Spoken Word with Electronics is an audio series that gives you a two-way recording of unusual stories paired with vintage modular electronic sounds
Hi all. Welcome back to the show. Part of this week is all about decompression after months and years of stressing Trump. After the election was over, I found myself more stressed out last week than months before, and that's partly because of the way I deal with threats. I am calm when threatened, and then untangle myself a bit afterwards when I am more secure. So for the sake of humor, as a tangent, this week's show is about the last ten days of my life that seem to be missing from my mind, and a discussion of drums. I don't like batteries. I can definitely tell how much I dislike batteries.
The batteries are lousy. The batteries are horrible. The batteries are overcharged. Batteries Batteries are a waste. The batteries are polluting. The batteries are zero.
The batteries have ruined so much. The alkalis, in particular. They give off poison and corrode. You give a toy to a child and it's often up to them to remember the batteries inside so they won't leak, which are little bombs. From my remote controlled R2D2 when I was a kid covered in Hoth's powdered Death Crystals, to countless radios that exploded, watches that stopped spinning, remotes that coughed up potassium hydroxideetc., batteries are bombs that you put in a device to kill it. Many people don't realize that an alkaline battery you put in a device will eventually leak and kill the components of whatever it is in it. Lithiums are much better, but they explode and catch fire. Rechargeable ones are weak and inefficient - and bad for devices like guitar pedals with their low voltage. All batteries are zero.
I recognize the value of batteries for mobility purposes - laptops, phones etc. - but so many things aren't meant to be portable and don't need them. My doctor has a wireless clock on his desk, right next to a surge protector, for example. This clock contained a battery, which he had forgotten. Most people choose alkalis. He fled and killed the clock. So if medics can't even prevent battery death, I wanted to share a few tips this week on how to remove batteries from a LOT of items.
The battery compartment, with its sturdy springs and metal connections, also remains one of the sturdiest parts of any device, and battery eliminators are designed to use this compartment. It's basically a wall outlet AC adapter with a dummy battery that you plug in where the battery would otherwise go:
Battery disposal pack and parallel battery adapter holder combine to replace AA, AAA, D or C batteries
So this episode I'm going to describe how easy it is to get rid of a battery in a device that you don't need to be on battery power. The cost savings alone are incredible. For example, our house loves to use LED candles, and all of them require size C batteries. LED candles used to cost around $ 40 in total, but the cost of the battery was hitting close to $ 400 over time to keep them running. . It's ridiculous. A battery eliminator for each of them was $ 12, and one parallel battery adapter to transform each of the AAA batteries into C batteries was also very inexpensive. Forgive Amazon links. The reason they work is that AAA, AA, C, and D all share the same base voltage of 1.5V. All that is different is the charge available inside the battery itself, that is. is why size C and D batteries are bigger (they have more capacity) - but if you have an AC adapter sending the voltage, the battery size is not needed. It also allows you to run your battery gear with a better power switch, as the power switch that cuts something off is a wearing part in itself, and moving all of that to a surge protector is better for the home. lifespan of everything you care about.
Batteries are also self-imposed timers on things. I have a short wave radio that runs on batteries that I have never been able to enjoy casually. I plugged it in with a battery eliminator and have now run it at low volume and it is much nicer as ambient noise. When it was running on batteries, I had to be aware to always turn it off.
So for two examples of how these work well. In SWWE Episode Ten I discussed my fondness for my Sony MX-650 Six Channel Microphone Mixer. This is configured to run on eight size C batteries, but I have a battery eliminator that works instead:
A Sony microphone mixer kept alive with an AC adapter set to 12v output, a single battery adapter plug and seven battery dummies - note that the eight AAA size batteries are inserted into battery adapter sockets parallel of size C.
The only tricky thing is working on the power cable, which I had to push out of the front panel of the panel:
Look for the cable - It's in the lower left corner, although some devices allow the cable to easily run under the panel for the batteries themselves.
Finally I wanted to do my Nanoloop from last week's show fully plugged in and not dependent on a battery. I took a 3.3v AAA battery eliminator which is a bit tight, in terms of voltage, with the chip itself (Nanoloop says any voltage below 3.4v should be cold but 4v will damage the device) - this 3.3v adapter is still better than a pair of lithium AAAs which at 1.8v each can exceed 3.6v out of the box. (1.5v is the voltage indicated on all batteries, but they fluctuate, rechargeable ones are the weakest, and rarely 1.5v, for example)
Anyway, I put in some permanent battery replacements and a power cable and made a little case out of cardboard and colored electrical tape. Upgrade price: $ 15, the Nanoloop can stay on all day when I record with it, the Nanoloop's power switch will never fail due to overuse, and I don't I will never need another battery for this. Warning: this is a new battery eliminator and something could go wrong, so be careful if you decide to do the same - I will update if something fails, but it works fine. Here's the modification, including a power outlet switch on the AC adapter, which you can find in the electrical section of most hardware stores for under a dollar. Completed the modification with small circular cut adhesive tape pads on the buttons for grip:
A postscript: A few people have noted that Apple Podcast plays this show in reverse order (sides B, A, talk, intro) every week, regardless of how they set it up. I created this new RSS feed which reverses the order of this show, which should help you.
Thanks - Have a nice week, Ethan
We all know that talking about others behind their back is bad. Gossip should be abhorred. I remember reading in a spiritual text that “backbiting extinguishes the light of the soul. ” DEEP. And it is.
Gossip is incredibly detrimental to any organization. And, what I think often gets missed is why people gossip. But, before we answer the question, “Why do people gossip at work ? ” let’s clear one thing up. I truly believe it is the rare person who chooses to gossip simply to be mean and hurt the reputation of the person or entity being talked about. Often gossip occurs for one of four reasons :
1 ) People fear the unknown. If people don’t have information that they want, they fear the unknown and will try to garner it from others – especially if that information appears to be hidden. This is why closed door conversations are so detrimental.
2 ) People want to belong and be included. If people believe they don’t have information that others have, they will feel excluded and on the outside of the “inner circle. ” Information is power. Everyone wants to be part of the team, to be included and the easiest way to identify those who are part of a tribe are those who are “in the know. ”
3 ) People crave intimacy and a sense of connection. I would suggest that because of the rampant pace we real at and the lack of real deal authentic communication with one another, many people crave a sense of genuine human connection and intimacy. Gossip is one of the quickest and easiest ways to connect with another human being. The secrecy, forbidden and exclusive nature of confiding in someone something that’s a bit subversive or judgmental is social super glue. Through the veneer of momentary vulnerability and trust, the two are bonded. Unfortunately gossip is a very sloppy deuxième to real, meaningful connection.
4 ) People want to work with people they think of as peers. Meaning, if someone isn’t carrying their own weight, isn’t competent or capable enough to do their travail or simply isn’t a good culture fit, then there will be gossip. Rather than being a “narc, ” employees will talk both about said individual and leadership’s lack of awareness/action. And they will talk often. The longer said individual goes unaddressed, the louder and more embedded the gossip becomes.
When it comes to gossip, these four reasons : fear, belonging, intimacy and the desire to work with others who carry their own weight, are all things that can be handled with some focused time and attention.
How do you want your employees to talk about your company ? How do you want them to feel when they walk in the door ? While this touchy-feely stuff may make you feel a little light-headed, when it comes down to it, company culture matters.
Many business owners are taking a second look at their company culture to make sure it’s the one they envision – one that supports their company’s mission, vision and values.
Insperity has spent the past 30 years building a human resources company committed to helping businesses succeed so communities prosper. In that vein, our leadership team offers these tips on having a great company culture.
You might think that trying to cultivate a positive workplace as an elusive, time-consuming waste of important resources, but studies show that the opposite is true. Creating a positive company culture begins with fostering happy employees.
Happy employees are 85 percent more efficient, experience a 60 percent drop in absenteeism and stay twice as long in their jobs as their less happy colleagues, creating a measurable effet on engagement, retention, safety, wellness, employer brand and even cost control goals, according to the study, The Science of Happiness, conducted by Globoforce.
Happiness is a habit that needs to be modeled. As a manager or business leader, your demeanor and attitude in the office has an impact on your employees. When you demonstrate happiness you’re training your employees to follow suit.
Get in the habit of being grateful and showing gratitude for what you have. It can be a small thing – I am thankful for this cup of coffee, for the sun coming out today. When you make an effort to find things to be grateful for, you’re training your brain to be on the watch for more of what is good in your world. By making gratitude a habit, you will set the example for others and create a positive work environment. Focus on the positive when interacting with your employees. Point out their accomplishments and abilities. Remind them that they are a positive force within your company and that they have much to offer. This is a powerful détermination tool and it will help to create a “can-do” attitude in your workforce.
As a leader you’re influential – your opinion matters, especially to your employees. Make it a goal to compliment people. Recognizing even small accomplishments and praising your team members in meetings or in an fax can make a big impact. It doesn’t have to be a big gesture.
We all know that sometimes work can get monotonous and overwhelming. Say for example that Mike is feeling a bit underappreciated and is frustrated with his current project. He comes to a meeting feeling defeated and unmotivated. Then you, as his manager, compliment his exercices and praise him for a job well done. The impact is immediate – he feels valued. His demeanor changes, he becomes engaged and leaves the meeting with a newfound energy to tackle his project.
People need to have a sense of purpose at work. Their happiness is directly connected to knowing that they make a difference. It’s not enough for a manager to dole out tasks. Take the time to explain why the individual task is important to the company as a whole. This will give your employees a sense of purpose and belonging that will motivate them to strive for more. Engaged employees are efficace, enthusiastic and are willing to do what it takes to help your organization succeed. Creating a sense of purpose for your employees is an investment in developing a positive workplace.