Build a car bed

As I am about to go back on the road, have no intention of paying for accommodation, and camping in a rain soaked tent is not to my liking, I thought I would put a bed in my car.

The front passenger seat was easily removed by loosening four bolts. The bed frame was made from redwood and the surface from 9mm plywood. The bed is wide enough for me to put a self-inflating mattress on top of and narrow enough to allow the right rear passenger seat to be used.

One end of the bed is supported by a sturdy plastic box (where the front passenger seat was) and in which I can store tools. The other end of the bed is supported on some old carpet tiles lying on top of the lid of the car's tool stowaway. With the two supports situated as they are, the frame of the bed is raised above the left rear passenger seat and is not crushed by my weight.

I shall now install an invertor, with which to run my computer, charge up my Skype phone and power my electric razor on those odd occasions that I use it.

For anyone else with a Mitsubishi Pajero Junior here is a rough out of the design.

A vibrator for your rabbit, ma'am?

Brother, the printer maker, has made a battery that gathers energy from vibrations. The Vibrating Energy Cell is energised merely by shaking the cell, which makes a magnet pass repeatedly through a coil to generate a current.

The Vibrating Energy Cell can be left inside the device it is powering (a TV remote, for example) and energised by shaking the device.

The current is stored within the cell for use in low power devices.The cell will come in AA or AAA size thus making it ideal for powering devices requiring such cells though I doubt they could run electric motors for very long so ma'am will still be requiring a battery charger for her friend whilst her husband is away.

BBC - Vibration packs aim to replace batteries for gadgets

You must watch the Keiser Report

If you really want to know what is going on in the economy. If you know that your government tells lies and prints lies in the form of fiat money then Max Keiser will put you right.

The half hour show can be seen on RT (Russia Today, as was), which is broadcast terrestrially in the UK on Freeview or can be seen in most of western Europe on FreeSat (Astra 28.2°E).

The show can also be seen online on Max Keiser's website - http://maxkeiser.com

Hard drives are cheaper than blank DVD media

If you, like I, have gigabytes (if not terabytes) of video files then you are probably worried about the need for backing up those files.

A simple web search tells me that 10 writeable DVDs holding a total of 43GB of data will cost me £10. That works out at £238 to store 1 TB of data on DVDs.

However, a 1TB external hard disk can be picked up for about £60. This begs the question, "Why bother buying blank DVDs any more?"

You can back up your media twice on two terabyte hard drives for the price of the equivalent in DVDs and still have change left over.

Everything is bigger in America!

Recently, I ran an advert for an organisation protesting oil company BP's activities in the Gulf of Mexico, following the recent oil rig explosion. I deplore corporations that will do anything for money regardless of the harm it does to people and the environment. However, I had a feeling in the back of my mind that if the oil company in question was American rather than British owned then maybe the furore would have been slightly different.

I was reminded this week, by a copy of Private Eye, of the Bhopal disaster in 1984 when the negligence of Union Carbide (an American company) caused thousands of deaths.

Here are some figures...

11 people killed in accident on oil rig leased by British company BP, resulting in four US presidential visits, a $1.6bn clean-up and the establishment of $20bn compensation fund in two months

15,000+ people killed in accident at Bhopal plant owned by American company Union Carbide, resulting in 0 presidential visits, no clean-up and $470m compensation in 25 years