Archive for February, 2009« Older Entries |
Sticker Shock With evMotorcycles? Charge It!
My only friends who are into motorcycles are obsessed with Harleys and Ducatis, and laugh me out of the room every time I say I want a hydrogen-powered Suzuki Crosscage. Well they’d laugh even harder at my fascination with ELECTRIC motorcycles. Especially the solar-powered SunRed concept bike pictured here, which resembles a snail in appearance, but not likely in performance, if it’s anything like other electric bikes. The evDaytona for instance, does an amazing 0-60 mph in 2.7 seconds. The caveat, of course, is that it only has a fifteen-mile range, and costs 77 grand. For the more practical shopper, Best Buy – of all places – will be selling the Brammo Enertia electric motorcycle at several locations on the west coast beginning May, 2009. And at a much more affordable US$11,995. Feeling a little sticker shock? Why? You can always charge it!
As You Suspected, It’s For Wasting Time Between Actually Doing Things
It’s been pretty well-established that the primary purpose of the Internet is to waste time between actually doing things. So today, we’re here to help you out with that. Sort of taking things to new heights of purposelessness, we have the on line Soft Drink Generator, brought to you by the same people that brought you the Church Sign Generator, among other things. With an amazing variety of options, you can easily waste an hour creating the perfect personalized product, which you can then order as a refrigerator magnet or other useless object, and pay an insanely high price for it, with money you don’t have. If you want to waste time for FREE, Facebook is the probably the latest “best of breed” site for time-wasting. If you’re a Facebook user, and like me, prefer to use the status box for entertainment rather than actual personal updates that no-one cares about, telling everyone how crappy you feel today, you may occasionally run into a wall when trying to come up with a clever post. Not to worry! Without looking very hard, I found several “Facebook Status Generators” right away, the best probably being Generatus.com, which lets you customize gender and pre-filter words (it would at least be fun to find out your supposedly upbeat and witty friend is using one of these!). And back to reality: if you actually have a job, and if it happens to involve generating headlines or taglines for real media or products, you might find The Advertising Slogan Generator handy. Where else would I have found useful taglines like “Choosy Mothers Choose Ian” or “Men Can’t Help Acting On Ian” or “Promise Her Anything, But Give Her Dissociated Press“. And if we haven’t helped you waste enough time yet, you really should just follow our Monday De-Motivators. Or suggest a time-waster in the comments, if you know of a good one. Happy time-wasting!
How Innovation Can Power The Future
Although I’m still convinced America would reap multiple benefits by fueling itself with its own fat, my mind is open to other possibilities. Which is why I’m intrigued with the Sundance Award winning documentary Fuel, directed by activist Josh Tickell, and based on his book Biodiesel America. The film explores America’s irrational history of dependence on the petrochemical industry, and through interviews with a surprising array of notable figures (Robert Kennedy Jr, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Richard Branson, and more), looks into the plethora of solutions to our numerous energy woes. Early reviews are mostly positive, and the film is scheduled for wider limited release beginning March 13, 2008. The Hulu clip here is from Tickell’s appearance on Jay Leno; see the trailer here, and visit the film’s web site for more information. One of the key pitches for the film involves talking about Rockefeller’s strategy to halt Ford’s first ethanol cars by backing prohibition. I just want to say that after some light research, this assertion seems a little feeble in my opinion; Ford himself aggressively supported prohibition. In any case, I can’t wait to see it for myself; it’s exciting to see this kind of interest in a film that takes a look at positive possibilities instead of just lazily re-stating the glaringly obvious flaws in our petrol-driven economies. Read the rest of this entry »
Hunger is a reality for 1 in 8 Americans – Support FeedingAmerica.org
I was impressed by the “We Will Rebuild” message of President Obama’s speech last night. Although I’m hesitant to start plugging into the idea that we’re entering a catastrophic depression, it’s been on my mind that things are already pretty bad in certain spots around the country, and I’ve been wondering if there was something in particular I might do to help out. Ironically, while we have problems here at home, I’m currently busy working on a project with a Kenya/US non-profit called Amara Conservation. Kenya’s pretty proud of the Obama connection, but has some problems of their own! As fate would have it though, I received an e-mail today from Dan Michel of Feeding America, asking that we help spread the word that an astounding 1 in 8 Americans don’t have enough to eat. In the clip at left, President Obama talks about places like Elkhart, Indiana, where the 15% unemployment rate is contributing to a situation in which the food banks are running out of food. Yes, right here in the states. Visit feedingamerica.org to learn more, or feedingamericacentral.org to download media to help you spread the word. If you have any worthwhile causes to promote, drop us a line, we’ll be glad to do what we can. Read the rest of this entry »
[ Comments Off ]Posted on February 24, 2009 by admin in TechnologyTuesday, February 24th, 2009
Screw-driven snow machines? How about “Screw Winter”…
One of the things that occasionally drives me nuts about living in Michigan (I know, I know, I should just get out) is the perpetual weather conversations. Every season – and don’t let anyone kid you, there are two: 3 months of Summer, 9 months of Winter – there’s a constant checking of weather web sites by MEN, who use it as a secret weapon to dictate the day’s activities, and an ongoing banter of “think it’s gonna rain?” or “I seen on the TEEvee we gonna get SIX INCHES.” So here I am, in what feels like the longest Winter on record (although so far last year will go down as the snowiest winter on record in Michigan, with 89 inches for the season) and what am I doing? TALKING ABOUT THE WEATHER! But I will now claim that it is not gratuitous weather chit chat, bacause I thought you should see the crazy Buck-Rogers-meets-farm-tractor snow vehicle from 1924 in the video at left. The clip looks almost fake at points, but I’m convinced the SPCA would have shut these guys down for the way they treat the horse in the film if it were filmed today. I find it amazing how much clever technology never finds its way into production. My pick for high-tech arctic travel would have to be the 2008 Lotus Model.