Archive for Feb 25, 2007

Kinetic Mobile Phones

These days, the single most important feature in a cell phone has to be the battery life. Yes, a good camera and 3G connectivity are great, but if your phone is dead, you won’t be taking any pictures. What if you could charge your cell phone just by carrying it around all day?


Beautifully stained teacups

Beautifully stained teacups

For those of us who do drink tea, we all know about that infamous stain that they create on the inside of the cup. This is extremely frustrating when you really love that teacup. Now there is a new creation that makes the stain only show up in certain places and create a design; over time as your stain becomes darker and darker so does the design.

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BitTorrent’s legitimate media sharing

BitTorrent, scourge of copyright, nightmare of content lawyers, anti-DRM protest of the people… except they’ve only gone and spoilt it all by cutting a juicy deal with the movie studios.  After playing nice with people like 20th Century Fox, MTV and Paramount last November, they’re now set to announce a movie rental service that will use the same distribution technology that has seen BitTorrent become the file-sharing method of choice for millions.



Siemens home networking sinks without trace

Ah, nothing like a game of “mock the staged PR photo” to brighten up a dour Sunday.  Appliancist link to today’s foolhardy models who are posing for Siemens’ home-automation system, Serve@Home, which seems to be implying that with a few simple taps on a wireless keyboard you can dispatch your sullen wife via a heavy monitor to the head.  In actual fact, it’s a network of appliances fitted with Siemens’ own “System Interface”, a proprietary version of powerline distribution.

Serve@Home was announced back in 2005; where is it now, do you think?


Robot Gecko could lead to new sticky-tape

If you thought a robot cat was cool, how about a wall-climbing robot gecko!  The indecently clever Sangbae Kim has spent the past few years looking at the Van der Waal-force harnessing feet of the lizard, which use microscopic hairs to form close bonds with a surface and thus adhere to them, and mimic that action with a cable-controlled foot design.



Flybook VM: what price for ergonomics?

After appearing at CES and catching quite a few eyes with its swan-neck display, the Flybook VM laptop has landed in Laptop Magazine’s labs and given itself up for some rigorous testing.  The 3.6-pound, 1-inch thick machine has a 12.1-inch screen that can be raised 2.3-inches and then pulled forward, offering far more ergonomic flexibility than standard laptop designs.



MIT team reach new heights at super-speed

The last time I was trapped at the top of a burning building, I was quite miffed that it took firefighters so damned long to reach me climbing up their ropes.  In fact, I was so annoyed that I refused to go back down with them until they’d talked me through the complaints procedure and given me a form to fill in.  All that unpleasant paperwork would be a thing of the past if they’d only had Atlas Devices’ Rope Ascender.


Canon’s super-squashed portable Pixma printer

Canon’s printer division has issued a warning this week about a group of gadget-squashing rogue Sumo wrestlers who have taken to squatting on consumer electronics and crushing them.  The most recent victim is the company’s Pixma iP90v printer, which used to be the size of a small bus but is now compact enough to slot into your printer bag.



UMPC uses growing: Spectrum Analyzer

While I’ve set up a few wireless networks, I’m certainly no network engineer – however, I think I really do need to treat myself to this Bumblebee Spectrum Analyzer.  Based on a Samsung Q1p and omnidirectional antenna that connects via the CF slot, there are two models covering different frequency ranges.



Motorola Motofone F3 is cheap and cheerful

We’ve all done it – concentrated on swish, high-end cellphones like the Treo or anything from HTC’s bevy of well-spec’d monsters, ignoring the cheaper end of the handset range.  And it looks like we’ve lost out by doing it, if Mitchell Oke’s review of Motorola’s ultra-budget Motofone F3 is anything to go by.


New Nintendo Wii Revisions

Nintendo of America’s VP Perrin Kaplan has confirmed that Wii might be getting hardware revision soon.

A DVD playback support has already been announced for late this year, however Kaplan indicates there will be more than just DVD playback on the new revised Wii.

Many speculate that Nintendo will release new Wii with new colors, increases its internal storage, bundling rechargeable battery, and component cables.

Nintendo Confirms Wii Hardware Revisions Coming [via dailytech]

A device that “watches” for calls

I have a tendency to walk off and leave my phone sitting in the other room. Then I miss a few calls from some family member, and they immediately think that something horrible has happened to me and call everyone that I know to find me. Now if only there was a way to still know I’m getting a call.


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