Saturday, May 07, 2005

Shiny Thing Day

Mutterings continued.

Today's shiny purchase was a wireless keyboard and mouse package. I got fed up with the keyboard and mouse falling off the desk every time I had to move the tower. And they're not USBed, but PS2, which means I get one of my USB ports back.

One of my 'must watch' tv series each week is Waking the Dead. It's a cold case detective series; very involving, very well acted.

I'm doing stir fry chicken from my diabetes cookbook for dins tonight. I also got the fixings for banana splits but we can have that another time as L and R are supplying sweeeets. Rob has a new Stargate Atlantis disk. Goodoh!

Vacuum elevator gives users a gentle lift

A one-person vacuum elevator that slots into buildings with a minimum of fuss has gone on sale in the US.

The tube-shaped transporter carries a person upwards at a steady speed of 15 centimetres per second using turbines to suck air out of a pressurised chamber above the passenger capsule. The capsule is lowered when the pressure in the upper section is returned to normal.

The Residential Pneumatic Vacuum Elevator was developed by Vacuum Elevators, a company based in Argentina and Florida, US. Two- or three-floor versions are currently available, and the company is now developing a four-floor system and another that can accommodate a wheelchair.
Panoramic view

The elevator is a metre in diameter and almost entirely transparent, providing the passenger with a panoramic view during their ride. It is made from lightweight aluminium and polycarbonate and can be installed with a minimum of construction work, says Dawn O'Connor at retailer Daytona Elevator, based in Florida, US.

"There are very little building costs," O'Connor told New Scientist. "You only need to bring in electricity at the top and cut a small hole in the ground."

The elevator has a 220-volt suction turbine at the top and can carry a maximum load of 204 kilograms. But O'Connor adds that a series of mechanical breaks will activate should there be a sudden loss of pressure, to prevent the capsule falling. The elevator costs between $20,000 and £22,000.

What fun!

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