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Unexpected gadgets?



  • LunarSeaLunarSea Posts: 1,326
    My Kindle. The best invention ever for reading fiction. Say what you like about Amazon but through them I've discovered & read so many great novels that I would otherwise have missed.

    And the wonderful adjustable stand I bought for it which folds down neatly to a pocketable rectangle.

    Clay soil - Cheshire/Derbyshire border - where old gardeners often wet their plants.
  • I bought my first Kindles 12 years ago when living in Europe - an absolute Godsend for getting English language books.
    Having renewed them recently, the newer versions are a PITA - too complicated and including too much tech which is not necessary - eg the reading time of a book !!  Why on earth would anyone need that info ? Apart from anything else, the need to Tap everything and the lack of a keyboard is a huge disadvantage -  for me at least.
    I find myself cursing more often than reading.  Such a disappointment.
  • StephenSouthwestStephenSouthwest Posts: 444
    edited December 2021
    I also really like the thermal cooker we have - it's a saucepan, that you put inside a thermos - keeps food cooking for hours, a modern version of a hay box.
    ...and the vacuum insulated electric kettle - saves loads of energy.

  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    edited December 2021
    Ooooo, a "vacuum insulated electric kettle" is new to me. I have a metal thermos which is brilliant. It has no fragile parts and keeps tea properly hot for many hours.
    - - - -
    I've been thinking of some other surprising things. I haven't owned them all, but have used them and found the to be super useful.

    🛠 Ikea motion sensor lights. I have these around the house and find them brilliant, especially for use with lodgers through the night so all the mains don't have to put on when others are sleeping. I use them in sheds and outside storage. The rechargable batteries last for months and the light has a soft tone. So good not to have to faff around wiring in new lights.

    🛠 Anker battery pack. I borrowed one of these for an off grid camping trip. You can different sizes/weights that holds days of charge. From some makes of battery packs you can you can jump start a car, as well as charge your phone.
    🛠 Giant silicone keyring. I got one of these years ago and have not lost my keys since. As it's larger than my hand, I  can find it in the depths of any bag. Mine is bright green, so easy to spot on a shelf. Made of silicone, so it doesn't weight much. It's not really a 'gadget' but hey.

    🛠 Siri. Apple's Macs and iphone have a voice activated app called Siri (like Alexa). You can ask it questions or to do tasks for you. I have shunned voice activation to date as it wigs me out and seems to be the start of a slippery slope. But this week I found one great use for it myself. I had a huge long list of number to calculate. I wasn't sure if my spreadsheet was set up right and wanted to check the total. I read out the whole list to Siri and she told me the total. So much easier for me to do the than using a visual calculator.

    🛠 Text to speech functions. Because my eyes don't work brilliiantly, I find it really useful that Macs can read back documents out loud. If I have a long letter or article where it's important to have no errors at all, I ask Alex to read it back to me. A total lifesaver.

    🛠 Thermal imaging cameras. Last winter I borrowed a thermal imaging camera from a local env group. It was great and showed me all sorts of surprising aspects of heat loss in my house. You also can buy (or borrow) a little attachment to fit into smart phone, if you want to adapt your own phone rather than buy a thermal camera. Great if you are planning insulation works, wondering how well your old windows are working to hold in heat, or pondering where your drafts are coming from.

    🛠 Wifi calling. If you are with companies like BT, you will have a function on your package that allows you to call on your mobile by using your home wifi router. So if you have rubbish mobile reception at home (like me), you can use your mobile like a landline. Another lifesaver. Lots of people don't know their landline package offers this option.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 50,268
    Re the 'how' response, that might be regional @pansyface. I've never heard it used in that context.
    It took me a while to understand your post too @Uff. 'Where do you stay?' is a standard query up here when asking someone where they live!  :D

    I bought a Kindle several months ago. It's in a cupboard somewhere. I hate it.  :/
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • UffUff Posts: 3,199
    It must be regional then Fairygirl both are used here in this area of the south west. I used to wonder why people asked me how instead of why.
    SW SCOTLAND but born in Derbyshire
  • BenCottoBenCotto Posts: 4,129
    A friend of mine teaches English in Amsterdam. He was doing rôle play with one of his students, a Japanese businessman.

    ”OK,” said Pete, “so you want a taxi to Schipol. Where from?”

    ”I live in Tokyo.”

    ”Hmm,” he said, “that’s going to cost a lot.”
    Rutland, England
  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 3,741
    Heavy duty nut cracker. Cracks walnuts and hazelnuts too. A Xmas present from a number of years ago. Much better than the classical type!

    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 33,732
    Indians often ask the question " are you hungry?" by saying " You are hungry?" ( rising inflection )
    To us it sounds like a statement.
  • B3B3 Posts: 24,469
    Would you mind closing the door? Means shut the bldddy door!
    Would you take a seat?  sit down
    In London. Keen but lazy.
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