Belkin held their SF Press Event today at Vessel, and Linhchi and i stopped by to see their latest products up close and personal. It was (or is, since its on for another half hour) a dark underground lounge space that managed to feel dark when it was an extremely hot and sunny day above ground… and filled with open bar, appetizers, washable mice, more ipod and iphone cases than you knew what to do with, routers, laptop coolers, USB hubs galore, and more. So, honestly i don’t even know where to start… how about you jump below and you can get a feel for the event, what was there, what we liked… and everything in the Belkin gift bag too (which feels kind of like a back to school bag… go see, and it will make a bit more sense). And it was far too fun to play with the washable mouse in person!
Lonely Planet and PSP teamed up last year to create this PSP Passport to… series of digital guides, and they were only released in Europe/Australia, and cover 6 European cities: Amsterdam, Prague, Rome, London, Paris, and Barcelona. Yes, i know i’m a year late on this one, but i only just stumbled upon them, and two things struck me: 1. Gorgeous covers (although strangely Katamari reminiscent… perhaps the crammed city highlights and the color/style of the illustrations) and 2. conceptually this is an interesting combination of gaming/digital entertainment handheld and lonely planet guide (both of which you are probably carrying while running around traveling), and far more navigable than an ipod guide… although this does make me wonder when the mini iPhone friendly pages will be popping up for travel guides, and for mapping, thanks to google maps on my phone, that part is now taken care of wherever i end up. Anyhow, check out the rest of the covers below, a youtube of the “game” in action, and some screenshots. Conclusion from what i read around the internets is that cool idea that fell short in execution. Also, although 39$ at Lonely Planet… these are all 7 pounds at Amazon UK.
iTrapped, yes this came up on .org yesterday (#5182) linking to Photojojo who then got dugg to the point where they were down and no one could view it. Well… checking out google blogsearch, i saw that one of the guys (Joshua Blankenship) that got iTrapped in the iPhonez actually noticed it on our site, and i agree with him, iTrapped is MUCH better than “Smooshtacts”… he says “Itâ€™s weird to open up my daily tabs and find my face on NOTCOT. (Oh, and calling it â€œSmooshtacts?â€ Honestly, Photojojoâ€¦ worst name ever. Itâ€™s iTrapped, people.)” Hehe, it made me laugh in my half awake state, and i just loved the iTrapped name and this great image he had up, and am now imagining people starting the trend of photobooths where they are pressing against a glass pane for this effect with a black backdrop… oh the drunken scenarios waiting to happen.
There’s a scavenger hunt afoot on the web and you’ve just found a piece of the puzzle. Ok, confused? Well read about the details at Mimoco. With SD Comic Con coming up next week, Mimoco will be launching its nine new Core Series 2 Mimobot Art Toy USB Flash Drives, and i’m proud to announce the first one below - so, meet Psy! This adorable cyclops of a flash drive has an adorable reptilian (or dino?) like look that will definitely keep your data safe. So there are 4 Psy Mimobots for you to win… one through the scavenger hunt (more details below), and three from NOTCOT! If you’d like to win one of our three, leave a comment with your idea for a great new USB device/toy/creature, and i’ll pick three winners on July 25th (which is the end of the scavenger hunt, and the release of all 9 new Mimobots!)
Initially Paul Smith was collaborating with classic motorcycle line Triumph on “Triumph by Paul Smith”, a modern collection of accessories and jeans wear inspired by the bikes… and somewhere along the way they got inspired and created nine Bonnevile T100’s customized with individual paint schemes designed by Paul Smith to complement the clothing line… and after so much interest in those 9 bikes, there are now two original Bonneville T100’s for retail. See more of the line and the story here.
Apparently the latest drool worthy design gadget from Logitech is the MX Air Mouse, which Engadget describes as their “attempt to bridge the gap between mouse and remote control with a touch-sensitive scroll-panel (instead of a scroll wheel) and a dedicated pause/play and volume control.” You can apparently push the volume button and then flick the mouse to t he left or right to increase and decrease volume! So gorgeous, dying to play with one! This RF goodie is set to retail around $150 in August.
On strange cryptic emails, here’s a new one. Apparently i was *lucky* enough to receive number 442/500 (yay i made the top 500 of some list?) of Limited Edition Emails from Multi@MultiPolarProjects.com. Being lazy and confused by all of this, instead of following the precise framing descriptions, lets visualize and pretend the iphone is my shadowbox… This thing came with an invoice email as well… (read it below)… and thank goodness mine came “PAID (Compliments of the artist)” because this “Media: Variable depending on the buyer” goes for a whopping $1,000 USD - but luckily they say: “We will verify Edition Number & Purchaser for ebay and auction house sales.” I hope i didn’t destroy its value by spreading the sarcasm to all of you! Since, “You may only print out ONE copy. If you make multiple prints, your edition will then be revoked.”
Also, i’d like to take this chance to say… this email is awesome because it gave me something fun to do with my iPhone before i go return it tomorrow or weds. I may try again once updates come out, and things become a bit more useable for my day to day life. But don’t get me wrong its a great ipod with fancy email and web browsing, and zooming in and out is far too fun (as is wasting more time watching youtubes than i ever did on a computer).
Video Bulb - it’s described like a lipstick tube that you plug into your RCA jack on your tv… and along runs this black and white pixel movie of BITMAN! Apparently great for parties, and a fun screensaver for your plasma? Relatively simple, just a really cute idea, and although CoolHunting had it back in ‘05 ~ i just rediscovered it and love the packaging (see below) and also found a youtube of what you’d get on it (also below!).
Bubblescope… bringing the 360 degree omni cam into the hands of any and everyone! This on brings me back to my UCSD HCI Lab days, where we had our omnicam strapped to the top of Infiniti Q45, capturing 360 degree video data of subjects’ drives… which were then used to process lane changes, driving behaviors, etc etc… fascinating stuff, naturally i was amused with watching the circular video footage both in circle form and after you stretch them back to normal.
But enough about that, the Bubblescope!= was over on Josh Spear and i hadn’t had time to write about it until now (with all that iphone madness and what not)… Tom Lawton is turning this into a water bottle looking camera for everyone. Now we can ALL take 360 view images… its especially fun indoors as well as capturing vast expanses of fields, etc… really fun way to completely change your perspective of a space. Point and shoot panorama’s anyone?
Bowflex SelectTech popped up on Uncrate, and while this isn’t usually the type of thing that catches my attention… their “dial a weight” system really is pretty efficient and does seem much easier than readjusting by manually adding and subtracting weights. Design wise, they are certainly the opposite end of the spectrum from those nice super minimalist nike weights… but i am certainly curious to play with these and see how their dialing mechanism works, and how secure it feels the way the weights are latched on. There are three sets, one with weights going up to 20 lbs, second goes up to 52.5 lbs, and the largest one for the hardcore weight trainer goes up to 90 lbs!
Ok ok, so perhaps you’re sick of the iPhone by now, or you’re just starting to fall deeply madly in love with it, but either way… i was just playing around with the iPhone bits on my desk, and wanted to point out some design details in the PACKAGING. (and as for my take on the UI, the verdict is still out, and part of me wants to return it, although its growing on me.)
So first thing… did you notice that on top of the over dramatized shadow on the only button on the front of the iPhone… the designers actually bothered to have an actual indentation where that button is on the cover of the box? The whole phone is extruded as well, but that is even more subtle than the button… More silly packaging design gushing below.
iPhone. Yes, we’ve all been inundated with the video a day leading up to launch, then launch lines, waits on activation, etc etc etc… so i’ll assume you’ve gotten your hands on one by now (seeing as hardly any stores are sold out) and have played with it enough to have a feel for what is and isn’t working with the tactile UI. So next question? What’s your iPhone wearing?
Did my rounds on on the options available and decided on the Belkin Remix Case… for now. It’s brilliant really, super sleek simple acrylic case, all clasps are optional (so when it lives in my purse its protected just enough), and when i choose, i can snap on the panel on the back with the rotating belt clasp that doubles as a stand! So yes, you can work at your desk and have it propped up for youtubing and ipoding nicely (calling it what it is, the iPhone really is just a glorified iPod with some internet/email access at this point, i’m not giving up my pearl quite yet). And you can even mount the rubbery piece somewhere to hang your iphone… (does this mean it doubles as your digital picture frame too?)
Gah iPhone day!!! (Can you believe i held back from iPhone gushing this long?) And leave it to people to plan events on iPhone day…. SO i just rushed over to Daniel’s from the Federated Media Author Meetup on the penthouse of Hotel Vitale to gush over our new iPhones (yes we got two). The meetup was a great way to get to meet so much of the FM team/family in person like John Battelle and his lovely wife (who had the most incredible glasses we will have to NotCouture later), as well as catch up with some of the ladies from Sugar Publishing (Yum Sugar, Party Sugar!), Digg folks, Mena Trott (that this blog wouldn’t exist without), … ok and so many more, but for now, just wanted to give you the quick update, while i go find some much needed food. Few more shots of the iphone madness below… and um, i was a skeptic, but its pretty sweet.
Syntes Studio has done a gorgeous job designing O2’s latest phone… the Cocoon. It’s sense of subtlety of the glossy white exterior is gorgeous, and the blue LED scrolling displays are playfully simple… not to mention the way it opens to expose a dark center. Only thing more fun than checking out the beautiful O2 site and images, are the concept sketches and renderings featured on their website. Something about that pebble like sketch demonstrating how when cut open, exposes the unexpected interior, translated very nicely to the final piece. And as for technical details… well it plays music, takes 2mgp pix, etc… cutest detail? It scrolls Good Morning to you when its nested and in alarm clock mode!
Latest gorgeous gadget to find its way to NOTCOT is the Lelo Elise. This is the latest pleasure object from the Swedish company, and they really do go all the way when it comes to scandinavian design details, gift worthy packaging, and technological performance… and in white, it looks like something you might find in the apple store. (The Elise also comes in a rich plum color.) Previously i showed you their Nea which was more pebble like, with the delicate floral illustrations… In the case of the Lelo Elise, “Sculptural simplicity and alluring tactile qualities define her essence. Well in tune with the natural curves of the female body, the stem forms a soft arc for easy access to all those special places.” Lots of unboxing and hands on imagery below ~