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06.17.2006

Interactive guitar and chords guide

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Whether you're a novice or an advanced guitar player, sometimes you may find yourself sitting there in your living room strumming away, and suddenly you're stuck. How do I play that chord? How does that scale work?

Now Chordbook.Com comes to the rescue. Chordbook gives you a flash modeled guitar with more than 1300 guitar chords and inversions. Once you come up with a combination of chords that you like to experiment, you can even save it in My Chords, and hear it strummed. Choose acoustic or electric guitar, left or right handed guitar, and which key to start with. You can put a capo on the neck, move it up and down, and the virtual guitar will show you how it sounds. It shows you 7 different most commonly used scales so you can follow where to put your fingers on the neck. Click on a different key and it’ll show you how to play that as well. Interested in learning about different types of tuning? No problem, it shows you right on screen. Still have questions? The site won’t leave you in a lurch. You can email your questions, plus there’s even a forum where you can talk all about your rock n’ roll guitar problems. And best of all? It’s FREE!

Thanks John W, for the tip!

Posted by maggie    Category: toys
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06.17.2006

Unimat 6-in-1 Cool Tool

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I remember once someone told me about the best wedding gift they ever received. He and his wife got matching Makita power drills. Now that's romantic. Likewise, when I saw the Unimat 6-in-1 Cool Tool I thought to myself 'who cares about picking out china and flatware?' For the couple that likes to tinker together something like this would be infinitely better. The Cool Tool is actually six machines in one. Depending on the configuration it can be used as a jig-saw, wood lathe, drill press, sanding machine, metal lathe or horizontal/vertical mill. And with additional attachments (not included) the system can be built upon to make additional machining tools! I can definitely tell you that I'd use something like this much more than I would nice table linens or a pretty vase.

Posted by Katherine    Category: devices
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06.16.2006

Miniature sized robotic turtle

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It took me awhile to pluck up the courage to actually blog about this one, ‘cause it’s just so “un-techie,” girlie, and silly. But I can resist it no more!

Not only do these tiny walking turtles walk, they play songs too. You can program them to walk in a rhythmic pattern, or have them race against each other. This rhythmic walking pattern can be programmed by “clicking” on the turtle’s shell, and it can store up to 15 “clicks.” What’s more? The turtle shells are interchangeable, so you can even trade with your friends and play mix and match with turtle fashion.

The turtles are made by Japanese company Takara Tomy , which was selected by Time magazine as creator of one of the best inventions of 2005 in the robot category. There are six colors to choose from: Melon, Peach, Orange, Mint, Pineapple, and Soda. If those are not the colors you like, don’t let that stop you. These little turtles have become such a fashion accessory that people have come up with ingenious designs, customizing each detachable shell with nail art and trading them with friends.

Each costs $14.90 USD, and they're available at Toys Brando.Com.HK .

Also available at Dynamism.Com

Posted by maggie    Category: toys
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06.16.2006

RetroGadget*: The first portable cell phone

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It was the very first portable cell phone. It was the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X. It was introduced in 1983. It was a whopping $3,995 and had a waiting list numbering in the thousands. It weighed 28 ounces and measured 13” x 1.75” x 3.5.” It was analog. It boasted one hour of talk time and eight hours of standby time. It was . . .

a brick by today’s standards. Compare it to Motorola’s latest, the RAZR, which weighs in at 3.5 ounces and measures 3.9” x 2.1” x .5,” and can be had for free with a contract. Oh yeah, there was the LED display, too! Can’t forget that!

If you really want one, they’re still available and much cheaper!


* - RetroGadget is a new series that will look back at what once was the latest and greatest in gadgets. You may laugh because something is so absurd by today’s standards. You may bow your head in shame because you once owned one of the featured items. You may cry because you miss a favorite past gadget and start searching eBay for a replacement. Whatever the case, join us as we stroll down memory lane.

Posted by Brian    Category: devices
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06.16.2006

iSplash™ Rugged

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This is for all those times when a only a boombox will do. While the delicate design of an iPod or the compact ease of most mp3 players these days are an essential when it comes to personal music portability, sometimes you just want to send out a blast of rockin' beats for everyone else to hear. For situations like that, the iSplash Rugged is perfect. Though many iPod/mp3 speaker systems will allow you plug in your player and share your tunes (the old-fashioned way) most do not provide the protection and care required for outdoor environments. This is where the Rugged excels, providing a zip connect module with 18" retractable plug and a safe splash-proof casing to keep your iPod dry. For other mp3 players there is a mini-cable jack allowing you to plug in almost anything that outputs audio. The device comes with all other standard boombox accoutrements, such as headphone jacks, high-fidelity stereo speakers, electronic equalizer, and sub-woofer. And, the handle doubles as a stand. So how fun is that? Rock on in the summer sun, near the water, in the sand, or anywhere else for that matter.

Posted by Katherine    Category: devices | home
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06.16.2006

Kodak Wi-Fi digital camera

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Digital cameras are great. You can take a limitless number of pictures, and the immediate ability to look at the quality of pictures I've taken satisfies my urge for instant gratification. It’s all good, except that I dislike the process of loading it up onto my computer. Kodak must have heard me.

The Kodak EasyShare One Series WiFi digital cameras offers the choice of 4.0 megapixels or 6.1 megapixels. Both give you WiFi capability with 3x optical zoom, and a 3.1” rotating touch screen. You can store and organize up to 1,500 pictures with 256 MB of internal memory, and can add even more picture capacity with the SD/MMC card expansion slot.

With WiFi capability and the Kodak EasyShare Dock, you’ll be able to easily transfer pictures and videos to your computer without USB, connect to the Kodak Gallery and email pictures right from the camera. If you’re equipped with the Kodak Photo Printer 500, you’ll be able to print wirelessly as well. Also, with the dock, you’ll be able to charge your camera in approximately 3.5 hours.

At a price of $299.99 USD, it sure is a nifty little device, and I can say goodbye to the USB transfer!

Posted by maggie    Category: devices
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06.16.2006

BUZZ OFF Kennebago fishing shirt

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Now you can scream “Buzz off!” at all those blood-sucking insects when you are on an outdoor trip. Well, maybe not really – the L.L. Bean Buzz Off Shirt is here to take the baton from you. This shirt has been specifically designed for outdoor buffs and is coated with an invisible, odorless, harmless layer of “BUZZ OFF Insect Shield” treatment which repels mosquitos, flies, ticks and chiggers. You can forget spraying on those smelly insect repellents while you are trekking, hiking, fishing , or just on a casual trip – the Buzz Off shirt promises to be your shining knight. The shirt is wrinkle-free and the integrated repellent lasts up to 25 washes.

The shirt is available in four colours, as well as in a long-sleeved version. The short-sleeved version is priced at $46 and the long-sleeved at $49.

Posted by kanchana    Category: wearables
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06.15.2006

New to the Pop crew: Stuart Memo

We looked far and wide for new writers, and were thrilled by the number of qualified, truly quirky people who responded to our invitation to apply. Posts from our new writers have been appearing here for a few weeks now, and it's time to let you know who they are, one at a time.

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From Glasgow, we have Stuart Memo writing about devices, games and accessories. When not writing for Popgadget, Stuart plays bass for the band Data Panik, and works as a software engineer. Unwittingly, he has also become our tech forensics expert and troubleshooter (proving that no good deed goes unpunished).

Data Panik is playing tonight at Bar Bloc in Glasgow (Club Olum) -- admission is free. You can also catch them at The Ghetto in London on July 3rd at a Rockstarz show (a "polysexual mash-up of new great bands and top indie dj's"), and at The Garage in London on July 4th (with Polysics). Additional summer performance dates are up on their website.

Though we wanted Stuart on our team partly because his sample posts were so hilarious, he claims to have no sense of humor in real life.

Posted by Hoyun    Category: current affairs
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06.15.2006

Honda fuel cell car by 2010?!

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According to this post on Sci Fi Tech, Honda has announced that it is planning to bring hydrogen fuel cell cars to the consumer market within the next three to four years.

Having spent a big part of my life in smog-covered metropolis Milano, where non-car weekends need to be regularly planned and enforced by the administration to reduce air pollution, I can’t wait for cars that only emit … water.

Better than the hydrogen running car is the energy station for the home that Honda is working on. The station is able to create hydrogen out of natural gasses and would allow anyone to refuel their car right in their home garage.

Via Sci Fi Tech

Posted by Camilla    Category: eco
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06.15.2006

Underwater MP3 player

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I’m not much of a swimmer (reads: not at all), but whenever I see somebody doing laps in a pool, I often wonder if that’s not the most boring thing to do next to running on a treadmill, I don’t know what is. I would know because I do run/walk on a treadmill sometimes, like once a year, and I can’t imagine doing that without some sort of device to distract or entertain me while doing it.

I was very excited when I read about the SwiMP3 Underwater MP3 Player . It utilizes direct transfer of sound vibrations from the cheekbone to the inner ear to provide an exceptional sound clarity. When the device is placed on any bones of the skull, it leads to vibration of the fluid in the inner ear. Supposedly bone conduction hearing is a safe and well-established sensory capability. I do wonder, however, if it would make me dizzy.

Priced at $199.99 USD, currently, the SwiMP3 only has a 128MB model available, and the capacity cannot be expanded due to its need to be sealed watertight. It can play only MP3 files, but the good news is that you can use the player as deep as 10 feet, it comes with a built-in lithium rechargeable battery that gives you approximately 4 hours playtime, plus, and it’s compatible with both PC and Mac.

Now all I have to do is learn how to swim, and start counting... Was that 1 lap or 10 that I just swam???

Posted by maggie    Category: devices
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