Tuesday, May 09, 2006


"The National Safety Council projects that nearly 250 million computers will become obsolete in the next five years," and I have at least two of them.

However, I still enjoy using my IBM 486 PS Notebook with lighting-loading Windows 3.1. . . yes, there isn't much to wait for to "happen," unlike with today's brainier computers that have to sort through six hard-drives in order to process unto opening and get you to the actual interactive screen.

Sure, I've had to tell it over and over again that it's indeed the 1980s once more. It's made a mess of file sorting, surely, but I'm not risking the 1999/1900 flip. That laptop got me to Japan and back, and it was obsolete for doing Internet then back then (nine years ago), but I still enjoy the fact that I can keep writing and writing and writing and it keeps saving and saving and saving.

The NSC's notice that while computers are junk-bound faster, the two televisions at our place are also losers, as "broadcasting switches from analog to digital in the coming decade." Yeah, we already had to buy this ninety-cord switching box to make the $30 DVD player "work" with the dino-tube. It's highly discouraging. The TV still works well enough for me, and knowing that monitors and "older TVs" picture tubes have an average of four to eight pounds of lead inside makes me as ill as a Pacific Ocean tuna fish to think about it. . . .

Add to that all the other fun heavy metals found in our favorite toys - chromium, cadmium, mercury, beryllium, nickel, zinc, and brominated flame-retardants - and there's enough death-potion in your home (not counting the things you may happen to "clean" with) to kill even all the dustmites living there or at least transform them into mutant X-Mites or something.

So, guess what? It's pretty much amoral to dump this sort of thing into MaEarth, in my opinion. The "solution" is to donate still-usable things to someone else, such as through Kansas City's Surplus Exchange, or to at least put them someplace where the chemical components will be recycled out or buried someplace "proper."

For now, our state is in study mode:

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources organized this workgroup to put in place a framework for disposing, reusing and recycling E-scrap in Missouri in an economically sustainable fashion without threatening the environment. We would like the workgroup to complete the following goals by December 2006:

Develop common sense strategies that define best management practices for collecting, processing, and transporting E-scrap;

Outline what is needed to implement those strategies, such as incentives, guidelines, or needed legislation and

Encourage sustainable economic development in the E-scrap industry within the state.

And I'm hoarding every dang electronic thing I ever owned, apparently.

More info. . .

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