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Monthly Archives: June 2009

Google Voice Invites Go Out


By Chris Scott Barr

You’ve probably heard me mention Google Voice once or twice, mostly because I love the service. Almost every phone call and text message I receive these days is to my Google Voice number. With a handy app for my iPhone, I even call out using it. Unfortunately the only downside to the service is that it’s a rather exclusive club.

Earlier this week we reported that Google had purchased 1 million new numbers for the service. Well yesterday the precious invites that everyone has been waiting for went out. Some of them at least. I know a few people that signed up some time ago for an invite that didn’t receive an invite. Hopefully at some point they will allow current users to invite a few friends, similar to how the Gmail beta got going. One cool thing about the number picker is that you can actually type in words, letters or numbers that you want included in your Google Voice number. I wish they had that when I signed up.

VIA [ Google Blog ]

Robots In Disguise Shirt


By Chris Scott Barr

I’m heading out to see the new Transformers movie tonight with some friends, and I’ll be sporting my classic Autobots shirt. However, had I known about this little gem, I’d have purchased one in time for the opening. Get it? Robots in disguise. Classic! $15 bucks and it’s yours.

[ SLAPt ] VIA [ Gearfuse ]

GE Shows Off New Digital Camera


By Shane McGlaun

When I hear the name GE, digital cameras are not what spring to mind. I think of light bulbs really. Still GE has a full line of digital cameras and other stuff that doesn’t have to do with lighting our homes.

The company announced its latest digital camera recently called the E1250TW. The cam sports a 12.2-megapixel resolution and a 28mm wide angle lens with 5x optical zoom. The most interesting feature of the camera is that the 3-inch LCD is touch sensitive.

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SanDisk Whips Out World’s Fastest 32GB SDHC Card


By Shane McGlaun

One of the reasons that I bought my Nikon D80 a few years back was because it could use the SD and SDHC cards that I already had laying around. I liked the looks and features of the Sony Alpha line but didn’t want to have to go with MemoryStick for storage and the other available storage media for DSLRs was too expensive.

I had to give up some write performance for my choice, but it was better than the alternatives. SanDisk has now unveiled a new SDHC card that complies with the new Class 10 specifications that offer speeds of 30Mbps for reads and writes.

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Affordable 3D Printing Is Now Closer Than Ever

Desktop Factory (Image courtesy Desktop Factory Inc.)
By Andrew Liszewski

With a price tag of $4,995 we’re not going to be seeing one of these in every home in America anytime soon, but the Desktop Factory proves that the cost of owning your own 3D printer continues to drop. One of the reasons the Desktop Factory is so ‘affordable’ is because it uses an inexpensive halogen light source and plastic powder instead of UV and polymers, which also means the cost of the build material is expected to be about $1 per cubic inch. And the parts can be sanded and painted as soon as they’re finished, without the need for a chemical infiltration curing or strengthening process.

Now given the Desktop Factory is roughly the size of an early laser printer (25x20x20 inches) it will easily fit on any desk, but your 3D creations will be limited to 125ci or roughly 2 liters in volume. So while you won’t be printing out body panels for your home-made Enzo, your bootleg action figure business will be booming.

[ Desktop Factory ] VIA [ The Red Ferret Journal ]

SquidLondon Color-Changing Hydrochromatic Umbrellas Now Available

SquidLondon Hydrochromatic Umbrella (Images courtesy SquidLondon)
By Andrew Liszewski

A few months ago we brought you the Squidarella umbrella from SquidLondon which uses hydrochromatic inks to change from black & white to a full-color rainbow design when it gets wet, or in other words, whenever it gets out in the rain. At the time the umbrellas were available in very limited quantities, but SquidLondon has just released a new Skyline Squidarella collection, featuring the London skyline, that’s now available for purchase online from Beyond the Valley for about $35. And if you’d like to see the Squidarella in action getting a good soaking, check out the video I’ve included after the jump.

[ SquidLondon Squidarella ]

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VirtualHUD Creates A Heads-Up Display For Single Prop Planes

VirtualHUD (Images courtesy
By Andrew Liszewski

Now here’s another clever idea. VirtualHUD is an easy to install device that attaches to the windshield of a small plane and creates a virtual heads-up display for the pilot by projecting an image onto the aircraft’s spinning propeller. (A white strip of paint added to the back of the prop increases its visibility.) The VirtualHUD is able to project “all the standard flight instrumentation required for normal VFR and IFR navigation when equipped with or attached to your GPS” or it can be hooked to an external source like an infrared camera allowing the pilot to monitor a video feed while keeping their eyes on the sky.

Currently there’s a nighttime-only version of the product called the NightVu which sells for around $7,500, but the new ForwardVu model, which can be used in the day as well, should be available sometime in late July.

[ VirtualHUD ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

Vintage Star Wars Electronic Laser Battle Game Makes Me Appreciate The Game Boy Even More

Star Wars Electronic Laser Battle (Images courtesy
By Andrew Liszewski took a brief (almost too brief) look at this Star Wars Electronic Laser Battle Game that dates back to A New Hope. The article mostly talks about the differences between the prototype pictured on the bottom and the final release version of the game pictured in the packaging above. While I would have preferred a few more shots of the actual game in action, and maybe even a video, the packaging shot still provides plenty of retro eye candy, and makes me appreciate all of my modern ‘electronic’ gaming consoles even more.

[ – Prototype Gallery: Electronic Laser Battle Game ] VIA [ ]

PhotoFast Compact Flash Adapters

PhotoFast Compact Flash Adapters (Images courtesy PhotoFast)
By Andrew Liszewski

A lot of high-end DSLRs still use compact flash cards instead of the ever-more-popular SD and its smaller cohorts. (The Nikon D3 comes to mind.) But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to buy a CF card which are getting harder and harder to find these days. These handy adapters from PhotoFast allow to use standard SD and microSD cards in your camera via a CF type II compliant adapter. And I particularly like the model in the lower right-corner which actually comes with a built-in RAID controller allowing you to use up to 4 microSD cards at the same time, theoretically giving you about 64GB of storage with 4 x 16GB microSDHC cards.

All 3 of these adapters appear to be available from the PhotoFast website and range in price from about $25 for the SD to CF adapter to about $30 for the microSDHC to CF adapter. Though the microSDHC model with the RAID controller won’t be available until mid-July.

[ PhotoFast CF Adapters ] VIA [ Akihabara News ]