Latest gadget to make it across my desk (and on my many road trips this last week) ~ the Happy Ear Flamingo. Ok get over the name, and moving along… while i’ve tried my share of bluetooth ear pieces, i was intrigued by this one because they decided to try something new with the way it actually stays in place… instead of inserting something directly into your ear canal, this one has two nubs that hook into the space above and below (look at the diagrams below to make more sense of it), and testing it on road trips from la-sd-sf its been working great. On silly features that won me over, the charging base is magnetic, so it just snaps right into where it needs to be to charge. Also sound quality has been great, and it really doesn’t get tangled in your hair, etc ~ it was quite comfortable having that straight part hang straight against my face, i guess making it look like a flamingo with one leg up next to my head? Anyhow, the blister packaging didn’t do much for me, but the comfort, stability, and sound quality of the headset impressed me.
Woohoo! We’re at Gift Guide Day 24 (gotta motivate myself, 31 feels like a lot of days) - and today i’m excited to share my picks from our sponsor Audiocubes, who you’ve seen a bit in our tags the last few months ~ they’ve been very kind in supporting what we do! And they are our go to store for audio goods and crazy japanese gadgetry (in fact we were shopping there before they even approached us!). And just to get you started on all the goodies in today’s gift guide, for anyone who hasn’t seen how this freaky Facebank works… check out the video below!
As much as i’m not a snow person, when i saw this incredible fold up sled with shock absorbers on Born Rich, i suddenly wanted to be bouncing and sliding down a snow covered hillside… Some great quotes from their site “Only 6 1/3” flat when folded. Take it from the boot to the piste in a jiffy.” - “Corrosion-resistant aluminium andbreak-proof polycarbonate.” - “No longer miss out on high-speed sledging fun, just because there is no space for bulky sledges in your car.”
“Give Good Food to your Mac” time… basically a series of developers met up at WWDC and have teamed up to offer you discounts on bundles up to 70% off for about 12 days… “While San Francisco was getting ready for the grand opening of Pixar’s new movie Ratatouille, with a smell of French Cuisine in the air, we had the idea of organizing a great Mac feast with Mac apps made by the top European developers. ‘Give Good Food to your Mac’ was born. ‘Give Good Food to your Mac’ is a community action where independent Mac developers come together and build this exciting project : for about 12 days, every Mac users are able to download and taste more than 25 great Mac applications and enjoy discounts ranging from 30 to 70%.”
What’s on the menu? Remote Buddy, Personal Trader, CoverScout, Magnet, Morphage, iDive, Expert Wine Cellar, iStopMotion, Cheetah 3D, Banner Zest, VideoPier, PulpMotion, CSSEdit, Contactizer Pro/Express, GeoPhoto, Merlin, RapidWeaver, Freeway 4 Express/Pro, Money, Art Text, FotoMagico, Feeder, Together, Pixelmator, Tables, and Unity Indie.
By now i’m sure you’ve heard about and seen the flashy Virgin America website and all the sweet goodies they’ve packed on to their flights - from the plugs at every seat, the neon purple/blue mood lighting, ordering drinks, movies, and tvshows with the swipe of a credit card, seat to seat chat (yes. imagine the possibilities… close quarters stalker possibilities on a long flight?!?!), google maps to track where you are, and even the cutest animated saftey video (youtube below). Anyhow, i got a chance to fly Virgin America for the super quick flight up to SFO from LAX for the Oakley event… and since my hour long flight was delayed another hour (sf fog!) i took some pics of the plane, my empty row, and the RED Entertainment UI while i was sitting in there. (I also found a nice little video of the UI in action on Youtube).
Wow thanksgiving was a bit different this year. Apparently technology = bonding? Was this true for you too? Did your wii, xbox 360, and cell phones change the social dynamic of the feasting?
I haven’t done a big family one (or been in the states for it) much the last decade… so it was funny to see everyone all grown up and out of college at my aunts, and we had a new set of young ones (twins 7 and 4) and all of us 20 somethings to entertain them. Just thinking back on what we did as kids at thanksgiving… we probably ran around outside - pool/basketball/tennis/etc, built forts, board games? movies? played lots of mortal kombat, sonic, etc? Well it certainly feels like times have changed… i brought down a plate of cookies and a basket of wii games as my contribution… the cousins had the wii projected on the wall ~ and hours were spent introducing newbies (who quickly got competitive!) to wii golf, tennis, and guitar hero… (fascinating watching how quickly even the 4 year olds would pick up mii making and game playing - not to mention how impressive the 7 year olds were at guitar hero)… the older generation was singing along… and when the little ones got bored early at dinner ~ their instant amusement? Borrowing camera phones and running around taking pictures and asking to keep them (i was slightly surprised they weren’t emailing them to themselves)…
Anyhow, i wasn’t the only one… Dan flew out to see family in Virginia and brought the wii and everything to go with it… and over at Joystiq, Ross has a great post on bringing Rock Band to his family feast (love checking out the images and the full family review of the new game)… and my old boss was even going to throw a Rock Band Party for Black Friday (momentarily postponed!)… Anyhow, just a quick post to reminisce… and ponder what we did back in the day?!?! So i guess i should have really added Rock Band and Guitar Hero to the Thanksgiving survival gift guide, but at least i had the wii!
Oh and on guitar hero ~ quite possibly the best Will It Blend to date is the one below of the GUITAR being blended. Must watch.
Gift Guide 27 is a page of designer tech accessories to explore ~ from hulger’s bluetooth phones and toyo ito’s usb hub to the ultimate shell to hide your video game controllers in plain site and the lelo elise pleasure object…
Remember the Keyport? Well the kit for the limited edition just showed up today - basically make copies of keys you want in the device, put them on the ring, stick the stickers on then, give a description, pop them back in the padded envelope, and fedex it away! The “I use this key for” section makes me pretty nervous (as if sending keys doesn’t already - even valet parking makes me nervous… we all watch our share of spy/con flicks, it’s so easy to get in where you want to… between lock picks and social hacking… especially if people will send you the keys AND a description of which are for what?)… i wonder if all they are really asking is what type of car if its a car key… the rest should be self explanatory to a locksmith right? But i am super curious about what the final product will look like… Well, at least they aren’t asking for pictures of the corresponding locks and lock locations with video proving the keys work… Anyhow, thought you’d be interested to see the next step of the Keyport, Happy almost turkey day.
Freshly back in LA, and slightly scared to wear my Tom Fords… as i told you earlier, i just spent two nights up in Half Moon Bay with the Oakley crew at their golf tournament, where i got to check out the Rolling O Lab. Now, i already showed you the *fun* side of the O Lab, here’s the fascinating rolling research lab in a trailer… it will really bring out the hands on science geek in anyone. I tried to get pics of all the fun bits to share with you… but here’s the cliff notes version before we get into the show and tell: if something blasts you in the face, most glasses will stab you in the eye - Oakley lenses just scratch slightly… if you lay down and drop a nearly 2 pound pointed weight on your glasses, you will have something sharp sticking out of your eye - Oakley lenses just get a dent… if you point lasers through the lenses to emulate your vision, the Oakleys actually meet at a point as they should - the others (and we put our random glasses on) were all over the place meaning your eyes are overcompensating (so THAT’s why some glasses give you headaches quickly)… ok ok there’s more, and it was all rather fascinating to me, so please don’t mind the ranting… see pics below - of inside the lab, and also the GIANT corona bottle that was at the first hole.
Uki International has some playfully modern hair styling tools ~ most noteworthy is this tiny “go on” 500 watt hair dryer that is a mere 9cm in length! and weighs in at only 110 grams. (see different angles of how adorable it is below) Also interesting is their Ionic 6000 that has apparently the “max ergonomics, allowed by double handle possibility” and is a powerful 1800/2000 watts and 21 cms in length. I also couldn’t resist sharing this technical coloration trolley, Moana, designed by Massimo Pizzoleo ~ which although it looks quite like a frog it is ready to go with two tinting brushes and a tin foil roll (see how it opens below).
On bizarre ways to kick off Thanksgiving week ~ i’m trying that whole “live blogging” thing from the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay today where Oakley is holding their Oakley Norcal Shootout, and there are some serious golfers out here! But i’m hiding out in the library/high tea room at the moment… the parts you’ll probably most interested in are their road crew of two large trailers that roam the states from event to event - fondly known as the Rolling O Lab… consider it a mini of the intense testing and research lab in their Foothill Ranch HQ! Anyhow, more on the research one soon… but first things first, take a look at this HUGE slick black Oakley’d out Freightliner they have hauling the lounge around? And take a look at the interior of the lounge ~ huge flat screens inside and out, comfy couches, surfboard, skateboard, kitchen, and even Oakley Tap for the kegerator. Not a bad way to travel around the states? (These guys are on the road 300+ days a year.) Anyhow, more pics below to give you a feel… check their schedule to see where you can run into them next (next stop Tahoe tomorrow, then salt lake, then the UCLA/USC game!)… Oh, and being a golf tournament… naturally Caddy Shack is playing.
Latest in toothbrush technology? Ultrasound. No, seriously… the Ultreo uses sonic vibrations plus ultrasound. And as much as initially i thought this might just be another crazy gimmick and I initially wanted to check it out b/c the packaging was interesting, and the new technology intriguing… I didn’t expect to actually be hooked on my teeth feeling this noticeably clean relative to the sonicare elite (i haven’t had a chance to compare this to that new sonicare flexcare, but its the same technology really, only less vibrations coming through and smaller?). Founded by Dr. Pierre Mourad (who has made his living finding novel applications for ultrasound and its ability to transform bubbles into miniature sources of mechanical energy) and Jack Gallagher (Ultreo’s CEO/President who was present of Phillips Oral Healthcare for a few years) and they brought on Dr. Christopher McInnes (Ultreo’s Principal Scientist who spent 12 years with Sonicare, and provided the fundamental science behind the Sonicare technology)… they have quite a team behind the Ultreo, which has just launched its first ultrasound toothbrush . Other than the incredible clean feeling (yes, i am running my tongue over my teeth in amazement still) ~ it’s impressive that it’s far less aggressive/harsh on your mouth, less vibrations, quieter and i was told the ultrasound technology creates tiny bubbles that blast away the plaque (see the comparison study images, more below)… and how does it work? It’s all about that orange transducer in the middle of the brush head. Really its hard to explain, and definitely worth trying to understand/feel for yourself…. images below of box scans, close ups of the charger, travel case, etc.
Nabzatag ~ the crazy wifi bunnies we’ve been seeing for a while… apparently in the goodies section of their site they are anti-naked bunnies! Anyhow, a little random, but cute that they have pdfs for everything from paper clothes (i guess you could make them with cloth too) to stickers to decorate them (from eyebrows to mustaches to logo shirts ~ give them some character!).