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

Tag Archives: CES 2012

[CES 2012]: Hands-On Video Of MakerBot Replicator

By David Ponce

News of the MakerBot Replicator had already been out for some time before CES, but I’m happy to say that seeing it in person got me much more excited about the tech. If you haven’t heard, this is a 3D printer for home use. Any 3D object you can think of, anything you can either design in a CAD program or even download from the Thingiverse (a user-populated marketplace of pre-made CAD files) is yours to simply print right at home. In the back of the machine are spools of ABS plastic that are fed into the system, heated up and extruded (glue-gun style) from the printer head. It’ll then slowly make your object, layer by layer. It’s simply awesome.

A few caveats. The printed objects have a slightly rough surface. This is because each layer is visible as the extruded plastic is tube-like; two circles stacked atop each other will not form a smooth surface. You can clearly see this in my video, after the jump. It’s not a huge problem however because these “tubes” are so tiny (much, much less than 1mm). Still some people prefer to sand their objects once completed. Also, it’s a very slow process. A figurine like the one in my video can take 30 minutes or so. Still, you’re buying this for home use, so go make yourself a coffee and stop bitching about awesome tech.

It’s $1,750 for the one-spool replicator, and $2,000 for two spools, which gives you more color options. A 1kg spool of ABS plastic costs around $43.

Hit the jump for two videos: one shitty one, mine. And one good one, the company’s.

Continue Reading

The Coolest CES Gadget I Didn’t See

By David Ponce

CES is a big place. Much too big for my feet to canvas in it’s its entirety, so above is a video of a Samsung device. It’s a video I should have taken, because damn it, it’s pretty awesome. It’s a transparent smart window. It looks, to use the overused analogy, like it’s straight out of Minority Report. Not only is it a one-way window (you can only see out, not the other way around), but it’s touchscreen and very interactive. As you can see in the video, you can use it to check on many things, like the quintessential Twitter and Facebook. And you can also draw blinds, selecting just how much outside light gets through.

It’s a fun video to watch and it’s catching on because, well, there’s a cute girl talking about cool tech. But I can totally see this being the future, replacing our boring old perv-friendly windows of today. But as most cool prototypey tech, there’s no price or availability. Although the girl says “coming months”… That could be, like, years!

VIA [ Teh Intertubes ]

[CES 2012] I’m Core Reaches For The Sky, Reeks Of Vaporware

By David Ponce

The “I’m” folks are at it again. “I’m” as in that’s the name of their products. First it was the I’m Watch. Now it’s an entire line of related products called I’m Circle. And what they’re proposing is quite revolutionary, if only too good to be possible. The idea is to eliminate overlapping technology in various devices by simply removing that particular tech from them and putting it in one central hub that would then act as a processing server. For example, there’s a microprocessor in your phone. There’s also one in your tablet. Why do you need two, when you could just share one?

The center of this new proposed ecosystem of tethered devices would be the I’m Core, the keychain-sized hub that would contain a quad-core processor, a GPS chip, a WiFi chip and a SIM card. Then, there are plans for a smartphone, a tablet, a flatscreen TV and what looks like a media server, all of which would connect to the I’m Core. They’d all be named something starting with “I’m”, with a stated time to market of late 2012. And I’m ready to bet good money this will never happen. Here’s why.

Continue Reading

[CES 2012] J5 Wormhole Switch Makes Peace Between Macs And PCs

By David Ponce

The Wormhole Switch from company J5Create does something most of us simply assumed couldn’t be done: easily transferring files between PCs and Macs. No need for a network, no need for drivers or to screw around with settings. You simply plug one end of the Wormhole cable into a USB port on each machine, and you’re done. You can even control the pointer of one computer with the mouse of the other. They immediately behave a little like one giant screen, with the pointer seamlessly scrolling from one screen to the other; file transfer is then a simple matter of drag and drop. Now, I say Mac to PC, but the truth is that it doesn’t have to be limited to that: PC/PC, Mac/Mac. It’s a useful tool to carry around with your laptop; just think of how many times you’ve wanted to share a file with your friends and not done so for lack of an easy way to do it.

It’s $40 and available at Fry’s and MicroCenter.

[ Product Page ]

[CES 2012] Ecovacs Winbot Goes All Roomba On Your Windows

By David Ponce

Through a combination of good marketing and of actually being available in America, the Roomba vacuuming robots are well known. But they’re not the only cleaning bots on the block. Ecovacs has been making these for years, but at CES this year I stumbled onto something I hadn’t see before. It was a cleaning robot that cleaned windows. Vertically. It’s called the Ecovacs Winbot and it’s a robot that splits in two. Both halves are joined together by strong magnets, with your pane of glass sandwiched in between. The cleaning is done through a 3M cleaning cloth, so I’m not sure how much dirt or grime it can handle. But it does work as expected, making its way across a window until it’s clean. Of course there’s a bit of a problem in that you’ll probably need two people to get it going in the first place, one inside and the other outside, each holding one half. But if manual cleaning is something you really hate, there’s a robot for that now.

The Winbot is currently available in China and Europe and a representative said it should come to America within a year. It’s $399.

[CES 2012] Ion Audio’s Guitar Apprentice Is Not A Game, Is Actually Cool

By David Ponce

So we all know that Guitar Hero is over and done. It was fun, but it was just a game with a controller that had 5 buttons. Now Rocksmith is out and while it does teach you to play with a real guitar, which I think it awesome (I own the game, by the way), there’s a pretty steep learning curve involved. Not the least of which is playing with metal strings which ends up shredding the tips of your fingers. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. But bridging the gap between useless toy and overly complex real instrument learning, there’s Ion Audio’s Guitar Apprentice. It’s a guitar shaped dock for your iPad that features a 14 fret board, with buttons replacing the strings. It’s not a full fretboard, but it’s not that far off which means you can actually play thousands of songs with no problem. The buttons work in conjunction with an app that progressively teaches you how to play by lighting up the appropriate buttons.

The company is currently working on licensing songs and the device should be released sometime in Q2 for an undisclosed price. At least not officially, but one rep did tell me somewhere in the vicinity of $100.

[ Product Page ]

[CES 2012] 360 Degree Panoramas Are Even Easier With The GoPano iPhone Case

By David Ponce

I finally got to see the GoPano iPhone case that was announced last April. Back then it was a Kickstarter project, well on its way to getting funded. Well, fast forward 9 months and here it is at CES. It’s a clip on case very similar to the Kogeto Dot which I wrote about back in October. The case features a detacheable 360-degree mirror that lets you take photos and videos in 360 degrees, natch. Like the Dot, these videos are fully interactive so you can pan around as you watch. The difference, and this is a big one, is that you don’t have to hold your phone like a waiter with a tiny plate of appetizers in your hand. The orientation of the mirror extension is vertical so you get to hold your iPhone 4 or 4S the same way you’ve become used to. It’s a well made product and feels comfortable to use.

It’s a fun product and for $79, won’t put a giant hole in your wallet.

[ Product Page ]

[CES 2012] Capture Camera Clip System Is A Cameraman’s Best Friend

By David Ponce

So I’ve been walking around the floor here at CES with a camera strapped to my neck and I just discovered a better way to do things. The Capture Camera Clip from Peak Design is a Kickstarter project that not only got fully funded last summer, but was the second most successful on the site to date. It’s a metal clipping system that features two parts: a clamp that attaches to either your clothing or bag, and another to your standard camera mount. Then it’s a matter of just holstering your device. There’s a trigger that releases it and the camera can be inserted in four different orientations. A representative from the company wandered into the press room, just now and gave me one. I’ve been trying it out and it’s pretty darn cool.

It’s $79 and is available now.

[ Product Page ]

[CES 2012] Kid-Tough Portable DVR To Keep Your Own Electronics Safe

By David Ponce

Kids get bored, and when they get bored they like to play with whatever is within their reach. That’s often going to be your electronics, and you know there’s nothing quite like starting the day by discovering a drool covered iPad with a cracked screen. Better to keep the little ones entertained with a decoy device, one that actually does something cool, like the Kid-Tough Portable DVR from Fisher Price. It’s a bit more than a DVR, since it’s capable of playing back whatever it records through its 3.5inch screen and stereo speakers (or headphones jack if you value your ears). And the recording is done by connecting it to your TV via composite connection. We’re not talking high quality stuff here, but I doubt your 3 year old will complain that he can’t see all of Katie Couric’s wrinkles. Parents can set the device to record up to 24h in advance and even manually sort the recorded shows so they can be easily found and played back later. Onboard storage gives you 2h of recording time,but this can easily be expanded with a MicroSD card.

Available in May for $150.