For behind the scenes pictures, stories and special contests, follow us on Facebook!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

Sound ID 510 Bluetooth Headset Is Controlled By Its Own iPhone App – Brilliant!

Sound ID 510 Bluetooth Headset (Image courtesy Sound ID)
By Andrew Liszewski

I’m only slightly ashamed to admit that I use a Bluetooth headset around the house/office, a tiny model from BlueAnt. But while its compact size makes it easy to wear, it also limits the number of buttons on it, making changing settings or adjusting the noise cancellation a ridiculous series of timed button presses that I never bothered to learn. So I have to say I’m quite surprised that the Sound ID 510 Bluetooth headset is actually the first to come with its own iPhone app, EarPrint, that makes changing settings, adjusting the volume or EQ of the sound and monitoring the battery life ridiculously easy.

EarPrint App (Images courtesy Sound ID)

The app is of course free on the App Store, but only works with the Sound ID 510 BT headset, which itself is no slouch. Its noise cancellation uses 3 separate mics to eliminate wind and other noises, it can be connected to 2 phones at the same time, has 5 hours of talk time with 135 hours of standby and the outer surface is a touch sensitive strip allowing you to adjust the volume (when your iPhone is inaccessible) by just sliding your finger across it. And it will be available in early June from AT&T stores or from the Sound ID website for $129.99.

[ Sound ID 510 Bluetooth Headset ] VIA [ The Gadgeteer ]

Sony’s Rollable OLED Display

Sony's Rollable OTFT-driven OLED Display (Image courtesy Sony)
By Andrew Liszewski

I’m still a bit bummed about Canon’s recent announcement that they’re officially throwing in the towel on their SED display technology, but life goes on, and it looks like OLEDs are shaping up to be a suitable replacement, and then some. Today Sony announced they’ve developed a “super-flexible 80 ?m-thick 4.1-in 121 ppi OTFT*1-driven full color OLED display” that can actually be wrapped around a cylinder with a radius of just 4mm, and even stretched, while still playing full-motion video! If you’re interested in the technical aspects of how the display was created, I’d recommend checking out Sony’s official press release, but the rest of us will probably be content to just ooh and aah at the video I’ve included below.

If you happen to be in Seattle on May 27 while attending the 2010 SID symposium you’ll apparently have a chance to see the display in person, but as for the rest of us, it’s easily going to be a few years before this technology even begins to trickle into consumer products. But, it’s clearly yet another nail in black and white e-ink’s coffin.

[ PR – Sony Develops a “Rollable” OTFT*1-driven OLED Display that can wrap around a Pencil ] VIA [ Akihabara News ]

ChumBuddy Is A Giant Man-Eating Plush

By Chris Scott Barr

Stuffed animals are for little children, right? Wrong. This awesome ChumBuddy is awesome, regardless of your age. After all, who wouldn’t want a 7-foot stuffed shark? Okay, so maybe some of you aren’t quite sold on the idea. I understand where you’re coming from, as a giant stuffed animal is still just a big toy. The real selling point here is that the opening for its mouth actually extends the entire way down through the body.

That’s right, this gigantic plush can eat you! It can be used to reenact scenes from Jaws, or as a sleeping bag if needed. It’s not your average lightweight plush either, this monstrosity weighs in at over 30lbs and is hand-sewn. The only thing that’s not awesome about this item is the price. You can pre-order it now for $200. I still think it would be completely worth every penny.

[ PatchTogether ] VIA [ UberReview ]

Line Handy Paper Cutter Turns Your Simple X-ACTO Knife Into A $40 Power Tool

Line Handy Paper Cutter (Images courtesy the Japan Trend Shop)
By Andrew Liszewski

If something’s worth doing, it’s worth going out and buying an expensive new tool to do it with. So if your weekend to-do list includes ‘cutting paper’ in addition to other tool-friendly tasks like mowing the lawn, cleaning the gutters, or trimming the hedges, you’ll appreciate the Line Handy Paper Cutter currently available from the Japan Trend Shop.

It replaces your trusty, always ready-to-use, X-ACTO or hobby knife with a mouse-sized device that features a spinning cutting blade that can be raised or lowered at the touch of a button. I suppose it would make cutting curved lines a bit easier for those with poor knife skills (I understand not everyone grew up with the ‘shiv or be shivved’ mantra of suburbia like I did) but the fact that it requires batteries that will inevitably need to be replaced, and a $40 price tag means it will probably only appeal to the most hardcore of scrapbookers.

[ Line Handy Paper Cutter ]

Wii2HDMI Adapter Doesn’t Need Much Explaining

Wii2HDMI Adapter (Images courtesy Neoya)
By Andrew Liszewski

If your TV is brimming with unused HDMI ports, but is suffering from a lack of available component connections, this dead simple HDMI adapter for the Wii will at least let you convert it over to the HDMI-side. Just jam it into the back of your Wii (installation techniques may vary) plug in an HDMI cable and you’re ready to enjoy all the glorious eye-candy that is 480p! It’s available from Neoya for $39.95 which isn’t incredibly cheap, but they let you tack on a 5 foot HDMI cable to your order for just $7.95 so it doesn’t seem like they’re trying to rip you off like other HDMI cable sellers.

[ Wii2HDMI ] VIA [ ChipChick ]

Ramiro Pareja Veredas’ PCB Business Card Wins Card Of The Day

PCB Business Card (Images courtesy Ramiro Pareja Veredas)
By Andrew Liszewski

Like it or not, job hunting is a competition, and every little advantage you can find puts you one step closer to landing the career of your dreams. So when Ramiro Pareja Veredas decided he wanted to leave the IT world behind and pursue a career in electrical engineering, he realized that a business card that actually demonstrated his skills would go a lot further than just a resume printed on nice paper stock. So he created this card that’s made from an actual PCB board with working electronic bits.

Besides his etched contact info, the card also features a couple of breakaway corners turning it into a USB flash drive when connected to a PC. Now the 24KB of onboard memory is of course extremely limited, but it’s enough to hold a copy of his resume and a cover letter, or small apps that turn the card into an oscilloscope, a datalogger or a PIC trainer. Now when produced in small batches like Ramiro’s been doing the cards cost about 5 euros a piece, but if it leads to employment it’s a minimal investment given the long term benefits.

[ T4F – Introduction to my Business Card ] VIA [ Make ]

Wii Accessories Hit A New Low With Wings For Wii

Wings For Wii (Images courtesy CTA Digital & Destructoid)
By Andrew Liszewski

I haven’t played any of the new activities available in the Wii Fit Plus update, but apparently it includes a game called Bird’s-Eye Bulls-Eye where you flap your arms while standing on the balance board to guide your Mii (who’s dressed up in a chicken suit) to a series of targets to score points. I’m sure it’s occasionally a fun diversion to yoga poses, but apparently CTA Digital thinks it’s an important enough activity to warrant a set of strap-on nylon wings to “… add a sensation that you will not feel mimicking a flying chicken with your hands alone.” Unfortunately there’s no pricing info on the CTA Digital website, but anything over $1 would be a complete rip-off in my opinion.

[ Wings For Wii ] VIA [ Tiny Cartridge ]

Interactiv’ Boxing Punching Bag Doesn’t Look Like A Hanging Slab Of Meat

Interactiv' Boxing (Image courtesy Domyos)
By Andrew Liszewski

Unlike your standard punching bag, which seems like it was designed to look like a hanging slab of beef, this Interactiv’ Boxing setup stylishly hangs on your wall via an adjustable rack so it’s always at the right height. Built-in sensors and LEDs can track where you’ve punched, or direct you where to unleash your fury if you’re using one of the 10 fitness programs which provide a stimulating cardio workout or self-defense training, while a small LCD display provides numerical feedback on your workout. The ‘bag’ itself sells for ~$182, though you’ll have to buy the wall mounting rack separately which is an additional $97. And while I like the space-saving nature of its design, I have to wonder how long this thing will stay safely attached to the wall if you’re wailing on it every day…

[ Domyos Interactiv’ Boxing ] VIA [ Chablog ]

Motz Tiny Wooden Emotion Speaker

Motz Tiny Wooden Emotion Speaker (Images courtesy Pyramid Distribution)
By Andrew Liszewski

Like with the Lexon bamboo calculator I brought you last week, this wooden Emotion Speaker manages to overcome it’s some technological limitations (ie FM radio?) with a lovely design. Hand-made from apricot wood the speaker features a built-in rechargeable battery good for about 10 hours of playback and a 3.5mm headphone so it can be connected to any audio source. The inclusion of an FM radio is actually a detriment in my opinion, since you’re left with an unsightly telescoping antenna to deal with, but it’s made from wood so removing it probably only requires an afternoon of careful whittling. $49.99 from Pyramid Distribution.

[ Motz Tiny Wooden Emotion Speaker ] VIA [ The Gadgeteer ]