October 5th, 2008
Like many people I bought a bunch of compact flourescent light bulbs to save energy. Like many people I took the label for what it said. I bought 60 watt “replacement” bulbs that were 13 watts. WooHoo!!! That is 47 fewer watts of power! That’s awesome! So I get them home and remove several perfectly good incandescent bulbs, flip the switch and Viola…. Wait, these aren’t as bright. Then I did a little reading. Here’s the jist. A 60 watt incandescent bulb puts out ~900 lumens, some say 870. The 13 watt CFL that I bought says right on the package that it puts out 830 lumens. That is less useful light. That is not what I would consider a “replacement”. Basically I think that marketing these bulb that produce less light as “replacements” will hurt the use of CFLs. Go with a 15 Watt CFL it is much closer to 900 lumens. That way you have an actual comparable bulb. You will have almost the same amount of light that you are used to. That sounds like a much better plan to me.
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July 30th, 2008
How many pre-approved credit card offers do you get in a month? Don’t know. I’m not surprised. I get several every week. I learned today that these companies submit requests to the credit bureaus for, let’s just say people with a credit score higher than 600. You want to what the credit bureaus do with that request? They fulfill it! That’s right. Your information, my information, your moms information is available for the asking. Then they send you all this crap mail.
It appears that there is a way to Opt-Out of receiving these pre-screened or preapproved credit card, and insurance offers. The web site is: https://www.optoutprescreen.com/ They ask for your name, address, Social Security number and birth date. You are only required to provide your name and address. You do not have to provide your SSN or birth date. They say that they would be used to make sure they opt-out the right person.
Of course I didn’t trust it when I first saw it. So I did a little checking. The main reassuring piece of information that I found was a reference to this web site on the FTC.gov web site. I also found an article written about the service that talked about some of the same concerns that I had. Let me just say that I don’t have in-depth knowledge of this organization and therefore cannot endorse it. I find enough information to make me comfortable enough to submit our information to opt-out. Now the real measure is the see how much less crap mail we get. Maybe we can save a tree or two.
Edit: I forgot to mention the fact that fewer of these preapproved applications could reduce your chance of identity theft. What happens to that application when you throw it in the trash? Anyone could get it and submit it. I’m sure there a place to change the address on there. (hint: shred everything!)
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July 25th, 2008
Why is organic zucchini packaged on a styrofoam tray?
Why do prenatal vitamins have red40 in them?
Why is there color added to my deodorant?
July 24th, 2008
Maybe not president, but how about Secretary of Energy? I need to read up on it more. However, from what I have read and heard the Pickens Plan sounds pretty darn good. Take a look:PickensPlan
I understand that distribution is a problem. Transmitting electricity over long distances is not very efficient. You actually lose power in the process. Some winds farms will shut the turbines down during times of reduced demand. That’s not good! There are ways to “store” electricity. Of course you can use batteries. My favorite is underground air tanks. When the demand is low, use the extra power to run compressors that force air into underground tanks or caverns. When demand is high release the stored air and drive a turbine with it. Viola! Stored electricity.
There are plenty of sources of power available. Many of them are immature, but it we work on them, we can make them happen.
Wind power is pretty mature – I’m not sure about the efficiency
Photovoltaic (typical solar) – Not very efficient yet, but getting better
Solar Thermal – concentrates sunlight on something to make it hot, use that energy. My favorites are the parabolic trough types that heat oil or molten sodium.
More later…. need sleep….
July 6th, 2008
Quote – “You didn’t just use antiperspirant did you?”
*note- antiperspirant typically contains aluminum salts that have been shown to be a neurotoxin.
July 6th, 2008
I dug someone else’s coke can out of the trash and recycled it at work