The latest incarnation of Wii things is Baby and Me, a package that ships with an actual doll with a snap-in port for a Wii controller which, as the box says, “will bring your baby to life”. Everything a child might do with an ordinary doll – dressing up, bathing, feeding – is duplicated in Wii fashion. Baby and Me is due for release in Australia next month.
If you have ever convinced yourself, after a misguided googling episode, that you have some dread disease when all you really have is a plantar's wart, you may be suffering from cyberchondria, the web-induced form of hyperchondria. Cyberchondriacs, believing that their doctors are misguided or that the internet offers a bigger resource of knowledge, characteristically diagnose themselves with the most extreme disease related to minor symptoms such as headaches or stiff necks. Stephen Josephson, a clinical associate professor of psychology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, says that many of the health concerns that people have are caused by anxiety, which can prompt compulsive behavior. He says, "It's a paradox: The more you read in an attempt to reduce your fear, the more you try to figure things out, the more anxiety peaks. Very few people know how to navigate the Internet and evaluate information when they're anxious, and yet that's when they tend to go online."
Energy innovators The Power Collective (thepowercollective.com) have won the 2009 Dutch Postcode Lottery Green Challenge with their design for a cost-effective, quiet and visually unobtrusive turbine that is able to generate power from low or variable wind condtions. The Ridgeblade is fitted to the ridge line on a a pitched roof where wind is forced up the slope of the roof. Here air flow is focused and accelerated through the turbine. The Power Collective aims to begin production early next year.
Sanyo's Eneloop batteries come packaged with Eneloopy, a cute canine reminiscent of cartoon character Snoopy. Eneloopy is not just a toy (although he will most certainly appeal to younger users); he is a battery checker designed to determine if your Eneloop rechargeable batteries have any charge left in them. If they do, Eneloopy's nose light glows: green represents a full charge, orange is a partial charge, and red indicates the battery needs to be charged. No light at all means that the battery is completely discharged. Eneloopy comes with a "bone" to squeeze the battery out of the checker. And a food bowl to keep the bone in.
Discover magazine maintains that the most important scientific researchers could be those who are trying to turn ice cream from artery-clogging dieter's nemesis into health food. This would mean adding fibre, antioxidants and probiotics. But would it still be ice cream?
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