<

Mystery Woman Casually Recycled a $200,000 Vintage Apple-1 Computer

One woman’s trash is literally everyone else’s super-expensive, rare $200,000 piece of computer history. Most of the time, recycled electronics are too crappy to sell on Craigslist. But one California e-recycling center recently received one of the most coveted gadgets ever: A genuine Apple-1 computer. » 5/31/15 7:55pm 5/31/15 7:55pm

These Vases Are Actually Made From Liquified Smartphone Byproducts

It’s not something anyone likes to think about, but your smartphone—or your laptop, or the battery in your hybrid car—created a huge amount of toxic and radioactive waste. And now we know what happens to that waste in the long term. It returns to the earth, mingles with sludge, and finds its way into clay pots. » 4/22/15 1:35pm 4/22/15 1:35pm

How to Stop Data Thieves From Stealing Information Off Your Old Gadgets

Considering our collective thirst to upgrade to the latest shiny gadget, it's not surprising that consumer electronics generate a nasty amount of waste—some 3.4 million tons of e-waste year. We are device-gobbling monsters who grow strong on the gleaming newness of our machines. But tossing out "old" devices creates… » 1/15/15 3:15pm 1/15/15 3:15pm

Throwing Out Gadgets Will Be Illegal in New York Starting Next Year 

Throwing away a dusty, broken printer or a intensely cracked old iPhone will be against the law in New York starting in 2015. A new "e-waste" ban goes into effect in the new year, making it illegal to put your discarded VCRs and underused iPods in the garbage. People who do can get fined $100 per item. » 12/29/14 4:25pm 12/29/14 4:25pm

Tracking a Gadget’s Journey From the Mine to Beneath the Christmas Tree

Imagine you're in the middle of the Pacific ocean. Behind you is China, below you are thousands of tons of consumer goods destined for faraway ports, then stores, then maybe a spot beneath a Christmas tree. You are part of a vast economy that supplies the things we buy—a galaxy of cities, systems, and people that is… » 12/10/14 2:05pm 12/10/14 2:05pm

There's $2.5 Billion Worth of Silver and Gold in Phones Sold This Year

Your gadgets contain tiny specks of precious and rare earth metals—we rely on these dust-sized particles, which are so small they're often not recycled because the cost of recycling outweighs the value of the metals. But according to the American Chemical Society, the overall value of these minute materials is massive. » 9/03/14 12:28pm 9/03/14 12:28pm

The Dirty Truth About Where Your Old Electronics Go

We all know we should recycle our electronics, but we don't really know what happens after we drop them off at the e-waste center. So filmmaker Alex Gorosh followed his old iPhones, all the way to Agbogbloshie, Ghana, the largest electronics dump in the world. It's a place so dirty and dangerous it's nicknamed "Sodom… » 9/02/14 2:49pm 9/02/14 2:49pm

Mushrooms Can Mine the Gold From Your Old Cellphones

Crack open your dumb old phone, and you'll find lots of circuits and no lack of precious metals. "In 100,000 cell phones, it's estimated that there is 2.4 kilograms of gold, more than 900 kilograms of copper, 25 kilograms of silver, and more," according to Motherboard. Could a safer and and cheaper method of… » 4/14/14 7:00pm 4/14/14 7:00pm

E-Hell on Earth: Where the West's Electronics Go to Die

While American consumers clamor for the latest and greatest in consumer electronics, our older digital devices are inundating and poisoning a generation of children in Ghana. Colorado Springs Gazette photographer Michael Ciaglo recently visited the largest e-waste processing site in the African nation and returned… » 10/09/13 12:15pm 10/09/13 12:15pm