Caravanistan/Travel toothpaste/Dewalt right angle



August 20 · Issue #57 · View online
A weekly newsletter that gives you 6 brief personal recommendations of cool stuff.

I’ve been exploring the vast territory of Central Asia, sometimes known as the Silk Road. Between the Caucuses in the west, and remote parts of China in the east, these places are exotic, beautiful, vastly varied (deserts to alpine) sufficiently developed to be fun, yet devoid of tourists. In the near future these will be prime tourist destinations. But right now it can be hard to navigate and occasionally hard to get visas. By far the best resource is a website, called Caravanistan, run by a English-speaking couple that has the clearest, most up-to-date information on the practical aspects of traveling along the Silk Road. Not what to see, but how to see it. Highly reliable, immensely helpful, and always inspiring. — KK
Clean teeth for travelers
For a variety of reasons, most hotels don’t supply toothpaste in rooms. (Here’s an article from Slate that explains why.) And you can’t take a standard-sized tube in carry-on luggage because the toothpaste police at the airport will confiscate it. I stock up on 12 packs of 0.85-ounce tubes of Crest. — MF
Smudge-free surfaces
My husband bought a bunch of these extra large microfiber cloths and now we keep them everywhere — home drawers, office, car, purse. I spend at least 10 hours a day staring at a screen and/or wearing glasses. I never knew I needed something so much in my life. — CD
Download Youtube videos
The fastest way to download any Youtube video is to replace “www.” with “ss”. This will redirect to you to, where you’ll click on download video in browser and select the video quality you prefer. Done in less than a minute. — CD
Extract images from Google docs
Why can’t I just right-click on a Google Docs image to download it to my computer? Until Google allows that, I’ll use this free add-on called Image Extractor. To install it, scroll down to Method 3 here. — MF
Most handy
A true miracle device in my workshop is a right-angle attachment to my power drill that lets me drill or screw in tight places. This small geared unit allows me to fit the drill or screw tip into narrow spaces I can’t get the length of the drill into. Just imagine being able to twist the tip of your driver 90 degrees to the side. Once I had one, I use it all the time. There are several makes. I use a Dewalt right angle ($24), because I have Dewalt tools, but it’ll work on any brand driver. There are also cheaper ones, Jocestyle, and more expensive ones, Milwaukee. — KK
— Kevin Kelly, Mark Frauenfelder, Claudia Dawson
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