Did you know Bloomberg apparently makes most of its profits on a single product/service? Well that was news to me. As far as design/tech inspiration - take a look at this Bloomberg B-Unit. At first glance, it seems like a wallet sized camera/battery/id gizmo. But upon closer look, you will find that it is apparently “one of the most advanced personal authentication devices available. The credit card sized device integrates a biometric sensor-a finger image scanner-to verify the identity of BLOOMBERG ANYWHEREusers, allowing them to log in to their BLOOMBERG TERMINAL from any internet-ready PC, anywhere in the world.” This is the B-Unit: Bloomberg Personal Authentication Device, and i want one. Not for any reason other than, at this moment my wallet and tech filled purse feels an inferiority complex coming on - thats so sleek and pretty, and a nice implementation of tech (although honestly, couldn’t it be even thinner?).
Travelling again - in San Francisco now! (till the 31st) - hence the slight gap in posting - helped a friend pack up his whole life and am now in a hotel using the internet off my treo to write this. Web God of NOTCOT, Jermacide, has been made and offer he can’t refuse - so now i’m up here apt hunting and settling him while probably stumbling upon things to share with you.
But i digress, giving credit where credit is due, Tumi (who’s classic line of suitcases will always have a soft spot in my heart - but the newer tech and colorful stuff wasn’t doing it for me for a few years there) has an incredibly functional/nicely designed travel adapter! That is surprisingly sleek and compact given that it takes in every input and provides every output! And has a cute carrying case. Also Tumi+Ducati teamed up, and i love Ducati…
Cable Yoyo sent us their new Cable Yoyo Pop, which will be available in April! I must admit this post is less a product review and more of a packaging design review. While i had seen the images of the product on the site and press releases, it is the box when it arrived that made me smile. Matte Black. Clean font. Sweet line drawings. Good colors. And preprinted stickers of various designs for the not so creatives to customize their POP!
As for how it works, basically that main piece has a high quality hardcore suction cup. You stick it to anything and wrap your headphones around it. More specifically, they provide you three options. The main piece labeled 1, has the suction and can clip your headphones and plug in the front. When attached to 2, you can clip it on to something. When attached to three, you can peel 3’s adhesive and stick it to just about anything. Or you could simply suction on to the back of your ipod, or window, etc. So Suction then wrap… My only complaint is it works best with simple headphones, esp ones that are symettrical (not one short side and one long piece for the second ear piece)…
The designers at Tray6 have come up with these interesting and pretty little cell phone catches… think clutch meets cell dangle? But these two color/bead shape combinations caught my eye, and if i had a smaller phone, i would be temped to use it on those days you just grab your phone and car keys and run out the door… or when you’re the phone but need that hand so can let go, and it doesn’t completely fall. Pretty bracelet like approach to the functional cell phone dangle.
You probably remember Tray6 from their great umbrella’s we told you about previously.
You may remember this one from a previous post, if not, you can go read it there… this post is to inform you that i recieved one as a gift… and it is great! I was a little skeptical at the quality of the card and whether it was practical to fold it (and how long that would last), but i’ve been playing with it constantly for the last few days, and must admit its brilliant… this new 1gig card of mine is perfect in the treo (and allows me to leave my previous 1 gig card dedicated to music). The hinge you must be gentle with, but certainly will withstand basic usage. It now replaces not only my usb key (which once looked small, and now looks like a behemoth) but also some form of an sd card reader (be it a pcmcia or usb chunk to carry around)… AND it came with that sleek SD card keychain carrier which is sleeker than both my USB key and the standard SD card boxes, and slips nicely into one’s wallet or pocket. At 130$ it was fully worth it. SanDisk SD II Plus
So CES Google goodies - they had these great simple black t-shirts with the graphic on the bottom wrapping around your left side (the OOOOO’s covering love handles)… and some fun magnets as well. [Oh yea and palm had some palm and treo magnets as well - that’s my working white board up on its side thats holding silly magnets between moves at the moment]
So in addition to that notorious Imation USB Bracelet (seriously, would you wear that?) they also launched this USB Lock thing - also cutesy… “forming a handy attachment clip for briefcases, backpacks, or beltloops”. And the tagline “MICRO on the outside! GIGA on the inside!” - it comes in 2 and 4 gig models… But as much as i gripe, it caught my eye in the CES 2006 Showcase, and its aesthetically interesting, i am just disappointed there isn’t more funtion to its form.
Mom sent me this one - (and apparently it was given out at some evening event at CES? so sad i missed that) - but its such a great use of your PCMCIA hole if you don’t have a card reader or something else stuffed up in there… finally dumbing down technology as the perfect hiding place. Or as mom says, the perfect spot to hide some cash so you never forget some money for lunch at the last minute! Or um whatever small secret things you have, in a spot few are bound to go snooping. StashCards. and only $9.99!
Yes yes everyone has it as the news of the day, so here goes the band wagon jumping. MACBOOK PRO - new mactop with the crazy magnetic (awesome for people tripping on your cable) power cord and the built in i-sight… and all the other bells and whistles. Don’t get me wrong, yes i want one, and yes i’m feeling a bit jaded about apple as well. But go check it out if you haven’t already done so,
Ok kids, after CES, destressing with XBOX 360 Live silliness. And not to be silly, but don’t know too many folks with one… so readers… who has one? you? want to play? DOA? PGR? (and sometimes Madden, but football and i are not such a good combo, but learning) Anyhow, i’m notcot there too… =)
But this is a picture from the XBOX display over at the MASSIVE MS section at CES… so more to post on that later. But on the XBOX 360 and the whole LIVE thing… it pains me to admit it is pretty freaking sweet. Well laid out, games are pretty fun, and it is kind of nice just sitting back listening to your personal music (from your media center) and chatting with your friends (or talking shit depending on the game and such) The skinning is quite pretty, and you can customize them. But at the moment i am just obsessed with how beautiful the project gotham racing tracks are, check out the detail when you manage to slow down, the people and environment actually reacting to you… ahhh. ok come play with me already. Real CES posts to come.
ROBORAPTOR… another silly holiday gift (yes, an xmas/bday gift, but i’m not exactly all that religious, so holiday gift works?) Designed and engineered by Mark Tilden (NASA background), these brilliantly fun little robot beings are gorgeous to look at, and highly amusing to leave roaming around the house. Chock full of sensors, and ingenious AI never before seen in such an accesible toy for kids/adults alike… it’s fun and technologically changing the level of robotics in toys as we know it. Boyfriend also just got the Robosapien V2, and you can have him fetching balls, grabbing beer cans, and even dancing and delivering pick up lines for you… He also interacts with my Raptor which is pretty sweet. Click the pic to read more, the Roboraptor and Robosapiens have made many “IT toy of the season” lists this year (from fashion mags to techy sites)… WOWWEE.com
Birthday+holiday gift… i have given in and have converted to the gprs/mobile pda world. Unbranded Unlocked GSM Treo 650 with T-mobile Gprs [Actually this will probably benefit people who like me to get im’s and emails immediately and to YOU notcot readers, since with the great camera i can run around taking pics of amusing things while shopping/wandering through my world, and also memos are key. I’m keeping lists in here, so i forget less of the things i want to share!] … things i love about it… camera works great, sd card expansion and ability to play music nicely, great syncing with Mac (from vcards to well just about everything i can come up with so far).
Progs I can’t live without for Palm OS 5-
MissingSync - best sync ever with Mac
Salling Clicker - I loved this with my old Sony Ericsson’s, even more gorgeous with Treo, and now i can use the Treo as my bluetooth trackpad pretty much
Pocket Tunes - with the iTunes 5 Skin, so gorgeous, works beautifully
Treo Alarm - I can’t do without an alarm on my phone to wake me up wherever i may be… this one does it great.
VolumeCare - You need it, it allows you to bump up volume for everything
VILLAGE SIM! - Best game EVER, so cute. You run the village… you click and drag the little guys around and they go “oooooh”. They build huts. You drag boys on girls and they make babies. [note: ok so thats simplified, also works vice versa, and depends on after the embrace whether they actually get along, if so they may “go inside”, then maybe babies happen]
Filez - So you can actually file browse and see where all those installs go
Verichat - Aim/MSN/Yahoo/etc client, you need to subscribe annually since it goes through third party server - verdict’s still out on that
p.s. if you know of other things i need, or some fun hacks, help me out!
“That was easy.” It is a silly thing to post, but it amused me while i was in Staples waiting in line with a friend. And i’ve always had this soft spot for big red buttons… (long story short, some day my car will have a flip panel red eject button. many ideas what i may do, or not do)… and that human nature iressistability to pushing it. What is that all about? So here is the Staples $4.99 “EASY button” about 4” in diameter and made in plastic, another bizarre manifestation of a marketing ploy for the xmas season… see the fun commercials too. B/c somedays you just need an easy button.
UPDATE! I actually got hands on with an EASY button, FACIL button, and Yahoo! INSTA-YODEL button… videos, pics, etc.
Bar Codes for visualizing data &Design’s exhibition is focused on “Characterized Design” and essentially created a collection of objects which simplified the functions of the everyday into iconic pieces that are reminiscent of mac icons… (see the power switch if you’re questioning my statement… or the trash can?)