Jan 292008

Solar Still

This Aquamate Inflatable Solar Still is light, compact and simple to use. It uses solar radiation to distill and collect pure drinking water from sea water or other impure water, like urine.

It’s much like the device used by Kevin Costner in Waterworld, the post-apocalyptic movie where there is no land and little fresh water after the polar ice caps melt.

The manufacturer says this still will produce 500 to 2000 ccs (1 to 4 pints) of water per day and has been used by military and civilian services throughout the world for the past 40 years.

BTW, you can get this from Landfall Navigation for $200, other stores are a little more expensive as high as $226. And for probably just $5-10 you could build your own using plastic sheeting and other cheap parts in your garage, though it probably won’t float.

[via Green Daily]

 Posted by at 12:01 am
Jan 282008

Pirate Grrrl

Through the month of January I paid particular attention to our Pirate Geeks and identified plenty of fun for all. Or, I irritated the heck out of you but at least you learned about lingerie for your Pirate Gal and why 15 men sat on a “Dead Man’s Chest”. And who could forget about the Pirate Laws!

Welp, this here is my final list of Pirate links for a long, looong time ya scurvy dogs! Enjoy:

– Arrr, so ye be wantin’ t’ go to sea an’ ye don’t be wantin’ t’ end up in Davy Jones’ Locker. Then ye best be learnin’ t’ be talkin’ like a buccaneer. This page converts your English phrases or web pages into Pirate Speak.

Blackbeard’s Rugged brand tampons. “Fer pluggin’ that bloody hole afore th’ sharks smell ye!”

– History’s most notorious, bad ass female pirates

A comprehensive list of famous pirates.

– Here’s a very short animation (1:30) of a pirate attack on a settlement, nice twist at the end.

– Pics of real maps and documents from Pirates.

Learn your Pirate name . I happen to be ‘Dirty Dave Roberts’

 Posted by at 12:05 am
Jan 272008

Boeings Frankentanker

I’m hoping one of our military folks that reads Geeknews, specifically Rizzo, can comment on this whole affair.

The Seattle-Times is reporting that Boeing’s opponents and critics are calling their latest design proposal for the military’s new air tanker a clumsily stitched together horror of parts assembled from different models of the 767. Visit the news page to see the bigger pic of the caricature, you can see a Frankenstein bolt sticking out of it’s ‘neck’ right behind the cockpit.

Boeing is competing for the contract against the bids by Northrop-Grumman and Airbus who are combining their efforts. If you haven’t been following this tale there’s been some very interesting twists and scenarios in this hotly contested contract, not the least of which is that Airbus may become Americans since they’d end up moving some of their manufacturing plants to the United States if they win the contract! Imagine that.

The Airbus/Northrop proposal is based on the A330 MRTT, Boeing’s proposal is called the KC-767.

Hey Rizzo – you work on the KC-135 Stratotanker that is to be replaced by the winning design, do you or your team ever talk about the next big thing in air refueling like these bad boys? Do you have any preference or comments?


 Posted by at 12:45 pm
Jan 272008

We all know how the guillotine works. I probably first learned about the device in history class as a child when studying 18th century France when Marie Antoinette and other government officials met their fate with the swift justice of a guillotine blade.

But that’s not what’s interesting. The interesting thing about guillotines are the version of this apparatus used by illusionists to entertain and scare us. We’re led to believe that they are surely going to wind up headless after showing us a watermelon split in half.

If you’ve wondered how they do that trick then wonder no more. Here’s a patent on a modern illusionist’s guillotine with full description of how the contraption works and fools the crowd.

Magicians Guillotine

 Posted by at 12:13 am