Switchable magnets/A Year in Space/The Noun Project


Recomendo: issue no. 179

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Switchable magnets
I’ve recently discovered magswitches.  These are magnets you can turn off and on. I use them in my workshop to hold down fences, stops, and featherboards. When they are turned on, you can’t move them. When off, they lift off instantly. They are non-electronic; the switch is an ingenious mechanical contraption hidden inside a very tiny case. You can buy fixtures with magswitches built in, or you can buy the switches to make your own devices. I found that even a single magswitch alone, such as the small MagJig 95 ($26), is a useful stop in the workshop because you can position it anywhere quickly on a metal surface and have it instantly hold. — KK

A Year in Space
I am a huge fan of spending big bucks to explore space scientifically. But I bet humans won’t settle (live long-term) on Mars, or the Moon, or in space willingly. To get a glimpse of why not, watch the Netflix mini-series, A Year in Space. This documentary follows two astronauts as they subject themselves to the harsh punishment of living off our planet. We’ll keep improving the process of space fitness, but this documentary is very sobering about the steep cost of doing without the things we get for “free” on this planet. — KK

Icons for everything
The Noun Project is a huge searchable database of icons you can use in PowerPoint slides, websites, signs, or for any project requiring symbols. As a test, I searched on the word “chicken” and got hundreds and hundreds of chicken related icons. Most of the icons are free under a Creative Commons license, and if you pay a small fee, you don’t have to credit the creator. — MF

Smart Wi-Fi Garage Door Opener
I wanted a way to open my garage door remotely, so I bought the Meross Smart Wi-Fi Garage Door Opener Remote ($30). It took just a few minutes to install and configure. Now I can open and close the door with my phone, and get an alert when someone else opens it. It also works with voice assistants. — MF

Easily remove hair out of vacuum brush
This LPT was a housekeeping game changer: Use a seam ripper to easily clean out hair tangled in a vacuum brush. My hair is long and everywhere and before I use to struggle with scissors to cut it out of the vacuum, but it turns out a seam ripper is the perfect tool for the job. — CD

Five quotes
Here are a few quotes that are helping me look at life differently. — CD

  • “The most courageous decision that you can make each day is to be in a good mood.” — Voltaire
  • “Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.” — Rainer Maria Rilke
  • “A good marriage is one in which each spouse secretly thinks he or she got the better deal, and this is true also of our friendships.” — Anne Lamott
  • “Things usually happen around us, not to us.” — Unknown, found on Reddit
  • “We suffer more in imagination than in reality.” — Seneca
-- Kevin Kelly, Mark Frauenfelder, Claudia Dawson 12/29/19

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