Today in Tech
  • A tasty treat from a tube?

    Heading down to the local convenience store on a hot summer day and buying an icy beverage bigger than your head has been an American tradition for many years. But sometimes you just want something a little different — perhaps something warmer, and smothered in meaty gravy. At least that's what 7-Eleven appears to have in mind with these almost too-ridiculous-to-be-real mashed potato dispensers.

    Is it the ultimate in convenience, or just another way to be lazy?The machines were created by Maggi, a food and condiment company that is popular in Europe and parts of Asia. Maggi sells instant mash potato powder that can be purchased in stores and made at home, but that clearly wasn't convenient enough for 7-Eleven customers. When activated, the machine mixes the powder with water, squirts out the steaming-hot mashed potato mix, and even tops it with some creamy gravy.

    The hearty treat costs just a dollar or two, and some 7-Eleven stores even pair their potato tubs with soft drinks, ensuring that you can eat an lunch that has been dispensed from a small

    Read More »from 7-Eleven’s ridiculous mashed potato dispenser could take the U.S. by storm
  • Because of the near eternal threat that certain toxic and radioactive waste poses, international researchers are looking into elaborate "keep out" signs for for dump sites to be read by distant generations of humans. One such option has been proposed by Patrick Charton of the French nuclear waste agency ANDRA. It's a disk made of sapphire that, when viewed under a microscope, would reveal warnings in text and pictures interacting them to leave the site alone, in case future civilizations don't speak the same languages we do.

    Another advantage of this concept — the prototype for which cost approximately $31,000 — is that the disk and and data on it would last an estimated one million years. On of the other proposed (and presumably cheaper) markers comes from Cornelius Holtorf, an archeologist at the Linnaeus University in Sweden, and is literally a large 3-foot stone with the words "Do Not Dig" inscribed on it along with some details as to why.

    These concepts are being developed to mark

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  • Brazil's new program aims to keep inmates fit and help keep the public safe

    You've probably heard of the dancing inmates that took the internet by storm, but what about pedaling, electricity-generating inmates? In a small prison in Minas Gerais, Brazil, prisoners are given the chance reduce their sentences and even help the public, simply by exercising. Inmates who are part of the program spend their days pedaling on exercise bikes that can generate electricity, and three eight-hour shifts reduce an inmate's sentence by one day.

    According to a recent BBC report, the electricity they generate is kept in old car batteries, which are then used to light up street lamps located along what used to be a dark and shady road. But that's not the extent of the project's benefits: Inmates also say they're now much fitter than before. No word yet on whether the same project would be implemented in other prisons in the country.

    [via TheNextWeb]

    This article was written by Mariella Moon and originally appeared on Tecca

    More from Tecca:

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