Tech Headline News: 12/31/2015
VCs Invest More But IPO
Transmitters in Germany and France Shutting down at Year's End
Potential Tesla Competitor Posts Teaser Video of
Android Returns to Growth in Europe's Big 5 Markets
Taiwan Neglects Supercomputing
Fairchild Semi Gets New Takeover Offer in Escalated Bidding
5G Hurdles Gauged at DesignCon (6G specifications coming...)
TV Remotes Get Voice
Activation with Bluetooth
N. Korea's Analysis Red Star OS Rife with Spy Tools
(U.S. gov't envious)
Japanese Research Institute Earns
Right to Name Element 113
"The U.S.-based International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry said Thursday
that researchers at the Riken institute had conclusively identified and earned the right to name the element. It provisionally was named ununtrium.
The new name wasn't immediately disclosed. A joint working group of the IUPAC and International Union of Pure and Applied Physics were due to
announce decisions on naming rights to elements 113, 115, 117 and ..."
Now - Metal Tubes
Today as I write this it is New Year's Eve. The year 1935 could be considered
'metal tube's eve' as a new paradigm was about to hit the world of high frequency circuit design. Thentofore[sic], vacuum tubes were almost
exclusively encased in a glass envelope. Metal-encased tubes
provided, among others, benefits like better heat dissipation, smaller physical size, ruggedness, inherent RF shielding, and lower parasitic
values of capacitance and inductance due to smaller plate areas and shorter lead lengths, respectively. The highest barrier to widespread adoption,
history would show, was the higher cost of production that made consumer products more expensive at a time when not every household saw the
need for ...
Powerful Solar Storm to Hit Earth
Before New Year's Eve
"Here's one way to end the year on a bright note. A powerful solar storm set
to slam Earth today will make for stunning views of the Northern Lights just before New Year's Eve. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's
Space Weather Prediction Center said the "strong" storm [G3] could allow the Northern Lights to dip as far south as Oregon and Illinois
Silvertone Radio in Tony Packo's Cafe
RF Cafe visitor Mike H. sent
me these two photos of the same type Silvertone radio as I discovered in Tony Packo's. He says there is no part number marked anywhere, so its
identity was still a mystery. Well, no more! I decided to use my paid subscription to newspapers.com to search for an advertisement from an
old newspaper. Sure enough, there was a full-page advertisement by Sears, Roebuck, and Co., in the October 23, 1936 edition of the Rio Grande
Farmer that appears to include this model. Until proven otherwise, I hereby declare the
Tony Packo's radio to be the '7 Tube Silvertone Battery
Console.' Battery powered radios were quite common in 1937 because commercial AC power distribution lines did not extend to many rural locations,
and many urban homes did not have service, either. Lead-acid storage batteries powered
Step by Step Crowdfunding: Everything
Needed to Raise Money from the Crowd
Step by Step Crowdfunding: Everything
You Need to Raise Money from the Crowd, by Joseph Hogue. Ever wonder how some people raise money crowdfunding and fundraising time and again
while 60% of campaigns fail? Even Hollywood fame hasn't been able to save some crowdfunding campaigns from epic fails. It's because with all
the media attention around crowdfunding, no one covers the actual process of how to run a successful campaign! In this step-by-step guide, you
will find the actual process you need from idea conception through pre-launch and fulfillment to make your fundraising or crowdfunding campaign
DARPA Funds Atoms-to-Products
"Materials have uncommon electrical and quantum-level properties at the nanoscale
that disappear at the millimeter-scale, where most chips are manufactured. The Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) is looking for a way to capture the benefits of both worlds: the nanoscale
manufacturing while upsizing to a more practical millimeter scale. The agency has now set that challenge to 10 laboratories nationwide in its
Atoms to Products program. "These 'atomic-scale' ..."
Stacking Four Z-Matched Yagis
It seems that creating
almost cartoonish-looking antenna arrays for the purpose of signal gain and directivity are usually relegated to the domains of military and
amateur radio practitioners, but this article from a 1952 edition of Radio & Television News magazine was done by the
Channel Master Laboratories
television antenna company. Successfully mounting and phasing even two antennas can be challenging, but in this case
four Yagis were arrayed and
tuned for operation. Trying to make the system work over the entire 4 octave band that is the VHF broadcast realm (54 MHz for channel 2 to 210
MHz for channel 13) would be nearly impossible without extremely
Generating Electric Current w/o Energy
Consumption at Room Temp
"A group of
researchers in Japan and China identified the requirements for the development of new types of extremely low power consumption electric devices
by studying Cr-doped (Sb, Bi) 2Te3 thin films. This study has been reported in Nature Communications At extremely low temperatures, an electric
current flows around the edge of the film without energy loss, and under no ..."
IEEE MTT-S Buys Rights to Smith Chart
Somehow, even with trolling
daily for technical headlines, I managed to miss (until recently) that back in April of this year, IEEE's Microwave
Theory and Techniques Society (MTT-S) acquired the copyright to Phillip Smith's legendary eponymous graphing format: the
Smith Chart. Per a column by 2015 IEEE president Tim Lee in the
Xplore publication: Mr. Tim Lee, IEEE's 2015 president. "In 2015, the MTT-S had the opportunity
to meet with Mrs. Anita Smith and her family and propose a way to preserve the legacy of her husband and their father. The MTT-S offered to
buy the rights from the Smith family of the Smith trademark belonging to Analog Instruments, along with the copyright. In return, the MTT-S
would make the Smith chart available to students, practitioners, and indeed people all over the world involved
Nanoworld 'Snow Blowers' Carve
Channels in Semiconductor Surfaces
"In the nanoworld,
tiny particles of gold can
operate like snow blowers, churning through surface layers of an important class of semiconductors to dig unerringly straight paths. The surprising
trenching capability, reported by scientists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and IBM, is an important addition
to the toolkit of nature-supplied 'self-assembly' methods that researchers aim to harness for making useful ..."
Notable Tech Quote: "...take away their
shovels and give them spoons.
"If it's jobs you want, take away their shovels and give them spoons." - Anon.
This part of a quotation is ascribed to various economists (most often Milton Friedman) and commentators in regard to people and systems which buck modern
mechanization while touting the virtues of manual labor. The story's setting is usually a canal project, ore mine, or other venue requiring
massive digging and a proprietor's boast of greater concern for the rapid replacement of human workers with machines. An amazingly thorough
investigation into the matter is presented by The Quote
Investigator. See also
Techno-Skeptics' Objection Growing Louder
MAX5869 16-Bit, 5.9 Gsps Interpolating
and Modulating RF DAC
This is amazing. I remember back in the early 1990s a 10 Msps DAC was the realm
of military radar applications and space electronics, and the cost for a hand-built hybrid flat pack was about $20k per device. Now, Maxim Integrated
has announced the MAX5869 16-Bit,
5.9 Gsps Interpolating and Modulating RF DAC with JESD204B interface providing direct RF synthesis with 600 MHz instantaneous bandwidth from
DC to greater than 2.8 GHz. Like I said - amazing. An NDA is required for full details and pricing. I'm sure it's not cheap, but a heck of a
lot less than $20k ...
Dial-A-Type Type Bar Print Head
for Engineering Characters
Here on page 402 of the Montgomery Ward 1969
Christmas catalog is a special type bar print head for the company's 'Signature' line of electric typewriters that permits special characters
for engineering, mathematics, international language, and medicine. If you look down the page here, you'll see a red key on the keyboard that
activates the Dial-A-Type type
bar. The 'type bar,' BTW, is the arm with the embossed character on the end that strikes the inked ribbon to print a character on the paper.
Although I could not find any instructions online, it appears the two rows of characters are accessed with the normal and shifted key presses,
and a twist of the Dial-a-Type head ...
Skyworks Introduces BDS/GPS/GNSS
Low Noise Amplifiers
Skyworks introduces two new global navigation low noise amplifiers. The
SKY65605-21 and SKY65611-11 are both designed for BeiDou / GPS / GLONASS / Galileo receiver applications
and are optimized to operate from 1559 to 1606 MHz. Each device integrates all output matching components, thereby requiring only a single external
input matching component. Ideal applications include smartphones, personal navigation
If Radio Corporation
of America (RCA) was still in existence today, undoubtedly
they would be running an advertisement mentioning not just radio and television in their list of wireless communications accomplishments since
Marconi's message "first forged in 1901 from the mere sound of three dots," but also cellphones, satellite navigation, cable television, and
Wi-Fi. Founded in 1919, RCA was bought by General Electric in 1986 and then subsequently broken into components and sold off to other companies
like Sony, NBC, and ...
Exceptionally Strong and Lightweight
New Metal Created
"A team led by researchers from the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering
and Applied Science has created a super-strong
yet light structural metal with extremely high specific strength and modulus, or stiffness-to-weight ratio. The new metal is composed of
magnesium infused with a dense and even dispersal of ceramic silicon carbide nanoparticles. It could be used to make lighter airplanes, spacecraft,
and cars, helping to improve fuel ..."
Final Science & Engineering Theme
Crossword Puzzle of 2015
This is the final
engineering and science themed crossword puzzle for the
year 2015. All 36 crosswords this year, as with every one of the last 16 years, was custom made by me for RF Cafe visitors who's interest in
crosswords ranges from the avid cruciverbalist to the curious technical type who is looking for an educational way to pass some time. Have a
safe New Year's celebration, and be sure to check back on January 3, 2016. Thanks for your patronage in 2015!
2015 – The Year in Engineering
"As 2015 draws to a close, The Engineer takes a look back at some of the biggest engineering stories
of the year, from Crossrail and Bloodhound, to Hinkley Point and Tim Peake’s space adventure. The year started in much the same way as it is
now ending: with controversy over fracking. In January, a bill calling for a moratorium on fracking was defeated in the House of Commons. We
asked our readers via a poll for their ..."
Christmas Eve 1955: 3/4 of Weather
Stations Reported ≥ 60°
This weather map appearing on a blog by Steven Goddard shows that roughly 3/4 of the weather
stations in the U.S. reported temperatures of 60° or more on Christmas Eve of 1955. Ashland
KS, Geary OK and Encinal, TX were all over 90°. Fort
Lauderdale was 85°. "Last winter, the East Coast had record cold.
That was ignored because
it was 'less than 1% of the
Earth.' But this week, the Eastern U.S. defines the global climate." I verified
the warm weather via the Newspapers.com website records (click thumbnails).
Bell System Opens
at the time as the longest microwave relay system in the world, this report on Bell Telephone Systems' transcontinental installation came just
a month after being put into commercial service. At a cost of $40 million ($650 million in 2015 dollars per
BLS Inflation Calculator),
the system relays telephone calls and radio and video program material along a chain of 107 microwave towers, spaced approximately 30 miles
apart. It was a big deal to be able to watch a TV show from New York City in Los Angeles, and vice versa; we take worldwide broadcasts for granted
Every year a day or two before Christmas I put up a couple music videos that I particularly like, figuring
that many visitors are like-minded and will appreciate them as well.
This video by Cloverton is titled "A Hallelujah Christmas." You might recognize the
music adapted from Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."
It was on September 11, 1977 that David
Bowie and Bing Crosby joined together at the Elstree Studios in London, England. Crosby was there to tape what would prove to be his final Christmas
TV special (he died on October 14, 1977 — 33 days after taping the duet) and he invited Bowie to appear
as a guest star.
European Researchers Claim THz
Breakthrough Using CMOS
"Airbus is leading a research group looking at terahertz imaging
technology and it is claiming a breakthrough which will see the imaging technology used in space observation, medical imaging, industrial automation
and security screening. The work to develop a new camera that delivers high accuracy using terahertz waves with lower operating costs in part
of a European Union project called TeraTOP. In security screening applications terahertz imagers ..."
Antenova's Modules Add GPS and GNSS
to Consumer Devices and Wearables
Antenova, manufacturer of
antennas and RF antenna modules for M2M and the
Internet of Things, has just released two new modules for GPS and GNSS. Both provide an easy drop-in receiver solution – a neat way to add
a location capability to very small consumer devices. The two modules are similar, both measuring 9.0 x 9.0 x 1.8 mm, with low current
consumption, making them suitable for smaller portable devices, such as smart watches, navigation devices, OBD II modules, asset tracking
World's Tiniest Temperature Sensor
Powered by Radio Waves
"Researchers at TU/e have
developed a very tiny wireless
temperature sensor that is powered in a very special way: from the radio waves that are part of the sensor's wireless network. This means
that the sensor needs not even a single wire, nor a battery that would have to be replaced. The arrival of such sensors is an important development
on route towards smart buildings, for instance. But the applications are many and various. The smart buildings of the future will be full
ATEC Seeking Multiple Entry Level
Inside Sales Candidates
"ATEC is seeking multiple
Entry Level Inside Sales candidates.
Our growing company is seeking multiple strong individuals that can assist our Inside Sales Department with serving our customers in a fast
paced environment. You will receive and distribute inbound and make outbound calls, via phone and or web from our customers such as Qualcomm,
NASA, Boeing, and other military and contract work. This position can lead into career path to a Sr. Sales position
Boston Dynamics' Robot Mules
Make Creepy Reindeer
"Father Christmas [aka Santa Claus] looks to be
giving Rudolph and his reindeer pals a night off this year after upgrading his sleigh. American engineering firm Boston Dynamics has created a group of robot reindeer that are capable of dragging Santa's sled, as
revealed in its Christmas message. The firm, which develops technology for the U.S. military, posted the festive video on YouTube, featuring
a female member of staff dressed as Mrs Claus driving the automated animals ..."
What Every Angel Investor
Wants You to Know
What Every Angel Investor Wants You to Know: An
Insider Reveals How to Get Smart Funding for Your Billion Dollar Idea, by Brian Cohen and John Kador. Maybe 2016 will be the year you finally
launch a business using a concept you have been developing. Short of trying a crowd funded scheme such as Kickstarter, you'll probably need funding - lots of it, especially if your idea is hardware-intensive.
This popular book promises to provide "Terrific advice from a master of the angel investing game. Brian Cohen reveals the art and craft of raising
angel money. An investment in this book will pay off a thousandfold
Woo-Hoo! SpaceX Makes 1st Successful
Vertical Soft Landing at Cape Canaveral
rocket soaring toward orbit Monday night with 11 small satellites, its first mission since an accident last summer. Then in an even more amazing
feat, it landed the 15-story leftover booster back on Earth safely. It was the first time an unmanned rocket returned to land vertically at
Cape Canaveral, Florida, and represented a tremendous success for SpaceX. The company led by billionaire Elon Musk is striving for reusability
to drive launch costs down and open up space to more people. SpaceX employees broke into cheers and chants, some of them jumping
Crystal Diodes in Modern Electronics
is part 5 in a series that began in the October 1951 issue of Radio & Television News magazine. Previous articles dealt with
crystal diodes in AM
and FM radios, and this article shift gears by moving into television applications. Crystal diodes were and are still used in frequency generation,
envelope detection, frequency mixing, and AC signal rectification. Vacuum tubes could be used for the latter three applications but many physical
issues such as size, weight, power consumption, and heat dissipation proved to be major drawbacks as designers strived to reduce the size of
electronics assemblies, make them more energy efficient, lower the cost of manufacturing, increase reliability, and decrease weight. Demands
Anatech Electronics Intros New Cavity
Filter for Band IV Wireless Systems
today introduced the AD1747-1842D335
cavity duplexer designed for use in wireless communications systems (Band IV). The duplexer has a receive passband of 1710 to 1785 MHz
and transmit passband of 1805 to 1880 MHz, passband return loss greater than 14 dB, and insertion loss of 1.2 dB or less. Ripple
is 0.8 dB or less and isolation is at least 50 dB
Notable Quote: Joel Hallas
"There needs to be something to connect the shield of the transmission line to,
otherwise it is a bit like one hand clapping." - Joel Hallas (W1ZR), January 2016 QST
column: "The Doctor Is In"
Filtered LNA FEM Front-End Modules
Skyworks introduces two new global
navigation low-noise amplifier front-end modules with integrated filters: the SKY65713-11 and SKY65715-81. Both solutions support products integrating GNSS functionality such
as smartphones, personal navigation devices, wearables, machine to machine (M2M) systems, base stations, asset tracking instruments, professional
radios and Internet of Things applications. The devices also provide high linearity, excellent gain, a high IP1 dB, and a superior NF
General Atomics Plans 150kW
"General Atomics, whose MQ-1 Predator changed the world, is to start testing
another potentially revolutionary weapon next month: a 150-kilowatt class laser. Several
other companies are developing laser weapons and 'we're looking at all of them,' said Lt. Gen. Bradley Heithold, head of Air Force Special Operations
Command, in an interview with Breaking Defense. 'The technology is ripe for application on an AC-130.' General Atomics hopes to see AFSOC install
a version of the weapon on ..."
Drone' Registration with
the FAA Begins Today
Actually, the title
of this and other news stories is very misleading regarding exactly what has to be registered. The generally uninformed or marginally informed
public believes the definition of a 'drone' is anything that flies without a human pilot in the cockpit. It associates the greatly dramatized
and sensationalized reports of public encounters with what are technically classified as Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) - multirotor copters.
These are for the most part the variety sold in toy stores ranging in cost and complexity from $50 for a basic 4-propeller 'quadcopter' to $500
for a 6-propeller model with an onboard camera and maybe even a First Person View (FPV) wireless system that allows the pilot to fly from a
vantage point on the craft while remaining at a remote ...
Exospace B55 Connected Watch
Apple Watch just isn't cool enough for your personal macho image, then consider Breitling's Exospace B55. "The Exospace B55 was entirely developed, assembled, finished and tested
in Switzerland, including the production of movement ébauches (blanks) in the workshops of Breitling Chronométrie. The smartphone application
was also developed and produced in Switzerland. This was an obvious choice for Breitling, which has always defended Swiss Made tradition and
Sylvania Electric Advertisement
evidenced in these mid-last-century magazine advertisements,
Sylvania Electric marketing moguls
learned early what sells products by exploiting the nature of their audience. The cartoon-style ads shown here appeared in social publications
like Look, Life, and Collier's, where both men and women - many of them numbnuts - are the expected audience. Compare these with the type of
ad run by Sylvania in a 'serious' magazine like
6th Edition of UL 1283 Standard
for EMI Filters Now Available
"UL has released a
new edition of UL 1283 the standard for Electromagnetic Interference Filters. This revision of ANSI/UL 1283 is being issued to incorporate a
revision to section 27, temperature, to be in line with IEC 60939. The sixth edition can be purchased on the UL Standard Sales website. Description
'1.1 These requirements cover EMI filters installed on, or connected to, 1000 V or lower potential circuits, 50 – 60 Hz, or up to 1500V dc,
and installed in accordance with the NEC ..."
RF Cafe Christmas 2015
is upon us once again, and amazingly another year is coming to an end. This marks my 57th Christmas; where has the time gone? "Tempus fugit,"
as the dial of my grandmother clock proclaims. In fine tradition, this week's engineering crossword puzzle has a special theme that contains
a heart-felt message from all the staff here at RF Cafe (look for the asterisks). We hope you had a good 2015 and
that you will have a safe and happy holiday season. Carpe diem ...
'Hybrid' Logic Gate Pushes Quest
for Quantum Computer Forward
"Oxford team demonstrates 'hybrid'
logic gate as work towards quantum computer continues. Just over a year ago, the UK government announced an investment of Pounds 270m over
five years to help get quantum technology out of laboratories and into the marketplace. Oxford was chosen to lead one of four EPSRC-funded 'Hubs'
looking at different aspects of quantum technology - in Oxford's case, shaping the future of quantum networking and computing, towards the ultimate
goal of developing a functioning quantum ..."
Building a 1930 Electric Receiver
Vreeland Corporation was an early radio manufacturer located in Hoboken, New Jersey,
with multiple patents on file for innovative circuits. The
Vreeland band selector system mentioned
here was originally filed in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in August of 1927 and had not been awarded by the time of this November 1929
article in Radio-Craft magazine. In fact, it wasn't until five years later, in 1932, that the patent was finally assigned. The official
description reads in part, "The general purpose of the invention is to receive the component frequencies of such a band with such uniformity
as to avoid material distortion of the modulated wave, and to exclude frequencies outside of the band which the system is designed to receive.
Another purpose of the invention is to provide means for shifting the position of the band
Amateur Radio Christmas Comics
Here are a couple good
Christmas-themed comics from the January 1942 issue
of the American Radio Relay League's (ARRL) monthly magazine, QST. Ironically, the 'Old Year' Father Time with
the sickle would not have been able to legally key that transmitter by the time readers had received this edition, because the U.S. government
shut down all amateur radio transmissions (except a few specially sanctioned civil defense units) immediately after the Japanese attack on Pearl
Harbor on December 7th of the previous year (see "War Comes").
Could Borophene Rival Graphene?
"Future electronic devices and batteries could become faster and more energy efficient by harnessing new 2-D sheets
of electrically-conductive materials. The latest example of such materials comes in the form of newly-created sheets of boron atoms, called
that could outperform even graphene as an electrical conductor in 2-D form. Carbon-based graphene sheets. Even better, their approach to making
borophene can be easily replicated by other labs around the world ..."
PMI Makes December 2015
Planar Monolithics Industries
(PMI) announces the availability of new RF/microwave product designs. Included are PMI Model No.
P1T-10M1G-80-T-SFF - an absorptive, high speed, SPST switch capable
of switching within 200 ns maximum for 10 MHz to 1.0 GHz, PMI Model No.
P2T-100M50G-100-T - an bsorptive, SP2T pin diode switch operating
over the 0.1 to 50.0 GHz, and PMI Model No. P8T-0R5G18G-60-T-SFF-PN
- a high speed, SP8T, absorptive switch is capable of switching within 100 ns for 0.5 to 18.0 GHz
EDI CON USA 2016 Call for Papers
EDI CON USA 2016, taking place September
20-22 in Boston, MA at the Hynes Convention Center, is pleased to announce their Call for Papers. Authors are invited to submit technical oral session
abstracts/proposals describing work in RF/microwave, EMC/EMI and high-speed digital electronic component or system-level design, modeling or
testing. The EDI CON Technical Advisory Committee will review all submissions based on quality, relevance, impact and originality. Prospective
authors are welcome to reference products in a design case study or as a proof of concept for a design methodology, as long as product references
are presented in an appropriately non-commercial fashion. The deadline for abstract submissions is February 28
IEEE's Interactive Patent Power Chart
The IEEE has created an interactive "Patent Power 2015" chart that ranks companies and their home countries
according to the following formula:
Pipeline Power = # of 2014 patents x
Pipeline Growth Index x Adjusted
Pipeline Impact x Pipeline Originality x
Pipeline Generality. When all categories are included, Google, Apple, and Facebook
take a significant lead, with Qualcomm trailing at a little better than half of those. Microsoft has a shameful 1/3 the Pipeline Power as the
leaders. Honeywell and Boeing lead the pack for Aerospace and Military. Apple overwhelms in Electronics. The top three semiconductor companies
are from Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea. MIT dwarfs other of the world's universities, with Harvard in the #2 spot. Try it yourself
Innovative "Super Phosphor" Oscilloscopes from Saelig
Saelig Company has introduced
a new line of Siglent SDS2000X Series Digital Oscilloscopes
with Super Phosphor technology in bandwidths of 70 MHz, 100 MHz, 200 MHz, and 300 MHz. With real-time sampling rates up
to 2 GSa/s, these new scopes feature waveform capture rates of up to 140,000 wfms/s, record length up to 70 Mpoints, and a 256-level
color and intensity grading display. Together, these technologies have been collectively dubbed by the manufacturer as "SPO"
(Super Phosphor Oscilloscope) technology. The low noise design supports 1-mv/div to 10-V/div voltage settings,
with most of the common adjustments ...
Jaguar Formula E Team Returns
to Global Motorsports w/Electric Car
"Jaguar is returning to global motorsport
with confirmation that it is to participate in the
FIA Formula E Championship. In the autumn of 2016, Jaguar will enter the third season of the all-electric drive championship as a manufacturer
with its own team, a move that gives the OEM a high-profile opportunity to further the development of EV powertrains. Nick Rogers, group engineering
director for Jaguar Land Rover, said: 'Electric vehicles will absolutely play a role in Jaguar Land Rover’s future product portfolio and Formula
E will give us a unique opportunity to further our
Trane VX95 Short Cycle Error Fixed
by Cleaning Flame Sensor Rod
For all its faults,
the Internet has definitely made life better in a lot of ways. Since YouTube was founded 10 years ago, I have benefitted many times from people
who have taken the time to record, edit, and post instructional videos. The money I have been able to save by fixing stuff myself rather than
paying a serviceman can be measured in the thousands. Subjects range from car, truck, and tractor maintenance to plumbing, drywall, and now
(again) a furnace. This morning the indoor temperature was at 70° even though the thermostat was set at 73°.
After a little troubleshooting, I noticed the flame would fire for a few seconds, turn off, then fire again for a few seconds, and then shut
off for good. The fan motor would then turn on and run ...
There's Still Time to Order
Christmas Gifts from Amazon
Amazon, it is not too late to order and receive many of your items in time for Christmas. Whether buying something for yourself or for someone
else, some of the best deals are available through Amazon - especially when free shipping is included. By clicking on the banner below, I will
earn a few pennies on whatever you buy, and it doesn't cost you any extra. Thanks!
How to Sell or Recycle Old Electronics
"People give all sorts of electronics as gifts around the holidays: phone chargers,
e-book readers, video games, drones and more. But what should we do with the devices they are replacing? Most of our gadgets end up in landfills,
others stuffed away in a closet, never to be played with again. In the tech industry, hoarding or disposing of used electronics this way is
known as e-waste, and can leave toxic materials and pollutants in the
environment. The amount of e-waste is growing every year — by some estimates, consumers threw away 92 billion pounds of used electronics