Expensive (yet crappy) Kenwood FP481 food processor strips its drive belt and gears when the chopper inevitably gets jammed.
I’m not sure what happened first. Either the belt started to lose its teeth, then the gear started slipping and ground its teeth off.
Or the gear wore out first, then ground the teeth off the drive belt.
I’m currently trying to get replacements that aren’t prohibitively expensive. To make things harder, Kenwood changed the design of the sprocket slightly so current spares are not directly compatible.
On to the Kenwood HB720 tri-blade stick blender with mini chopper attachment.
Inside the chopper lid there is a single plastic cog on a metal shaft that drives 3 planetary gears.
The cog has split, maybe after the shaft started slipping and heated up the plastic, but who knows. This cog needs to be stronger as it is driving 3 cogs. Or there should be a proper clutch mechanism that avoids catastrophe when the chopper inevitably jams.
This is clearly not meant to be serviced. I’m supposed to throw it away and spend $27 on a new one.
Some appliances consume quite a bit of power even when they are switched off. In the following table “soft off” means that it is turned off using the remote control or soft button. “switch off” means it is turned off using the (apparent) on/off switch.
|Samsung 22 inch TV
The so-called power switch is not always what it seems – for instance the Sharp TV switch just stops the TV being turned on using the remote, but power consumption is still 24W even in the off position.
Griffins suggests that you should serve two macaroons, one with a bite taken out of it, along with half of a miniature fresh coconut:
Tip top suggests that you should serve icecream by placing a ball of it on the table, and inserting two whole vanilla beans to look like a moustache. Then draw a red beret on top of it.
Tip Top serving suggestion
What should a power user’s microwave oven interface look like? Not like My panasonic one
Two vertical touch strips, one linear power 10% to 100%, the other logarithmic time. Touch the power to set power, touch the time to set time and start the cooking. The controls have lights behind to show current power setting and remaining time. Any time, just touch either control to change the power, or increase or decrease the time. + – nudge button on the time
Dan Randow recently asked “Is Email Killing Collaboration“. He concluded
This preliminary investigation has confirmed my hunches that people are stuck with email and that email is not great for collaboration. But they seem not to be bothered by that. This raises more questions than it answers.”
I’m going to describe the situation at the technology company where I work, as one ‘data point’ in the collaboration space. I’m certainly not holding it up as a great role model though ;)
I also conclude that while email has its weaknesses, it can’t be avoided…
E – software/hardware engineer
USA west coast
S – VP engineering, hardware engineer, manager, some software
H – technician
K – operations (organising making and shipping stuff)
D – accounts
USA East 1
A – software
T – software
R – test, support
USA East 2
G – CEO, sales
N – sales
X – software
P – Sales
With this amount of physical and timezone separation, the opportunity for real-time collaboration is limited, so needs support from tools…
- wiki (private TWiki, can send change notifications by email)
- issue tracker (private Eventum*)
- IM – skype, private jabber server with conference rooms, logging
- VOIP – private SIP provider
- software repository (sends email notifications, checkins linked to issues)
*Eventum was chosen primarily because it allows interaction with customers using only email (Employees can access the web interfaces.)
Issues are created directly from customer emails, all subsequent emails are associated with the issue. So, when e.g. a new engineer is assigned to an issue, the whole history is available.
Notifications are sent by email (e.g. reminders, new issue created)
email : everybody
wiki : I think everyone can access. main editors are engineers though.
eventum: engineers + support
IM: some engineers, though S refuses to use it, which makes it less useful
VOIP: used for engineering ‘meetings, available to engineers + G
- Email is the only medium guaranteed to reach everybody
- Email is used for direct communication, but also to inform about changes in the wiki and issue tracker
- Often a discussion that starts in email gets moved to the wiki when it gets too long or complex
- However, stuff also gets buried in the wiki, because it is not ‘in your face’
- VOIP conferences can be good, but often are wasting the time of at least half the participants. E has noted that a weakness off VOIP calls is that no minutes or recordings are kept. The wide time separation limits the opportunity for global collaboration.
- I set up the jabber server with the following thoughts. (So far, I’d say it is not a success because one potential important participant won’t use it for fear of ‘being interrupted all the time’ and ‘because I can’t touch type’)
- take advantage of near-real-time communication (phone-like)
- conversation could be logged for later review/audit (email-like)
- persistent conference rooms to ‘meet’ in. (senders don’t determine receivers)
- private (compared to e.g. skype,msn,gtalk)
- With email, the sender chooses who will receive it, while with IM and wikis, they rely on readers actively choosing to “receive” the conversation.
Now I really have something to bemoan.
I took some photos of our house, and some of our neighbours.
As you can see, all things considered we are not badly off.
The old Samsung seemed to be on its way out (no light, and really noisy fan), so I bought a new Panasonic Inverter, thinking this is better tech – no more on and off boil over then do nothing kind of low power.
The inverter variable power is fine, but as far as the U.I. is concerned, I’m missing the old Samsung.
- No one button, one minute on full power
- Can’t change the power level while the thing is running, or even when it is stopped. To change power you need to cancel, set new power, set new time, then start again.
- Can’t add time while its running. Eg. this looks like it needs another 30 seconds, add them. Again, need to cancel, set power level again if it is not 100%, then set new time, start.
- It has a 12 button keypad, but the buttons are labelled 1 to 12. They can’t be used to enter numbers for time or power.
- No way to turn off beeps for every button press.
I can’t think of any excuse for this brain-dead lack of features. I just assumed they would be available…