Most so-called universal plug adapters aren’t. Universal, that is. They are capable of converting between the most common outlets like the C-type (used in much of Europe) and the A-type (North America and Japan). But your typical plug adapter can’t conform to the M-type of plug (southern Africa) or L-type (northern Africa and the Middle East). Some even have a hard time with the “sunken” plugs used in Europe, like the J-type (common in Switzerland) or F-Type (found in Germany).
The APC is one of the few universal plug adapters that can handle every residential outlet type on the planet. And it is by far the smallest and most lightweight of those that can. The APC is so efficient because it consists of two parts, each of which can be twisted, turned and attached together in a multitude of ways such that its users can be forgiven for thinking that they are playing with a transformer toy. The design is unusual, but it works. Always. Making the APC adapter one of Spot Cool Stuff’s must-pack items for any international trip.
Autumn is upon the northern parts of the northern hemisphere and we’re stocking up on our cold weather gear. First up, the new hard warmer from Zippo. Unlike the company’s famous lighters, this Zippo produces no flame. Instead, the radiant heat comes from a smoldering of lighter fluid within an ultra-thin platinum-catalyzed burner. A mere 4 ounces of lighter fluid can produce heat for 24 hours, virtually pollution free.
Before Spot Cool Stuff headed for a month-long stay with the family on the coast we picked up a the new version of Amazon’s Kindle electronic reading device. We are big readers. Instead of packing a small library of bulky novels (and one travel guidebook) we loaded our Kindle with all our literature. The Kindle, we soon found, was also able to replace our need to buy paper newspapers.
As we write this review it is a month later and we find ourselves on an airplane headed home. What we learned about the Kindle during that time was this: It is really cool. (Hence the review here and not on Spot Mediocre Stuff). In fact, the Kindle has reach that highest Parthenon of devices we consider a must-have. But before you shell out $350 on your own Kindle you should know that it does comes with a few downsides along with its superlatives. Read on for more . . .
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