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Friday, June 22, 2007

Philips' iPod-friendly universal remote
John P. Falcone

The Philips SJM3151 controls your iPod--and your other home theater gear as well.(Credit: Philips)
It's easy to hook up your iPod to any home audio system, but finding a good remote solution--one that doesn't require you to scurry from the sofa to the stereo every time you want to change a song--is a bit more of a challenge. Personally, I'm only interested in those that let me completely browse the iPod's music collection: the DLO HomeDock Music Remote, Belkin TuneSage 2, and Keyspan TuneView come to mind.
But why clutter the coffee table with yet another remote? That's where the Philips SJM3151 comes in. The remote does double duty as a standard six-device universal remote and a full-service iPod remote, complete with a built-in LCD screen that mirrors that of a docked iPod. Based on the Philips SRU9600, the remote can be programmed to control via infrared the usual bevy of home theater gear--TV, cable/satellite box, DVD player, AV receiver--but it also uses the Zigbee RF wireless standard to communicate with the included iPod dock at distances up to 300 feet. That means you could have the music cranked up a couple of rooms away and still be able to navigate to a new song, artist, or album at the touch of a button.
Look for the Philips SJM3151 to hit stores in the fall of 2007 for $180. For those who wish to control PC-based music files instead, a similar version that ships with a USB dongle instead of an iPod dock is also expected.

Concorde parts up for auction

With the demise of the Concorde fleet, spare parts from the scrapped fleet are to be auctioned at the Hotel des Ventes Saint-Aubin in Toulouse, France, from September 28th to October 1st of this year. Interested in buying a piece of history? Have a look through the catalog, and bone up on your aviation French to avoid accidentally buying an “arbre d’entrainement” (drive shaft), when you really wanted the machmètre (mach meter). The iconic instrument (which tells you the airplane's speed relative to the speed of sound), sold in lots 310, 568, and 791, respectively, is estimated to fetch between 1500 and 2500 euros, but you can bet some aviation nutcase is going to drive the price higher than that. Even if you can’t attend personally, you can send bid orders online.—Jacob Ward

Versatile New Laser May Change Surgery, Metallurgy and More

INDY 4 - first photo leaked

Silent Green- SunLawn EM2

The Sunlawn EM2 will be available to purchase July 15, 2007The EM-2 represents the highest level of innovation, power and performance in rechargeable mower technology. Utilizing two long lasting but easily replaceable 12 volt SLA batteries, the EM-2 mows for a full hour on a charge. The EM-2 features the original Sunlawn flame hardened non-contact cutting system in a seven blade configuration. It quietly does a beautiful job of grooming all North American turf types including Bermuda, Zoysia, St. Augustine, Fescue, Bluegrass. For the person who wants a truly “perfect” appearance to their lawn with minimal pushing effort the EM-2 is an excellent choice.

• Mows one full hour on a single charge; recharges in 5 – 8 hours• Weight 39 pounds (17.8kg) with batteries• 24V power system utilizes two commonly available 12V 7Ah SLA batteries• Precision 7 blade contact-free cutting system - flame hardened, bearing mounted blades• Cutting swath 40cm (16 inches)• Cutting height .4 – 2.25 inches (10 – 55mm ), easily adjustable• Suitable for all North American grasses• Expected blade life without sharpening 6 – 9 years• Rigid full-width handle with foam grip• Nine inch wheel diameter• Segmented rear roller• Grass Catcher included
Sunlawn Universal Grass Catcher
• woven nylon with metal frame • fits all sunlawn & Brill models • weight 3 pounds

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All Sunlawn mowers come with a 2 year warranty.
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“Powered By 100% Vegetable Oil” Bumper Sticker Triggers $1K Fine!

Today’s world of “choice” for what you can use to power your vehicle may in fact cost you lots of money. As one man found out in Charlotte, NC simply promoting your independence from oil can cost you thousands of dollars. From the article,
“Bob Teixeira decided it was time to take a stand against U.S. dependence on foreign oil.
So last fall the Charlotte musician and guitar instructor spent $1,200 to convert his 1981 diesel Mercedes to run on vegetable oil. He bought soybean oil in 5-gallon jugs at Costco, spending about 30 percent more than diesel would cost. His reward, from a state that heavily promotes alternative fuels: a $1,000 fine last month for not paying motor fuel taxes.
He’s been told to expect another $1,000 fine from the federal government. And to legally use veggie oil, state officials told him, he would have to first post a $2,500 bond.”
Holy shit! We should be exempting these people from oil taxes, not punishing them! Unfortunately, most state laws have strict penalties for those that do not partake from the traditional pump. It’s almost like the Spanish Inquisition has come to the fuel industry. States understandably receive an immense amount of money from taxing fuel to help pay for road repair costs. Still, a $2,500 bond, $1,000 fine, and another $1K from the federal government? It’s enough to make any American think twice about making the switch. Then again, that’s probably the entire point.
Word to the wise: If you use veggie oil, make sure your bumper sticker reads “100% Powered By Big Oil & Loving It!” You’ll probably actually receive a check…..