Gadgets

Pharyngula

Category archives for Gadgets

Where’s the duct tape?

Obviously, I did it all wrong. I have a digital video microscope in my lab, but what I did was spend about $20,000 on a nice microscope, $1000 on a digital still camera and about $500 on a digital video camera, and $200 on a pair of custom adapters to link them together. The principle…

Grrrr, bad laptop. Bad!

I’m struggling with some annoying problems with my computer right now: every once in a while, it spontaneously dies without warning, and the system says there’s something wrong with the battery. It’s happened now several times today, always right when I’m in the middle of writing something. I’ve ordered a new battery, but until then,…

Those porn sites you’ve been browsing? They’ve been slurping in more of your private data than you think. A paper has been published documenting the invasive practices of many websites. They’re doing something called history hijacking, using code that grabs your entire browsing history so they can monitor every site you’ve visited. Cute, huh? There…

TimeTree

People are always asking me for the source of those nice t-shirts that illustrate how long we’ve diverged from a given species. I think the name must be hard to remember: they’re at evogeneao.com. Now there’s a little software widget that will be just as neat-o. Look up TimeTree, and remember to show it to…

What is this abomination called knol?

I’d never heard of knol before, but apparently it was Google’s attempt at creating a competitor to Wikipedia. Wikipedia has its flaws, but wow, it was revealing to see the alternative: knol is awful. It was brought to my attention because it is infested with woo. To see how bad it is, compare the answers…

Bad, bad Webkit

I’ve been going insane this morning, thinking I might have mysteriously lost my ability to type, or even recognize valid HTML…and I’ve been seeing really weird stuff everywhere I type on the web. It looks like the problem is Webkit, the browser I usually use. I updated it this morning, and it seems to have…

There’s an app for that

If you ever argue with creationists, you know that the Index to Creationist Claims is an incredibly useful site, as is the book version, The Counter Creationism Handbook. Life just got a little sweeter: it is now available as a smartphone app for the blackberry and iPhone (just get into the App Store and search…

Goofy gadget, falsified by SCIENCE!

RCA (which is not the old and reputable company I remember, but has gone out of business and its name sold to anyone with the right amount of cash) recently announced a device called the Airnergy harvester, which supposedly simply soaks up the RF energy emitted by WiFi devices in the neighborhood and uses it…

Kindle improves!

Woo hoo! Amazon has addressed one of my biggest complaints about the Kindle (other than the evil DRM on the thing): they have added built-in pdf support. Finally, I can just transfer papers directly to the Kindle and get reasonable rendering. Got a Kindle yourself? Follow the instructions to update your machine.

It’s an announcement for a new video game, and the website is totally deadpan. I can’t find the company “Prayer Works Interactive” on the web, which gives me some hope that this isn’t real.