The Perfect Cooker: perfect for teaching kids to cook

I first came across the Perfect Cooker for sale at my local Walmart, and decided to pick it up thinking that if nothing else it would be a good rice cooker.

And I was right, it is a good rice cooker, it’s also great for pasta, and even makes a decent meatloaf.

The reviews vary but I’ve found that it really depends on the liquid, etc. Make sure you add the right amount of water or sauce and you can cook everything perfectly.

But where I’ve found the perfect cooker excels…With kids!

My daughter loves making mac and cheese in this cooker, and has also made lasagna in it, but has made mac and cheese more.

She reads the included recipe book, and adds all the ingredients, she’s even started coming up with her own.

For example, the lasagna recipe is the standard one but she prefers chicken alfredo lasagna, so she’s replaced the beef with sliced chicken breast and added alfredo sauce to get a nice dinner.

If you have kids that want to get into doing more in the kitchen, then pick up a perfect cooker.

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Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition

Nintendo will discontinue the Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition and the last shipments will go out to retailers throughout this month.

A Nintendo representative provided the following statement to IGN:

“Throughout April, NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding availability. We understand that it has been difficult for many consumers to find a system, and for that we apologize. We have paid close attention to consumer feedback, and we greatly appreciate the incredible level of consumer interest and support for this product.”

Additionally, a representative told IGN, “NES Classic Edition wasn’t intended to be an ongoing, long-term product. However, due to high demand, we did add extra shipments to our original plans.” The company has no plans to produce more NES Classic systems for North America. This announcement includes the discontinuation of the NES Classic Controller. As for third party accessories, Nintendo said the decision whether or not to continue production of accessories will be up to each individual manufacturer.

The NES Classic is a fun little console, but no surprise it was short term.


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Someone Made Their Own iPhone 6S

Scotty Allen built a working iPhone 6S from scratch using parts bought in the electronics markets of Shenzhen, China.

I built a like-new(but really refurbished) iPhone 6S 16GB entirely from parts I bought in the public cell phone parts markets in Huaqiangbei. And it works!

I’ve been fascinated by the cell phone parts markets in Shenzhen, China for a while. I’d walked through them a bunch of times, but I still didn’t understand basic things, like how they were organized or who was buying all these parts and what they were doing with them.

So when someone mentioned they wondered if you could build a working smartphone from parts in the markets, I jumped at the chance to really dive in and understand how everything works.


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Reviewing The Nintento Switch

Reviewing The Nintento Switch

I had started to write my review of the Nintendo Switch, but Myke Hurley did a great job pulling together this video walkthrough of it, and nailed just about everything I had planned to write, so I’m sharing it here.

If you are interested in the Nintendo Switch, then you need to watch this video.

The Nintendo Switch is an interesting take on console gaming, play it plugged into your TV or grab it and take it on the go.

The Switch blurs the line between home and portable gaming, which makes what it can do more powerful.

As far as game play and graphics go, for what is essentially a tablet, this is a nice package.

As more games come out, it will be an even better experience but as far as current game play goes, Zelda is a great game right now.

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Rolling your own VPN server

Dan Moren:

With the news that internet service providers may soon start scanning all your personal data and using it to target ads, I decided it was time to investigate setting up a virtual private network (VPN) server. I’ve mentioned this in a couple places, including recently on Clockwise, and had more than a few people asking if I’d document my experience.

Dan walks through how to set up OpenVPN on your own machine, which works great.

I use ExpressVPN myself currently as my primary VPN which is nice if you don’t want to roll your own VPN server.


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The Vaporware Mac Pro

M.G. Siegler:

So. Apple did a curious thing yesterday. They held a meeting with reporters to acknowledge a mistake. That mistake being the most recent iteration of the Mac Pro.

Well, it was as close as you’re going to get to Apple admitting they made a mistake. There’s still a lot of equivocation and defensiveness in their statements on the matter. But the very fact that they called the meeting says all you need to know.

This is an Apple mea culpa.

The only thing I can recall that was similar was around the “Antennagate” situation several years ago. Apple also summoned a small group of reporters to talk about that — I was one of them at the time — and also held it in a Apple building meant to showcase all the work they do behind the scenes on their devices. But that was a very different event. That was Apple defiantly showing off their advanced testing machinery to prove that nothing could possibly be wrong with the iPhone. This was… a chat.

And it seems pretty clear why they did it. Apple was on the verge of rolling out some updates to the Mac Pro. But they’re so ridiculously minor that the blogosphere would have thrown an absolute shit fit if Apple didn’t try to get ahead of the news cycle by previewing what is to come — something Apple never does.

It’s: pay no attention to these Mac Pros. The real ones are coming! Also professional iMacs! And stand-alone retina displays! Oh my!

Of course, those “real ones” are coming… in 2018. Which is presumably why Apple bothered with the current Mac Pro spec bump at all. We’re a ways away.

And so Apple just released the Mac Pro, Osbourne Effect edition.


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Ubuntu abandons its phone efforts, will switch back to GNOME

In a bombshell blog post today (via OMG Ubuntu), Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Canonical, the maker of Ubuntu, announced the company will stop investing in its “Unity” user interface for Linux and instead move back to GNOME as a default for the next major version of Ubuntu. This also ends work on Ubuntu phones, which has been a major focus for the company in recent years.

“The choice, ultimately, is to invest in the areas which are contributing to the growth of the company,” Shuttleworth writes.

Canonical’s Ubuntu is one of the many shining success stories of the grand Linux experiment. It’s nearly ubiquitous in the server world, it’s available in Windows of all places, and it’s a very polished and user-friendly desktop operating system in its own right. But Canonical’s attempts over the past few years to branch out into phones and tablets have been a near total failure.

About time.


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YouTube TV needs more channels, but it gets the basics right

YouTube TV launched earlier this week, bringing another option to the quickly growing online TV subscription space. It’s basically the cord-cutting dream; being able to watch shows, news or sports as they happen instead of waiting for your favorite sitcom to show up on Hulu the next day.

Of course, YouTube TV and its competitors (which include Sony’s PlayStation Vue, Sling TV and DirecTV Now) all have their flaws. There isn’t a perfect option out there yet, but after spending the better part of the week watching YouTube TV I can say it definitely has some things going for it over the competition – but it’s also pretty clearly a service in its infancy.


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Panic Turns 20

No, your eyes do not deceive you. Some of you may not know that we founded our company in 1997, but it’s true. We’re older than Facebook, older than Twitter, older than Google, and somehow still kickin’.

Every year is a little different, and last year was for sure — a little bit quieter on the software front (at least publicly), and a whole lot louder on the launch-of-a-major-multi-platform-video-game front.

Yes, it’s time: here’s a look back at 2016, and look forward to 2017.


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