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Tag Archives: Office

FitDesk – Another Exercise While You Work Solution

FitDesk (Images courtesy FitDesk)
By Carole Sinclair

I’m just as un-keen on exercise and work as the next… well… everybody. So picking off these two birds with one stone is always the dream. Our desk-based work days have been blamed for their fair share of our oft-lamented ‘sedentary lifestyles’, and solutions like those office-chair-bouncy-ball-thingys don’t suit everyone’s tastes. (*Rubs tailbone*) We’ve probably also all seen other uber-fit solutions like working at a computer while walking on a treadmill. But doing that for 8 hours straight can be grueling at best, and a safety hazard at worst.

Enter the FitDesk. It’s an exercise bike with a usable desk attached where you’d normally find the handlebars. You’re technically still sitting and working while using it, but you’re also pedaling, building muscle and burning calories throughout the day. With a treadmill workstation, when you decide to stop walking you’re either left standing and working for hours at a time, or risk admitting that you’ve abandoned yet another exercise endeavor. But when you take a break with the FitDesk, you’re still comfortably seated, leaving you plenty of endurance to keep exercising and building up the strength to eventually win the rat race. (Or at least place respectfully.)

The resistance of the pedaling can be adjusted for a more intense workout as desired, and the whole unit folds up so it can be stashed away in a closet if used at home. Unfortunately I don’t see a way to secure the laptop, which is a little worrisome given it sits perched pretty high, and an untimely fall from your sweaty hands could easily be its demise. I guess that’s where duct tape and bungee cords come in. It’s also $229, which is kind of expensive for a pretty basic exercise bike. Even with a built-in ‘desk’.

[ FitDesk ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]

Porsche Design Mouse And Mousepad

Porsche Design Mouse And Mousepad (Image courtesy Porsche)
By Andrew Liszewski

Can’t afford a Porsche for your daily drive to work? There are still plenty of ways to impress your co-workers. And just because these PC accessories from Porsche Design won’t post a great lap time at the Nürburgring (much to Captain Slow’s delight) it doesn’t mean the person sharing your cubicle won’t eye your desk with envy.

Available from their online store, the Porsche 911-inspired mouse features the company’s logo printed on the rear as well as an aluminum scroll wheel, 2,000 dpi optical sensor and a 2.4 GHz wireless USB dongle. So it can certainly be used on any surface, but would probably feel most at home on the matching Porsche crest mousepad made of the same leather used in the vehicles’ interiors. Complete with an embossed logo at the top. Sold separately they each run ~$82 (£50) which is a little steep for a piece of leather, but not outrageously expensive for a mouse oddly enough.

[ Porsche Design Mouse And Mousepad ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]

Eraser Pencil Eliminates Wasted Wood

Eraser Pencil (Images courtesy Deuk Young Lee)
By Andrew Liszewski

While incredibly simple but highly usable, there are still two big issues I have with wooden pencils. 1) The wood basically does nothing more than make holding and writing with a thin piece of graphite easier. And it’s basically wasted every time the pencil is sharpened. 2) The eraser on the end is never big enough to accomodate my constant mistakes.

So I’m 100% behind Deuk Young Lee’s concept of making a pencil out of rubber eraser material instead. It can still be sharpened like a traditional wooden pencil, using the same office gear, but ends up being more comfortable and easier to hold thanks to the softer material. And there’s plenty of eraser for correcting your mistakes. Admittedly the delete key tends to fill the eraser’s role in my life these days, but as long as grade school kids still have to learn penmanship, I think this design has some merit.

[ designboom - deuk young lee: eraser pencil ]

Smart Phone Note – iPhone 4 Case + Notebook In One

Smart Phone Note (Images courtesy design tag)
By Andrew Liszewski

While not necessarily designed exclusively for students, I’m filing this notebook/iPhone 4 case under ‘back to school’ gear since I think I would have found it really handy back when I still had classes to attend. The top half of the notebook features a foam mould designed to hold the iPhone 4 in landscape or portrait orientations, while a strategic cutout lets you still access the headphone port when it’s turned sideways. On the inside of the cover you’ll find slots for holding debit or credit cards, as well as business cards. And since the notebook will set you back about $29 (30,000 WON) from design tag, the notebook portion is fortunately replaceable once you fill it up.

[ Smart Phone Note ]

Ninjapins Promise No More Pin Holes In Your Wall

Ninjapins (Images courtesy AssistOn)
By Andrew Liszewski

If you’ve ever spent an afternoon trying to camouflage the holes left from pins and thumbtacks before moving out of a dorm room or apartment, you’ll appreciate the simple innovation these Ninjapins bring. Traditional tacks feature a round shaft with a pointed tip that makes them easy to stick in a wall, but when removed they leave behind a tiny, but very noticeable, hole. So to combat that problem the ninjapins feature a shaft that’s actually just a thin, folded metal strip. It stays just as rigid as a round shaft, and sticks into a wall just as easily thanks to an angled, sharpened tip.

But when removed, instead of a hole, you’re left with a very thin ‘L’ shaped slit in the wall that’s far less noticeable from a distance. I mean, if your landlord is going over your place with a fine-toothed-comb they’re probably going to see them, but for most uses they seem like a far better alternative to regular tacks if you’re trying to keep your wall damage to a minimum. The only catch? A 5-piece set from AssistOn runs about $5 (¥400), so in the long run it may just be cheaper to refinish a perforated wall.

[ Ninjapins ] VIA [ Matomeno ]

Elecom’s New DATA clip Flash Drives Seem Oddly Familiar…

Elecom DATA clip Flash Drive (Image courtesy Elecom)
By Andrew Liszewski

You know I can’t seem to put my finger on it, but Elecom’s new DATA clip USB flash drives look oddly familiar to me. Their design awkwardly combines a USB flash drive with a traditional, curved metal paperclip. (Except plastic is the material of choice here.) And I say ‘awkwardly’ because when attached to a stack of documents the drive part ends up sticking out, which to me looks like it could easily be knocked off when passed around. A more improved design would have the DATA clip attached to a document so that the flash drive part hung over the page, making it more secure. But who knows, maybe that’s not even possible?

[ Elecom DATA clip by Nendo ] VIA [ designboom ]

Canon Announces Desktop Accessories

Canon Desktop Accessories (Images courtesy Canon)
By Andrew Liszewski

Most consumers associate Canon with imaging products, from digital cameras to printers to photocopiers. But I guess they’ve decided they want a bigger slice of that sweet, sweet office equipment pie, and have introduced a couple of wireless accessories designed to complement your laptop. The X Mark I Keypad and X Mark I Mouse will sell for $59.99 each when they’re available in September and August respectively, and both connect to your PC via Bluetooth serving as an external keypad, mouse and dedicated calculator. I’ll leave it to you to figure out which one does which. Both are available in black or white finishes, while the keypad adds a small solar panel to augment its single AAA battery.

[ PR - Canon U.S.A. Announces New Desktop Accessories For Today's Business Professionals ] VIA [ TechCrunch ]

Novac’s Tiny Simply Scan Business Card Scanner

Novac Simply Scan (Image courtesy Novac)
By Andrew Liszewski

Dedicated business card scanners have mostly been replaced by camera-equipped smartphones, but I say mostly because a Japanese company called Novac has just bucked that trend and released this Simply Scan device. It looks like a tiny flatbed scanner that’s barely larger than a business card, but oddly enough it doesn’t work like one. Instead of a glass bed and a sliding scanning mechanism, you just lift the lid of the Simply Scan which positions a small camera over the center of the card. It then snaps a pic and uses included OCR software (running on your computer) to convert the details on the card into an entry in your address book.

Unfortunately it’s only compatible with Windows based PCs, or at least I assume the included software is, and at ~$120+ (¥9,980) it’s actually really expensive when you consider it’s just a lo-res digital camera.

[ Novac Simply Scan ] VIA [ Akihabara News ]

Bridge Shredder Fits Various Sized And Shaped Garbage Cans

Bridge Shredder (Images courtesy designboom)
By Andrew Liszewski

I already have a document shredder that’s designed to sit atop garbage cans of various shapes and sizes using a sliding arm mechanism, but it’s a pain to use, and quite frankly, rarely works as it’s supposed. As far as I’m concerned it’s another example of where the K.I.S.S. maxim could and should have been applied, which is what studio ‘one tenth design’ clearly did for their Bridge shredder.

Instead of complicated moving parts, the Bridge simply has a narrowing body design below the slot that allows it to securely sit inside rectangular or circular garbage cans. Kind of like how you carve the lid of a pumpkin at an angle when making a jack-o-lantern so it doesn’t fall inside. And whereas my shredder has an annoying 4 foot power cord which usually requires me to dig up an extension in order to actually use it, the Bridge is cordless and instead relies on a set of AA batteries to keep it going. Sure it means it’s probably not as powerful as a corded version, nor will it last as long, but in this case I think convenience totally wins out. According to designboom the Bridge has officially hit the market, but I’m not entirely sure where you can order one just yet.

[ Bridge Shredder Warning: Annoying use of Flash! ] VIA [ designboom ]