ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FOOD INGREDIENTS

  TellSpecopedia.com  This website has one of those hard to remember names that usually spell doom. But if you go there, you’ll find info on a thousand common food ingredients. Click on an ingredient like propylene glycol, Vitamin H or chicory root fiber and find the benefits or harms. This is an exhaustive site.

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BLOCKING THE BLUES

There’s a growing body of research warning about too much blue light, the kind that comes out of our phone and computer screens. In short, it appears to be bad for the eyes. It could lead to macular degeneration, headaches, wrinkles and other problems. It can also make it harder to fall asleep if you use your device at bedtime. Bob feels it’s like staring into a light bulb.

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TIME TO SUNBURN

“Time to Sunburn” from Wolfram Alpha tells you how long you can stay in the sun, based on your skin type, time of day and location. Search “Time to Sunburn” to find it.

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SMOKING

“Smokefree TXT” is a free app to help you quit smoking. You get texts with helpful advice from other quitters, progress updates and other tips.

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COMPLAINING ABOUT HEALTH INSURANCE

YourHealthInsuranceCompanySucksWhen.org has complaints about insurance companies and invites you to tell yours. One guy’s policy was cancelled after 12 years because he missed a payment when the premium doubled.

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ONE SMALL STEP FOR ALIEN KIND

A little fitness tracker, about the size of a thick quarter, arrived in a package that looked like a spaceship. It was somebody’s really clever idea, and what we’ve noticed over the years is that people who make these clever packages have never tried to open them.

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WE DO THE ROKU

The other day, our smart TV got dumber. It stopped giving us channels like Amazon and Netflix. Using the “reset” command fixed it, but in the meantime, we had a chance to explore the $49 Roku Streaming Stick and we took it.

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SEE YOUR DOC IN AN APP

“MDLive” for Android and iPhone, lets you visit a doctor from your phone, through video chatting, phone or email. It’s $10 a month and $49 per consultation, 24 hours a day, every day. The first consultation is free.

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BLOOD PRESSURE WILL TELL

Twenty-five percent of the world’s population has high blood pressure (we love statistics). We suspect some of it is “white coat” syndrome, the kind you get in doctor’s offices. This was once an annoyance to Joy, but her home monitor shows her pressure is normally 110 over 70, with a heart rate of 48 or 50. (Very fit, Joy.)

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ONE RING TO READ THEM ALL

A “FingerReader” under development at MIT is a scanner on a ring. With that, the computer will read to you as you pass your finger over a page or a book title. The computer speaks the words in a voice like a robot from an old sci-fi movie. You — know — it — sounds — like — this.

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