Say Hello to Elio a 3 Wheeled Power House

If you thought you couldn’t possibly own a new car for $7,000 dollars you would be right at any other time in history. However today, that is all about to change because we are entering a brave new world of car ownership in the form of the Elio’s 3 wheeled car that is coming in right around that price point. And oh yeah it also gets 84 MPG if you’re in to the whole, saving money and the planet thing.

The Elio company claims that it is locking in on its prices for different levels of reservation holders. If you are willing to put down a deposit, there is good news you will get about 500 dollars of if you are willing to make the non refundable commitment. This is because Elio really needs capital because they have not been met with a lot of fan fair or even respect from the general public or car buying public in general.

But when we think about what is going to be the most fuel efficient and affordable car on the market then there is really no rival, if they can actually stand and deliver, a task that is easier said than done. But all things considered we are on the predispose of something that could be pretty remarkable if it can take off and be something special.

The company has announced that it will be having the official pricing for its three wheeled vehicle that is running a cool $7,300. The announcement was made in an email sent by company founder Paul Elio (I wonder where he got the name for the company) which also said that the company has gone public and has planned out the option ordering system for the car.

The Elio is something that hasn’t delivered a single car to date, yet to a customer and it needs loans to start its production in the USA so don’t hold your breath if you think you are going to get it when they said they are going to be able to produce them, because as is the case you will probably be waiting a very long time. This is going to save you big times on your energy bills.

So the catch is if you were to say it is that you are likely going to pay the $7,000 outright to purchase an Elio three-wheeled car, but that payment is non-refundable. You are going to essentially going to be running the risk that the company will go bankrupt before you ever get the car, rendering your $7K a total waste and you would get nothing back except a fat headache. That is the risk you gotta take if you want one of these things because if they ever actually get their production up and running then you can imagine that it is safe to say that they are going to be working through all the back orders for so long that it will be months or even years before you can buy one on the open market. But that is just one mans opinion. What the Elio represents is a new trend in transportation and frankly I’m excited.

Bathroom Delights

Whether you are someone with the money to pull of an entire bathroom renovation or you are someone who doesn’t know how they can improve their lives on such a tiny budget there are going to be products in here that will fit your needs and greatly improve the time spend within the hallowed walls of your bathroom. There are a lot of things you can do for your bathroom that are going to cost you a lot of money and at the end of the day are going to leave you scratching your head considering what you just paid for, and ultimately add to the stress surrounding your bathroom not the ease we are all going for when we consider the design of these spaces. Have no fear the call for sanity is here and willing to cut through the nonsense and get you the bathroom experience of a life time, for a price that won’t take you a life time to obtain. Because, lets face it, whose got the time?

Up first among my big dog watch list for bathroom revamp series is the Oral-B Black 7000 smart series. These bad boy is coming in hot at the rock bottom price of $119.97. Lets face it the toothbrush and your dental hygiene can either be a source of utter happiness of total shame and embarrassment. What you spend in dollars you will get back 10 fold when it comes to the confidence and cleanliness of your teeth. What makes this product so unique in my eyes is that it provides real time feed back on your brushing habits via a smartphone app. You see there are sensors that tell you when you are pushing too hard, a common mistake among teeth brushes, as well as tell you when you hit the coveted 2 minute mart for your brushing, a time frame that is almost impossible to keep in mind when you are in the thick of it.

Up next is the most important tool a man can own, a healthy and awe insping thrown for the king of the castle. I’m referring to your toilet, and in this case I’m giving a big time shout out to the Delta Brevard with Flush IQ. So what the heck is a smart toilet you ask ? Well a smart toilet or iPoo as they are referred to within the industry is touch free for one (yes please) and it has over flow protection system for those who can’t control their movement. Not to mention water activation that allows a nice calming stream of relief to caress your hind parts. At a cool $2oo bucks this is a steal considering other comparable products on the market today will go upwards of 3 thousand dollars US. This next one is an oldie but a goodie and gives you peace of mind without tossing too many dimes.  This is a hands free faucet from the Bear Co. brand and allows you to have hands free access to water without touching it.

The Next Generation of Consumer Integration


We are in the midst of one of the most fundamental changes to the fabric of the way we live more so than any other time in human history. The only times which are comparable can be understood in terms the advent of first developing agriculture, then onto the automobile, and then the advent of electricity infrastructure and grids. What makes the next wave which we find ourselves in is that it is none which is self improving to a large degree, and whose potential and speed of growth is exponential. What this means for its affect will go further than something like the advent of electricity or personal mobility because the later are things whole end is understood in the advent of their creation. What I mean by that is that in some respects the logical conclusion or end for these things is already understood when you set out in their creation. However, when it comes to tech, this is simply not the case, and we are left to consider where it will go with nothing inhibiting our creative or logistical en devours. This is both one of the most exciting as well as cautionary or frightful reality about both the history of the human race, as well as the future of the planet and its sustained existentialist and potential for relative peace. The things that we can understand most about this reality is that tech is going to find a way to infiltrate and alter the course of every things and institution we operate with and under in our daily lives today, In many respects it already has. Where this road goes is entirely unknown, However it is the most substantial things we should negatived or will ever navigate. The time to ask the questions that pertain to these issues of morality and reach need to be asked in our philosophical or policy circles more so than our tech circus because many times our moral en-devours are pushed to the way side in an effort to make rapidity of change constantly increasing and keeping us unable to ask questions of whether or one we should do something, and only ever ask if we can do something. This is wrong headed and needs to be the core of our social and political discourse of the millennial generation. When we look a generation back to the cold war we see a time where there was a sense of mutually ensured destruction on both ends of those who fought in it. Today there is very much a reality shift, where it is a final global agenda, where in there is little to no sense of things being world ending or changing in a catastrophic way. Essentially we are operating under the guise that we are incapable of being harmed by any enemy domestic, that we fail to see the treachery of ourselves as being ourselves. Thus we are caught in a kind of blind security where our next great innovation, may be our last. And that’s the way the cookie crumbles.


Big Savings for Little Effort

When caring for your home we usually treat it like a 100 yard dash, and not the marathon it should be, where in it never ends. When we fix up our homes we usually wait until the total failure of an appliance, system, or structure and it ends up costing you way more to over haul an entire project to address it rather than the vigil low cost maintenance repairs that we should all do out of respect for our living space and more importantly our investment. 

Trying to tackle the myriad repairs can be an over whelming task, and many times we do not know where to begin or look. Or on the other hand we go all out on a project we don’t know that much about and end up doing a poor job at a much high cost than is necessary. You should take tasks you are not totally comfortable with some times just as long as you have someone who is more senior than you give you advice so you can build your skills and save money in the long run. However, you should always know where to count your losses and get the pros involved. At the end of the day, they are going to save you more time than you could imagine and do a much better job, thus increasing the value of your home. Time is money and if you do something wrong, or poorly you’re going to be loosing a lot of it.

Thanks to the following quick and clever solutions you’ll gain they eye of the pros and will be feeling the savings the second you begin to incorporate this time tested solutions into your daily lives. Maintenance is love, and if you love yourself and your home you will live the maintenance life, or parish by way of the home owning dingus. 

The thing about maintenance is that it doesn’t have to be scary and hard, and it also doesn’t have to be big things at all. For instance anyone who looks at a wobbly or out of wack chair can probably diagnosis the problem in a matter of seconds, there isn’t much going on there in terms of design or difficulty. More over the chair itself is probably wearing down your floors if you are not careful and protect the feet. This can be done with felt stickers. In terms of the chairs themselves, an investment in some wood glue, screw driver, and a few clamps could easily double and even triple the life span of your chairs. Its this way of looking at your things that sees them as objects that come from materials that are finite that is the starting point for developing a respectful working relationship with your stuff. By seeing things as not in the ikea throw away paradigm you are going to save yourself a lot of money, but you will also help be a change in the world in how we need to start treating our objects with car and respect.

Is Your Power Bill Accurate?

Power bills can constitute a substantial portion of your house finances, so it’s worth your while to ensure that you’re being charged an appropriate amount. Unfortunately, it’s all too common for people’s power bills to not reflect the actual amount of electricity used by the consumer. Luckily, those with electric power meters installed at their homes can consult the instrument and compare their use to the price they were charged. Here’s how.

home-electric-power-meter-12149216 (2)Electric power meters are very sensitive and very accurate. To read them, you must peer through the glass enclosure until you can make out a rotating metal disc. This disc rotates in proportion to the amount of electricity that’s being used at the time that you’re reading it. If you’re using a lot of energy during that time (by doing things like heating or air conditioning your house or charging your electric vehicle), the disc will rotate faster.

Each rotation of the disc implies a specific amount of electricity. The disc’s rotation causes gears to rotate, which turn moves pointers on a dial that show how much electricity has been used all together. Electricity is measured in kilowatt hours, and one kilowatt hour of electricity can supply enough energy to keep ten 100 watt bulbs burning for one hour. A representative from your electric company reads your meter at regular intervals, ultimately billing you for the kilowatt hours that you have used. If the meter reader for some reason cannot access your meter, you will be billed based on an estimate.

But what if you want to read your power meter to check up on the accuracy of the meter reader? This isn’t too difficult, but you do need to understand which parts of the meter refer to what.

The first dial on the right measures units and rotates clockwise. The dial on its left measures tens and rotates counter-clockwise. The middle dial measures hundreds and rotates clockwise, and so on until the final dial, which measures ten thousands. You can read your meter from right to left and write down the numbers that each arrow points to.

powerIf the arrow on the dial is in between two numbers, record the lower number. The exception to this rule is when the dial is between 0 and 9. Because 0 represents the next revolution of the dial, 9 is actually lower than 0 and that’s the one you would record. If the dial is exactly on that number, then you can record that number accordingly.

Once you have recorded how much power you have used, check your power bill for the dates of when your meter was read and how much power you supposedly used. You can double check your power company’s meter maid’s work by either figuring out how much time they let pass (probably around a month) between readings and waiting that amount of time and then reading your meter again and seeing if you get a similar number (be sure to note if your electricity use has changed in that month, as it will show up in the amount of power you use) or you can time it so that you read your meter on the same day as the meter maid and directly make sure that the bill has the right difference recorded.

Appliance Trends: Time is Money

No matter who you are or what you eat today’s highly customization luxury kitchen trend gives you the freedom to design everything from the color to the specifics of the machines functionality. Also in today’s custom kitchen economy, whatever you are there is a product for you, whether you are Paleo or Vegan, Artisan organic or DIY sushi master there is someone out there is found a way to monetize the phase you are going through and get you something that is painfully specific to what you cook. nl

This marks a big shift in the way we tend to personalize our kitchens and spaces in general. We have long been in the Sears catalog paradigm where you get a few options of basically the same things, and in the track homes we found ourselves in they usually have the exact same layout and machines as all of your neighbors and whoever else is in your socioeconomic scale.

BSH is the maker of Bosch, Gaggenau and Thermodor brands, which are more than 500 other exhibitors showed off their goods all this last season in the kitchen and bath trade shows across the country and world. When you work through these the crowd of one of these things there are up to 100,000 dealers, builders, architects, designers and suppliers, for all intensive purposes they are a mad house. The choices are overwhelming, and most of them will never take off. That said, through all of this madness a handful of products stand out and are on the lips and minds of most people who attend. Its these products that change the market going into the next year.

This year one of the big ones was French manufacturer La Cornue which tapped into the influence of Designer Suzanna Kasler in order to create some new very stylish Parisian inspired colors for its handmade ranges. This whole company is going for customization and wants your dishware to be as much a part of the style of your home as the drapes or color. So much so that they give the the freedom to choose your own color. How much freedom? Upwards of 8,000 colors. So whatever you choose or want for your house they should be able to color match it.

nfnAnother thing that was key this year on the circuit was the notion of cooking time and quality to be delivered in a fraction of the time. Easier said than done, because this has long meant that people have made those hybrid microwave toaster ovens you are likely to find at Subway which are really bad, and ruin something with even a little more culinary integrity than Subway (Whattaburgar).

One of the top ovens this year answered the bell with a Middleby debuted its Turbochef line. This oven heats air and moves it at 60mph in a convection. This allowed them to cook a 12-pound turkey in 42 minutes in front of a stunned onlooking crowed of two thousand in Reno Nevada. This is compared to this taking upwards of 4 hours.

Kitchen Hacks: Masters of the Waffle Iron

We’ve all been there, don’t get me wrong “lets not beat around the brunch.” Its time to cook and you have very little inspiration in your kitchen both in the ingredients you have at the ready as well as the tools you have to cook said materials is usually uninspired and ultimately bleak. So you go into your kitchen and what do you do, you cook the same meals with the same materials with the same everything and you fade into a monotonous and bleak existence where each day blends into the next without any difference or joy on the horizon. But there is one thing that might offer a little hope to this cycle of darkness: your waffle iron. I know you’re thinking “how the heck am I gonna eat a waffle everyday day, What I’m gonna spruce things up with a little blueberry ? pa-lease.”oof

The thing is that the waffle iron is one of the most versatile appliances in your kitchen, possibly in the whole world. It offers a quick and effective way to cook an extremely wide range of foods at a very low energy price point. Meaning that given the pressure and surrounding attention to heat you are given the means to achieve an internal temperature with a much lower amount of energy being spent. Consider if you were to heat something in a conventional convection oven. The amount of energy you need to produce needs to heat an entire internal chamber and maintain that heat for the duration of the cooking. Now this is not to say that the waffle iron is going to cook your thanksgiving turkey or be the showcase of your dinner parties. However, most people eat alone or for a small amount of people, so incorporating this bad boy into your daily use is going to save you a lot of time, money and energy for clean ups. This is also extremely versatile and used can be used on the road. mom

From sweet to savory here are a few ways to get most bang for your buck in the kitchen. First way to embody the easy breakfast life a possibility with little clean up is to use the waffle iron for everything you do. For example begin by grating your potatoes finely and squeezing out all the water from it. When jah is fresh you add flour until the consistency is correct then place it in the waffle iron with a little bit of oil. This is another way the Waffle iron will change your life is through the fact that you are going to use a lot less oil when cooking things. When that puppy is golden brown remove it and add your waffle mix with nothing more than a quick wipe. You can add 14 blueberries if you want to be fancy. Boom there is your breakfast, no dishes and a lot of smiles.

Lunch time: get yourself some artisan bread and Swiss with an arugula and pesto spread, in addition to some capitol. Just like that you have yourself a panini press, and saved about $300 in the process.

Don’t forget dessert, Waffle brownies. Just make your standard batter and pour it in and just like that every brownie is a corner brownie.

There is Festool, Then There’s Everyone Else

I am often asked when prospective tools buyers are in the market for something new whether or not they can justify any Festool products given their on average much higher pricing. For any carpenter you are going to need to decide what the needs of your shop are and what you are willing to spend; that said when it comes to finish carpentry it really comes down to Festool and everyone else. fasFrom their precision longevity and revolutionary dust collection system that works with all of their products there is no one that comes close. To understand this leap in performance consider using a Ryobi or Porter Cable Product and the difference in performance when you begin using a tool on par with Makita DeWalt; The leap from those brands to Festool is as significant if not more significant.Unless you are a profession carpenter, or a very serious hobbiest it may not be practical for you to spend the kind of money you need to have an entire Festool shop. However, if you are in the market for a table saw as a hobbiest the Festool TS plunge track saw may actually be a practical purchase for you. This is their jack of all trades saw and delivers the capabilities of a table saw, a miter saw, a radial arm saw, and even a panel saw.  All this with an unmatched precision and compact portable means that will not eat up your shop space. god sawThe reason being that the actual machine is no larger than ant standard circular saw, the tracks they run can be stacked nicely and neatly into any wall storage. The freedom this allows is that you can clamp the track into place and know exactly how your cut is going to end up before you begin saving a lot of the hassle of making sure your material runs along the fence precisely and evenly. Another major perk of the Festool TS is the safety, you are never going to have a kick back or binding of the material as you cut, if at any point you want to stop you merely raise the blade from the material and adjust your cut accordingly. They Can also be hooked up to a larger air vac system to ensure total dust efficiency.

The Festool dust collection system is incredible in terms of its effectiveness in  doing just that, keeping the dust out of your shop and more importantly out of your lungs and eyes. That said, they are somewhat lacking in how it is implemented onto the tool itself, it is often the case that they will bind and tug as you are doing a long cross cut, which is an inconvenience but is not going to affect the cut quality, its just kind of a pain. A pain that you are more than happy to deal with with when it comes time to clean up the shop after a long day of cutting and there is nothing to sweep.

If you are a professional Carpenter and you want to separate yourself from the competition then implementing the Festool system into your shop will pay for itself with the higher quality you will produce.

CaloriCool Leads the Way in Replacing Conventional Refrigerators

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory recently announced that it was working on a design for a new generation refrigerator.

The conventional refrigeration process has gone basically unrevised for almost a century; that means it takes a whole lot of energy and creates a whole lot of heat to keep  things cool.

Nowadays, there’s a call for energy efficient appliances that’s more urgent than ever before; climate change is no longer a subject of debate, nor is our need to drastically revise our lifestyles in order to meet the environmental needs of our warming planet.

PrintAccordingly, a research group called CaloriCool will be investigating caloric cooling technology as a way to improve on the conventional refrigeration process.

“There is a technical revolution right now as breakthroughs ind at a science and materials science combine to provide breakthroughs in applied research,” explained Director the Advanced Manufacturing Office for EERE Mark Johnson. “As Ames is a globally recognized leader in the basic discoveries for caloric materials, which if developed could be an important technology for our energy future, we are pleased to see them engaging with industry to accelerate these discoveries towards potential applications.”

According to some studies, 20-30 percent of the energy in the United States is used for cooling alone.

In general, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory in Iowa will become the home of a wide research consortium for the discovery and development of more environmentally friendly and energy-effieicient refrigeration technologies.

CaloriCool’s research will be conducted in collaboration with the private appliance sector and universities. The EMN will facilitate industry access to whatever unique and technical resources become available as a result of the consortium’s findings and will enable manufacturers to bring cutting edge materials to market as quickly as possible.

caloric coolingThe CaloriCool method involves creating compounds that generate cooling when cyclically acted upon by magnetic, electric, or mechanical forces. These forces are called magnetocaloric, electrocaloric, and elastocaloric matierlas. These materials can be more effective and cheaper to use than those known today, which would enable huge energy savings in the form of resources and money for owners and the environment.

“Following our discovery of the giant magnetocaloric effect, it took everyone almost 20 years to realize that what really holds the technology back from commercialization is the lack of a viable material with a strong enough caloric cooling effect,” Explained Ames Lab scientist Vitalij Pecharsky. “Once we develop the materials that are suitable and cost-effective, the technology can make the leap forward on its own.”

“If you consider all the ways in which humans are using cooling technology globally, the societal impact and energy savings are enormous,” comments Duane Johnson, chief research officer for Ames Laboratory. “In the U.S. it represents a 20 to 30 percent drop in energy needs for cooling.”

Cooling seems to be just another example of a need done by antiquated methods that can and will be done in a better way, if we can only attribute enough value to doing so as a society. I find the direction of this movement relieving, and hope that there will continue to be a way to outsmart environmentally unfriendly practices.

Can You Unclog a Toilet Without a Plunger?

Just moved into your new spot and finished wondering if you forgot to buy any important bathroom appliances, only to clog the toilet and realize you don’t have a toilet plunger yet? To make matters worse, is the date of your dreams on his or her way over to sweep you off your feet, but you don’t want them to see this sort of disgusting mess you’ve created and you don’t have time to go to the store before they get to your house because they already texted to tell you that they’re on their way? Feel like you’re screwed to live alone for the rest of your life because you can’t stop scaring away potential lovers with your awkward toilet-related mistakes?

hot watDon’t worry. You can unclog your toilet without a plunger, and if this first way doesn’t work, there’s a second way you can try out too.

The first way is to get a bucket and fill it with hot water. Squirt a whole lot of dishwashing liquid into your toilet, or chop up an entire bar of soap and pour all the little pieces into the bowl instead. Either way, you’re going to need a whole lot of soap.

Then carefully pour the hot water into the toilet bowl so that it dissolves the liquid or the bar of soap. You want it to be hot enough water that it will kick the sudsy chemicals in your soap right into gear. If it’s activated, the soap should begin to unclog the toilet drain by helping the clogged paper and waste to begin to slide down the pipes. Repeat the process if necessary until the water in the toilet bowl goes down the drain, implying that the blockage has been dislodged. Then you’r going to need to flush the toilet a few more times in order to remove any residue from the soap. You don’t want anyone to come around asking questions after all.

dawnDidn’t work? Here’s Plan B:

Pick a container that you’re never going to use again and put on some rubber gloves. Remove as much water from the toilet bowl as possible by filling the container repeatedly and pouring its contents out into a bucket. Now fill a large plastic bottle with warm water. Keep your thumb over the top so you can fit the top of it into the outlet at the bottom of the toilet. Then remove your thumb quickly and squeeze the bottle so that water shoots into the toilet drain. The pressure will likely dislodge the clog. You’re going to want to wear a mask and some eye protection in this case, as water might splash feces into your eyes and give you pink eye. Then Add more hot was water to the toilet bowl and see if goes down the drain; if it does, you’re in the clear. If it doesn’t, repeat the bottle squirting steps until it does.

Finally, pour about three quarts of boiled water into the toilet bowl to clean out the residue. Let it sit for about 15 to 20 minutes until it cools down, then flush it for a sparkling finish.