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Tag Archives: sensors

A New Nero Trigger Adds Even More Functionality For That Perfect Shot

Screen Shot 2013-03-20 at 12.47.27 AM Some of you may remember that we wrote about the Nero Trigger last August. This was a sensor-laden device whose purpose was to help you capture photographs of events that are too quick to catch with even the fastest trigger finger. Well there’s a new generation of the gadget out, and this is what the company has to say about it:

It has now a color LCD screen which increases usability compared to the previous version. Every piece of information you need will be displayed to you right on the screen. NeroTrigger features two new modes: HDR (High Dynamic Range) and DIY (Do It Yourself) HDR mode will let you to get different exposures without an hassle and DIY mode will bring you countless options to show your creativity. NeroTrigger is now much more stable as analog controls have been totally eliminated. Everything is digital, everything is accurate.

I have one that I’m supposed to be reviewing, and haven’t had time to put through its paces properly. I can say, however, that I got a few shots out and that it does indeed work as advertised. There’s some fine-tuning to do to synchronize the event you want to capture with the selected trigger (be it sound, light or through the cutting of a laser), but the fact that there’s an LCD to navigate the menus does make the task easier.

It attaches to the hot-shoe of your camera, and at $200, is a worthwhile investment for the photographer looking to shoot what’s gone in the blink of an eye.

[ Product Page ]

Breathometer Integrates With Smartphone: Why?

breathometer

We think that carrying around a breathalyzer is a great idea. You go to a bar, have just a couple drinks and are ready to go home, but you want to make sure you’re legally allowed to drive? Bust it out, and test! The Breathometer is one such device, although unlike the myriad of cheap Chinese versions out there, this one integrates with a smartphone. Plug it into the audio jack on your phone, launch the app, and blow. Now the thing is, we’re not sure why the smartphone is necessary for this. If all it does is use the handset to display the figure… what’s the point? You can get the same functionality from a cheap old LCD! Granted, the Breathometer is small and fits in your pocket easily. But so are many other equally breathalyzers out there! What’s more, it likely uses a semiconductor-based sensor, which is much less accurate than the professional-grade fuel-cell sensors. Why do we think it’s a semiconductor sensor? The $20 price tag, for one.

So we’re not sure where to stand on this product. On the one hand, there’s nothing wrong with it (aside from potentially questionable accuracy, a problem shared by all non-professional grade breathalyzers): it’s inexpensive, small and, gee-whiz, it works with your smartphone! On the other hand, why is that an advantage? Maybe there’s some finer point we’re missing here. Whatever the case, feel free to head over to the IndieGogo campaign to make a pledge if you want one for yourself.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Werd ]

94Fifty Basketball Is Rigged With Six Sensitive Sensors

94fifty_basketball

Baketball’s been around for a while, but now that high-tech sensors are super small and cheap, why not stuff them inside a ball and start getting a bunch of metrics on the game you know and love? The 94Fifty basketball weighs and behaves exactly the same as a standard ball, but contains 6 sensors that can communicate with your smartphone via Bluetooth, and feed it data on spin, shot arc, shot speed, dribbling speed, dribbling strength and pretty much anything you’d want to measure to help you improve your game. The app also comes with various challenges for you to complete and social elements to put you up against other 94Fifty owners around the world. Charging of the various sensors is accomplished wirelessly, through a Qi-approved electrical induction pad.

There’s no official price just yet, but this should be hitting the marketplace this month.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Werd ]

Control Your Computer With The Electricity In Your Arm

myo-armband-xl

The MYO Armband is yet another entrant in the gesture control field. Crowded by the likes of Microsoft’s Kinect, or the vastly more promising Leap Motion Controller, the MYO uses innovative new technology to interface with you. It’s kind of interesting and could actually give it an advantage over the other ones. Instead of using image recognition, the MYO has a sensor to detect the electrical impulses in the muscles of your forearm. This, alongside a motion detector, allows the armband to resolve your hand and arm movements with extreme precision, down to the individual fingers. It may even seem at times that your finger twitch is detected even before you’ve actually done so: this is because the muscles are activated slightly before your fingers actually start moving, and the MYO picks the signal up first.

So what can you do with it? That’s still in development. There’s going to be an API, and it will work with PCs and Macs, but the specific kinds of things you can do is up in the air. We’re thinking mouse replacement, but of course it’s much more than that. 3D model manipulation, gaming… If done right, the possibilities are, as they always say, endless. The best part is the price: $149, to be released late this year. And yes, you can pre-order now.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Uncrate ]

DropTag Sensor Could Keep A Check On Heavy Handed Parcel Delivery Personnel

diagram

There’s been a spate of news lately concerning UPS or Fedex truck drivers mistreating and mishandling various parcels. Whether it’s a Fedex guy throwing a box over a fence or a a UPS dude tossing the parcel at the door, it’s pretty clear that the integrity your goods often lies in very human hands. So, UK-based Cambridge Consultants (which we’ve mentioned before) have developed the DropTag. It’s a Bluetooth-enabled sensor that can automatically tell a smartphone equipped with the related application whether the package being delivered to you has been mishandled. Most people don’t take the time to open a package and inspect the goods while the delivery man is still in the door, which means they can’t send it back right away and have to deal with that hassle later on. With the DropTag, a simple scan of your phone is enough to tell you if you need to take a closer look at your products.

It’s not currently a mass market product, but they will be demonstrating a prototype at Hannover MESSE, April 8-12.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

New Sensor Constantly Monitors Bicycle Tire Pressure

Cars with TPMS sensors are pretty common these days. These are the ones that tell you when you’re getting a flat tire, by constantly monitoring the pressure within. It’s smart, and safe, and about time cyclists got the same treatment. The BTPS sensor aims to do just that, connecting to your smartphone and informing you of the pressure of your tires accurately, between 0 and 174psi. Admittedly, the device is more useful as a convenient indicator of tire pressure; it sure beats having to bend down every time. And since many road bikes need a regular air adjustment, the simple phone-glance convenience is appreciated.

“The BTPS unit itself consists of a pressure sensor, circuit board, and battery. When used with tubeless tires, it is mounted on the rim tape. If tubes are being used, it’s stuck right onto the tube, like a patch.” Currently weighing only seven grams (0.25 oz), it shouldn’t affect your ride in the least. It’s going through funding with Kickstarter though, and is quite far from its goal. Still, if you want one for yourself, a $140 pledge will get you a pair of tubeless-specific BTPS units.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

Party Buzzer Works Only While Drunk

Who said that tech hardware has to be useful all the time? What’s wrong with having a bit of pointless fun with it? The Buzzed Buzzer contains an alcohol sensor and will only work if it detects booze on your breath. Use enough of these at a party to ensure that anyone that looks like they’re having fun, is actually having fun. Well… not that you can’t have fun without alcohol, but you get our drift. Using a $16 Teensy 2.0 Microcontroller, a $5 MQ-3 Alcohol Gas Sensor, and a handful of other easily obtainable supplies, the Buzzed Buzzer is a surefire way to have drunk peeps making noise, eager as drunk people often are to prove their drunkenness. Unfortunately, this is not a product you can purchase at a store; the link at the bottom will lead you to very detailed instructions on how to make your own.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Engadget ]

ShockBox Is A G-Meter For Potential Head Injuries

Playing contact sports is all fun and games (literally) until someone gets a concussion, or worse. It’s not always easy to tell between the player that’s laying on the ground because he got the wind knocked out of him, or the one that needs medical attention because his brain got a shakeup. The ShockBox is a special sensor that is meant to be placed either on or inside a helmet, and it contains two things: an accelerometer and a Bluetooth radio. Should any one player experience a severe hit, a signal is immediately sent to a paired smartphone (say, the coach’s) with impact data and analysis. It uses long range Bluetooth, so the device has a range of up to 100m, and one smartphone can pair with up to 128 sensors at once. This means you could conceivably monitor an entire team, and provide medical assistance when needed. ShockBox installs with 3M double sided tape, which is provided with your $149 unit. Yeah, that’s a lot of money to fork over when you’re decking out an entire high school football team, but if you’ve got the budget, you don’t want to be skimping on safety.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

Helmet Sensor Device Calls For Help When You Crash

If your ride comes to an abrupt end in the city, chances are there will be some living soul calling EMTs quickly. But the same can’t be said if you venture out on some secluded nature path and have a violent encounter with a tree trunk. The ICEdot Crash Sensor is a motion detector that can sense when you’ve crashed, and even evaluate the severity of that crash. Once paired through Bluetooth with its related application, the device will sound an alarm and initiate a countdown. If you don’t deactivate the alarm within the specified time the app will contact your emergency numbers and relay information about your location, as well as how serious a condition you might be in and other critical medical details (diabetes, allergies, etc.). Hopefully this way you won’t bleed out in some ditch. We like it: it’s smart and can’t hit the market soon enough. Unfortunately, availability is slated for “sometime next year” at roughly $200, which isn’t cheap and is pretty far from now, but hey, better late than never.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ DVice ]