Study Finds 3D Printing Could Save The Average Home Up To $2,000 A Year

TechCrunch

While I don’t have to remind you about the value of studies – many company-funded studies are best dropped directly in the trash after publication – this one about 3D printing does have some merit. Produced by the authors at Michigan Technological University, it posits that at a home 3D printer can provide a return on investment of 200 to 40 percent and can save the average home up to $2,000 in avoided purchase costs.

Here’s the money shot:

The results show that even making the extremely conservative assumption that the household would only use the printer to make the selected twenty products a year the avoided purchase cost savings would range from about $300 to $2000/year

Now obviously this is at once conservative and a bit of wishful thinking. While I, personally, have built a few hundred dollars worth of parts for various customers using MakeXYZ, I’ve…

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Starbucks will get speedier, Google-powered free Wi-Fi

Gigaom

Sometimes, the only way to get connected is via coffee shop Wi-Fi. And for many people across the U.S., the nearest Wi-Fi-enabled cafe is a Starbucks.

But Starbucks is notorious for its spotty internet connections. It’s always free, but the challenge of getting a connection while waiting for a Frappuccino means many people don’t even try, much less camp out the way that many customers do at indie establishments.

But that may be about to change, as Google announced that it would be boosting the Wi-Fi in all 7,000 company-operated Starbucks stores over the next 18 months. The search giant promises connection speeds up to 10 times faster than what they are now, and 100 times faster in Google Fiber cities across America. Starting in August, each free Wi-Fi connection will be available under the same name “Google Starbucks.”

This isn’t the first time Google has rolled out fast free Wi-Fi…

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How to Smoke Your Cheese: The Art of Cold Smoking

Patrons of the Pit

Delving into the smokey arts with any degree of abandon, sooner or later you’re likely going to find yourself with a 20130723_180544_edit0sincere desire to smoke something peculiar.  Oh its starts innocently enough with the usual gamut of savory meats. But before you know it, and if you’re not careful, you may catch yourself trying to smoke such oddities as vegetables, fruits, and even nuts. And in the back of your mind, where brain thrusts often copulate, you no doubt will have the curious yet lingering urge to set smoke to your favorite block of cheese. No worries. Such thoughts are common place among the brotherhood of the pit, and not soon to be ashamed of. Indeed, fret not, for this is the pleasurable bane of many a pit keeper, of whom’s patron plumes of mesquite and smoldering apple are not just for meat alone, but a bevy of nourishment…

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When it comes to free speech, Twitter is caught between a rock and a very hard place

Gigaom

Twitter has spent tens of millions of dollars trying to become what CEO Dick Costolo has called “a global town square,” and with 200 million users in dozens of different countries it has come pretty close to achieving that goal. But what happens when the town square is filled with sexual abuse or death threats or other bad behavior? That’s the conflict the company finds itself in right now, as it tries to battle a firestorm of criticism over its lack of action in cases like those of British journalist Caroline Criado-Perez.

As we explained in a recent post, Criado-Perez was subjected to what she says were hundreds of abusive and violent messages — many threatening rape and some even worse — in a matter of hours earlier this week, in what appeared to be a co-ordinated attack that lasted for several days. The abuse was apparently directed at…

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