TeCheap Winterized

As the temperatures start to cool off, in the Northern Hemisphere anyway, I have a couple of tips for you to make winter as tolerable as possible.

The first is a new offering from Google designed to help you avoid the flu. It’s the Flu Shot Finder overlay for Google Maps. Just enter your location into Google Maps and it will give you a list of locations near your area that are offering the seasonal flu shot, the H1N1 flu vaccine, or both. While you have to call to get fee information, it does give you a convenient list that you can call down to compare prices and double-check availability. (Thanks to Search Engine Land for the heads up.)

Last year, Google also came up with a map to track flu trends by tracking how often flu symptoms were searched for in different geographic areas. This map, at Google.org, shows a country breakdown, and if you click on any particular country, you can also get a state by state, or region by region map. There is also an interesting graph showing the time of each year’s flu season.

Along with keeping an eye on the flu, Lifehacker has some good tips on protecting yourself against wasted money on heat. Along with a couple of more standard tips, the tip most interesting to me involves attaching bubble wrap to your windows in order to add pockets of air. This helps keep the cold out and the warm air you are paying for in. The other nice thing about this method is that , if you are like me, you have a lot of bubble wrap lying around from packages that are sent from on-line retailers.

Since some of those packages may be holiday gifts, it is time to remember that Black Friday and the holiday shopping season are coming. I plan on talking more about Black Friday as it approaches, but the first place to find out info about it is BlackFridayInfo.com. They’ll have early looks at all of the ad scans that they can get a hold of and can let you know about some great deals.

Do you have any TeCheap ways of getting ready for winter? Let me know in the comments.

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