I recently just got one of these and it is pretty sweet. You can see how much power each one of your appliances uses in real time. This information is really helpful in trying to reduce your monthly power bill. I was able to get one from amazon.com for about $25. The top power consumers that I found were our computer (250w), LCD TV (250W), coffee maker (800w), hair dryer (1400w), microwave (1500w,) and iron (1500w). Some of the more power friendly items included the stereo (30w) and laptop (30w). I have not checked the Xbox yet mainly because its hard to read the wattage when you are playing gears of war 2.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
This is an amazing documentary about Philippe Petit and his tight rope walking across the twin towers. His personality and life are really fascinating. Imagine having the nerve to taunt the police as you walk forwards and backwards up there. He is pretty much the man.
Monday, February 23, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Monday, February 9, 2009
For you guitarists out there, check out this great tapping video by Paul Gilbert. It got me thinking about new ways to to use the technique. Also, I recommend checking out his new album "Silence followed by a Deafening Roar." You can listen to one of the songs, The Gargoyle, here.
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Friday, February 6, 2009
What might these two things have in common? Dr. Strangelove was an enjoyable cold war satire involving Doomsday Machines and nuclear strategy. For example, if we recieve news of an attack on us first, should we retaliate and push the button? Policy has been to do so as a deterrent. But on the other hand, the damage has been done. Pushing the button will not bring back the American lives lost. But then this is exactly the kind of thinking that encouraged them to attack in the first place. And so forth..... This is where the Doomsday Machines come in. If a vast network of explosives are wired to explode on attack, there is no reasoning involved. No one bothers attacking because it will definitely destroy everything including them. So this acts as the ultimate deterrent against enemy attackers.
Our emotions may act in a similar way. Imagine you are haggling with a used car dealer. He is asking an outrageous price. This enrages you as he is clearly trying to rip you off. Why? Your frustration is valuable in this transaction because it shows the car dealer that you cannot just be persuaded into taking the offer. Your anger is like a mini-doomsday machine in that it clearly shows you will not budge. It is a very effective bargaining strategy. Emotions can help in any situation where it can be valuable to show that you have no choice. For example, being helplessly in love shows that you cannot possibly be enticed by a more attractive partner and gives your current partner a sense of security. Emotions are tough to fake as we are very sensitive to people not being genuine with us. This adds to the credibility of emotions. These are just a few examples, but you can probably think of many others.
I wanted to share the above thoughts from "How the Mind Works" by Steven Pinker. It seemed to be a very compelling idea about the evolutionary value of emotions. Let me know your thoughts.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
I just recently heard about this from a co-worker. A beer french press? It is hooked up to a tap and beer is filtered through additional hops before it is served. Pretty cool. It is only made by Dogfish Head so bars have to order them directly. They also bring them to some Dogfish Head special events. I definitely want to try it!
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
This is the first post to my new blog! For those of you that haven't seen my guitar recordings site, you can find it here.