Wi-Fi, David Pogue, New York Times,
[Commentary by John Smart] Great article about Verizon's EV-DO Wireless Broadband. A $70 Kyocera KPC650 card (the best option) plus $80/month to Verizon will get you wireless cellular broadband for your laptop, with 400-700 Kbps download (cable modem speed), and 100 Kpbs upload (crippled to keep you from using it as a wireless server). Fortunately, Skype will work on a minimum of 34 Kbps, so you can now use your EV-DO-equipped laptop for unlimited-length free calls to PC users anywhere with Skype, or super low-cost calls (see SkypeOut global rates, often just 3 cents/minute) to any standard or mobile phone in the world.
Verizon's $1 billion, true 3G network presently covers 32 major U.S. cities, and will cover half the country by December. Fortunately, Sprint will also offer EV-DO by the end of this year, so the $80/month corporate-level rate may fall to a consumer level as early as 2006. This is a very empowering development!
Philips Sonicare IntelliClean
Toothbrush and Decapinol Oral
Here are two great new tools for healthy teeth. The first is the $120 Philips Sonicare toothbrush, whose sonic technology and liquid toothpaste dispensing system is "one step closer to daily flossing," for those millions who don't floss regularly as there is as yet no convenient way to do it.
The second is a new oral rinse for combating one of the most common diseases of aging, gingivitis, or inflamed and shrinking gumlines. Rather than killing natural oral bacteria, delmopinol hydrochloride (Decapinol) takes away their ability to stick to teeth, gums, and each other, reducing bacterial plaque and the toxins they release at the gumline. Decapinol has just been approved by the FDA, so expect it in U.S. stores soon. In the meantime, you can call your friends in the United Kingdom who have had it for years and have them mail you some. Decapinol also doesn't interact with toothpaste, unlike anti-gingivitis treatments like chlorhexidine, so with luck we may even see it added to liquid toothpaste in these sonic systems a few years hence. Sounds like intelligent cleaning to me! Thanks to Bryan Hall for the Decapinol link.