On MNN: A totally brilliant bell, common cleaning mistakes and are ad blockers the death of the web?

Members of the TreeHugger team have been contributing posts to sister site MNN.com recently, and I have been noticing that there is a lot of content that I think TreeHugger readers would enjoy. So we're going to round up some of our favorites every day or two.

In Amsterdam's sea of bicycles, a smart bike bell to hone in confused riders

pingbell© Pingbell via MNN

When I was in Copenhagen recently wasted quite a bit of time looking for my hotel bike. It's a common phenomenon; there isn't much of a bike theft problem in Copenhagen; as I noted in another post, the big problem there is people who "borrow" bikes to get home after a night in the bar and they can't find their own. Now Matt Hickman shows the Pingbell, which "enables dazed and disoriented commuters (like me) to remotely ping their bikes from their smartphones."

Just open the corresponding Pingbell app (for iOS and Android), press the ping button … and voila! The bell rings itself, allowing you to hunt down a parked bike from a distance with your trusty old ears. As mentioned, Pingbell, which also functions as a conventional bell (something cyclists should have in the first place), emits a “normal” brass bell jingle — a sound described by FROLIC studio as a “rich, full sound that sounds much more authentic than an electronic beep.”

Now that is a smart idea. More at MNN.

9 common cleaning mistakes you might be making

unmade bed© Stacey Newman/Shutterstock via MNN

TreeHugger's Melissa Breyer describes nine mistakes that most of us make. But wait, it's not all bad news; note point 3 about making your bed. She tells us that we actually shouldn't:

The average bed could harbor up to 1.5 million of the little guys, according to a study released earlier this year. And that same research revealed that they thrive in a bed that’s been made but suffer in the dry conditions of one that has not. "Something as simple as leaving a bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from the sheets and mattress so the mites will dehydrate and eventually die," notes the study.

And all these years I have been doing the right thing after all. . More in MNN

Ad-blockers: The death of the Web as we know it?

screen shot of THTreeHugger.com/Screen capture

Here's a strange sort of crossover post, where I worry about how ad-blocking software might well spell the end of sites like TreeHugger. It certainly doesn't make me happy, being served ads for big honking SUVs when I have spent ten years complaining about how I hate them. And all I did was look at a Subaru ad and Google has been chasing me since.

TreeHugger 10 years ago TreeHugger 10 years ago today/Screen capture

Years ago, ads were sold directly by TreeHugger; Graham and Olga and Vikash would find advertisers that made products that fit the concept of the site. But as the web grew and google ads took over the market, the ads switched from relating to the site to being targeted to the reader. That's why I see SUVs instead of Voltaic backpacks. And I look at them because they are what feed my family. But more and more people are using ad blockers, and this has serious implications.

What to do? More on MNN.

Tags: MNN

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