Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

More Tips on E-waste

If you have an Office Depot near you, they have a program I think you should know about.

If you are like most, you have drawers and/or closet shelves piled with old electronic gadgets, doodads, and whatnots, that you know should go to the recyclers. And you’re aware that electronics contain toxic chemicals and stuff, so you know it’ll probably cost you good money to get rid of it.
So that old gear sits and takes up space.

“Electronic waste, commonly known as “E-waste” is one of the fastest growing segments of our nation’s waste stream. Millions of tons of E-waste was dumped in landfills in the U.S., according to the EPA. How can you help? Office Depot launched a Tech Recycling Service in over 1,000 store locations in 2007, which gives customers the opportunity to recycle their old technology right at their local Office Depot store. Simply purchase a Tech Recycling box at your local store for a nominal fee, take it to your home or office and fill it with unlimited pieces of technology. Office Depot then works with a recycling partner to turn E-waste into reusable materials, such as glass, copper, plastic and aluminum.”


3 SIZES AVAILABLE
Small ($5):       8″H x 15″D x 18″W (Max Weight 20lbs.)
Medium ($10): 20″H x 16″D x 16″W (Max Weight 40lbs.)
Large ($15):    24″H x 18″D x 18″W (Max Weight 60lbs.)

ACCEPTABLE
* Monitors (CRTs + LCD)
* Fax Machines
* Desktop PCs
* Laptop PCs
* Printers/All-In-Ones
* Scanners
* Peripherals (e.g. Keyboards, mice, drives, etc.)
* Telephones
* Digital Cameras
* Video Cameras
* VCRs
* DVD Players
* MP3 Players
* Small Televisions
* Cords & Cables
NOT ACCEPTABLE
*  Cracked monitors
*  Electronics covered in
liquids / leaking
*  Refrigerators or other items
containing Freon
*  Appliances such as
toasters or kettles
*  Items containing
radioactive materials
*  Items that have, or may
have been contaminated
with chemicals
*  Liquids

I applaud Office  Depot for providing this service; and, naturally, I encourage folks to dispose of electronics safely and properly. (To take advantage full advantage, I reco buying a big box. $15 will get rid of a lot of that old junk. Sixty pounds worth!)

I also remind you that devices that may have data stored on them (aka “memory”), such as floppies, hard drives, cell phones, should have those memories “shredded” (aka “destroyed”). Please read, Delete does NOT erase your data*– preventing recovery and/or Reader Question Answered: Disposing of Floppies before you recycle (or otherwise dispose of old gear).

For more advice with tips for selling, or disposal, you can read my earlier articles. Just click here.

Bonus: These came in overnight.. what is wrong with people, man?! Is it contagious?

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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April 11, 2011 Posted by | advice, computers, gadgets, hardware, how to, tech | , , , , | 2 Comments

e-Waste: Getting Rid of Your Old Tech*

One of the great things about Tech is there’s always something new coming out. And, Moore’s Law tells us that the power of computers doubles every 18 months. Technology is ever-evolving and advancing.ewaste

What is not so great about that is: our gear becomes obsolete, and winds up gathering dust on a closet shelf or taking up room in our garage. What did you do with that huge CRT monitor when you got the nifty flat-panel LCD?

Our old tech equipment contains many materials and chemicals that are quite poisonous — lead, mercury, cadmium, and arsenic, to name a few (aka “e-waste”) — and they must be properly disposed of so they won’t cause an environmental disaster and poisoned water supplies, like it’s currently doing to China, India, and Pakistan.

So, how do you get rid of that old stuff the right way?

Essentially, there’s two good ways to dispose of your old tech gear– recycling, and donation.

Recycling: We know that we can’t just toss our old stuff in the trash, so what do we do with it?
1) You may not know this, but when you purchased your item, you may have also paid a “disposal fee” as part of the purchase price, and the manufacturer will take the old item off your hands (this is standard practice these days). Contact the device manufacturer and ask how to recycle their item.
Dell, for example, will take any Dell product in for recycling at no charge.
2) Your town may accept e-waste for a fee (this covers the cost of properly separating out the toxins), and a Internet search (or the Yellow Pages) will point you to the nearest drop-off point. Also, where I live, there are special “amnesty days” once a year, and toxins can be turned in at no cost.
3) Another form of recycling is donation, where your old tech can be put back to beneficial use.

Donation: I am a big fan of donating tech and getting more life out of it. Two factors must be considered when thinking about donation: the age of the device, and whether it’s in working order. If the device is of a fairly recent vintage, it probably can be put to use whether it’s currently working or not– but no matter how well it’s working, nobody’s going to want Pentium II computers, 10 Mbps co-axial networking gear, and daisy-wheel printers (okay.. maybe somebody would.. but good luck finding them!)

1) Your old tech may actually be worth a few dollars. Repair tech’s like me sometimes acquire old equipment for replacement parts. If you’ve an inclination, you may want to list your old gear in the classifieds, and/or on sites like eBay and Craig’s List. It won’t make you rich, but you might be surprised at the interest you get.
2) Donating non-working gear can actually assist job training, and so just because it’s not working doesn’t mean you can’t donate it. You may want to check with schools near you and see if they will accept your stuff (I’m thinking High Schools and Adult Schools, but..?) Also, you may want to consider contacting the Free Geek community.
Recycles.org is a Website that specializes in helping you locate a place willing to accept your gear.
3) Get a receipt. Your donations may (probably) qualify for tax credits.

Please Note– A word of caution: When getting rid of any device that has storage memory– such as a computer’s hard-drive, or cellphone’s Flash– you must take special precaution and thoroughly eradicate the 1’s and 0’s: simple deleting is NOT ENOUGH. Your data can be retrieved. Please read Delete does NOT erase your data*– preventing recovery and follow the advice there before allowing the device to leave your control.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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November 10, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, hardware, how to, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Right Way To Dispose Of Old Tech Gear

One of the great things about Tech is there’s always something new coming out; and Moore’s Law tells us that the power of computers doubles every 18 months– Tech is ever evolving and advancing.ewaste

What is not so great about that is our gear becomes obsolete, and winds up gathering dust on a closet shelf or taking up room in our garage. What did you do with that huge CRT monitor when you got the nifty flat-panel LCD?

Our old tech equipment contains many materials and chemicals that are quite poisonous — lead, mercury, cadmium, and arsenic, to name a few (aka “e-waste”) — and they must be properly disposed of so they won’t cause an environmental disaster and poisoned water supplies, like it’s currently doing to China, India, and Pakistan.

So, how do you get rid of that old stuff the right way?
Essentially, there’s two good ways to dispose of your old tech gear– recycling, and donation.

Recycling: We know that we can’t just toss our old stuff in the trash, so what do we do with it?
1) You may not know this, but when you purchased your item, you may have also paid a “disposal fee” as part of the purchase price, and the manufacturer will take the old item off your hands (this is standard practice these days). Contact the device manufacturer and ask how to recycle their item.
Dell, for example, will take any Dell product in for recycling at no charge.
2) Your town may accept e-waste for a fee (this covers the cost of properly separating out the toxins), and a Internet search (or the Yellow Pages) will point you to the nearest drop-off point. Also, where I live, there are special “amnesty days” once a year, and toxins can be turned in at no cost.
3) Another form of recycling is donation, where your old tech can be put back to beneficial use.

Donation: I am a big fan of donating tech and getting more life out of it. Two factors must be considered when thinking about donation: the age of the device, and whether it’s in working order. If the device is of a fairly recent vintage, it probably can be put to use whether it’s currently working or not– but no matter how well it’s working, nobody’s going to want Pentium II computers, 10 Mbps co-axial networking gear, and daisy-wheel printers (okay.. maybe somebody would.. but good luck finding them!)

1) Your old tech may actually be worth a few dollars. Repair tech’s like me sometimes acquire old equipment for replacement parts. If you’ve an inclination, you may want to list your old gear in the classifieds, and/or on sites like eBay and Craig’s List. It won’t make you rich, but you might be surprised at the interest you get.
2) Donating non-working gear can actually assist job training, and so just because it’s not working doesn’t mean you can’t donate it. You may want to check with schools near you and see if they will accept your stuff (I’m thinking High Schools and Adult Schools, but..?) Also, you may want to consider contacting the Free Geek community.
Recycles.org is a Website that specializes in helping you locate a place willing to accept your gear.
3) Get a receipt. Your donations may (probably) qualify for tax credits.

Please Note– A word of caution: When getting rid of any device that has storage memory– such as a computer’s hard-drive, or cellphone’s Flash– you must take special precaution and thoroughly eradicate the 1’s and 0’s: simple deleting is NOT ENOUGH. Your data can be retrieved. Please read Delete does NOT erase your data*– preventing recovery and follow the advice there before allowing the device to leave your control.

Today’s free link: Porn Surfing – Put a Software Condom on Your Computer!
Original posting: 8/27/08

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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November 22, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, gadgets, hardware, how to, PC, recycling, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Proper Disposal of Old Computer Gear– eWaste

One of the great things about Tech is there’s always something new coming out; and Moore’s Law tells us that the power of computers doubles every 18 months– Tech is ever evolving and advancing.ewaste

What is not so great about that is our gear becomes obsolete, and winds up gathering dust on a closet shelf or taking up room in our garage. What did you do with that huge CRT monitor when you got the nifty flat-panel LCD?

Our old tech equipment contains many materials and chemicals that are quite poisonous — lead, mercury, cadmium, and arsenic, to name a few (aka “e-waste”) — and they must be properly disposed of so they won’t cause an environmental disaster and poisoned water supplies, like it’s currently doing to China, India, and Pakistan.

So, how do you get rid of that old stuff the right way?
Essentially, there’s two good ways to dispose of your old tech gear– recycling, and donation.

Recycling: We know that we can’t just toss our old stuff in the trash, so what do we do with it?
1) You may not know this, but when you purchased your item, you may have also paid a “disposal fee” as part of the purchase price, and the manufacturer will take the old item off your hands (this is standard practice these days). Contact the device manufacturer and ask how to recycle their item.
Dell, for example, will take any Dell product in for recycling at no charge.
2) Your town may accept e-waste for a fee (this covers the cost of properly separating out the toxins), and a Internet search (or the Yellow Pages) will point you to the nearest drop-off point. Also, where I live, there are special “amnesty days” once a year, and toxins can be turned in at no cost.
3) Another form of recycling is donation, where your old tech can be put back to beneficial use.

Donation: I am a big fan of donating tech and getting more life out of it. Two factors must be considered when thinking about donation: the age of the device, and whether it’s in working order. If the device is of a fairly recent vintage, it probably can be put to use whether it’s currently working or not– but no matter how well it’s working, nobody’s going to want Pentium II computers, 10 Mbps co-axial networking gear, and daisy-wheel printers (okay.. maybe somebody would.. but good luck finding them!)
1) Your old tech may actually be worth a few dollars. Repair tech’s like me sometimes acquire old equipment for replacement parts. If you’ve an inclination, you may want to list your old gear in the classifieds, and/or on sites like eBay and Craig’s List. It won’t make you rich, but you might be surprised at the interest you get.
2) Donating non-working gear can actually assist job training, and so just because it’s not working doesn’t mean you can’t donate it. You may want to check with schools near you and see if they will accept your stuff (I’m thinking High Schools and Adult Schools, but..?) Also, you may want to consider contacting the Free Geek community.
Recycles.org is a Website that specializes in helping you locate a place willing to accept your gear.
3) Get a receipt. Your donations may (probably) qualify for tax credits.

* A word of caution: When getting rid of any device that has storage memory– such as a computer’s hard-drive, or cellphone’s Flash– you must take special precaution and thoroughly eradicate the 1’s and 0’s: simple deleting is NOT ENOUGH. Your data can be retrieved. Please read Delete does NOT erase your data*– preventing recovery and follow the advice there before allowing the device to leave your control.

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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August 27, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, hardware, how to, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments