The AP featured news of the Honda (NYSE:HMC) FCX Clarity, a zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell car. The alternative fuel car will make its July debut in Hollywood California. Several celebrities have already ordered theirs, including Jamie Lee Curtis and husband Christopher Guest.
The FCX Clarity runs on hydrogen and electricity and emits water vapor, though I'm guessing you can't steam your curtains. Besides earning kudos for decreased pollution, the hydrogen car is also more efficient than both gasoline and gas-electric hybrid cars.
The car, however super-green it may be, has some major hurdles. First, there are almost no hydrogen gas stations; only 3 in all of Southern California. Second, the car is incredibly expensive. The last hurdle, Toyota's (NYSE:TM) dominant Prius sales.
Hello, again! I am so happy to be back in front of this keyboard, but blink and you'll miss it, this one's a quickie.
Know More Media is gathering research about our visitors. I encourage you to take the quick reader survey
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I wonder, is cyberspace a vacuum? Anyhoo, if the link didn't work here's the URL, http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=M6OQbUDMkluNiS0RHVvI9Q_3d_3d.
Blogs, news websites and television shows alike are abuzz with The Grocery Game
, an online coupon emporium that specializes in food coupons. The claim is that if
you sign up for a $1 trial membership and "spend a few minutes with a pair of scissors" GroceryGame.com
can save you hundreds of dollars on your grocery bill.
The Grocery Game (and teritoday.com
) are the inventions of saving expert Teri Gault. The game works by sending you a weekly list, "Teri's List", of the cheapest products at your grocer matched to advertised and unadvertised manufacturer's coupons. Jim Downing, reporter for the online website of the Sacramento Bee, sacbee.com
, declared the service a winner. His savings, a mighty significant 74 percent, though he admitted he'll never need 3 cans of pork and beans.
Wendy Burger, in a post on Associated Content
said the Grocery Game works
but it may not be everyone's cup of tea. It takes time and energy to clip coupons, organize those coupons, and plot a route of several stores to save, not to mention finding storage in your home from all your bulk buys.
I might check it out, especially if I save enough to recover the cost of the membership fee
Monday is Memorial Day, the national holiday that marks the beginning of travel season and the unofficial start of summer. This weekend is considered Memorial Day weekend. I pause to ask, who decided all the holidays get an entire weekend? I bet it's a thinly veiled corporate agenda to push people to shop. Anyway, back to Memorial Day.
Memorial Day has a long and storied history dating back to the Civil War and bitter Southerners. In recent history a 1971 federal law cemented the status of several holidays along with Memorial Day, including Columbus Day, Veterans Day, and Presidents' Day. We all used to get those days off, nowadays many corporations only observe Memorial Day because of the days designation as summer's dawn.
Bad news for travelers everywhere, airlines have found another way to nickel and
dime customers. Starting June 15, customers flying American Airlines (NYSE:AMR) will pay $15 to check their first bag, I'm guessing the amount of the fee is directly related to the number of bags checked. So unless one can pack light enough for a carry-on bag, there's a fee to take luggage on a trip. The fee is only one component of several changes announced today.
American Airlines said the moves, including layoffs in the thousands and a 12% decrease in the number of domestic flights, are necessary to cope with soaring fuel prices. The price per barrel surpassed $130, meaning the airlines are in for another crunch.
I really think this new fee sucks. Last April I took a trip to Miami, flew American Airlines. Being that the flight was cross-country and I wasn't on Southwest or Jet Blue, I expected lunch. What I got was diddly-squat. I was incredulous, I'd have to cough up $7 for a dry turkey sandwich, a red apple, and some potato salad!
Yesterday, DVD-by-mail giant Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) announced a new application of their streaming service. For $99.99 customers can buy a TV set top box that allows subscribers to stream video directly to the television. Netflix already allows subscribers to stream video online, this new technology allowing users to stream
directly to their TV is just the icing on the cake.
Here's the lowdown, (as told to me by the AP and PC World). As of yesterday Netflix subscribers can purchase a small box that connects to the internet (ethernet, or WiFi) and steams video directly to the television. The Netflix box, made by Silicone-Valley start-up Roku Inc., is priced like a DVD player and supposedly just as simple to use. Currently about 10,000 movies are available for streaming, a drop in the bucket compared to the 100,000+ movies available. Best of all, besides the equipment purchase, the service is free for Netflix subscribers.
Free is a great word all by itself, but when you pair it with another word or short phrase it becomes beautiful. One of my favorite pairings with free is "with purchase," (such fond memories of Clinique Bonus) but that's not the purpose of today's post. Today free is paired with food, two of America's premier fast-food franchises, Dunkin Donuts
), are giving away free food.
McDonald's is giving customers a breakfast biscuit or Southern-style chicken sandwich if they purchase a medium or large drink. Dunkin Donuts, "world's largest coffee and baked goods chain" according to the press release on PR Newswire
, is giving away 16 oz. iced coffees to anyone who asks between 10a.m. and 10p.m. today.
To be frank, the offer from McDonald's doesn't appeal to me, a post on Trans World News
didn't paint a flattering picture, butter of the main garnish for both. By contrast, Dunkin Donuts is offering any "original or flavored iced coffee," customers are encouraged to try the "Berry Berry Iced Coffee," a blend of seasonal berries with their coffee. Bet you can guess which establishment I'm most likely to visit.
Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) (RIM), the Canadian manufacturer of the Blackberry smartphone, announced the launch of its newest product, the Blackberry Bold. The first major new model since the Curve, the BlackBerry 9000 Bold, which boasts twice the screen resolution of its predecessor, will be available this summer.
The official RIM press release, while lacking photos, details the new features and improvements. For a quicker read, I liked an article on Mobile News International. The UK site noted the new Blackberry lets users "ownload Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint files and edit them directly on the handset" and "allows users to sync their iTunes digital music collections with the device."
AT&T (NYSE:T) announced Monday it is the exclusive U.S. carrier for the Bold, which could make for an interesting competition with the still ever-popular iPhone.
Sunday, Mother's Day
, is quickly approaching. Besides my usual reason for
scrambling at the last minute to find a gift (it seems I forget it's Mother's Day or Father's Day every year, it alternates) I have the added stress this year of being absolutely, completely, 100% flat broke with no end in sight. So what's a cash-strapped but loving child to do for a great mother when a card just won't suffice?Google
) of course! A search for affordable Mother's Day Gifts turned up several helpful websites. ABC News
featured "Mother's Day Gift Ideas That Won't Break the Bank," Living a Better Life, a money-saving ezine, suggested 18 great gifts, many of them free. About.com directed me to Frugal Living, a blog by Erin Huffstetler
. Erin suggested 6 "super cheap" Mother's Day gifts that are "likely to make your mom swoon" without incurring a bill that'll make you swoon.
Here are my favorite gift ideas:
1. Personalized stamps
- Frugal Living
2. A family portrait (using old photos) - Frugal Living
3. Personalized family cookbook (your photos, your recipes) from Kodak - ABC News.
) and Sprint Nextel
) announced plans to merge
their wireless broadband divisions. A post on CNNMoney.com reported
the new company will be called Clearwire. The $14.55 billion venture will receive an investment of $3.2 billion from Intel Corp., Google, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Works. Clearwater has an estimated value of $20 per share, giving the companies 22% ownership. Sprint will have the majority, 51%, share. Check out this post
on Tech Crunch for a breakdown of the contributions from each company.
Tech Crunch author Erick Shonfeld wrote
about the impetus for the merger. WiMax
, a telecommunications technology aimed as shaking up broadband access as we know it, is "promising" and still in its "early days," yet it's valuable enough for several different multi-billion dollar companies with very different aims (you know, besides making money) to contribute significant funds.