The computer reservation system that airline personnel at airports use to rebook flights for customers, change seats, and so on seem markedly slower than when the customer uses the internet to pick a seat, or book or change a flight. Why is that? [more inside]
posted by lassie
on Feb 19, 2014 -
To prepare for summer I'd like to install air conditioning, but don't want the huge electricity bill. What are some alternatives? [more inside]
posted by gorcha
on Feb 11, 2014 -
I have seen many controlled intersections that have one (or more) left turn lanes with one (or more) straight-through lanes with separate signals for the left turn lane(s) versus the straight lane(s). In general, those intersections are designed to have straight-through traffic going from two opposing directions and then alternate with left-turning traffic going from two opposing directions. When the straight-through traffic is passing, why do the left-turning lanes get a red circular light rather than a green circular light or a yellow circular light? [more inside]
posted by saeculorum
on Jan 5, 2014 -
We have just the right number of potatoes per person. Organic Yukon. One of them had a green streak visible through the skin -- I can't see everything that's inside, of course. Can we eat this potato? I cut off the visible green part.
There is a lot of Toxic Green Potato lore out there. I just can't believe it's a big deal -- I mean, a busy sous chef would never throw out a potato for a bit of a green streak, right? or even notice it?-- but another cook in our kitchen thinks it's dangerous toxic mold. Yes, the potato was only 25 cents or something, but it would be nice for everyone to have their baked potato if there's no reason to toss it. The potatoes will be done in an hour, so thanks!
posted by third rail
on Nov 22, 2013 -
One day I googled "what is the most effective way to help the world" and found a link that told me to
"identify a cause with lots of leverage".
posted by defmute
on Oct 2, 2013 -
On average, or an educated guess, how much energy does it take to store a terabyte of data? I don't mean how much does storage cost. I want to know what the environmental impact of a terabyte of data. [more inside]
posted by Nanukthedog
on Aug 9, 2013 -
Anyone have any experience with using plastic boxes to move? How did it work out for your stuff compared to cardboard boxes? How did your moving company react to them (like, did they think it was too heavy, clumsy, etc). [more inside]
posted by vivzan
on Aug 1, 2013 -
I'm compiling a list of simple, abstract rules that three-year olds are likely to know, along the lines of "green means go" or "a smile means they're happy". I need some more rules/patterns/abstract properties that kids this age in the US usually know about. [more inside]
posted by heyforfour
on Jun 25, 2013 -
We are getting a new patio soon (woo hoo) and are looking at furniture. We are in favor of using recycled materials, and we are not good at staining/storing our outdoor stuff. Someone told us about polywood (which is made from old milk jugs?) and it looks pretty sharp. All of the polywood sales sites promise 20-year or longer warranties, say that no maintenance is required, and promise that the stuff is basically weatherproof. But I'm skeptical. So, does anyone have polywood furniture? Does it perform as advertised? Is it comfy? Does it look nice? Are there any brands that are clearly better than others?
posted by AgentRocket
on Jun 21, 2013 -
I live in a central Pennsylvania village that's almost 200 years old called Linden Hall. It was in the cellar of a home in our village that one of my neighbors found a bunch of old feed bags from the mill that used to be powered by the creek that runs through here. One of those feed bags looked like this
. It uses this term "Chop." So we began to wonder why, if Chop was a type of feed, why did it had a protein and fat content label? And why are there horses on the bag? Was this actually livestock feed, or something else? [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan
on May 25, 2013 -
New York City dwellers: Do you use Green Mountain Energy for your household power? Why or why not? [more inside]
posted by greta simone
on May 21, 2013 -
I've noticed that my favorite jasmine green tea tastes a lot better when I first buy it than it does a few weeks later. I'm currently storing it in a double-lid tea container, much like this one
. Can anybody suggest a better storage method? What works for you?
posted by yankeefog
on May 6, 2013 -
I make a big batch of green juice each weekend and freeze it to enjoy throughout the week. The taste is fine, but I miss the velvety texture of fresh juice. Mine freezes into layers and, when defrosted, is more "water with a lot of pulp" than juice. [more inside]
posted by acidic
on May 5, 2013 -
Surely when people try to be more "green", some efforts are significant and some are mere rounding error. What are some examples I could use, with an emphasis on the quantifiable and counterintuitive? [more inside]
posted by quarantine
on Apr 30, 2013 -
Are succulents and/or sedums a good choice for Baltimore west-facing window boxes? [more inside]
posted by Asherah
on Apr 10, 2013 -
I have cotton napkins, some 100 percent, some 65 percent. And it says on the label to wash them in cold.
I want to make sure that when my child puts the napkin to her mouth that the napkin is sanitary. But I'm wondering if washing them in cold takes all the microbes out. I'm not only talking about the food, but what about my wash machine which may have just washed our family underpants. Is this common practice? Or am I missing something? Am I supposed to be washing the napkins in a bucket instead?
I wanted the convenience of washing in the washing machine, but if that is not sanitary I will do the bucket. Also, if I can do it in the machine, should I do it in warm to make sure microbes are gone? Or is cold best? Also, should I line dry or do it in the dryer.
Thanks in advance for your help.
posted by lynnie-the-pooh
on Jan 24, 2013 -
I have been fully radicalized by climate change. Help me find a new job preparing for and/or helping us avoid it. Some requirements and nice-to-haves inside. [more inside]
posted by downing street memo
on Nov 10, 2012 -
The next car I buy will be a hybrid but I can't find a good one. Want something like my Scion XB. [more inside]
posted by JJkiss
on Oct 30, 2012 -
New Jersey gasoline is more efficient than Massachusetts gasoline? I seem to get much better gas mileage with both my cars when they are filled up in NJ. What gives? [more inside]
posted by Rafaelloello
on Jul 26, 2012 -
Looking for a lead on Removall 220 available for retail in the Twin Cities area, or recommendations of equivalent (brushable, eco-friendly) paint strippers. [more inside]
posted by longtime_lurker
on Jul 10, 2012 -
thinking of buying a new car. Priorities are :
1) green (fuel efficient)
3) can seat 4-5
4) ideally will hold an 8-9 foot surfboard inside (not essential)
5) I drive about 30 miles a day
Amongst other options in looking at the new prius plug-in, how does one really calculate per mile costs? My concern is that in Hawaii, where electricity costs are through the roof, the savings accrued through plug in option are minimal and the costs not minor.
What other vehicles would one look into? I have the Hyundai Elantra, Fit, regular prius
posted by dougiedd
on Jun 26, 2012 -
I'm growing an organic garden with a friend this year. This morning, we harvested lots of salad greens and I took a paper bag of them home. They have not been washed, and they are in the paper bag sitting inside my fridge in the crisper drawer. How many days do you think it is likely they will last? Is there anything I can do to keep it fresh longer?
posted by long haired child
on Jun 10, 2012 -
In 2009, 91.2%
of Seattle's electricity was from hydroelectric sources, and in 2010, 87.9%
was hydro. Is the hydro capacity maxed out, or will it scale up to meet additional demand and maintain that ratio? Here's what I'm getting at: If I were to use more electricity than now, will that incremental power effectively come from non-renewable sources rather than ~90% hydro?
posted by hodgebodge
on Jun 6, 2012 -
Help me track down a blog (from maybe 10 years ago) where - if memory serves - the author posted feminist pieces and talked openly about her voluntary sterilisation in her 20s. I vaguely recall that the poster's handle was "Green"-something along the lines of GreenFairy (but not 100% sure on that either).
posted by kreestar
on May 28, 2012 -
How bad is it if non-recycling/non-compost items end up in recycling/compost bins? Is it counter-productive to green efforts to give office workers ONLY recycling and compost bins and their desks, no trash cans? [more inside]
posted by CruiseSavvy
on May 15, 2012 -
Musical question: back in the 80s I heard a cover of Al Green's Rhymes. It was a snarkier, Gen Xy, punkish version. Very distinctive vocals, kind of raspy and whiny. I don't remember the music behind it much which makes me think it was minimalistic. I want to say the singer's name was Chris something? Who did this version? I have faith some mefite well versed in obscure music will come to my aid. Thanks!
posted by Jandoe
on Jan 16, 2012 -
I usually use the New Year for a small environmental resolution. Can you help me find a good one for this year? [more inside]
posted by sciencegeek
on Dec 30, 2011 -
After returning from a month away, we discovered green mold (or something resembling mold) growing on and around the cat's litter box in our basement. I have removed the litter box and anything else covered in the green stuff, and I started running a dehumidifier in the basement. What steps should I take to ensure that I eradicate the stuff and that my family (including a baby and the cat) remain safe?
posted by billtron
on Aug 27, 2011 -
Where can I get fluorescent green translucent polypropylene suitable for injection-molding a case with a living hinge? Failing that, what is the industry term for this luminescent/fluorescent effect? [more inside]
posted by designbot
on Aug 19, 2011 -
Green career ideas for a right-brained, mechanically challenged sociophobic introvert who doesn’t want a desk job? [more inside]
posted by indognito
on Jul 17, 2011 -