The Skip: The end of four-digit unlock codes

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Motorola has broken down a rather overwhelming bit of data: we unlock our smartphones around 40 times per day. Do we do anything useful after unlock number 27? Maybe we do something quite productive. But either way, that is a lot of four-digit unlock codes typed to read an e-mail or scroll through our Twitter feeds. Continue reading

Armour39: The Smart Workout

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Were I to be a little more disciplined with exercise, the Armour39 from Under Armour is what I would buy, or maybe it’s what I need to access some of that discipline. Even better, the Armour39 is the first product to measure something we might call “WILLpower.” The Armour39 breaks your workout down into a 0.0 to 10.0 scale that estimates how hard your body worked during your exercise regime. Continue reading

Beolab 2 by Bang & Olufsen: Bug-like Bass

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As a guitar player, learning to love bass tones is like the slow-burn fulfillment of living as an adult. Everything to do with the word bass seems to get shoved into the background in most contexts. Solos are giving to so-called “lead” instruments like guitars. Stand-up bass players are confined to a corner of the stage near the drummer, both working in low-tone synchronization to make sure the song doesn’t fray because the trumpet and saxophone players are wandering around their instrument like they were the only musician playing. Perhaps as I get older though, I crave the security of bass tones. Continue reading

The Cube from Cubify: The DIY Toy Maker

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I do not understand how 3D printers work, but there is no doubt that I am fascinated by them. I have some sense that a liquidy material gets extruded out and turns into a model rocket or a bouncy ball. I always thought that 3D printers would be bulky, room-occupying inaccessible devices, similar to a copy machine. But there seems to be a connection between excitement for a product and its eventual portability. Now, 3D printers are shrinking to a point where they can fit on a counter. Continue reading

The Smile Watch: Wrap It

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Sometimes I do not know the purpose of many of the world’s gadgets. It seems like we’ve reached a certain point where things can’t get any faster or any more connected. And maybe designers are starting to feel like this too, because some of them are starting to return to older ideas and revising them for modern use. The Smile Watch, an Indiegogo project, is one of these ultra-modern gadgets that refers to an older design scheme, the familiar wrist watch. Continue reading

Parrot Zik: Become the Master of Audio

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The touchscreen has transformed technology. There are some features that seem a bit comedic now, like the option to turn on clicking sounds when you press a virtual button on your iPhone. But, for the most part, we use actual physical buttons less and less. Now this seamless technology has carried over to the world of headphones. The Parrot Zik is a pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones for which you control the volume, song selection, stopping and starting all by specific movements of your finger on the exterior. Continue reading

Switch Speaker by Native Union: A box of wonders

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I’ve been searching for a wireless portable speaker for quite some time now. I want it to sound good and look good. It also needs to be packed with great features without burning a hole in my pocket. I was looking at the Jawbone Jambox and the Beats Pill by Dre, but finally I’ve decided to go with the Switch by Native Union. And boy, am I glad I did!

With great quality for under $150 price range, the Switch has everything I wanted in a portable Bluetooth speaker. Hi-Fi sound? yep. Good looks? yep. Feature packed? heck, yeah! Continue reading

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Kinivo Bluetooth Hands-Free Car Kit: Drive Safe

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The ultimate error these days is driving while texting, talking, updating Twitter and Facebook, and then yelling at other drivers for doing the same thing when you happen to not be using your smartphone for once. The difference between an attentive driver and a driver that’s glued to their phone can be the difference between life and death. Also, no one has really figured out how to make Bluetooth headsets look cool, and there’s still the risk of getting tangled in the headphone / speaker combination that dangles in your lap while you drive and talk. Continue reading

Chargecard: Credit card Sized Charger

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I often think of a “chargecard” as that thin piece of plastic shoved into my wallet that is used only when absolutely necessary. I still don’t really understand how credit works, but it’s there and quite useful when I end up buying too many Snickers bars. But you ought to rethink what a “chargecard” is with the Chargecard from Nomad, a company that specializes in shrinking common electronics accessories to wallet-sized or key-sized form. Continue reading

HiRise for iMac: To Better Your Back

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Ergonomics are everything. Sure, you could huddle over your laptop with a u-shaped posture, your legs sort of splayed out in no particular pattern, and your neck tipped at something like a 79-degree angle. But with habits like these, we’ll return to that arched form of our monkey-like ancestors, except will be expert coders. But we all know that what our teachers told us about a good posture is an important step to us feeling good about our work. It’s helpful to use a standing desk, but it’s exhausting to stand for six to eight hours per day if your unfamiliar with it. But for those who want to build an ergonomic work space, the HiRise is a good start. Continue reading