Stevenator65’s Weblog

Technology, Commentary, Opinions, Reviews and Fun Happenings.

10 Great Tech Ideas that Fell Short

The world would be a different place if…the many incredible inventions that came from brilliant minds actually actually made it through the tough and demanding rigors of the free marketplace.  Let’s go back and look at what is and what could never be…

10. After the mouse, a brilliant inventor came up with a great, yet diffent idea.  This was in the days before we had wireless connections, mind you. 

The Hamster! was, conceptually, ahead of it’s time.  It was comfortable to hold, soft and cute.  The inventor, who’s name is not even a footnote in history anymore, aimed to strap on the mechanicals on the bottom of the hamster.  The problems were twofold;  the hamster kept moving, and it kept, uh, shall we say, making poopees.











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July 31, 2007 Posted by | Accessories, Opinions, Windows, Windows Mobile | Leave a comment

Feel the Evil of the 17 Year Itch

They’re Here!

Known as periodical Cicadas because they only appear once every 17 years, these 1.5″ monsters fester underground their entire lives.  They sustain themselves by drinking the blood of children.  I almost lost a couple of mine, were it not for some quick thinking and fast action:


These cicadas are part of Brood XIII, and appear in the Chicago area once every 17 years.  There are 7 different types of Cicadas, and they appear either every 13 or 17 years in different parts of the country.

They attack with a viciousness only rivaled by my pet hamster.  To the left is my six year old daughter Drew.  She wanted to take them home as pets.  I don’t know what is more disgusting, that thought or those bugs.

We took the family to Lake County Illinois’ Cicada Mania, where they had fun projects for kids, information about Cicadas, and of course, featured the Cicadas themselves.  Lovely.














Below is a picture of yours truly getting violently attacked.  There is a lawsuit pending.

In the background are trees full of billions of Cicadas.  I urge you to run away! 

Cicada Mania was a riot.  There were reporters from as far away as Japan there.  Apparantly Cicadas are a big deal, literally.

They live for 30 days after they rise from the ground.  They come up for only one thing, and that’s to get down and get funky with a mate.  The males make a very loud sound with their wings.  It buzzes at about 90 decibles, which is as loud as a concert.  These bugs are very docile and don’t bite.  They are very harmless.  My kids had lots of fun with them. 

My oldest is 8 years old and that’s how old I was when I first came in contact with Cicadas.  This is the third brood I have seen in my life and it is interesting to pass on a tradition to my children.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this non-tech view into one of the scariest, most terror filled bugs man has ever experienced.

July 17, 2007 Posted by | Opinions | Leave a comment

Do Gadgets Cause Road Rage?

I just completed a “Defensive Driving Course” because I received a speeding ticket.  After driving nearly 26 years with a spotless record, I made a silly driving error.  My dad just moved to a new neighborhood, and I just assumed the speed limit was 45mph.  But it was 30.  I was pulled over for going 50.  Big deal.  I certainly wasn’t trying to abuse my driving priviledges, nor was I trying to speed, I just made a simple mistake.  In order to get the ticket off my record, I chose to attend this four hour course. 

It happens to be that the course was fun.  The teacher was engaging and the students made the best of a time-consuming situation.  We discussed many different aspects of driving, most of which we just take for granted.  We probably all are too aggressive when we drive, for example.  But one of the sections dealt with “Distracted Driving.”  This is where we gadget geeks come in.  The book asks, “Why has driving become more complicated?”  It goes on to give some possible answers as, “the information age, technology, multi-tasking, reading maps on screens, using computers, note taking, talking on the phone, the speed with which we live our lives…” 

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July 14, 2007 Posted by | Opinions | Leave a comment