January 17, 2018

Archives for March 2007

High Tech Home Appliances

From Forbes magazine:

Fifteen years ago, you needn’t look further than the ice cube-maker on the door of your Whirlpool refrigerator to find innovation. But these days, we expect a bit more than crushed ice when it comes to high-end, high-tech gadgets.

And we’re not afraid to spend on these domestic devices. Consumers worldwide forked over $301 billion on housewares in 2005, and $72.6 billion of that was in the U.S., according to the most recent data compiled by the International Housewares Association.

The latest innovations include a motion-sensing trashcan and a wall-mounted fish tank that’s only 4.2 inches thick and computer-controlled to sense oxygen flow or when water needs changing.

They join a cadre of housewares built to accommodate the consumer who wants user-friendly, time-saving appliances in every room in the home.

Smart Appliances

The Turbo Chef Speedcook Oven, for example, cooks meals 15 times faster than conventional stoves. Unlike your run-of-the-mill microwave, a Turbo Chef-prepared roast is just as well cooked, and sometimes even better than that of a standard oven, the company says. The oven, currently used only in restaurants, will be available to consumers in April.

Steve Beshara, chief branding officer of TurboChef Technologies, says everyday entertainers were hungry for the Turbo Chef for three reasons: performance, design and, of course, efficiency.

“[It] essentially empowers the home cook to be the cook they want to be,” he says. “Time has become the world’s most precious commodity and we’re trying to help busy people enjoy healthier, tastier meals with an efficient, ergonomically designed tool.”

Other time savers abound.

Consider HomeRight’s Velocity Waxer. This cordless contraption allows you to buff and wax your car, truck or yacht in 30 minutes flat.

Or check out Bialetti Thermovisual Cookware, which debuted this week at the 2007 International Home and Housewares Show and will be available later this year. When the line of pots and pans are ready for cooking, they literally say just that, right on the side of each piece. Now, you can spend your time slicing and dicing instead of watching a pot that appears to never boil.

Gorgeous Gizmos
Of course design is also a factor. The Espressione Nuvola Professional Pod Espresso Machine is not only simple to use, it’s lovely to look at. The dry steam makes concocting a milky espresso drink easy as pie, but it’s Espressione’s knack for designing an artful product that distinguishes itself from competitors.

The combination of well thought out constructs and stunning styles has also worked for Simplehuman, a trashcan company that released its the aforementioned garbage pail, boasting a sensor device that’s recessed so to prevent false triggers.

Beauty aside, Gary Grossman, president of Innovations and Developments, a marketing, advertising and industrial design firm that advises companies on what satisfies today’s consumer, says that above all, Americans are in love with ease.

“It all points back to convenience,” he says.


Crunchy Brownie Pan

Baker's Edge Brownie Pan

Does it have to be electric to qualify as an appliance?

I don’t know and I don’t care. I tell my daughters to bake my brownies for 2 weeks because I can’t get enough crunch.

BoingBoing points to the Baker\’s Edge – Edge Brownie Pan.

Here’s the description from Cooking for Engineers that BB cribbed:

Each of the brownies from the Baker’s Edge did indeed have chewy edges – two of them (and sometimes three) in fact. It was almost like every piece was a corner piece from the standard pan. Therein laid a problem I hadn’t considered. I had tasters that liked brownies with edges and tasters that liked brownies that didn’t have any chewy edges but were soft and moist throughout. With the regular pan, I had corner pieces, edge pieces, and center pieces (although there are always more than four people who want corner pieces and not enough edge pieces). For the edge lovers, the brownies from the Baker’s Edge were perfect – chewy edges surrounding a moist chocolate brownie. For the center lovers, the brownies were good, but they much preferred the texture of the brownies from the 9×13 pan.


Recall:Maytag and Samsung Front Loading Washer

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firms named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer products. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of product: Maytag and Samsung Brand Front Loading Washing Machines

Units: About 250,000 Maytag-brand units and about 20,000 Samsung-brand units

Distributor: Maytag Corp., of Newton, Iowa, and Samsung Electronics America Inc., of Ridgefield Park, N.J.

Manufacturer: Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., of South Korea

Hazard: Water leakage onto the electrical connections to the washing machine’s thermal sensor could cause an electrical short and ignite a circuit board, posing a fire hazard to consumers.

Incidents/Injuries: Maytag has received five reports of incidents involving ignition in the circuit board. Samsung has received one report of an incident involving ignition in the circuit board. No injuries, fires or property damage outside the washing machine have been reported.

Description and Models: The recall involves certain Maytag and Samsung brand front-load washers. The Maytag washers have model numbers beginning with MAH9700 or MAH8700. The Samsung model number WF306BHW or a model number beginning with WF316. Not all serial numbers are subject to the recall. The model and serial numbers are located on a tag at the bottom of the door opening. Maytag models with a serial number ending in the last two letters identified below are subject to the recall:

2006 JA JC JE JG JJ JL JN          

Sample Maytag Serial Number: 10123456GN

Samsung models with the six-digit number 100001 through 799999 prior to a letter at the end of the serial number are subject to the recall:

Sample Samsung Serial Number: 230854AL300026B

Sold at: Major department and appliance stores nationwide from April 2005 through August 2006 for between $1,000 and $1,200.

Manufactured in: South Korea

Remedy: Consumers should immediately contact the firm for information on how to receive a free repair. Consumers should not return the washing machine to the retailer where it was purchased.

Consumer Contact: For more information, consumers can call Maytag toll-free at (800) 868-5109 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or go to Maytag’s Web site at www.washerrecall.com – Samsung customers can call (800) 515-7902 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or go to Samsung’s Web site at www.Samsung.com/washerrecall

Maytag Media Contact: Monica Teague, (269) 923-7405 or monica.teague@Whirlpool.com

Samsung Media Contact: Deborah Szajngarten at (201) 229-4090 or dszajngarten@sea.samsung.com

Picture of Recalled Maytag Washing Machine    Picture of Recalled Samsung Washing Machine

Internet Enabled Wall Ovens- Now your Blackberry can make dinner

Ah those were the days. Mom in the kitchen cooking dinner (chops, potatos, peas) while we all played tag outside for hours until she finally called as the sun came down “Dinner” and we slowly worked our way back home for a family dinner. But what happens if the boys are at little league, the girls are at karate, dad’s stuck on the freeway, and mom is on the way to pick everybody up as she swings home from court? Well if you want to justify having those two incomes check out this super hot (or super cold) integrated refrigerated double wall oven with internet controls. Just buy a premade meal from one of those almost home cooked shops and toss it in the oven before you leave in the morning. Afraid of salmonella? no problem. These ovens have built in refrigeration. Program it to stay cold all day. When you walk out of court, you can pull up the browser on your blackberry, hit the oven over the wireless net and tell it to start cooking.

Pick up the kids, meet dad on the driveway, and dinner is waiting as you walk in. The Jetsons never had it so good.

Check it out here: SuperSmart Internet Enabled Wall Ovens

TMIO announced an expanded Intelligent Oven product line based on the original Connect Io double wall oven of consistent accolades. The original Connect Io double offers remote control by Internet and telephone, and comes with built-in refrigeration to keep foods fresh before and after cooking. These advanced remote features allow homeowners to communicate with the oven to give cooking, warming, and refrigeration instructions so that “dinner is ready when you are.”

Internet controlled wall ovens from IMIO

Here’s a link to TMIO: to read more

How to ruin your electric wall oven for under a buck

No matter how high tech our ovens, ranges and other appliances get, we’re sometimes still driven to try old fashioned fixes. I’m sure that you hate when your food overflows and spills on the bottom of the oven. You know its just gonna burn off and smoke up the joint before its gone. So you quickly try mom’s old trick of lining the bottom of the oven with foil. Maybe not such a great idea with today’s high powered, but delicately balanced ovens. I found this piece in a Missouri paper called the News Leader.

You want to keep your oven sparkling clean so you protect it by putting aluminum foil on racks, under food as it cooks, and down on the oven floor where food drops and burns to a crisp. But instead of helping, you’re hurting your oven.
Foil placed on the oven floor reflects and intensifies heat, which can cause the bake element to burn out prematurely.

Foil placed under foods on the racks is bad because it traps heat in the bottom of the oven, keeping it from circulating and reaching the heat sensor near the top. Severe overheating is possible; besides damaging the bake element, that could also affect insulation in the oven wall and discolor or even crack oven-door glass.

By disrupting temperatures and air circulation, aluminum foil messes up cooking times, too.

A quickie clean just isn’t worth it.