Thursday, August 30, 2012

No more needed

How To Save a Wet Cell Phone or Tablet

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Tip of the Day: Today's article illustrates the damage water can do to a smartphone or tablet. If you want to clean a smartphone or tablet's screen, skip the water and use a microfiber cloth (these are often used to clean eyeglasses.) At most, you should use a damp microfiber cloth. Unsubscribe

How To Save A Wet Cell Phone Or Tablet

by Christian Cawley
wet cell phone
I've got bad news for you. Dropping your phone in a puddle of water, bath, sink, toilet - even getting caught in a heavy shower - will leave it irreparably damaged. The same goes for tablet computers.
No more apps, games, Facebook, phonecalls or browsing. All gone.
That is, if you leave it switched on. Switching it off right away is probably the best solution, but it's not all bad news.
In fact, there are a number of ways in which you can stop your phone or tablet computer from being left as nothing more than an expensive brick following prolonged contact with water.

The Effect of Water Damage

It is important to act fast when your phone or tablet gets wet. Water and electricity simply don't get along, so a wet device could short out and even give you an electric shock. At best, a bit of water will condense on a hot circuit board or processor and cause damage to the screen, while water can find its way into bezels, slots, under the screen and into the battery cavity.
Basically, letting your phone or tablet (or laptop) get wet is a bad idea, and requires you to act as quickly as possible.

First Things First - Turn It Off!

If your phone has been exposed to enough water to make you concerned, the first thing you should do is turn it off! Not all phones will allow you to remove the battery, but if this option is available to you, do this rather than turning the device off.
Whatever you do, don't waste time checking if it still works or not - this will make things worse!
You might be out and about when the phone gets wet, or you might be at home or in the office. Either way, you will need to find a flat, dry surface that you can use for the following steps. Fast action is hugely recommended - failure to complete this and the following steps quickly will result in a permanently damaged phone or tablet!

Disassemble What You Can

Fortunately phones and tablets don't come apart too easily. If they did, they'd probably fragment each time they were dropped!

wet cell phone

However along with the battery, there are at most two other items that should be removed. The first is the SIM card, which you should retrieve, dry and keep somewhere safe. Following this, if your device has a removable SD or micro SD card, this should also be removed and dried.
The reason for this step is simple - water gets everywhere! By removing these two cards, you can dry the slots where they are housed with some tissue paper, soaking up as much water as possible.

Drying the Phone or Tablet

Don't stop with the SIM and SD card slots, however - any water you can find on your switched-off device should be blotted up as quickly as possible.
What follows is a list of suggestions for alternative methods of moisture removal from your hardware, but in the meantime, before reaching that stage, ensure all water droplets around the edge of the display, on the display itself, around any screw holes and bezels (in fact, everywhere on the exterior of your phone or tablet) is soaked up with tissue paper or kitchen towel.
Without taking the device apart (something that in itself is dangerous and with the added moisture drops trickling around becomes smartphone-suicide) this is as dry as you will be able to physically get it.
But what about the insides? Fortunately, there are a couple of tricks you can use...

Drying the Inner Workings

Inside a smartphone or tablet computer you will find processors, circuit boards, button rockets - all places where water can find a home and cause damage. With your waterlogged device quickly switched off and the SIM and micro SD card removed, however, you are in a strong position to recover the device.
You just need to dry the bare circuit board, wires and processors inside.
There are several ways in which you can achieve this:

fix wet cell phone

Hairdryer: with your hairdryer on a low setting and your phone held far enough away that you won't burn your hand, use the hot air that it projects to dry your phone, spending some time focusing on the battery and SIM/micro SD card slots (in order to push warm, drying air ito the device). Be careful when warming the screen, however, as you don't want to cause damage to the touch-screen interface. Continue this for up to 30 minutes, maintaining an even covering of warm air.
Oven: placing your phone or tablet on a small empty box on an oven tray and setting the oven to its lowest setting is one other way that you might dry the internal components of your device. Your oven's lowest temperature (110 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit) shouldn't cause any damage to your device, but you'll need to leave it in overnight (or until "done")
Boiler/Airing Cupboard: another heat-based solution, this will take a few hours to dry your phone - probably about a full day. Make sure your boiler is switched on before using this solution, however.

fix wet cell phone

A Bowl of Rice: while you might have to head to the local convenience store, a bowl of dry, uncooked rice is perhaps the most successful solution to any water damage to your phone or tablet. You'll need to pack it into a container big enough to hold your hardware and a good layer of rice - about 1 inch on all sides - but the foodstuff will soak up almost all of the moisture overnight, leaving you with a fully working device.

fix wet cell phone

Lots of Silica Gel: if you're a serial tech addict, the chances are you've collected a large supply of silica gel sachets for some indeterminate event in the future. Well, I've got news for you - the future is now! Pack your phone or tablet into a box with plenty of silica gel sachets to cover the device on all sides and leave it overnight, and hope that your hoarding wasn't in vain.
Pure Alcohol: one last suggestion that has been proven to work is the use of pure alcohol. If the damage caused to your device by water is the result of basic physics then the submerging of the switched-off device into rubbing alcohol is a result of basic chemistry. The concept is simple: the alcohol will displace the water, and when your device is removed from the liquid the alcohol will evaporate. This is an extreme solution, but useful if the other fixes don't work.


wet cell phone

With so many ways of resolving the problem of a waterlogged phone or tablet, you would be forgiven for thinking that it is okay to get your hardware wet.
It isn't.
These potential fixes are precisely that: "potential" fixes, as opposed to "actual" fixes. They've all be used by people in the past, but none is guaranteed to work, not even submerging in rice! As such, there are a few things you should consider:
  • Don't use your phone or tablet over a toilet, sink or bath.
  • Don't leave your device in the bathroom (steam from a hot shower can condense and cause water damage).
  • Treat your hardware with respect, regardless of how much it cost you. A replacement will be costly and time consuming to acquire.
Keeping your phone or tablet in a safe place where it is unlikely to be exposed to any water damage is of course the best option!
Image Credit: Mobile floats on water ripples, Hair dryer, Silica Gel packets via Shutterstock
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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A recipe for... Ice Cubes. Seriously.

There's a recipe for ice cubes on the website.

The recipe reviews and comments are the fun part.

Power tools... in the kitchen!

"Now watch as we use this router to put a decorative edge on a Jell-O mold."


Monday, August 20, 2012

Churchkey Can Co. - Pilsner Beer


What's old is new again. 

The story of the flat top beer can—which must be opened with a churchkey—goes back to 1935 when the first flat top cans were introduced. Canned beer was an immediate success and others quickly joined the marketplace with this versatile packaging. Beer lovers could now enjoy their favorite brews anywhere and with anyone. The flat top can remained a standard until the pull-tab came to market in the mid-1960s. By the mid-1970s, the flat top can was all but a memory. We're excited to offer this often forgotten beer experience once again.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Video: BBC "Look around you"

  It's a daft send-up of those silly educational science programs we were shown in school.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

You're gonna need a bigger score...


Revolutionary War Encampment this weekend

The 6th Pennsylvania Regiment of Revolutionary War reenactors invites you to an event this weekend:

On August 18 and 19th, our regiment will set up an
encampment at Wentz Church on Skippack Pike, just down the road from the Peter Wentz Farmstead.

We're helping Wentz Church celebrate the 250th anniversary of the founding of their church by setting up our encampment on the front lawn. We'll present the many things we do so well: Marching and Drilling, Musket Firing and Hawk Throwing demonstrations, Camp Cooking, Children's Musket Drills, Weaving and Spinning, 18th Century Medicine, & etc.

We will be joined by Dave the Coopersmith, and we will also be honored by the presence of none other than Martha Washington herself.

Hours 9 am - 5 pm

For directions, see

Friday, August 10, 2012

Thank you, thank you. He'll be here all week.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

"McKayla is not impressed" meme

After her miffed expression on the podium while receiving the prize in the vault competition on Sunday made headlines, the U.S. gymnast's face went viral online as a meme on a popular Tumblr page titled "McKayla is not impressed."

Sarcastic Rover: The tweets that keep on giving

Buzz Aldrin got a parade, all I get is Wesley Crusher retweeting my instagrams. Whatever.

If I discover intelligent life, it'll be the first I've ever seen. (I'm looking at you, Mohawk JPL nerd)

Mars can get down to -153° Celsius. Good thing no one bothered to pack me a sweater! Idiots.

I bet if I looked like Wall•E, you jerks would love me more. Not that I care.

Got a rock in my tread… fantastic. I already hate this place. John Carter can have it.

If I get one more "red rover, red rover" joke, I'mma go mass spectrometry on all your asses.

I enter the martian atmosphere at over 20,000 km per hour, and you call Usain Bolt "fast". Screw you assholes.

What they don't show you in that parachute photo is me inside the capsule pissing myself in sheer terror.

TAKE 2: Direct from Mars! It's the Sarcastic Rover (this time with attachments)

Direct from Mars! It's the Sarcastic Rover

FW: “A Tall Tail” by Charles Stross

A friend sent me this Short story about the use of various propellents to power rocket engines.
Chemists will love this..


"You're looking for safety, right? Nuclear thermal, you launch the reactor fuel piecemeal in Soyuz or Dragon capsules with a man-rated launch escape system, then fuel the reactor once it's in orbit. No, nuclear-thermal is fine. Not very efficient, but it's not going to kill anyone. If you want efficient propulsion technology, you've got to look elsewhere. But unfortunately the best rocket tech we know of is far too dangerous to use."

"How dangerous?"

Jim winked at me. "Let me introduce you to Leonard," he said as we drifted toward the poolside cocktail bar. "He'll fill you in on it..."


Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Serenity now!

Seven-foot long minifig-scale Serenity model is a Lego masterpiece
Adrian Drake spent 475 hours over the course of 21 months to build this painstakingly accurate model of Firefly's Serenity entirely out of Lego bricks. The result is this 135-pound, seven-foot long, 70,000-brick beauty that looks especially shiny paired with its minifig crew.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Admiral Ackbar says...

Three previous Oreo "Daily Twist"


Monday, August 06, 2012

Gold, silver and bronze for Team NASA


Friday, August 03, 2012




Dear Noah,

We could have sworn you said the ark wasn't leaving till 5.




Dear Twilight fans,

Please realize that because vampires are dead and have no blood pumping through them, they can never get an erection.  Enjoy fantasizing about that.




Dear Icebergs,

Sorry to hear about the global warming.  Karma's a bitch.


The Titanic


Dear America,

You produced Miley Cyrus. Bieber is your punishment.




Dear Yahoo,

I've never heard anyone say, "I don't know, let's Yahoo! it..." Just saying...




Dear 2010,

So I hear the best rapper is white and the president is black? WTF happened?!




Dear girls who have been dumped,

There are plenty of fish in the sea... Just kidding!  They're all dead.




Dear Skin-Colored Band Aids,

Please make one for every skin color.


Black people


Dear Scissors,

I feel your one wants to run with me either.


Sarah Palin


Dear Customers,

Yes, we ARE making fun of you in Vietnamese.


Nail Salon Ladies


Dear Ugly People,

You're welcome.




Dear World,

Please stop freaking out about 2012.  Our calendars end there because some Spanish d-bags invaded our country and we got a little busy ok?


The Mayans


Dear White People,

Don't you just hate immigrants?


Native Americans


Dear iPhone,

Please stop spell checking all of my rude words into nice words. You piece of shut.


Every iPhone User


Dear Trash,

At least you get picked up...


The Girls of JerseyShore


Dear Man,

It's cute, but can you pick up peanuts with it?




The English Language In 24 Accents

Dorothy Parker on A. A. Milne

A perennial favorite ...

Dorothy Parker, who had little tolerance for whimsy, wrote a book review column for The New Yorker under the pseudonym "Constant Reader." The following is her reaction to A.A. Milne's "The House at Pooh Corner," which she quotes and reacts to:

"'Tiddely what?'" said Piglet." (He took, as you might say, the very words out of your correspondent's mouth.)

"'Pom,' said Pooh. 'I put that in to make it more hummy.'"

And it is that word 'hummy,' my darlings, that marks the first place in The House at Pooh Corner at which Tonstant Weader fwowed up.

Dude, you were pwned.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Bobby Jindal’s Science Problem


At least, for the second presidential election in a row, both major party candidates are on record as accepting the science of evolution, the cornerstone of the biological sciences. But let's not celebrate just yet. One of those candidates still has to make a vice presidential pick, and one of the leading contenders for that job has a public record on science that's crystal clear—and deeply troubling. It's Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana.

Jindal has an elite résumé. He was a biology major at my school, Brown University, and a Rhodes scholar. He knows the science, or at least he ought to. But in his rise to prominence in Louisiana, he made a bargain with the religious right and compromised science and science education for the children of his state. In fact, Jindal's actions at one point persuaded leading scientific organizations, including the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, to cross New Orleans off their list of future meeting sites (PDF).

What did Jindal do to produce a hornet's nest of "mad scientists," as Times-Picayunewriter James Gill described them? He signed into law, in Gill's words, the "Louisiana Science Education Act (LSEA), which is named for what it is designed to destroy." The act allows "supplemental textbooks and other instructional materials" to be brought into classrooms to support the "open and objective discussion" of certain "scientific theories," including, of course, evolution. As educators who have heard such coded language before quickly realized, the act was intended to promote creationism as science. In April, Kevin Carman, dean of the College of Science at Louisiana State University, testified before the Louisiana Senate's Education Committee that two top scientists had rejected offers to come to LSU because of the LSEA, and the school may lose more scientists in the future.

And now Jindal is poised to spend millions of dollars of state money to support the teaching of creationism in private schools.

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