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Showing posts from July, 2007

The Mac Mini Discontinued?

There are rumors that the Mac Mini is going to be discontinued. I disagree. Instead, I think it will evolve by being merged in with the Apple TV product. Of course, I don't work for Apple, so I have no idea if my plan is workable. But I do think that it is a possibility, as it considers:
Leveraging current engineering projectsReducing manufacturing costsSimplifying the product lineStaying reasonable in terms of product costs
Here's my thought of how I would converge the Apple TV and Mac Mini concept into one compelling product:
Stick the guts of a MacBook into an Apple TV sized caseDrop out the LCD, the battery, the keyboard, the DVDDrop in a (cheaper, bigger) 3.5 inch HDD drive, in lieu of a 2.5" notebook drive.
Add various Video Out optionsProvide a standard MacBook power brick
Now you've got a fully capable computer - a computer as powerful as a MacBook - that basically cost nothing to engineer (other than reboxing the thing). You still have a computer that is ess…

A tip of my hat for the new Roomba

I really hate vacuuming, and so I vacuum as little as possible. However, in contrast to my hate of vacuuming, I love a clean house. And so I either find myself vacuuming (yuk), or living in a not-so-clean house (yuk).

So to reduce my emotional distress related to vacuuming, I recently bought a Roomba. Here are my impressions and some tips:

Efficacy of the Roomba

The Roomba certainly keeps my floors clean. I'll still have to get out the traditional vacuum to clean the moldings, window sills, and some tricky spots (like behind my desk), but the bulk of my vacuuming effort has gone away.

The Roomba is not nearly as fast as the local cleaning service - but it does do a good job of covering all accessible floor surfaces. My routine: I get up in the morning, and just before I leave for work, I ask the Roomba to vacuum a particular room in my house. By the time I get home, the room's floor has been cleaned and Roomba has recharged itself.

The Roomba can miss some pockets of dirt.…

Prius owners and Biofuel users beware!

I'm sorry to say that driving a Prius or making your own biofuel doesn't make you "green". These things might make you feel good, and they might reduce the world's energy consumption by a few BTUs.

But you can be very "green" by spending NO money at all.

I'm not anti-Prius, and I'm not against biofuel. In fact, I think they're both cool. And I'm certainly not an environmental wacko. I'm just a pragmatist.

In the end, reducing your purchases, investing money wisely (say, in a new fridge or in CFL bulbs), and recouping money on your prior expenditures is, in the end, a very green strategy that can help minimize your negative impact on the environment.

And now, the six most important environmental tips you've been waiting for!...
Buy less new stuff. The stuff you buy requires substantial energy and materials to produce, package, and ship. The less crap you buy, the better for the environment. Remember that factories require a lot …