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Is 9V too much for a 6V device?

If I have a device that requests 6V input and I have an a/c adapter that outputs 9V, will the device draw only the 6V it needs or will it try to take all 9V and burn itself out? In this case the circuit is simply a light. It has the switch and the bulb with an optio of being powered by 4 AA batteries or 6V input. No amp requirement specified.

Watt’s it matter?

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LHC Achieves Blackhole!

And it has formed in my house! Last night I set my glasses down and they instantly vanished. This morning the same thing happened to some ointment I pulled out for one of the children. When I say vanished, I mean blink and it is gone! I hope this hole doesn’t grow too large. So far it has only eaten objects about the size of 2 decks of cards. Now I’ll allow it to eat the cat but any larger than that the children are at risk and there will none of that!

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And today started off so well…Now I’m seeing stars

I have been working a project that no person in their right mind would have accepted, particularly at the pittance of the budget alloted. It is a train wreck but today, after several hours of feeling like I was trying to fill the ocean with sand from the beach, I felt the train was back on the track! The client is in a timezone 7 hours ahead of me so I have to work furiously to have this done for their opening business day. Then I had a meeting to help the boy scouts plan for a high adventure trip next summer. During the meeting, at 4:30pm on a Sunday, I get a message that another parent has called my wife to consult on the 3-D solar system project that he knows all parents have probably been working so furiously on for the whole weekend (or longer). Solar system project?! To be built to scale! And with excellent report attached.

So, a pot of coffee brews as I tear the house up looking for objects that are to scale (a trip to AC Moore for Styrofoam would have been nice!) and watch the business day in my client’s timezone come ever so much nearer. Let’s go upstairs and figure out just what the world revolves around.

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BRAINS! Braaaainnns!

Since you do not have enough to worry about, I suppose you probably want to hear about the Zombie Amoeba. That’s right. There is an amoeba that wants to eat your brains! If I recall my science lessons correctly, an amoeba is a single celled organism. This simple thing is taking people down.

According to the CDC, the amoeba called Naegleria fowleri (nuh-GLEER-ee-uh FOWL’-erh-eye) killed 23 people in the United States, from 1995 to 2004. This year health officials noticed a spike with six cases — three in Florida, two in Texas and one in Arizona. The CDC knows of only several hundred cases worldwide since its discovery in Australia in the 1960s. [Source]

Where does it thrive? Heat and stagnant water. So as global warming worsens and people flock to the lakes to cool themselves, the Naegleria is going to eat their brains.

Though infections tend to be found in southern states, Naegleria lives almost everywhere in lakes, hot springs, even dirty swimming pools, grazing off algae and bacteria in the sediment. [Source]

How do you know your brain is being eaten? Basically you have the same symptoms as everything else.

People who are infected tend to complain of a stiff neck, headaches and fevers. In the later stages, they’ll show signs of brain damage such as hallucinations and behavioral changes… [Source]

And how does it eat your brain? Through your nose!

Beach said people become infected when they wade through shallow water and stir up the bottom. If someone allows water to shoot up the nose — say, by doing a somersault in chest-deep water — the amoeba can latch onto the olfactory nerve. … Beach said people become infected when they wade through shallow water and stir up the bottom. If someone allows water to shoot up the nose — say, by doing a somersault in chest-deep water — the amoeba can latch onto the olfactory nerve. … "Usually, from initial exposure it’s fatal within two weeks," [Source]

Can this be prevented?

"You’d have to have water going way up in your nose to begin with" to be infected … The easiest way to prevent infection … is to use nose clips when swimming or diving in fresh water. [Source]

Thanks to BoingBoing, my wife will never let the children near water again.

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Practicing what I preach

I have bemoaned that we could get the United States onto the metric system if we started using it. You know.. put up speed limit signs that show both metric and English measurements. Of course if both the metric and English measurement appeared on the same sign, people may continue to ignore the metric. What if the English measurement sign was a half a mile before the metric. Confusion? We don’t confuse a yield sign with a speed limit sign. I think this could be worked out. Make metric the prominent measurement on all things and the English measurement the smaller. Right now my speedometer shows English measurements very large and shows metric speeds in a smaller, darker print.

What can I do? I am going to commitment myself to using metric as often as possible. I will find a thermostat for the house that displays in centigrade. When I give distances to the Scouts, they will be stated metrically first. And so forth. I know I can do this! I already drink out of two liter bottles.

Update: What is a meter?

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Oh! That acid rain…

Wow! The things that we miss. I just learned that Pennsylvania has had an underground fire burning for 45 years and that it is likely to burn for another 245 years!

An exposed vein of coal ignited in 1962 due to the standard policy of burning the garbage on a weekly basis in the borough landfill, located in an abandoned mine pit in the southeast portion of Centralia. Attempts to extinguish the fire were unsuccessful, and it continued to burn throughout the 1960s and 1970s.

There are no current plans to extinguish the fire, which is consuming an eight-mile seam containing enough coal to fuel it for 250 years.

Apparently, at $42 million, it is cheaper to move a town than extinguish the fire.

The federal and state governments gave up trying to extinguish the fire in the 1980s. “Pennsylvania didn’t have enough money in the bank to do the job,” says Steve Jones, a geologist with the state’s Office of Surface Mining.

Across the globe, thousands of coal fires are burning. Nearly impossible to reach and extinguish once they get started, the underground blazes threaten towns and roads, poison the air and soil and, some say, worsen global warming. … The United States, with the world’s largest coal reserves, harbors hundreds of blazes from Alaska to Alabama. Pennsylvania, the worst-afflicted state, has at least 38—an insignificant number compared with China and India, where poverty, old unregulated mining practices and runaway development have created waves of Centralias.

Scientists estimate that Australia’s BurningMountain, the oldest known coal fire, has burned for 6,000 years.

…in the United States; near Glenwood Springs, Colorado, for example, an old coal mine has burned for the past 100 years.

So, why are we still using coal?

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What’s in your future?

How about wireless lightbulbs? Or perhaps a toaster with no cord? Charge your laptop simply by setting it on your desk? How about a child-safe house that has absolutely no exposed outlets?

Researchers at MIT have shown that it’s possible to wirelessly power a 60-watt lightbulb sitting about two meters away from a power source. Using a remarkably simple setup…they have demonstrated, for the first time, that it is feasible to efficiently send that much power over such a distance.

Wireless power transfer is an idea that’s more than 100 years old. In the 1890s, physicist and electrical engineer Nikola Tesla proposed beaming electricity through the air.

The [MIT] team has minimized [safety issues] by making sure that the power is mainly in the form of a magnetic field, a form of energy to which the body is almost entirely insensitive.

They’ve applied for a patent. I bet its not long before we see some form of this in new home construction.

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The Earth is growing

In today’s science, a video purports that the Pangaea theory is wrong and that the continents are not being pushed around by the tectonic plates. The video claims the world is growing and it gives a pretty decent argument. There are still questions about how the Earth can grow but keep the same density. Is there any real evidence to support the growing theory? Today the ScienceDaily reported that the Earth’s crust is missing in the middle of the Atlantic.

Scientists have discovered a large area thousands of square kilometres in extent in the middle of the Atlantic where the Earth’s crust appears to be missing. Instead, the mantle – the deep interior of the Earth, normally covered by crust many kilometres thick – is exposed on the seafloor, 3000m below the surface. [Source]

Could this gaping wound be where the Earth has grown and simply not yet reformed the crust? Of course, if the Earth is growing, seems like with today’s technology it would be fairly simple to measure.