Elektor USA

3-USA-IssuesSoon versions of the British electronics enthusiast magazine will be hitting American book store shelves.

Elektor Electronics is a British magazine that aims to inspire people to master electronics at any level by presenting construction projects and spotting developments in electronics and information technology. Every issue is packed with innovative articles, simple and complex construction projects, news, reviews, columns, and more.

I’m looking forward to reading it, hard to find good electronics projects magazines these days.

Elektor USA

Validity of Information, How to Be A BS Detective

mess of wiresWhen I think about how easy it is to find information on the Internet I have to pause to wonder just how accurate is that information? Back in the day you had to go to a library or dust off a volume of the household encyclopedia to get the facts on a subject. Now you just have to do a Google search of scan the Wikipedia article on it. That’s all well and good but just how do you know what you’re reading is correct? The books and periodicals that are in the library are a trusted source because publishers have fact checkers that fix incorrect data before a bazillion copies are made. Not so on the wild Internet. It’s tough to sort out the facts from the BS and like the author of the bellow mentioned article says you need to be a bit of a detective.  He outlines a number of ways to see the clues that offer insight into whether what your reading is on the mark or is crackpot nonsense. These ‘rules of thumb’ are also part of being a critical thinker.  I’m fond of saying that you should keep an open mind but don’t let it fall out. Think of critical thinking as a bungie cord for your brain. Enough give to move about but keeps everything all together when the going is rough. Enjoy the article and I hope this helps you while you navigate the ‘Net.


[via Skepchick]

Crap Detection 101

Tuk Tuk USA

Tuk Tuk in Bangkok Thailand

One of the things you do when you visit Southeast Asia is getting a rid on a Tuk-Tuk. It’s not some sort of amusement park ride because if park rides were this visceral the lines to ride them would be epic. Nope,the Tuk-Tuk is a three wheeled scooter taxi like car that gets you form one place to another in a busy crowded Asian metropolis quickly, sometimes by using sidewalks or by zipping between traffic that you could have sworn didn’t have enough space to fit a cat let alone a thing you are sitting in. Soon, local laws permitting, you may see them popping up on the streets in your area:

Get on board with the ONLY EPA and DOT approved Tuk Tuk in America! Tuk Tuk USA is excited to bring the internationally acclaimed Tuk Tuk motor vehicle to the United States after over 60 years of service abroad in over 20 countries! Dealership opportunities are coming soon with full service and and parts departments to be included on site! Tuk Tuk USA is proud to present over 14 models with choices in transmission and even alternative fuel source engines! There are both private and commercial vehicle configurations to choose from!

[via Red Ferret]

Tuk Tuk USA

When Satellites Collide

Like a scene from the Japanese TV series “Planetes“, a Russian and US satellite have collided in orbit. Early in February a non functional Russian military satellite (Kosmos 2251) and a US Iridium communications satellite occurred temporarily disrupting the Iridium communications network. An on orbit spare will be brought into service within the next 30 days. So far this isi the first accident of it’s kind, where a satellites has struck another satellite and not just orbital debris (paint chips, fuel tanks, etc) hitting working space hardware. There was that Chinese missile test where they destroyed a non functional weather bird but that was intentional (and also caused quite a mes up there). Hopefully the junk left from the recent accident will burn up, if not it will become part of the cloud of over 17,000 objects that are currently tracked by ground stations.

Original story:
Russian and US satellites collide

Tape + Vacuum = X-rays?

Simply cool, who would have thought you could get x-rays out of tape? Chalk one up for triboluminescence!

It turns out that if you peel the popular adhesive tape off its roll in a vacuum chamber, it emits X-rays. The researchers even made an X-ray image of one of their fingers.

X-rays emitted from ordinary Scotch tape