Five amazing products from the mind of Steve Jobs

by Thing Two on October 6, 2013

We sadly lost a genius a year ago. Steve Jobs, the mastermind behind some of the greatest technology products, has passed away. He completely changed the way we use technology in our lives, and had the drive to put his ideas into a physical product that we all would use and fall in love with. Here are just five of the amazing products from the mind of Steve Jobs.

1. iPod – While Sony Walkmen changed the way we could listen to cassette tapes, the iPod changed how we could listen to digital music anywhere. The iPod paired with iTunes opened the floodgates for both the portable device market and for digital music downloads. Also, to this day, we don’t know what would happen to your iPod if you were playing it in your car and your car is struck by lightening. We think the pod would survive.

2. iPhone – The smartest smartphone out there is the iPhone, and I don’t care what anybody says. It’s simple, super powerful, sleek, and paved the way for other touch screen smartphones.

3. Magic Mouse – While this computer mouse looks similar to a regular one with no buttons, it’s quite a bit cooler. The cordless mouse hooks up to your computer via bluetooth, and has multi-touch capabilities with no buttons. You can set the mouse work the way you like, and basically works on any surface. Neat-o!

4. iPod Shuffle – Sure, we already talked about the iPod and how great it is, but the shuffle was a unique way to simplify a product down to the main elements. Simply load music and hit play. Sometimes you need to crank the tunes, and other times you need to skip a song, which are the main – and only – buttons on the device. So simple, yet so genius.

5. iPad – Like a giant iPhone that doesn’t make calls, the iPad is the device that completely changes the way we do business and personal work. The tablet computer allows you to do just about anything that you could on a normal computer, except it’s much more portable and much more fun. You can browse the web, write documents, check email, and simply flip the cover over and store it when you’re done.

Plenty of other Apple products out there – which is your favorite?

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Five Chain Sammie Spots

by Thing Two on October 5, 2013

Lookin’ for lunch and aren’t sure where to go? Fear not, we’ve got your major sandwich restaurants covered, so now you can just read about each place and determine which one sounds most appealing to you. Here are five chain Sammie spots that you might want for lunch today.

1. Subway – Eat fresh! Jared the Subway Guy lost a significant amount of weight by eating Subway sandwiches free of fattening condiments. The American restaurant now has over 35,000 restaurants in 98 countries, allowing you to have a sub just about anywhere you’d like to travel. You can pick from multiple types of bread, toasted or not, a handful of different cheese, and just about any veggie you’d like piled high on your sub.

2. Mr. Submarine – There’s a few of these out there, including one Toronto based company, but the one I’m speaking of is Mr. Submarine, Chicago’s First, Chicago’s Best. There are 27 locations in the Chicagoland area, and are made on fresh Turano bread.  While you can get most meats such as turkey and ham, their specialty is roast beef and corned beef.  If you’d like to opt for an unhealthy lunch or just some drunk food, they do offer pizza puffs, too.

3. Jimmy Johns – While these sandwiches are less customizable than other sub shops, the tastes are matched perfectly so there is little to change on each sandwich. The sammies are made so fast you’ll freak, and their speedy delivery service might make you want to consider ordering from them since you barely have to leave your office for lunch. You can choose from a white roll or wheat slices, and each creation is piled high with meats and veggies sure to leave you full as you’re licking your fingers clean.

4. Potbelly – Any time you’re looking for a little entertainment with your lunch, stop by Potbelly for a delicious toasted sub. The sandwich shop began in 1977 as an antique store where the owners would make sandwiches for their customers. The antique shop eventually turned into a full-fledged sandwich shop, complete with ice cream and live music.

5. Quiznos – I’ll admit that their sandwiches aren’t my favorite (sorry, for the folks that do love them), HOWEVER, they do have the best marketing campaigns. It’s not every sandwich shop that has a giant softdrink mascot dancing on the street, and I don’t think any other restaurant would dare use a rodent as their spokesperson (see video below). Go Quiznos!

What other sandwich shops do you love?

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Five strange New Year traditions

by Thing Two on December 31, 2012

It’s once again to celebrate your accomplishments, future goals, good times and bad times of the last 365 days you’ve lived through. You might be heading to a party or keeping it low key with a bottle of wine and movies at home. No matter how you celebrate it, it’s a fun evening to remember the past and look forward to the future. While your “normal” celebration may be getting hammered, there are plenty of other traditions around the world thought to bring good fortune and a prosperous year to those who partake in them. Here are five strange New Year traditions celebrated around the world.

1. Finland – It’s a longtime Finnish tradition to predict the coming year by casting molten tin into a container of water, and then interpreting the shape the metal takes after hardening. A heart or ring shape means a wedding in the New Year; a ship forecasts travel; and a pig shape signifies plenty of food.

2. Spain – At midnight on New Year’s Eve, it’s customary in Spain to quickly eat 12 grapes (or uvas)—one at each stroke of the clock. Each grape supposedly signifies good luck for one month of the coming year. In Madrid, Barcelona, and other Spanish cities, revelers congregate in the main squares to gobble their grapes together and pass around bottles of cava.

3. Scotland – During the New Year’s Eve celebration of Hogmanay, “first-footing” is practiced all over Scotland. The custom dictates that the first person to cross the threshold of a home in the New Year should carry a gift for luck (whiskey is the most common). The Scots also hold bonfire ceremonies, most notably in the small fishing village of Stonehaven, where townsmen parade while swinging giant fireballs on poles overhead (supposedly symbols of the sun, to purify the coming year).

4. South America – In Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Venezuela, it’s considered lucky to wear special underwear on New Year’s Eve; in cities like Sao Paulo and La Paz, market vendors start displaying brightly colored underpants a few days before the holiday. The most popular colors are red and yellow: red is supposed to bring love in the coming year, and yellow is supposed to bring money.

5. Panama – Models or dummies of well-known people—called muñecos—are traditionally burned in New Year’s bonfires in Panama. The figures can include everyone from television characters like “Ugly Betty” to political figures like Fidel Castro (last year, Panama’s first Olympic gold medalist, track star Irving Saladin, was burned as a muñeco). The effigies represent the old year; immolating them is meant to drive off evil spirits for a fresh New Year’s start.

What’s your strange New Year tradition?

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