a firmware updates, and includes user account setup, parental control setup and other components,' a representative said."

Comment Web OS never gets in the way (Score 1) 236

I've said it time and time again--Apps are not a major decision factor for me when purchasing a smartphone ; they're great but I'm looking for something that at the core does email, messaging, contacts, calendars and calling really, really, well. This palm pre in my hand is truly a revolutionary device...The iphone cannot touch it. It doesn't matter that I'm coming from a 1st gen iphone, the OS and user interface are pretty much the same up through the 3gs...Finally I'm not fighting my phone.

Another post from me over at precentral:
My Last post was when I first purchased the Pre back in December of 09.
I'm not going to rehash what's already out there...just point out things that surprised me coming from the iPhone.

THE GOOD: WEB OS is the mobile platform of the future, here NOW. Notifications are handled unobtrusively and elegantly: Receive an email? Miss a Call? New track playing (music app, even Pandora!!!). Get a new mention on twitter (tweed does not req. that app be open to receive notifications). A slick news ticker style bar keeps these constant streams of information organized and always at my finger tips. This is much more efficient than the pop up/ badge notification system on my iphone.

USB drive mode. This means freedom from that headache of a program iTunes. +1 palm, +1

The Physical Keyboard is awesome. It's great to be able to A - keep all of my screen real estate while entering in text fields and B- have the ability to search for just about anything from contacts to google from any screen.

The Back Panel Mirror is a slick touch...and much appreciated for the times I need to do a quick once over.

The convenience of always having the system menu at the top. I can instantly toggle wifi, bluetooth, led flashlight (nifty patch, hehe), and airplane mode no matter what application is in use.. On my iPhone to toggle anything I had to close my the pref. app, toggle, then close that pref. app and re-open the previous app. Needless to say a huge waste of time!

TOUCHSTONE: Love how easy it is to charge and the auto speaker/ auto answer features that are enabled when mounted to the base.

I think in the long haul, WEB OS will come out as a top performer with widespread adoption.


Man Put On "No-Fly List" While In Air To NYC 300

An unnamed man flying from Nigeria to New York City found out he was added to a no-fly list somewhere above the Atlantic Ocean, when the plane stopped to refuel in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Officials won't say what he did or why he was added to the list after he had already boarded a flight. He was not immediately charged with a crime and Customs and Border Protection will only say that he is a "potential person of interest." From the article: "The man, a citizen of Gambia, was not on the no-fly list when he boarded the aircraft in Dakar, Senegal, said a US official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the issue publicly."

George Washington Racks Up 220 Years of Late Fees At Library 146

Everyone knows that George Washington couldn't tell a lie. What you probably didn't know is that he couldn't return a library book on time. From the article: "New York City's oldest library says one of its ledgers shows that the president has racked up 220 years' worth of late fees on two books he borrowed, but never returned. One of the books was the 'Law of Nations,' which deals with international relations. The other was a volume of debates from Britain's House of Commons. Both books were due on Nov. 2, 1789."

Churches Use Twitter To Reach a Wider Audience 169

In an attempt to reverse declining attendance figures, many American churches are starting to ask WWJD in 140 or fewer characters. Pastors at Westwinds Community Church in Michigan spent two weeks teaching their 900-member congregation how to use Twitter. 150 of them are now tweeting. Seattle's Mars Hill Church encourages its members to Twitter messages during services. The tweets appear on the church's official Twitter page. Kyle Firstenberg, the church's administrator, said,"It's a good way for them to tell their friends what church is about without their friends even coming in the building."

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