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Monthly Archives: January 2013

Pro Sports Schedule Watch – It’s Game Time!

Pro Sports Schedule Watch (Image courtesy Wireless Catalog) By Andrew Liszewski

If you’ve got a sports fanatic in your family or circle of friends you’ll be glad to know you don’t have to worry about what to get them for their birthday this year. The Pro Sports Schedule Watch can be ordered for any team in either the NFL or MLB and comes pre-programmed with the team’s schedule for the entire season. To ensure the person wearing the watch never misses the first pitch or kickoff the watch plays either The Star Spangled Banner or Take Me Out To The Ball Game at the start of each game.

The watch will also display the complete results for every SuperBowl game or World Series match dating all the way back to 1903, just in case you happen to find yourself in an argument defending your own team’s reputation. Thankfully as a Lion’s fan I don’t need any help in remembering how many SuperBowls they’ve won. An included USB cable will also allow you to upload new schedules for your team every year.

The Pro Sports Schedule Watches are available from The Wireless Catalog for $129.95.

[ Pro Sports Schedule Watch ] VIA [ Uber-Review ]

RC X2 Dragster Hoping To Break 200mph

X2 RC Car (Image courtesy Jalopnik)
By Andrew Liszewski

Believe it or not the current record holder for fastest RC car actually achieved a top speed of 134.4mph. And that’s not a scale measurement either nor was it attained through the use of rockets or some sort of cannon. But Nick Maslowski is hoping to beat that record with his X2 RC dragster, and by a wide margin. While the car isn’t much to look at I guess keeping it streamlined and ‘boring’ is an important part of achieving his goal. Theoretically the 29.6 volt motor should be able to propel the car up to 274mph but when you factor in drag and friction Nick is aiming a bit lower at 200mph. Still it’s an impressive feat when I’ve never even driven a full size car capable of that speed.

The X2 relies on special foam tires that won’t disintegrate or melt at the high RPMs and also uses a gyroscope controlled set of fins on the back to keep the dragster going in a straight line. I can’t imagine it would even be possible for Nick to safely steer the X2 via a remote control even if he wanted to.

I’ve included a Google Video after the jump that shows Nick testing the X2 at the Houston Raceway. To be honest the video’s not the most exciting thing but at least you get a good idea of just how fast the little car can move.

[ RC Car Aims for 200-mph Record ] VIA [ Autoblog ]

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Canadian Teens Invent A Segway-like Motorcycle Called The Tango

Tango (Image courtesy Canoe.ca) By Andrew Liszewski

While the Segway hasn’t really caught on the way its makers had hoped it’s nice to see the technology and concepts behind the device catching on elsewhere. The Tango was created by high school students Ben Gulak and Jason Morrow who represented Team Canada at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Albuquerque, New Mexico this year. Think of the Tango as a self-balancing, compact version of a racing motorcycle with a bit more kick than even the fastest Segway model.

Riding the Tango is just like riding a racing bike though instead of having the wheels mounted in the front and back they actually sit side by side in the middle of the bike. Using accelerometers the Tango detects the subtle movements of the rider which are used to control the vehicle. Like with the Segway you just lean forward to drive forward or lean left and right in order to turn. Since the Tango is electric powered it produces zero emissions but it also means a top speed of only 40 miles an hour. So while speed freaks should look elsewhere, commuters living in a crowded city center might soon have another transportation alternative.

Unfortunately Ben and Jason didn’t win the top prize at the Intel ISEF but they did manage to get a lot of publicity which will hopefully attract investors and get more people excited about their concept.

[ Teen scientists rev their motors ] VIA [ Ubergizmo ]

USB Eye Massager Will Probably Blind You

USB Eye Massager (Image courtesy SunDayo.com)
By Andrew Liszewski

Since USB ports can supply power to whatever’s connected they’ve somehow spawned an entire industry devoted to useless USB-powered gadgets. Every now and then though you’ll come across one of these USB devices that pretends to be actually useful like this USB Eye Massager designed to give relief to people who spend all day in front of a computer.

It’s shaped like a small hand with two fingers sticking up that vibrate at either a high or low speed and are supposed to be used to massage and relax the areas around your eyes. Now I don’t know about you but I’ve become particularly fond of my eyes and I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t place this device anywhere near them. In fact I would rate it just higher than a Red Rider BB Gun when it comes to eye safety, but that’s only because the Red Rider doesn’t come in your choice of green, yellow, red or purple colors.

The USB Eye Massager is available from SunDayo.com but I have no idea about pricing. I assume though you’ll get quite a discount if you buy 10,000 of them.

[ USB Eye Massager ] VIA [ ThisNext ]

Sanyo Launches Backup Camera System for Vehicles

Sanyo Rear View Backup Camera (Image via Sanyo)
By Shane McGlaun

Sanyo announced a new rear view backup camera system today that drivers of large vans and SUVs will find appealing. I drive a large vehicle and it is impossible to see what is below the glass and close to the bumper. Anyone that lives in a neighborhood with lots of kids or has kids themselves knows that many little ones are not tall enough to see from inside a big vehicle if they are close to the bumper.

Sanyo’s new CCA-BC200 Rear View Backup Camera System with AirCam technology uses digital processing to deliver accurate and natural looking images of what is behind you. That means you don’t have to look at strangely distorted fish-eye type images.

The only bad part about this system is that a monitor for viewing the video feed isn’t included, nor is a monitor an option. The Sanyo system relies completely on the fact that many vehicles have onboard displays for DVDs and GPS navigation. If your vehicle lacks a display of some sort you will need to add one for the Sanyo system to work. Pricing for the camera system is $299.99 and it is available now.

[ Press Release (registration required) ] VIA [ Sanyo ]

Yet Another Time Waster – The Nerd Watch Museum

Nerd Watch Museum Samples (Images courtesy The Nerd Watch Museum)
By Andrew Liszewski

I’ll admit I’ve always had a passion for high-tech watches and it’s mostly because I don’t see a reason for wearing one unless it does something more than just tell time. So as someone who grew up in the late 70’s and early 80’s and saw the evolution of the digital watch first hand I highly recommend the Nerd Watch Museum for a small dose of nostalgia.

The collection appears to date back as far as 1977 and goes all the way through the 80’s up until the late 90’s. Just keep in mind you’re not going to find any Rolex or Tag Heuer models here. No I’m afraid this is the domain of companies like Casio, Citizen, CompuChron, Texas Instruments and Seiko. (Plus plenty of knock-off brands as well.) In fact there’s a section dedicated specifically to calculator watches which I guess is as ‘nerdy’ as you can get. I particularly like the attempts to cram all the functionality of a scientific calculator into something as small as a wrist watch which usually led to the individual buttons being about the size of a pin head. Clearly a case where functionality had a higher priority over form, and even usability.

[ The Nerd Watch Museum ]

ZER00:00 Minimalist Digital Clock

ZER00:00 Digital Clock (Images courtesy Charles & Marie)
By Andrew Liszewski

Like with watches there’s really no reason to buy a standalone clock these days unless it’s for reasons of fashion or design. So it’s no surprise we’re seeing more and more clocks that push form over functionality, like this ZER00:00 clock for example. Created by WAT from the Netherlands it’s as minimal as a digital clock can possibly get since it’s comprised of only a circuit board and a basic 4 character LCD display.

In fact it doesn’t even include a way to stand on its own and instead relies on a 9-volt battery connected to the back to remain upright. And while I don’t see any buttons I assume there has to be at least one somewhere on the clock for setting the time. (FYI it doesn’t include any date functions.)

The ZER00:00 Digital Clock is available from Charles & Marie for a very unminimalistic price of $40. But at least you have the choice of either a butterfly or tree branch design on the front.

[ ZER00:00 Digital Clock ]

Uniqlock Interpretive Dance Clock Sucks Bandwidth; Hilarious Fun.

uniqlock_small.jpg

By Ryan Nill

[ I'm hiding this one after the jump, less I spend the entire day responding to hate mail over auto-playing music. -Ed. ]

You might want to turn your sound down (or even off) for this one, folks. [Don't bother unless you read the full article. -Ed.] The uniqlock Interpretive dance clock tells time online via 5 second bursts of highly confusing dance. Also comes included an exceedingly catchy tune. It is both free and highly entertaining. Performance art never looked like so much fun. You can also insert it into your site.

Hit the jump to see what we’re talking about.

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Ten Out Of Ten Sea Otters Agree: LG Philips Flexible Oil Water Display Is Pretty Slick

Oil Display

By Evan Ackerman

The last time a major corporation tried mixing oil and water, the results weren’t nearly as pretty as this prototype display from LG Philips. Typical E-Ink displays use organic light emitting diodes and are expensive to produce, but LG Philips has patented a method of making pixels out of itty bitty plastic cells containing oil and water over a colored background. Normally, the opaque oil floats over the water, obscuring the color. When an electric current is applied, the oil moves out of the way, revealing the color underneath. Cheap to produce? Check. Colorful? Check. Flexible? Check. There isn’t any information about the refresh rate, power consumption, or pixel size of this new technology, but hey, at least it’s otter friendly.

[ Flexible Display Patent Application ] VIA [ New Scientist ]