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04.30.2009

Capture high quality audio on your iPod with Mikey

Posted by kanchana    Category: devices | entertainment
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04.30.2009

Mr Brightside keyboard light is your light in shining armor

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Imagine being in such a dark environment that the keys on your laptop keyboard are really difficult to perceive and you wished earnestly for a source of light to keep you going. Honestly, though we don't see such desperateness ever arising (your laptop display already lights up the keyboard well enough, remember ?), this little USB light called Mr Brightside can put a focus light right on top of your laptop keyboard.

The light plugs into your USB port and juts out at a right angle to illuminate the keyboard. Its flexible neck allows for easy angle adjustment. Each individual light costs $9 and a pack of three would be not only be cheaper at $20, but could also be hooked up to different USB ports to provide more light in case you are not satisfied with the intensity of one - quite like a floodlit football match. Jokes apart, Mr Brightside could prove an ideal partner on a camping trip or if you have the bad habit of working in the dark.

Via Coolest Gadgets.

Posted by kanchana    Category: accessories | computers | novelty
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04.29.2009

Sony offers some exciting deals for Mother's Day

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We have heard enough about the recession and how more spending will actually help make things better, so here comes an opportunity to put some of that into practice.

Sony has a couple of interesting deals targeted at mothers, and presumably in pink. The first one is the pink Cyber-shot S980BDL. This 12.1MP camera comes with a sharp 2.7-inch display, 4X-optical zoom, face-detection, and digital image stabilization among other features. The offer entitles you, in addition, to a 2GB Memory Stick PRO Duo, and a matching floral black and pink case to protect from bumps and scratches. Which is a pretty good deal at $149.99. The second offer is that you will get $150 off on any purchase of Sony Vaio CS that is bundled along with a Dooney & Burke Tote Bag. Which essentially means that you get the tote bag free with your purchase (the bag itself costs $149.99).

We say, if you haven't yet begun, there not a better time than to start splurging for Mother's Day.

Via Chip Chick.

Posted by kanchana    Category: deals
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04.29.2009

Wooden Projection Clock gives you a luxurious reminder of the hour

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Now time will adjust to your preferences and we are only half-joking considering that the Auto-Rotate Wooden Projection Clock from Oregon Scientific has a display that can be set to a horizontal or vertical format by choice.

The USP of this good-looker happens to be two-fold - the first being that the display automatically adjusts depending on the horizontal or vertical orientation of the clock similar to the play-back feature on your digital camera, and the second being that the time is actually projected onto the nearest wall for easy night-time viewing. Not to mention that the large LCD screen itself screams for attention even as it is encased within a lovely wooden casing. It displays not only the time bright and clear, but also the interior temperature and even the weather forecast for the next 12-24 hours.

But unlike the weather, some other predictions are much tougher to make. Such as when you will be able to lay your hands on this one. For now, keep looking out for the status on the site to change from "Coming Soon" to "In Stock".And keep $130 handy.

Via DVICE.

Posted by kanchana    Category: accessories
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04.28.2009

Swine flu: Everything you need to know about swine flu--and what to avoid

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Inevitably, Twitter is atwitter with swine flu tweets of varying reliability. CNET's Larry Magid describes the authoritative swine flu tweets from the US Centers for Disease Control, along with warnings about regarding other swine flu tweets with caution. CNN also regards Twitter as a mixed blessing for swine flu info.

As I'm writing this, it's clear the media have gone overboard with the swine flu tale. No doubt people are grateful for a distraction from the world's economic crisis, but swine flu 24-7 is, at this point, generating unnecessary alarm. In the immortal words of Douglas Adams, Don't Panic.

You may, however, want to keep handy the following list of pretty reliable sources on swine flu. They will tell you when panic is appropriate.

Updates from the US Centers for Disease Control:
http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/

Updates from the World Health Organization, aimed largely at medical professionals:
http://www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/en/index.html

The Washington Post's swine flu central, with some videos:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/health/swineflu/index.html?sid=ST2009042703878

The New York Times has a swine flu central too, with interactive graphics and videos:
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/subjects/i/influenza/swine_influenza/index.html

Yahoo News roundup of stories:
http://news.search.yahoo.com/news/search?p=swine+flu

Swine flu FAQs on About.com's Patient Empowerment pages:
http://patients.about.com/od/patientempowermentissues/a/swindflu2009.htm

And, also inevitably, Wikipedia already has an entry on the current outbreak. In fact, mysteriously, it has two entries. Expect constant changes here, not all of them trustworthy, and heed the Wikipedia caveat--and plea: "This article may require cleanup (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Cleanup) to meet Wikipedia's quality standards (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style). Please improve this article (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Swine_influenza&action=edit) if you can. (April 2009)"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swine_influenza

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009_H1N1_flu_outbreak

Posted by Tam    Category: body | current affairs | on the web
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04.28.2009

Pilotfish conceptualizes the Ondo phone just for music lovers

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If folks at Pilotfish, the Munich based industrial design firm, could have it their way, you could soon be holding a mobile phone that can be twisted, bent and roughed up - all for the noble cause to create more music for the world via your mobile phone.

Seriously, the Ondo "music phone" concept is one that totally shakes up each one of the traditional ways in which we have always used a mobile phone. It is shaped like a candy bar and has a touch sensitive surface, the upper portion of which is divided into three segmented OLED panels. Each segment has its own memory and can be detached from the phone and clipped on to another person or instrument as a standalone microphone, or even exchanged among different Ondo owners for music sharing. The center of the phone itself is bendable for the purposes of editing the recorded music and creates a tangible sound editing experience as you tweak the recordings. Call it one terrific sound mixer, or the most unique mobile phone concept ever, the Ondo takes first place in either category.

I am just reminded of a recent statement made by a legendary sportsman when he was asked "What is your biggest dream?". He replied, "Dreams are only for people who are sleeping". And we hope that this awesome concept will not end up being just somebody's enchanting dream.

More photos and video after the jump.

Via Engadget.

Continue reading "Pilotfish conceptualizes the Ondo phone just for music lovers"

Posted by kanchana    Category: cell phones
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04.27.2009

Trispecs: Better than X-Ray Specs Any Day

Gadgets are cool, but let's face it, carrying all that techno-swag can get a little burdensome after awhile. This is especially true when you're trying to answer your phone while listening to your MP3 player. And when you add a headset and headphones into the mix its just a FAIL all the way around. But Tri-Specs Inc. has created Trispecs in a stylish attempt to free you from your techie-clutter.

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Continue reading "Trispecs: Better than X-Ray Specs Any Day"

Posted by sherri    Category: devices | wearables
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04.27.2009

Silver Seal washable keyboard gives your peripheral its fundamental right to hygiene

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Tossing that dirty keyboard into a tub of warm soap water for a clean-up is no longer an urge that you have to repeatedly supress due to those well-understood, practical reasons. The Silver Seal washable keyboard adds a simple and utterly sensible innovation to the normal keyboard to fend off the disastrous consequences - waterproofing. A gotcha moment for you too there, wasn't it ?

The Silver Seal USB keyboard can be dunked into a tub of water, held under a running tap, or simply tossed into the dishwasher along with the rest of your utensils which are waiting to get scrubbed up. In any case, cleaning this keyboard is a no-nonsense matter since it has a special Seal Shield that makes it totally water-cum-spill proof. And laser etching ensures that the keys won't fade off either. The shield also has an "Antimicrobial Protection" layer that makes sure that the mucky microbes are kept at bay.

With such features under its belt, the functional specs can't really matter, can they? For me personally, it brings in the huuuge freedom to be clumsy with the cuppa while I am working. Totally precious. Available at Firebox.com for around $58.

Via The Red Ferret.

Posted by kanchana    Category: peripherals
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04.26.2009

Swarovski D:light: D:lovely and D:vine

When you think of Swarovski crystals a few words may come to mind - luxe, gaudy, and expensive. Swarovski crystals have bejeweled everything from tacky art to toilets. But with the unveiling of its first watch collection at Beselword, the premier trade event for the watch and jewelry industries, you might want to add classy and clever to that word association list.

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Continue reading "Swarovski D:light: D:lovely and D:vine"

Posted by sherri    Category: luxury
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04.24.2009

Green Tech: New, improved composting in your kitchen

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Compost is, I speak from experience, just as good for your soil and your plants as everybody says. Friendly microbes do nearly all of the work of breaking waste plant material and kitchen scraps down for recycling into growing new plants. But bringing microbes and material together into blissful union can be a bit of a hassle for the human composter. I speak from experience here, too.

Doing it outside takes some labor: turning it over and keeping it moist so the microbes can do their work. It also takes time, usually a year or more. And space. A compost pile is not a thing of beauty, so you'll want to stick it somewhere unobtrusive. That usually means outdoor space larger than a small yard. And it generally rules out yard-free dwellings altogether, even though compost would do your houseplants and windowboxes a world of good.

Continue reading "Green Tech: New, improved composting in your kitchen"

Posted by Tam    Category: eco
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04.24.2009

Obama flash drive bundles more history into your storage

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This is perhaps the only thing that my geekdom was missing - a gizmo with the similing face of the one of the most popular US presidents on it. The Obama Drive from Active Media is a 2GB fash drive that not only facilitates that (Obama’s image is on it), but also comes preloaded with 30MB of material containing, among other things, his inaugural speech and his famous "Race Speech" in MP3 format. There is almost 1-hour of audio and textual PDF versions of his other speeches, plus an official (meaning, the White House) Obama photo.

Also be informed that this cool drive is waterproof. A must-grab at under $10 from Amazon.

Via Chip Chick.

Posted by kanchana    Category: devices | peripherals | portable media
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04.23.2009

iLuv these Speakers

iLuv, the accessory company built off the shiny, silver back of the iPod unveiled it's latest must have accoutrement for your mp3 listening pleasure. The iSP100 Mini Portable Speaker have arrived just in time for spring, summer, and any impromptu bouts of dance fever.

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Continue reading "iLuv these Speakers"

Posted by sherri    Category: accessories | devices | entertainment
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04.23.2009

64 things every geek should know

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It is easy to find your geek quotient as you run through this rather exhaustive list that challenges and completely shakes up your mettle. The list we are talking about is called "64 things every geek should know" and I sheepishly confess, I was left shaking my head to many of the items which are on it.

To let you in on some that I missed and, since then, have uploaded to my brain in an almost Matrix style - "Bypass a Computer Password on All Major Operating Systems", "Replace a Laptop Keyboard", and "Lock Your Computer with a USB Drive". Plus some that I really would consider for future upload : "Learn At Least One Fictional Language" (totally leaning towards Bordunian to honor my favorite comic character Tintin), "Increase Wifi Range" (wouldn't that impress my husband), and put off my laziness in trying to "Use a Camera in Manual Mode".

Head on to Laptoplogic.com to discover some embarrassing truths about your own geekhood.

Posted by kanchana    Category: on the web
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04.23.2009

The BBC releases a new Creative Commons show

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One of the complaints of British (and non-British) citizens not resident in the UK is that they are not allowed access to any of the BBC's online output, or to its fabulously popular catch-up service, BBC iPlayer.

But now it seems that the BBC is taking some steps to correct the imbalance, with the launch of its first ever online show... that everyone is allowed to watch. Yay! Released under a Creative Commons licence, the first episode of a technology show called R&D TV is available to download now from this BBC FTP server.

Via Ars Technica.

Posted by Diane    Category: entertainment | on the web
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04.22.2009

Customer service via IM: good idea?

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On Monday, I was thinking of buying a new cell phone. Actually, I'd been thinking about it for a while: I don't even have Internet access on my phone - in fact, I've never even Twittered from it! - which considering how much time I spend writing about technology (and on the Internet) each week, is more than a little shameful. But I was holding out for the right phone, the right deal - and finally, I thought I'd found it.

But even though the deal I liked looked good, I still had a couple of questions about it. The thought of calling the customer care center filled me with dread, though: I always seem to be hanging on the line for hours and they always try to give me the hard sell. So should I just take the gamble and click on "buy" or wait until I could trudge into town and ask a cashier for more details? I was mulling this over when I saw something flashing in the corner of the screen: an invitation to chat in real time with a customer services rep. Over an instant-messaging system built into the functionality of the site.

Continue reading "Customer service via IM: good idea?"

Posted by Diane    Category: on the web
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04.21.2009

Kyocera trots out a gorgeous new foldable OLED cellphone

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It is as portable as your wallet, runs on kinetic energy and sports an expansive screen that would put the best touchscreens to shame. In short, maker Kyocera has every reason to be boastful about this latest kinetic energy powered cellphone called the Kyocera EOS, which takes the future of cellphone design a notch or two higher with respect to creativity.

The EOS, designed by Susan McKinney, is a clamshell phone which can be folded up into a form factor equivalent to a wallet or clutch-purse thanks to a flexible OLED screen. When in use as a cellphone, the soft, semi-rigid polymer "living" skin which surrounds the display transforms itself into a keypad that dissolves right back once you are done. At other times, you can unfold the phone to the complete extent of its massive screen and live out your fantasies. Perhaps the best part of this phone is that it gets its juice from human interaction - the more you use it, the more it loads up on battery. Don't see it yet ? The kinetic power means we will finally get to stop cussing at phones that go dead when we most need them. Isn't that such a relief.

While we are having fun imagining how much better our lives would be with this one, some busy bees from the Kyocera teams at San Diego and Bangalore are working their heads off trying to get this early EOS design into a reality in their future cellphone lineup.

More images after the jump.

Via Inhabitat. Photos courtesy Jeffrey Sass and Core77.

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Posted by kanchana    Category: cell phones
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04.21.2009

Nintendo Controller Handbag: Retro Never Looked So Good

Attention old school gaming fanatics. Here's your chance to put your love of video games and fashion on display for the world to see. Hot off the Etsy.com runway, courtesy of inhope -- teacher, gamer, and craftswoman, comes the Nintendo Controller handbag.

Continue reading "Nintendo Controller Handbag: Retro Never Looked So Good"

Posted by sherri    Category: gaming
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04.20.2009

Sony Vaio: Style and Function

For all you feisty fashionistas out there looking for the perfect gadget to complement your ensemble, Sony Japan may have you covered. As companies begin to design machines that are stylish and functional, Sony wants a piece of the luxe pie. On April 18, Sony Japan will be unveiling their answer to the Dell Adamo and the MacBook Air in the newest addition to the Sony Vaio C series.

Continue reading "Sony Vaio: Style and Function"

Posted by sherri    Category: computers
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04.20.2009

Make way for... the new Segway?

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I always wanted a Segway so much. I never knew anyone who actually had one (apart from Niles in Frasier, and former President George Bush, who fell off one in 2003) but I thought it was the perfect transportation (apart from when it rains). The rest of the world didn't quite agree: Segway sales never went through the roof as the designers had hoped, although they have remained reasonably popular among the gadget-loving wealthy and even the occasional police force.

Now the same company is joining with General Motors to make another new form of transportation which they hope will be even more popular: a very cute little electric car designed for urban driving called the Puma (which stands for personal urban mobility and accessibility). General Motors are clearly hoping this will help stave off bankruptcy as well as being better for the environment than standard petrol cars.

It definitely wins my "I want one!" test... What do you think?

Posted by Diane    Category: cars
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04.18.2009

Twitter, what are you doing?

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An amusing take on Twitter, the e-fad du jour. It turns the Twitter question--what are you doing?--into an occasion for self-examination by Twitterers. Warning: this video was not put together by a fan.

Thanks to Katy Abby at Windows Secrets.

Posted by Tam    Category: culture
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04.17.2009

The neti pot for hay fever and other nasal allergies gets another thumbs up

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A few weeks ago I wrote about Harvard Medical School's advice on dealing with sinusitis, the medical name for a sinus infection. To my surprise, one item the august medical authorities were recommending for sinusitis was an ancient Indian technology, the neti pot.

Now we hear from yet another august authority: the New York Times. This time the topic is nasal allergies. The paper sorts through the evidence and arrives at the same conclusion: Washing out your nasal passages with salty water from a neti pot is medically helpful: it can help prevent spring pollen, hay fever, and other nasal allergies.

In my neck of the woods, tree pollen is in full flower, and grass pollen will be along before we know it. So this up-to-date advice praising a thousand year-old medical practice comes not a moment too soon.

Here's a video showing how to use a neti pot. It's not really as icky as you might imagine. Warning: the video ends with a pitch to order neti-related products. You don't really need them; ordinary non-iodized salt will do fine.

Posted by Tam    Category: body
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04.17.2009

Hot stone grill adds some sizzle to outdoor cooking

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Here's an early (very early) tip for Father's Day this year, if your Dad likes grilling as much as most Dads of my acquaintance seem to do. Giles & Posner are selling a hot stone grill that not only looks very stylish (for a grill) but brings out the natural flavors of foods with no need for fats or oil. The grills can be used inside or out, and retail for around $43. The only snag? They seem to be UK and Ireland-only so far.

Via Boing Boing Gadgets.

Posted by Diane    Category: eat/drink
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04.17.2009

Got a Hunch? Make a choice!

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Feeling a little indecisive today? Not sure what to have for lunch, whether to stay in tonight or see a movie or even if you should stick with your boyfriend a little longer or kick him to the curb?

Hunch could help you out. It's a website that will run through a range of options with you to help you make a reasoned decision - a modern version of the pro-con list but a lot more fun, in other words.

CNet used it to decide on that age old question: Mac or PC? But there are no limits to what Hunch could help you with. Probably.

Posted by Diane    Category: on the web
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04.16.2009

The Ripple bluetooth headset is bound to make heads turn

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It makes me secretly happy (no more?) to know that technology is going all out to woo the fairer sex and what better than to be able to lay my hands on accessories-cum-gizmos that are not only visually appetizing but also happen to satisfy my hunger for sensible technology.

The latest debutante in this category is from designer Ilya Fridman - the Ripple bluetooth headset. The idea behind this design was the conceptualization of "smooth fluid sound waves, like that of ripples in a still body of water". And the result is this gorgeous "earring" which actually camouflages an ultra minimalistic headset that clips on to your earlobe unlike the conventionally styled headsets that remain suspended over your ear. The outer covering can be flipped open to reveal the microphone and once you are done talking, pressing the button in the centre of the light ring allows it to remain active for listening to music. Well, thanks to this designer's creativity, we are one step closer to looking like airbrushed glam dolls, not very unlike the one pictured above. And I sincerely hope that this terrific product is carried over by gentle ripples to the safety of the shores, ahem…stores.

Via Yanko Design.

Posted by kanchana    Category: accessories | wearables
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04.16.2009

Get dressed for peace

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It might be a more unusual rallying cry than you're used to (what do we want? T-shirts!) but it is genuine all the same. KamGi Chak and Kyle Finch, the founding members of clothing company Be Love are on the board of Common Peace: The Center for the Advancement of Nonviolence, which provides nonviolence workshops in Los Angeles.

All the company's shirts (which feature icons of peace including Gandhi and the Buddha) are guaranteed sweatshop-free and most are organic. There are styles for men, women and children and prices start from $30 - although Treehugger has a discount code.

Chak and Finch donate 10 percent of Be Love's profits to Common Peace and use their website as a forum for debate about nonviolence and peace.

Posted by Diane    Category: wearables
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04.15.2009

The Personality Project: Women of Personality

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It seems that over the last five years (the amount of time Popgadget has been around), I've talked a lot about how women are under-valued in technology and business, so it makes me very happy to talk about something that very much celebrates the successes of women: The Personality Project: Women of Personality.

The Personality Project: WOP, is a FREE e-book, written by the PR and Digital Marketing guru, Rohit Bhargava, bestselling author of Personality Not Included. After Bhargava published PNI, he was overwhelmed by how many women wrote to him about their experiences in business, and he was inspired to write Women of Personality, to showcase some entrepreneurial women who have used their dynamic personalities to create strong brands. I'm truly humbled to be included in this group, which includes amazing women like Kare Anderson, Emmy-winning journalist and author, and Dr. Marcia Firestone, founder of the Women Presidents' Organization.

Please do check it out- you can read it in full, just below, or just click the image on top of this post to download your own copy. Also- if you have in mind someone who should be included in Women of Personality, please do go to the WOP site and let Rohit know, as he's already working on Volume 2.

The Personality Project: Women of Personality

Posted by Mia    Category: current affairs
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04.15.2009

Teenagers tend to socialize online with those they already know, reveals study

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We hear a lot about teenagers being bullied or stalked or induced into anorexia via their use of social networking sites but how representative are the big news stories that grab the headlines and instill fear into the heart of every parent?

Not that representative at all, actually, according to a study undertaken in 2008 and reported in the last week in USA Today.

A team of California researchers asked 251 teenagers about who they communicate with online (and their motives for that communication) and found that teens were mostly using the Internet to catch up with and stay close to existing friends, rather than to meet new ones.

Continue reading "Teenagers tend to socialize online with those they already know, reveals study"

Posted by Diane    Category: on the web
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04.14.2009

The weirdness of computer-human interaction

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Computer-human interaction can be weird. So maybe it's reasonable that some of the ideas on display at the recent Computer-Human Interaction 2009 conference were a bit strange too, or at least strange-looking.

Technology Review has a roundup here. A sampling:
--odd goggles that permit the user to control a computer with eye movements alone.
--communicating with a mouse via sensations of hot and cold.
--turtle-shaped photo-displaying clocks that, when synced, show related photos.
--a small robot that can trundle a cell phone around.
--a camera and mic embedded in a matchstick whose purpose I will not even try to describe.

But, trust me, it's weird.

Posted by Tam    Category: computers | current affairs
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04.14.2009

Louise Graham combines ceramics with everyday objects

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I can't decide whether these are weird or cute but they certainly are inventive. Ceramic artist Louise Graham is on a mission to make everyday objects beautiful. The egg cup stand above uses velcro to turn part of a box into an egg cup and the pourer below will fit a variety of milk containers.

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Prices start at around $41 from British store Pedlars, or you could always smash some of your grandmother's old china and see if you can re-capture the old-meets-new sensibility for free.... (Good luck with that).

Via Hygge Nook.

Posted by Diane    Category: home
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04.11.2009

Quirky pincushion ring is "sew" attractive

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I'm not a fan of sewing: there are enough perfectly good clothes shops and tailors in the world without adding my ham-fisted attempts to make something to the mix. But I hear making your own clothes is making something of a comeback in these credit crunch-y times and this ring would make the perfect gift for the seamstress in your life: it combines cool and quirky jewelry with the functionality of a pincushion, and is extremely portable.

Buy it from Art Star for $150.

Via Mighty Goods.

Posted by Diane    Category: novelty | wearables
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04.10.2009

Privacy protestors block Google Street View "spy" car

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Street View, Google's attempt to index the entire world in 360 degree photographs, hit a snag this week in the small village of Broughton in Buckinghamshire, England.

Residents formed a human wall, stopping Google's vehicle from entering the village or capturing any useful pictures of its outskirts.

Paul Jacobs, who spotted the Street View car and called an impromptu demonstration, says he was motivated by a fear of burglary, as the area has seen three burglaries in the last six weeks: "If our houses are plastered all over Google, it's an invitation for more criminals to strike."

What do you think of Street View? I know I've had fun using it, but perhaps I'd feel differently if my house were clearly visible. Or if I had anything worth stealing.

Via The Guardian.

Posted by Diane    Category: current affairs | on the web
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04.10.2009

Leica M8 special edition will be out in pristine white

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Ever wonder why the "perceived" value of any gadget rises parabolically when you attach the tag "special edition" to it ? Well, not to worry if you haven't, you can still gawk at this all-white Leica M8, due to be out soon in extremely limited numbers and exclusively from Leica.

The German camera maker has retained the specs of the original M8 rangefinder though, while dousing the body in pure white - the camera comes with an all-white casing, a white leather trim and brushed aluminium controls. Even the lens - Elmarit 28mm ƒ2.8 aspherical - follows suit with a silver finish. Truly some lovely eye-candy to add to your photo equipment if you are a rich kid, even if you choose to overlook the trademark hand-assembled body and fine quality that each Leica has been traditionally associated with.

No news about the pricing or release date just yet, so just keep your fingers crossed and expect to drop a huge bundle on this little fella.

Via Wired Gadget Lab.

Posted by kanchana    Category: cameras
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04. 9.2009

Joint implants could be specially tailored in future

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Researchers at the University of Leeds in the UK are working on ways to make joint implants last longer. At the moment, a knee or hip replacement only lasts about 15 years at best but the team of British scientists led by Sotiris Korossis is hoping to engineer new implants that won't wear out so quickly by working out how to sculpt them to suit an individual's skeleton. If that individual is an athletic type who needs replacement surgery following a lot of sporting activity, it's important to consider ways to minimize that risk in future, too - so the team is also looking into how to specially tailor implants for different sports in order to make them last longer. If they succeed, it's a win-win situation: fewer invasive medical procedures for patients and less investment for hospitals. Go team.

Via New Scientist.

Posted by Diane    Category: body | current affairs
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04. 8.2009

Nintendo DSi: Third Time's the Charm

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Since the debut of the olive green-screened Game Boy in 1989, Nintendo has proven time and time again that they are the top dog in the realm of handheld gaming. Their current handheld device, the Nintendo DS (short for Dual Screen) has seen monumental success, selling 100 million units worldwide to date. The powers that be at Nintendo are determined to keep the momentum going with the latest iteration of the DS series, the Nintendo DSi. The third in the DS series, the 'i' stands for "individualization" or "eye" as it alludes to one of the new hardware additions.

Continue reading "Nintendo DSi: Third Time's the Charm"

Posted by sherri    Category: devices | gaming
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04. 8.2009

Rock Band ottoman adds style, minimizes clutter

Rock Band has quickly become one of the most popular video games of the decade, if not all time. After the initial outlay, it doesn't cost anything, making it a great recession-busting activity for all the family.

The only problem is, it's kinda bulky, what with the drum pads, guitar, microphones and all. It's not something you want cluttering up your living room when the neighbours come round for a sophisticated dinner party, for example.

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That's why the Rock Band Ottoman, above, is the perfect answer to the "what the heck do I do with all this stuff?" question: it looks like any other ottoman but is specially bullt to house all your gaming accessories and can be used as a (sleek-looking) seat-slash-footstool as well.

Continue reading "Rock Band ottoman adds style, minimizes clutter"

Posted by Diane    Category: gaming | home
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04. 7.2009

President Obama presents Queen with iPod - bad move?

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Although President Obama is a great representative for the US in many respects he has become known on the other side of the pond for being a bit of a lame gift-giver. When he met up with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown in Washington last month, he handed him a pack of 25 DVDs. Which weren't compatible with British DVD players. Hardly the most thoughtful present.

This week he's been in the UK meeting The Queen, the 82 year old monarch who has been head of state of Britain and the Commonwealth for over 50 years and who is not known for her tech savvy. And he brought her... an iPod. Now, I wouldn't turn down a free MP3 player myself, but it hardly seems like Obama was considering his audience. Couldn't he have got her something more personal, more appropriate? And he even got it engraved, so there's no way she can get a refund.

Continue reading "President Obama presents Queen with iPod - bad move?"

Posted by Diane    Category: culture | current affairs | devices
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04. 7.2009

Multifunctional mug lets you drink coffee and make plans

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I always seem to have my best ideas (or what I think at the time are my best ideas) when I'm relaxing and don't have a pad of paper handy. So I was excited to see this new invention, which provides for those times when you have a few ideas but nowhere to write them: it's write-on glassware which has times pre-printed on it so you can have a morning cup of coffee and plan your day (or write down anything else that occurs to you).

It's $16 from Fred Flare and comes with an eraser-topped pencil.

Via Bloom.

Posted by Diane    Category: design | eat/drink | home | novelty
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04. 6.2009

The Phonofone II iPod speaker makes amplification an artform

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Yes, it's $500, and few of us have that kind of cash to splash on an iPod speaker, but.. isn't it gorgeous? And the pocket-sized (well, almost) Phonofone II is brilliantly engineered, too: it uses "passive amplification," meaning it requires no power to transmit tunes from your MP3 player to a roomful of people.

According to the product website, "Although it is not intended to be used as home stereo system, it is perfect for a studio, next to the bed, or for a dinner party." You're telling me.

Via Mighty Goods.

Posted by Diane    Category: luxury | novelty | peripherals | portable media
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04. 6.2009

The computer keyboard goes funky with the Keybag

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What is black, white, pink or red and holds an arrangement of buttons with single alphanumeric characters engraved on them? You said a colored computer keyboard, huh? Easy enough, but you ain't quite there yet. Technology and fashion borrow ideas from each other so often that it's almost impossible to guess at first glance whether, for example, a compact kit is really a makeup accessory or a chic cell phone in disguise.

In this spirit of artistic inspiration, the Keybag by Portugese designers Joao Sabino Studio is a tribute to the faithful old computer keyboard. It is a lady's handbag made of plastic keyboard keys on the outside, with a nylon lining on the inside. And a total of 393 keys are used for each bag measuring 30 x 22 x 50 cm, if you must know. The multi-purpose handbags are available in the normal keyboard black and white or the more sporty pink and red colors.

Our verdict - looks totally funky for a geeky girl's night out and is bound to get you attention, but is probably to be avoided during mundane expeditions like shopping simply because it looks to be fairly heavy even without the addition of your purchases. As always, art doesn't come cheap - even if it is only a keyboard, in essence. The black and white versions are available at $175 while the pink and red versions are priced at $195.

Via designboom.

Posted by kanchana    Category: accessories | computers | design | peripherals | wearables
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04. 6.2009

A new application for cell phones: saving lives

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Most of the cell phone applications we write about are fun, or somewhat useful: not many of them save lives. But AT&T has just launched new technology in partnership with Mednet which monitors heart patients' health and transmits the results to their cardiologists via Bluetooth. There is a monthly fee and it requires a tech-savvy doctor who is already signed up to the scheme but it could save on appointments (and save your co-pay) which is no bad thing.

Via Textually.

Posted by Diane    Category: body | cell phones | on the web | software
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04. 3.2009

Check out this cool sustainable chair

While a lot of recycled furniture is great-looking (not to mention great for the environment) a lot of the time it's also pretty obvious that it's recycled.

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But this fabulous chair, which adds a quirky squared-off twist to the pod chairs that were so popular in the 1960s, doesn't look like it's been recycled at all. Until you look closer and see that it's made out of an old refrigerator. Designers Yinnon and Danit Simhi used an Amcor 7, an Israeli refrigerator from the '50s.

It's cooler now than it ever was before - and perfect for chilling out in. (Sorry - couldn't resist.)

Via Unpluggd.

Posted by Diane    Category: eco | home
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04. 3.2009

The Turtle USB hub can be your geeky pet

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Though it stumps me as to why we like to surround ourselves with computer peripherals that resemble animals, I would like to make a little argument in favor of the Turtle USB hub simply because of the fact that it looks rather sincere (and lovable) as it lies on the desk, faithfully connected to the PC. And I am perhaps also subconsciously inspired by the fact that all turtles represent the idea of endurance, living out hundreds of years as symbols of calm and poise.

Well, to cut out the poetry, the Turtle USB hub is a cleverly designed 4-port USB hub with the USB ports hidden within the limbs of the e-reptile. The shell is functional as well, and can be lifted up to store away the tiny items on your desk such as paper clips, post-it notes, and so on. A handy contraption that also looks good on your desk. Head on to USBFever.com to get your turtle at $13.99.

Via Pocket-lint.

Posted by kanchana    Category: computers | devices | peripherals | pets | toys
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04. 2.2009

Dell Adamo laptop: Love at first sight?

Dell's latest laptop is shooting for the high end market with its latest offering. Complete with a snazzy website featuring beautiful models looking blase and a forgettable, mind-numbing track on an endless loop, the Dell Adamo is definitely a looker. Decked out in a machined aluminum chassis, with a mix of brushed and glossy facing, Adamo is available in Pearl or Onyx.

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The name Adamo is latin meaning to "fall in love with" and looking at the specs, it’s easy to see why. Sporting a waifish .65 inch profile, weighing in at four pounds, the ultra-thin Adamo makes size 0’s jealous. The keyboard is a backlit, scalloped deal, making for a unique look and a nice typing experience. The view just gets better with the 13.4 inch widescreen 16:9 HD display with an integrated 1.3 megapixel web cam and edge to edge glass. But Adamo still packs a decent punch in the power department with an Intel Core 2 Duo Processors with Centrino technology under the hood. With its

advanced lithium polymer technology,
Dell claims that Adamo has a battery life of approximately five hours on a full charge. WiFi and Bluetooth are standard.

Continue reading "Dell Adamo laptop: Love at first sight?"

Posted by sherri    Category: computers | devices | luxury
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04. 2.2009

Lego Minifig business cards add fun to your profile

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I don't expect employees of LEGO would be too generous in distributing their out-of-the-ordinary business cards. Nor do I expect lucky recipients to toss them in carelessly with their other unglamorous brethen, to be yellowed and forgotten.

Because LEGO business cards are printed on minifigs - little toy figures that even look like the individuals who carry them! The front of a minifig spells out the employee's name while additional details are printed on to the back. Is that creative or what?

It would be difficult enough for me to keep a straight face handing out one of these to an unsuspecting business contact, but carrying a hundred-pack to a conference would also be bad for my back.

Via Shiny Shiny.

Posted by kanchana    Category: novelty | toys
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04. 1.2009

Buzzword shock bracelet

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Don't you hate when nerves get the best of you during a big presentation and no matter how well-prepared you are, the "likes" and "you knows" start falling out of your mouth along with a spatter of silly giggles? Really unprofessional. Or maybe your use of corporate buzzwords that mean nothing like "value added service" and "mobile social network extranet" has gotten so extreme that even the bigwigs with C in their titles (CEO, COO, CTO, CSO- Chief Synergy Officer) have started to wonder if you really know what your company does. Well your troubles are over. The Buzzword shock bracelet, which works a lot like the electric shock collars we put around dogs with boundary issues, can detect when you use those words, and will emit a mildly painful shock. Of course, it can't predict when you use those words, so it won't stop you from saying them, but soon you'll associate those words with pain, numbing, and embarrassing yelps, so you'll soon learn to find alternatives, or better yet, you'll just stop talking and start nodding every time you're in a meeting.

The included software lets you program your own problem words and lets you track your progress. For example, when "think outside the box" falls from 600 shocks in June to just 1 in August, you might be ready to turn that phrase off to leave room in the wristband's memory for the ever-increasing new bank of words which mean absolutely nothing.

Just $39.99 at Think Geek.

Posted by Mia    Category: entertainment
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04. 1.2009

Gmail Auto-pilot

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Spam filters work to some degree, but you still get those offers from Nigerian princes at least once a day and sometimes just hitting "mark as junk" doesn't quite cut it. You want revenge, you want to wreak some havoc. But who has time? Now, with Gmail Auto-Pilot powered by CADIE (Cognitive Autoheuristic Distributed-Intelligence Entity), you can send a nasty, passive-aggressive, snide reply without any effort. Auto-Pilot uses advanced natural language synthesis to mimic your own writing style, complete with tone, grammar and spelling mistakes to compose a reply based on filters you set up.

Have an annoying friend who persists in contacting you despite you ignoring them? Are you avoiding a break-up with someone too depressed to handle it at the moment? With advanced CADIE analysis, Auto-Pilot determines when it's time to let them know the truth and without any input from you, Auto-Pilot will compose the email which will end the heartache for them, and more importantly for you.

Stop complaining about your email inbox overflowing- and let the new Auto-Pilot take over. The more Auto-Pilot analyzes your writing style, the more transparently it can become you. Eventually, you may not need to check your email again- EVER.

Posted by Mia    Category: on the web
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04. 1.2009

Grandma Clara's cooking tips are an Internet sensation (that could help your food budget)

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Clara Cannucciari remembers the economic chaos of the 1930s, so there's no way she's going to let the current credit crunch get her down. Her YouTube series Great Depression Cooking began when her grandson Christopher started filming her cooking in her kitchen, and now she's a genuine celebrity chef, with her own DVD coming out soon.

Clara's recipes are cheap but good quality. There's no junk food here but her lean meats, pasta and veggies are all easy to prepare. Watching Clara in action could be a great way for students and cash-strapped young families to learn how to cook on a budget. Or you could just sit back and listen to her charming childhood reminiscences - you won't regret it.

Via Chow.

Posted by Diane    Category: culture | eat/drink | home | on the web
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04. 1.2009

Jenny Holzer's Protect Protect Show

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The currently ongoing retrospective of Jenny Holzer at the Whitney Museum, entitled "Protect Protect" is a dizzy display of control over text and messaging. The show contains two sections. The first half contains pieces which are a continuation of Holzer's now famous explorations of slogans and marketing communication. Brightly glowing LED signs broadcast messages such as "Abuse of Power Comes As No Surprise" in her work "For Chicago." At first glance the signs seem like not much more than the signage in New York delis which display the current jackpot of the state lottery. However, the subversive phrases make the viewer feel uneasy. The signs are often embedded into the wall, allowing the text to hang in the air above the viewer.

Much of her recent work, which comprises the second half of the show, uses text from declassified documents made public from the ACLU and the National Security Archives. The work of blown up military documents uses otherwise unaltered text and images that have been partially blacked out because what lies beneath was deemed too sensitive for the public. The pieces of enlarged photocopies offer an interesting and poignant contrast to the hi-tech LED signs. The connection between the two halves is the use of the simplest of forms and material to convey caution and danger.

Posted by Ray    Category: culture | current affairs | design | entertainment
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