Once I saw this, I just couldn’t walk away without having one in my hot little hands. True, this is just plain silly, but with a name like that, what can I do other than embrace it and buy one for my niece.
Peel and stick decorations for your phones, laptops, PSPs, or your rock n’ roll guitars. There were various styles to choose from at the computer ghetto mall close to my house here in Hong Kong, but you can get yours via PhatPhones.Com for £4.95, or many other merchants on Ebay at prices ranging from $9.99 to $19.99 USD.
I used to have one of those first generation PDAs when PDAs were still in monochrome color and the most you could use it for was to keep track of your appointments and some addresses and telephone numbers. Okay, maybe you could pretend to read a book, but there really weren’t that many eBooks available back then. And I always thought it was sort of a waste of technology to have such an “advanced” device just to tell me what day it was. Plus half the time I could barely see what was on the screen because that screen just wasn’t very bright and not very easy to read. Nonetheless, since I’m such a gadgety kinda gal, I ran around with one in my workbag anyway.
Now, let me introduce you to something almost as small as a PDA, but can do a whole heck of a lot more. The new Sony Vaio UX series micro PCs are small and lightweight, but they come fully equipped with a 30 GB hard drive, wireless WAN/Lan, Bluetooth technology, a 4.5” LCD touch screen, a slide-out backlit keyboard, built-in microphone, and TWO (not just one) built-in cameras, one in the front facing out, and one facing the user.
Check out "the interactive clothing concept," brought to you by Uranium Jeans, a French company that has started making jeans and clothing with embedded thin flexible micro screens. "Luminous and communicative," and "the very latest thing," says the company on its website.
While I want to believe that a pair of Uranium jeans are "alive," and will give me "the real sensation of turning into a bionicle [sic] being" I just can't seem to get my big whoopties on for a pair of jeans that have a scrolling text bar embedded into them. Even with the ability to customize the message and add images I have to ask myself why I'd want to turn my body into a billboard (and in case you're wondering, no I don't like designer logos either, so why push the equivalent with technological steroids?)
But logo madness aside, they're not even cute. Not even. With all the aesthetic subtlety of the spectaculars at Times Square, I'm not sure what proud fashionista could seriously doll up in one of these and keep a straight face. I mean, the crazy club thing has its place, but companies like Cyberdog have been rocking that for years, and though they primarily use LEDs and EL wire, Enlighted works the blinkie bling better than almost anyone out there. I can't imagine Uranium taking off for anything but novelty wear.
Oh well. Uranium has already opened up shop in France with a St. Tropez store this week and a boutique in Los Angeles planned for the end of summer. So I guess we'll see...
Hundreds of websites promise to match soul mates, but the lack of regulation and accountability in the industry is surprising. The Washington Post is running a great piece on the ramifications of the online meet and greet. Sadly, it's not all tea and cupcakes, Mary Ann. Casual keyboard banter has led to problems with STD notification, fraudulent profiles to entice new users, and the standard cases of cash and ticket scams that have plagued mail order bride companies for decades.
Young Pakistanis worldwide have decided to go a different route and integrate a dating site with a respectable online version of the TV show "The Dating Game." Shaadi Online picks a profile for one lucky lady that's shown to the viewing audience. Interested viewers respond with their willingness to marry the nice lady, and the computer screens all of the potential applicant profiles. The bride-to-be picks a gentleman out of the top three and they get married after introductions and marriage counseling. No muss, no fuss, and it's kind of respectable when compared to MySpace.
Well this one is exclusively for the men – a pair of sandals that are quite neat to have on a camping trip or at the beach. Not that they look extraordinary, but because it's a cool idea to have a bottle opener built into the outer sole of each sandal – especially when you are dehydrated and realize that you forgot to carry a bottle opener along. The sandals have been created as a tribute to pro-surfer Mick Fanning and are available for $39.95 to $43.95 at DogFunk.com.
If there is a universal word that is synonymous with adolescence, it is acne. The one thing I remember about acne is that all the ugly break-outs always mysteriously and precisely surfaced just before important events. And not to mention those frantic, vain attempts at appeasing them with expensive creams and weird looking home-made concoctions. To add to this, the primary advice given by those clued-up on acne remedies was a very painful one to follow - avoid sweets and chocolates as both of them will surely give you zits.
Well, time to introduce you to a contrary opinion - Borba, a manufacturer of cosmetics and “ingestible skin-care products,” has released the “Chocolate Clarifying Bar,” a Swiss dark chocolate that contains the patented Borba “Skin Balance Clarifying Aqua-Less Crystalline Powder” to promote skin clarity, prevent break-outs and reduce redness and irritation associated with acne.
If this works, pampering yourself with chocolate remorselessly was never so easy – that is if you are a chocolate-lover looking for an acne remedy. The Borba skin care chocolate is available online only at Nordstrom. You could also visit Borba's retail locator for more outlets.
Via Strange New Products.
The Vinyl Killer has been around for a few years now. It's a clever little motorized bus that drives around in circles on top of any 12-inch vinyl record. It has a stylus on its underside, so that when it's on its merry trip it will play music from whatever record you've chosen. The bus is more of a novelty that any serious replacement for your turntable, as the speaker is quite small, and listening to music from a moving source can be quite disorientating. It is amazing to watch though! Why am I talking about this now when it's been available for a few years? Well, the creators, Razyworks, have recently released the Swarovski Crystal Limited Bling Bling Edition. For $520 you can be the talk of the town with your crystal encrusted battery-operated minibus. Unfortunately, the talk of the town will most likely be "Did you hear about the person that paid $520 for a toy record player?!" For the less flash among us, the standard $70 version is still available.
I practically stopped dead in my tracks when I saw this little thing sitting in the display window of an electronics store here in Hong Kong. I just couldn’t get over how little it is! Measuring at just 2.68" x 2.72" x 4.29", it fits easily in the palm of my hand. In fact, I’d be afraid it may get lost if I just dropped it into my handbag!
The JVC Everio G series hard disk drive camcorder weighs approximately a pound, and comes in either 20GB or 30GB capacity. You can get up to 37 hours of recording in Eco mode. Ranging from 10x to 32x optical zoom, depending on the model, you’ll be able to zoom all the way to China!
Tiny camera doesn’t mean miniature sized viewing screen; this little baby comes equipped with a 2.7” 16:9 widescreen clear LCD monitor. Another nice feature is that at a touch of a button, you can check the remaining battery time and hard disk space, even when the camera is off.
In addition to easy sharing by using the USB 2.0 fast transfer with other devices like your computer, TV, VCR/DVD recorder, printer, and direct DVD burning without a PC via the optional Everio Share Station, there's also an SD memory card slot for extra storage and easy data transfer, convenient for recording and transferring video and still images to other equipment.
Suggested retail price is listed at $900 in the US. In the streets of Hong Kong, it’s priced at HK$5,650, so that’s approximately $730 US. You could also get an extra battery and 30GB space to make it go even further -- they’ll cost you about $350 and $1,100 HK respectively.
Wanroom and San-X, the Japanese makers of these niftaaay plushie toys are insane. Insanely cute, that is. Each stuffed toy takes on the persona of an everyday household object, with special character names, and a sly little hidden compartment for storage or a mobile phone holder. Whether it's the cute little sofa, the bed (with slippers) or the bath/shower complete with bubbles you will have a hard time picking just one. In fact, you may "enjoy Wanroom life" so much that you'll have to get them all.
The latest offering from the world of body electronics is an intelligent shirt that can sense the wearer’s vital signs such as body temperature, heart rate and respiration. The Smartshirt from Sensatex, a developer of integrated smart textile systems, is a cotton shirt that lives up to its name. Made of fully-washable fabric that has a patented nanotechnology-based conductive fibre seamlessly integrated within, the t-shirt is designed to digitize the wearer information and then transmit it via a wireless connection to a remote back-end system for real-time monitoring. Another advantage of the wireless connectivity is that it eliminates the need for a trained technician to be present to perform the data transfer or retrieval.
The technology used to develop the Smartshirt was first commissioned by the U.S Department of Defense, DARPA, presumably because of the huge investments involved, and took 5 years to see the light of day.
The applications of this invention are innumerable and some of them include remote monitoring of patients with chronic illnesses and elderly patients, training support for athletes, monitoring of individuals who work with hazardous materials, and tracking of professional truck drivers’ vital signs to alert them of fatigue. The price tag on the t-shirt is not available as yet and the actual deployment will begin later this year. The company is looking for beta testers – contact them and you could be one of the lucky ones to get a feel of the Smartshirt for yourself.