1 October

Pet tracker initiative smashes crowdfunding records

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Many of us know the heartbreak of losing a pet and Sebastian Langton is on a global mission to prevent it. Last year, after losing his best mate, Rango (the cat), Sebastian decided that he had to do something to stop this happening.

“If nobody else had found a way of tracking cats and dogs, then I was certainly going to,” he said.

Teaming up with his friend Damien Cantelo, he’s developed the smallest and lightest pet GPS tracker in the world. The working prototype, Pod Live, is waterproof with an interchangeable battery and is designed to attach onto your pet’s collar. Pod works by syncing with your phone and through the app you can locate your pet anywhere and any time. The Pod app also has some other pretty nifty features like being able to set a virtual perimetre for your pet, and being alerted when they wander further.

After securing some of the largest pet retailers in the world to stock Pod, Sebastian and Damien have now turned to crowdfunding to get their product up and running.… Read more

19 December

Melbourne has a Captain Kirk of trams, keeps log, is wonderful

Captain Kirk of Melbourne trams

Melbourne, as you’re ramping up to Christmas and giving thanks to your colleagues, friends and total strangers in random acts of chardonnay-fueled  goodwill, make sure you spare a thought for sand.  It turns out we owe our grainy friend a lot. If you have ever voyaged on the good ship Public Transport in Melbourne, you may have at times noticed that sand fills sections of the walls of our trams. Being the edgy city this is, we’ve long thought those clear panels were some kind of art installation.  But a quick Google reveals two things:

1) We are wrong

2) Melbourne has one of the most surprisingly joy-giving blogs dedicated to tramlife you’ve ever seen.

melbournetramdriver.blogspot.com.au enthusiastically explains all the things about trams (and douchebags with umbrellas and the horror of working on New Year’s Eve) that you never knew you really want to know about.

It’s mesmerising. That sand, for example, turns out to be a delightfully antiquated mechanism for helping trams not kill us all in wet weather.… Read more

4 September

Unfiending: the gentle art of losing jerks on Facebook

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When you can no longer be friends with someone on Facebook, but don’t want to be one who cuts ties, there can be a third, wonderful way…

Dear The Internet,

Do you like this person outside Facebook (no/no)?

Do you like this person outside Facebook (no/no)?

The English language is the largest of all of the human word-things – partially because of its playful versatility, partially because we just gank words from other languages whenever we fancy it, and partially because of the Oxford English Dictionary’s new policy of getting headlines by officially adding any word that gets used more than twice in The New York Times.

And yet there are still vast tundras of human experience as yet unmapped by intrepid lexicographers, which is why I so often find myself forced into creating my own words. Like an infant trying to build a cathedral by bashing bits of Lego together, I struggle, cry and often end up wetting myself – but dammit, I shall never waver in my passionate commitment to making our rich and supple language be heaps more awesomer.… Read more