Archive for February, 2007

ThinkGeek wages war against deep sleep

ThinkGeek wages war against deep sleep

Look, this clock is called the Sonic Bomb - it has an alarm capable of being cranked up to 113db and, if that's not enough to shift you, there's a remote vibration unit which slips under your mattress and wibbles you awake - and even though it's advertised as being bloody loud I'm certain someone will injure their ears with it and sue ThinkGeek for medical costs.

Japanese fast-food junkies get simple cellphone payment

Japanese fast-food junkies get simple cellphone payment

Sometimes you read a story and it rings all too true for you.  This evening I managed to ruin some chicken (stupid crappy broiler) so decided to grab some McDonalds drive-thru, only I got there and didn't have cash on me and so had to find a cashpoint.  Nearest one charged me an almost 20% processing fee for the pleasure of withdrawing my own money, then if you've ever experienced the UK version of "fast food" you'll know they manage to excise the "fast" part and just leave you with "tepid crap".

Oh to be in Japan!  NTT DoCoMo and McDonalds have announced a partnership where cellphone subscribers will be able to swipe their handsets as e-payment for food. 

The service will start in October 2007.

McDonalds and DoCoMo launches mobile payment in Japan [SlashPhone]

DNA Data could last a century

DNA Data could last a century

When did you last wash your hands?  Funnily enough, at some point in the future you might just have rinsed away your family photos.  Researchers in Japan have figured out a way to slot specially-constructed DNA into the genome DNA of a bacterium; while each individual cell is relatively short-lived, the genome is passed down from generation to generation and thus the information encoded is preserved as long as the bacteria colony is.

In fact, the researchers are claiming that longevity measured in terms of hundreds or thousands of years could be expected. 

Institute of Advanced Biosciences, Keio University [via Pclaunches]

Spy-stick keeps an eye on your kids

Spy-stick keeps an eye on your kids

Let's face it, you can't trust your kids.  Give them an inch and they'll take your credit cards, laptop and cellphone and run up huge charges on pay-per-view sex sites.  So thank the sweet mother Bertie that fear-fuelling companies like CYBERsitter are around, with their remote tracking USB SnoopStick.

 

Super-sleek Giugiaro concept has a hydrogen heart

Super-sleek Giugiaro concept has a hydrogen heart

We've already seen that just because a car is economical, it doesn't have to be boring; now the super-green lobby have a pin-up, in the shape of Giugiaro's Vadhò.  The aerodynamic body-shell is built on a one-off chassis, sitting two passengers in tandem in a fighter-jet styled cockpit that could be sited on either the left or right side depending on which country the car was built for.

 

motorazr.com vs. Motorola: the verdict is in!

motorazr.com vs. Motorola: the verdict is in!

Regular readers may be aware that the guys behind SlashGear/SlashPhone/MYiPhone/Unbox.IT (among others) have been involved in a domain name dispute with Motorola since October last year. The URL in question is MOTORAZR.com, which we registered back in July 2004, and has been a source of cellphone related news ever since.

Three aspects of Motorola's complaint were ruled on: that the domain name is confusingly similar to a trademark in which they have rights; that we, the current owners of MOTORAZR.com, had neither rights nor legitimate interests in the domain, and that we had registered and used it in "bad faith".

The WIPO Administrative Panel invited Motorola on several occasions to prove use of the MOTORAZR mark before they registered it in June 2005, abut they were unable or unwilling to do so. Instead, they claimed that anything involving MOTO (which had been registered back in 2001) should come under the Motorola umbrella and be protected as a mark of their own. The panel, reasonably, declined to give Motorola rights to everything from MOTORWAYS to the MOTORCYCLES that drive along them.

As for using MOTORAZR.com in "bad faith", the panel disagreed with Motorola's claim:

"[Motorola has given] no explanation of why the evidence of [their] real and actual use of MOTORAZR is so thin, why a year passed from product launch to trademark application, and why [they] failed to respond to the [WIPO] Panel’s express invitation to provide further information"

Because of that, the panel also factored out Motorola's suggestion that MOTORAZR.com was expressly designed to misdirect readers into an advertising site.

Motorola's claim, then, was dismissed, in no small part due to the fact that they apparently had no substance to back up their claims.

Please find attached the full text of the decision issued on February 15, 2007 by the Administrative Panel in the above-referenced case.

The Administrative Panel’s finding is as follows:

"For all the foregoing reasons, the Complaint is denied."


Yours sincerely,

Gabriele Bahr
Case Manager

Domain disputes are happening every day, many of them large companies looming large over individuals and demanding they hand over their coveted URL. As this author can confirm it's undoubtedly a scary situation to find yourself in, and the idea of fighting it seems vaguely farcical when you consider the legal might these companies have. Yet if there's one thing we know now it's that simply because a corporation is big, it doesn't mean they're always in the right - or that they've done their homework before putting in a complaint.

Click through for detailed response from Mr. Thomas D. Halket - Sole Panelist.

Kohjinsha ultra-portable: another middling review

Kohjinsha ultra-portable: another middling review

We've seen reviews of the Kohjinsha SA1F00A before, but I'm still in two minds about the dinky handheld.  On the positive side there's undoubtedly something cool about a full Windows XP laptop, complete with keyboard, that's small enough to make even the weakest road-warrior happy; on the negative, there've been all sorts of dark mutterings about usability and how fit for purpose its power-sipping specs are.  Now it's Jenn over at Pocketables' turn to have a try, and see whether the SA1F00A will fit into her mobile lifestyle.

 

Give messy cables the Bird-Electron

Give messy cables the Bird-Electron

If there's one thing I can't stand, it's untidy cables.  I've been known to roundly thrash a grown man for leaving a single headphone extension lead trailing messily across the corner of my desk.  And if you're going to tidy, then you may as well tidy in style; oh, and with a daft name, too. 

 

Multi-Functional Digital Camcorders From Mustek

Multi-Functional Digital Camcorders From Mustek

The new Mustek DV700TZ and DV530TZ camcorders are simple to use as point-and-shoot cameras. These new camcoders are designed to be very compact and portable with multi functions such as built-in digital still camera, digital voice recorder, MP3 player and webcam.

For the pig in everyone-the Piggy Vacuum

For the pig in everyone-the Piggy Vacuum

Feel the need to flaunt your pig-like traits? Now you can buy a vacuum that declares it to the world. It’s a little handheld vacuum shaped like a pig and powered by batteries. This means if you were brave enough you could carry this in your car.

Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Next