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Why can't I get a movie and pizza delivered to my house in 30 minutes or less?

Self-cleaning air filters for air ducts.

Air ducts get filthy. Ever dare to look at the ceiling tiles around the air ducts in your office? They're disgusting. I really don't want to know what the inside of one of those things look like. Certainly not like the movies when people are crawling around in them. If I ever did that, I'd have an allergy attack like you wouldn't believe. I guess that's yet another reason why I'm not an international super spy. (Or... so I'd like you to believe...)

Well, why not get one of those ionizing air filters, like the kind the Sharper Image sells? They need to be cleaned every once in a while by running them under water, but at least they can be cleaned.

And... Sure it would be expensive, but it might be possible to make them self-cleaning by running some plumbing to the air duct. Once a month the ionic rods would get doused with water, and the water would simply go down the drain. Then a high-pressure blast of air would dry the filters so there's no water left to allow any mold to form.

Or, you can still place the filter within reach and wash it yourself every couple of months, but that would be no better than a regular filter.

Drum Key/Bottle Opener

Drums are tuned with these things called "Drum Keys." They're sort of fancy T shaped allen wrenches. Drummers are drunks. The lot of 'em. Why hasn't anyone made a good Drum Key/Bottle Opener?

Maybe it's because drummers can all open bottles with their teeth (or at least drum sticks), but as long as you've got to carry one thing around with you, why not combine the two?

Timed Car Lights

I go bike riding at night, after midnight and before dawn usually. Sunrises are really gorgeous from a nearby bridge I cross, and watching the seagulls wake up and perform this sort of morning dance in the air... it's just breathtaking.

On any given night, I may notice a car or two that have left their dome lights on. I estimate that I probably pass by about a thousand cars a night. So I would guess that there's about a 1/1000 chance someone will leave their dome light on all night.

Why? Why do car dome lights stay on all night to the point of running down the battery? Why not have lights that turn off in an hour or so if the key isn't in the ignition? I've seen specialized tools to get around this problem ranging from

Why not get at the source of the matter - stupid electrical devices that never shut down.

Gas Station Drive Through

Ian Boys pointed out that gas stations are losing impulse buys by allowing you to pay for gas at the pump - you never go in the store. So why not create a menu system that allows you to order things at the pump and charge the whole thing on your credit card? You're bored when you're filling your tank, so you'll push through the menu system just to be entertained, and before you know it, 3 Cokes, a Hershey's bar and a copy of Maxim have been added to your bill. Pick it up from a drive-through window as you're leaving the station.

What Blockbuster Should Really do to Fight Netflix

Philo commented on Blockbuster's shady "no more late fees" policy. What would I do if I was on Blockbuster's Board of Directors?

I'd start a subscription/flat fee service similar to netflix and emphasize "See what you want tonight, not 2 days from now" in my ads. I'd put stickers on the back of the boxes that say "people who rented this movie also rented..." I'd start a home delivery service with Domino's.

If Everquest can partner with Pizza Hut, then why not Blockbuster and Domino's?

Other articles in this series

page first created on Saturday, February 19, 2005

© Mark Wieczorek