Hidden Water Pools

Having an in-ground pool always seemed like an enjoyable, but inconvenient and somewhat risky thing to have at your home. But this pool becomes a nice patio at the touch of a button. Another one of those “Why didn’t I think of that?” ideas:

My first question would be – how reliable is it? If it is truly engineered to last, then a 20-30% price premium over a standard pool wouldn’t be completely unreasonable … would it, dear? … honey?  … sweetie??  Hm.  Now where’d she go?

Hidden Water Pools

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“Power Felt” turns body heat into electricity

Is there anything that carbon nanotubes can’t do?

“When graduate student Corey Hewitt (Ph.D. ’13) touches a two-inch square of black fabric, a meter goes berserk.

Simply by touching a small piece of Power Felt – a promising new thermoelectric device developed by team of researchers in the Center for Nanotechnology and Molecular Materials – he has converted his body heat into an electrical current.

Comprised of tiny carbon nanotubes locked up in flexible plastic fibers and made to feel like fabric, Power Felt uses temperature differences – room temperature versus body temperature, for instance – to create a charge.”

Many objects and surfaces around us throw off significant waste heat – and this material could capture it for re-use – the possibilities are nearly limitless. It’s exciting developments like this that convince me our future will be bright – despite all the ticks and mosquitos that are constantly trying to suck our freedom and energies away from us.

Source: Wake Forest News Center

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Japanese co. IHI announces tiny turbine generator

Propane-powered, the turbine itself is small enough to fit in your hand (!)

The whole electricity generating unit is only about the size of a suitcase.

It’s very cool-running (exhaust temp 70ºC), so it’s probably also extremely efficient, and it can be setup to use kerosene or light oil as fuel.

“The company expects that the gas turbine generator unit will be used as a charger for personal devices such as mobile devices as well as a power source for a robot.”

I’m sure if it works as well as hoped, they’ll scale it up for different purposes. I’d like one about 2 hp please. Then I’ll just rip out the old gas furnace and away we go!

Source : TechOn

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Wymen’s Wysdom …

Woman begins by resisting a man’s advances and ends by blocking his retreat. ~ Oscar Wilde

Women like silent men. They think they’re listening. ~ Marcel Achard

A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Lovely female shapes are terrible complicators of the difficulties and dangers of this earthly life, especially for their owners. ~ George du Maurier

I haven’t trusted polls since I read that 62% of women had affairs during their lunch hour. I’ve never met a woman in my life who would give up lunch for sex. ~ Erma Bombeck

Men who don’t like girls with brains don’t like girls. ~ Mignon McLaughlin

Curve: The loveliest distance between two points. ~ Mae West

A woman can say more in a sigh than a man can say in a sermon. ~ Arnold Haultain

I would be the most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

The average woman would rather have beauty than brains, because the average man can see better than he can think. ~ Author Unknown

Some men know that a light touch of the tongue, running from a woman’s toes to her ears, lingering in the softest way possible in various places in between, given often enough and sincerely enough, would add immeasurably to world peace. ~ Marianne Williamson

A woman drove me to drink and I didn’t even have the decency to thank her. ~ W. C. Fields

I’m selfish, impatient, and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best. ~ Marilyn Monroe

“People said it was my smile. That I looked very happy, that I enjoyed my work, and I did. ~ Bettie Page

If a woman has to choose between catching a fly ball and saving an infant’s life, she will choose to save the infant’s life without even considering if there are men on base. ~ Dave Barry

It upsets women to be, or not to be, stared at hungrily. ~ Mignon McLaughlin

I base my fashion taste on what doesn’t itch. ~ Gilda Radner

I don’t have a girlfriend. But I do know a woman who’d be mad at me for saying that. ~ Mitch Hedberg

A diplomat is a man who always remembers a woman’s birthday but never remembers her age. ~ Robert Frost

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Custom 3D Printing is coming to your house – soon.

The capabilities of 3D printers are accelerating rapidly. For several years, 3D printers have been used to make engineering prototypes of small objects. It’s become cheaper, faster, and often more precise than traditional methods.

But it’s gone way beyond that now. Soon your car, your plane, your house, your replacement knee and hip bones – may be 3D printed, custom fit items.

NASA is planning to bring a 3D printer to the International Space Station, to create some parts and tools on the spot, as the need arises.

Boeing is printing aircraft parts from sintered metal compounds – because the parts can be designed to be lighter and stronger than is possible with older ways of making them.

A 83-year-old woman in Europe just had a 3D-printed titanium jawbone fitted into her face. Doctors say the surgery was less risky, and took a third as much time to do, as a conventional reconstructive operation would have been.

3D printing has also made 10 million hearing aids “more comfortable”.

Some professors at USC have found a way to print a concrete wall structure – straight or curved – and reinforced. They call it Contour Crafting (nice video at the link). NASA has helped fund their research, exploring the idea of 3D printing landing pads, roads and buildings for a lunar base.

The PC and the desktop laser printer made custom business printing affordable for everybody. Working musicians now compose, record and produce their music on a laptop or an iPad. And the same is true with TV. CNN producers carry a laptop and a camera to field assignments, and send the edited video “tape” straight to the studio for broadcast. In all these fields, the technical quality of the end products has gone up. Meanwhile, the tools have become portable and personal, and the cost has fallen exponentially.

And now, computer-driven 3D printers are beginning a consumer-products manufacturing revolution here in the United States. For many items, both large or small, and simple or complex, it’s simply going to make more sense to custom print what we need right here at home, than it will be to mass-produce it and ship it from China. When we can get quicker order fulfillment, greater materials efficiency, less overall cost, and better product quality, why would we travel farther to get less?

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Broadband, Yes. Toilet, No.

A young family who lives in a yurt – in Alaska.  Nice slideshow included.

Home, sweet home.

This one has a diameter of 24 ft. =  452 square feet. They say it cost $14k, and took them 3 days to set it up.

When we toured the Oregon coast a few years ago, we stayed in some smaller ones (16 ft. dia.) operated by the state parks system – they were all sturdy, and surprisingly comfortable.

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The Vote Pump

Bill Whittle explains, briefly, simply and with pictures, where all the money comes from and where it goes. Basic clarity about federal spending, i.e., our money.


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