Rubber Tote Bag

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Sounds great but at a whopping $75 it is to be appreciated more than used.

Americans alone toss out about 300 million tires every year. The big thinkers of the world are working on creative ways to reuse this vast quantity of rubber – ideas include mixing ground-up tires with urethane to create sidewalks or burning them like coal to produce energy. Meanwhile, some designers are thinking a little smaller. With the large Rubber Tote, discarded tires are hand-cut and hand-sewn into a vessel that can be used indoors or out as planter for a small tree, carrying container, space for gardening supplies or anything else that can benefit from solidly constructed storage. Modeled on ancient leather-crafting techniques, these durable containers are each unique and offer a functional alternative to the landfill. Not guaranteed to be watertight. Made in Egypt.

Link. Via Swissmiss.


75 tutorials to transform your iPod

If you’re thinking that all your iPod can do is play music, think again. With a little ingenuity and guidance, you can turn your iPod into just about anything, whether it’s a remote control or a notepad. Read on to find more than 75 tutorials that will walk you through projects that will transform your iPod.

Link.


Building relationships with people outside the office and IM

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When I left my day job 2 years ago one of the biggest shocks for me was realizing just how much I relied upon my co-workers for social interaction, inspiration, and motivation. It’s one of the drawbacks of working from home – lack of contact with people outside of social networking sites, IM, email, and mobile phone. Interacting in this fashion isn’t really interacting at all. It’s very impersonal.
While many people face this challenge, my circumstances are fairly unique. I am an expat. living in Asia in a house far from any city center. The area in which I live has little in the way of professional interaction and in general outside of a few pubs there is little opportunity social interaction. There are few professional associations here, at least in the industry I am in. There are meet-ups organized for groups of people loosely related (various expat. get-togethers) but they tend to be hours away and require not just a significant investment of my time but time away from my family.
I don’t have the answers and it’s something that I am working on but luckily there are many people with great advice. Here’s what a few sources have to say on how to develop and find ‘real’ relationships outside your home office.
Go to where the people are! Volunteer for a big event, attend a conference or join a club. While it’s possible to meet people hanging around the local coffee shop, it can be harder — your prospective contact may not be interested in interacting with anyone except the barista. However, at events and club activities, people show up ready to talk. Lifehack.
Make your solitary activity social. If you have an interest that you normally partake in on your own, you may be able to introduce a social element into it. For example, if you like running, then put out a call for a running buddy. If you normally mountain bike by yourself then you could find a group that rides together on the weekends. If you like reading you could start a book club. If you like playing an instrument then start a band or join one. If you’re a writer you could organize a group where people meet to share what they’ve been working on and help each other improve. If you’re into comics or card games maybe you can hang around the store with the other hobbyists instead of staying at home.
Go to church or other spiritual event. This may seem too self-serving but I have found that people are far more outgoing and willing to accept a stranger when the context is a church activity. Perhaps you are interested in exploring another belief system or your own with more depth. Where I live it’s one of the few places you can make friends without the influence of alcohol.
Use a web-based service to find people to do things with. Use online services like Upcoming.org, Meetup, Socializer, or a local discussion forum. Forumosa, a Taiwan online community, hosts regular happy hours for it’s members. If you like photography look for Flickr group meets.
Maintain current relationships. Re-contact people periodically. Let people know what you’re up to, and show a genuine interest in what they’re up to. Don’t drop a connection because they don’t show any immediate need for whatever you do — you never know when they will, and you never know who they know who will. More importantly, these personal connections add more value than just a file full of prospective clients, customers, or voters. Lifehack.
Further reading:
Building Healthy Relationships
How to Make Friends And Get a Social Life
Places And Ways To Meet New People
Photo by cypherone @ Taiwan.


Echo your status and location with PresenceRouter

PresenceRouter lets you route your location and status information from Plazes.com to a variety of other web services (Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Jaiku, etc.).
The application works by obtaining current status information from Plazes using the nascent Plazes API, and then using the APIs of the various webservices to update them with a message like watching the hockey game at Steve’s House in Montreal, Canada.

PresenceRouter: Download


Case-Mate Signature Sleeve for MacBook

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A sleeve to help protect your 13″ Macbook. The color works for me!
Rich, Italian Pebblestone leather surrounds a form-fit, impact resistant molded shell. The Sleeve protects your notebook from dirt, dust and abrasive surfaces while in transit. The flawless form-fit design was created exclusively for Apple notebooks.
Case-Mate 13″ Signature Sleeve


Icon Clock

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Great minimalist design of the clock icon of old. A really relevant clock would be one paying homage top the Mac’s spinning beach ball, an icon I experience far too regularly.
Link


Universal active speaker for Ipod or laptops

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I think it would make a great desk.

AMP is a universal active speaker for Ipod or laptops. Active speakers don’t need an external amplifier as the amplification happens inside. So all you need to do, is hook it up to a music source and you’re set. The AMP refers to the time before transistor radios. At the time, radios looked like giant pieces of furniture, as it took a lot of space to put all the technology needed. Nowadays, because of innovations like the transistor, music equipment has become something that is sold as boxes meant to be hidden. The AMP however doesn’t hide its true nature.
The AMP is equipped with a mosfet amplifier and a 3-way speaker cone-set. The audio jack ensures the freedom to connect any portable music device whatsoever.

Objects by Pieter Maes


Stress

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The above is not my schedule but it very well could be (photo by Isabisa). The only writing I have time to do these days is of the twitter kind. I am hoping things will quiet down by the new week. Until then here is a list of things I have read on the go:
Why I love working with family people
Poka-yoke
CrackBerrys: Exploring the Social Implications of Wireless Email Devices
Strategies For Interactive Marketing In A Recession
How to Draw a Curved Great Circle line in Google Maps
Two Americas? Stuck?


Calendar Wallpaper

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Christiaan Postma:

The calendar plays an important role in our daily life, we might not always be aware, but it strongly influences how we structure our days. Without a calendar our lives would be more inefficient and confusing to live. By merging qualities from an everyday item like a wallpaper with functions from a calendar that we use daily, something ordinary like a wall becomes alive and personal.

I think this might be the next addition to my office wall. I’ve tried all kinds of calendaring apps. online and off but in the end I still prefer the tactility of writing on paper. Trying to keep the family in the loop has been a challenge as well so perhaps this could be a practical and attractive solution.
http://www.christiaanpostma.nl. Via Design Milk.


The Money Bag

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Made in Italy from the supplest Italian leather. Seals with Japanese made 18 carat gold plated zips, and opens to reveal a lining made from real dollar bills.

I’m speechless- £799.00 from the Money store.


Leather Postal Messenger

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The leather postal messenger is J.Crew’s recreation of the oil-tanned mailbags carried by the US Postal Service from 1868 until the 1970s. From their product page: ‘ Designed to last a lifetime and improve with age, our hand-oiled, hand-stained, hand-burnished postal messengers are sewn by experienced artisans on century-old leather machines. Each piece of leather is carefully selected for quality; each historically correct, heavy copper rivet is set by hand. As a result, each “original” leather postal messenger is a one-of-kind with its own unique character’. Sounds romantic and perhaps accounts for the price. The strap looks good but I think the buckle closure might be annoying. Available at J.Crew for $795.00.