GeekSpeak for 2010-03-27

Printers Are Evil

The Geeks cover news and take calls from listeners with questions and comments about technology.

ecovative design: eco packaging

Cradle to cradle packaging
From creation to composting, EcoCradle™ packaging fit into nature’s recycling program. The materials that go into EcoCradle™ are all naturally occurring waste products, like buckwheat hulls, rice hulls, or cotton burrs. Our production process harnesses the natural ability of our organism to self assemble lignin and cellulose into strong bio-composites. Because we grow materials without lots of heat, pressure or petroleum, our process is extremely energy efficient. And once you’re done with an EcoCradle™ packaging buffer, it can be used as mulch in your garden, composted or even thrown away.

All natural ingredients
Unlike synthetic materials such as expanded polystyrene that are made from oil or natural gas, EcoCradle™ is all natural. It is comprised of local agricultural byproducts such as cotton seed hulls and buckwheat hulls. We strive to utilize agricultural wastes that have almost no value. We avoid agricultural byproducts that can be used for livestock feed, and because we focus on materials that are high in lignin, they typically can’t be used in a cellulosic ethanol processes. The raw material inputs of EcoCradle™ are selected based on regionally available agricultural by-products. So a factory in Texas or China might use cotton seed hulls, and a factory in Virginia or Spain might use rice husks and soybean hulls. By manufacturing regionally, and using local feedstocks, we aim to minimize the trucking of raw and finished materials.

Toyota Recall Might Be Caused by Cosmic Rays | LiveScience

Cosmic rays are high-energy protons that originate in shock waves from the remnants of supernovas – the death heaves of giant exploded stars. Cosmic rays constantly rain down on Earth. And while the high-energy “primary” rays collide with atoms in the Earth’s upper atmosphere and rarely make it through to the ground, “secondary” particles are ejected from these collisions and do reach ground level.

Bias Called Persistent Hurdle for Women in Sciences

13-to-1 a few decades ago to 3-to-1 today cannot be explained away by biology.

Russian maths genius Perelman urged to take $1m prize

“Russian maths genius Grigory Perelman, who declined a prestigious international award four years ago, is under new pressure to accept a prize.”

Earth Hour is Today!

Earth Hour today! (March 27, 8:30 pm, follows the time zones)

Turn off your electronics during that hour!

Ink Costs

Ben’s Ink Notes:

Printer ink is one of the most expensive liquids you can find:

$0.60 / mL – HP #45 black ink cartridge
$0.40 / mL – Human Blood from Red Cross
$0.34 / mL – 1985 Dom Perignon
$0.08 / mL – Penicillin

So what can we do about this?

  • Print less
  • Change your font!
    University of Wisconsin-Green Bay switched their email system’s default email font from Arial to Century Gothic
    Apparently they use 30% less ink
    Disadvantage is that Century Gothic apparently takes a bit more space on the page, so that’s a bit more paper used.
  • Use Ecofont
    It punches tiny holes in your font, small enough to not be seen, but big enough to let you save up to 25% of your ink or toner.
    They offer a free sans-serif font, but also make software (paid) so you can make other fonts more eco-friendly. (not available yet in the web shop)

Wisconsin college says new e-mail font will save money

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay has switched the default font on its e-mail system from Arial to Century Gothic. It says that while the change sounds minor, it will save money on ink when students print e-mails in the new font.
Diane Blohowiak is the school’s director of computing. She says the new font uses about 30 percent less ink than the previous one.

Found: 90% of the distant Universe

This is fascinating news: 90% of the distant Universe was thought to be missing, but it was recently found. And what’s weird is, it was found to be in the red. Quite literally.

Top 10 Computer and Office Related Pranks To Do on April Fools

April Fools, a day of friendly pranks on family, friends and business colleagues, has arrived once again.

In this day and age, Technology and the Internet rule, and the majority spend their time online browsing, emailing or shopping.

Why not try and play a joke on your friends where they spend most of their time…their computers and offices.

We gathered up a list of top pranks that are easy to implement for anyone and are actually harmless.

Crazy USB: Warm Egg

Rechargeable mini USB Warm Egg

  1. Features: Environmental friendly
  2. Palm and portable
  3. Low / High heating mode
  4. Operation time: 6-7 hours (low), 3-4 hours (high)
  5. Safety thermal electric heating device
  6. Surface temperature: (39°C – 48°C)
  7. Charging time: 3-5 hours
  8. Charging by USB port
  9. Built-in rechargeable Li-ion battery (3.7V, 1800mA)
  10. Dimension: 86 × 67 × 21mm (approx.)
  11. Weight: 76g

Contents:

  1. USB Warm Egg
  2. USB Charging Cord
  3. Pouch
  4. Hand Strap

! Content from David I…

[Can Mushrooms overtake Styrofoam|http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/discoblog/2010/03/01/in-the-packaging-wars-can-shrooms-overtake-styrofoam/] ?

[HP printer ink costs almost twice as much as human blood|http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/hp_printer_ink_costs_almost_twice_much_human_blood]

[Solid ink|http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solid_ink]

[University of Wisconsin Green Bay changes font, saves cash|http://www.wbay.com/Global/story.asp?S=12204248]

“The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay switched the default font on its e-mail system from Arial to Century Gothic.”

[Bias Called Persistent Hurdle for Women in Sciences| http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/22/science/22women.html]

“A report on the underrepresentation of women in science and math by the American Association of University Women, to be released Monday, found that although women have made gains, stereotypes and cultural biases still impede their success.”

[Graph|http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2010/03/22/science/22women-graphic/22women-graphic-articleInline.jpg]

! Missing Galaxies

[Most of Missing Universe found|http://worldofweirdthings.com/2010/03/24/newsflash-most-of-missing-universe-found/]

! Computer and office related pranks to play on April Fools day

! Photo Sharing Sites