I do not know how I would react if my grandchild were to gift me a "for-elderly-only" gadget that would have nothing but the bare essentials, with the statement "The xxx device is the current rage Grandma, but I thought you needed one that's as simple to get around as ABC". One thing I know for certain - I would be saddened by my age being automatically assigned with a diminished learning ability. But for now, it gives me some hope to think that I am still several years away from that possibility and I resolve now to remain somewhat open to the idea, if ever. Sigh.
The iNo CP09 is another such GSM cellphone for kids and elderly that tears down the features to a minimum - a basic calculator-like screen with a large font display, large buttons, FM radio, torch light, headphone jack, and text messaging. And since both the categories of people are often imagined courting emergencies, there is an SOS button which when pressed sends a text alarm to a configured number and calls that number. Along with letting out a loud siren. Imagine the havoc a child could create with that. Whew.
The iNo Mobile is available exclusively in Singapore at $78.
I am always intrigued by new designs that aim at energy saving, which is probably why my attention was caught by Switch a power socket designed by Yong-jin Kim. Switch’s purpose is to help users save on their electricity bills that are often affected by the Stand-By power of many appliances and gadgets left plugged in. By making it very easy and effortless to disconnect any type of power-sucking device, the consumer’s “lazy” or “forgetful” behavior can therefore be modified. So, instead of bending down all the way to your power socket and unplug whatever is contributing to both a bad consumer and environmental behavior, you can now bend all the way down but simply turn the plug to turn it off.
And now I wonder, is Switch really making a difference?
I like its concept and sleek design but I am not convinced that it will influence a behavioral pattern for the better. Granted, its fancy style will make my power sockets look a lot nicer and my apartment a lot tidier than if I would have a bunch of unplugged cords lying around, but if I forget or am just too lazy to unplug my appliances I wonder how Switch will make it any easier for me to either remember or make it so effortless to unplug the incriminating device that I will actually go ahead and do it.
Via Yanko Design.
If you've ever had dreams of embracing your inner Julia Child a la "Julie & Julia", here's your chance. Thanks to a nifty new gadget from France, you can throw away all those tattered recipes and cookbooks.
The QOOQ (pronounced "cook"), is a kitchen computer that might be able to make cooking a pleasurable experience for those of us that are a little gun shy around the oven. QOOQ comes with video recipes as well as 500 preloaded dishes. And if that's not enough, users can sign up for a monthly subscription and have new recipes and sent to device. The digital recipe box can get internet access using WiFi or Ethernet. There's no web browser to speak of, but you can check the weather and update recipes as needed.
In addition to the recipes and videos, the QOOQ also serves as a meal planner and can help create a shopping list, so you don't off track with the impulse buying when you hit the grocery store. And when you need a little entertainment, QOOQ doubles as a digital picture frame and receives internet radio stations.
The 10.2-inch touchscreen tablet PC has a glass screen that makes for easy clean up as a precaution against those unexpected splashes and spills. Unfortunately, QOOQ is currently a French exclusive, but if there are plans to bring the device stateside, I'm sure it will sell like hotcakes (pun totally intended) to the burgeoning foodie movement.
Via Coolest Gadgets
T-Mobile adds more allure to its 3G phones with this latest from Sony Ericsson - the Sony Ericsson Equinox (earlier named T707). Otherwise a basic flip-phone in functionality, the Equinox carries some eye-catching bling to push itself to the limelight amongst the other established clamshell models in the market. First is the stylish exterior - after you update your T-Mobile favorites list with your caller friends' circle, the shell lights up to indicate the identity of the caller in one of the five available colors. Say "amber" for good friend Joe and "amethyst" for avoidable Erica. I say, a thumbs-up for people with good memory, and more confusion for those without. Other than that, the external shell also contains an 128 x 36 OLED screen that functions only when you get an incoming call.
If you didn't fall for that, here's the next - the phone flaunts a scratch-resistant 2.2-inch QVGA inner screen, a 3.2MP camera, stereo Bluetooth connectivity, GPS for navigation, and an FM radio. It uses motion sensing for some gesture control - to silence a call or an alarm without opening the device. The phone also supports picture messaging and the provision to directly upload videos to YouTube. Poser or not you decide, but don't say we didn't warn you. The Equinox is due to go on sale today (October 28th) in T-Mobile stores. The price is pegged at $50 with a 2-year contract agreement.
Okay, it's almost time to start switching from our fall gear into our winter wear. Are you wondering whether those slouchy boots clash with that bag or if you can get away with wearing leggings under that dress? Before you shell out a small fortune making potential fashion faux pas, mayhaps you should pay a visit to Shmotter.com.
A new web startup, Shmotter is your own personal lookbook. Populated with clothes and accessories from a large selection of retailers, the site allows fashion mavens to put a look together without the hassle of running from store to store like a mad woman. Just select the piece of clothing or fashion accoutrement you want to sort through using the available tab to select from tops, dresses, bags, etc.
When you've find the piece you're looking for simply drag it over to the left side of the screen to add to part of your look and rinse, wash, and repeat until you've created your look. And since sometimes you really need a second opinion, you can save your outfit to your profile and have the Shmotter community vote on your wardrobe to determine whether it's a fashion hit or miss. (The outfit that you're viewing in the pic is one I put together. I call it Dark and Stormy. Thoughts?)
The wait is longer than we imagined, and it is now official. Allerta is offering its limited, first-edition inPulse Bluetooth watch for the BlackBerry on pre-order, but you will have to hold on until February 2010 for the shipping to begin.
The watch sports a 1.3-inch color OLED display and functions as a virtual, display-only accessory for your BlackBerry while wirelessly communicating with it via a Bluetooth 2.0 connection. So that, based on the email, SMS, Twitter previews or call alerts you see on your wrist, you can choose to flip out your smartphone or not. The magic is made possible through a custom BlackBerry background application which runs on the watch to keep track of your received messages/calls and also provides the ability to customize the watch itself.
Powered by a 150mAh Li-Ion battery, the watch has a micro-USB jack for charging - with a single charge going approximately into 4 days while you get an average 20-30 updates per day. The inPulse has a built-in vibrating motor to alert you of incoming calls and boasts the ability to pull in new text messages directly. All the settings on the watch (time, alarms, alerts) are controlled through the BlackBerry itself, with the wireless connection also facilitating over-the-air firmware updates.
Part with $149 (shipping extra) and book your seat for some great wrist candy. And much more.
Philips has unveiled its latest portable speakers for the Korean market - the SBA1700. And they are back with the disc-shaped profile, perhaps to please the purists. The speakers show-off an elegant silver finish and weigh a mere 0.3 kg - almost resembling a giant pocket watch, if only much sleeker. They are plug-and-play and connect to an audio source via a 3.5mm stereo connector with the promise of a 20-hour long playtime (3 AAA batteries, 1.5V). Then there is the trademark simplicity of design - the connector cable can be neatly hidden within the back-case when not in use and the speaker itself looped around your wrist like a vanity purse. The SBA1700 is rather dearly priced at around $60, but we bet it will be your every penny's worth.
It's been proven that babies do hear and respond to noises in the womb and do enjoy an nice tune every now and then. For those parents that want to provide your child with some soothing tunes while still in the womb, the Lullabelly iPod speaker belt is just for you.
The Prenatal Music Belt wraps comfortably around pregnant bellies and has a front pocket to store your mp3 player or other accessories. Simply plug your player into the Lullabelly into the built in speaker and let the concert begin. You can play soothing sounds or read your unborn child a story via an audio book. There's also a dual adapter included in the deluxe edition so mommy and baby can both listen as well as a speaker volume control so you can protect baby's sensitive ears.According to the site, the highest decibel Lullabelly can reach is the equivalent of a telephone ringing.
Someone apparently doesn't believe in the word "waste". And you bet they are bound to have a few creative genes when they can defy such a powerful word. Well, apparently such creative genes must total much more than one can imagine, for these geniuses from TerraCycle have created the most unique products in their effort to turn waste into something useful.
The company, founded by Tom Szaky, collects waste from groups across the country and turns it into over 100 useful products, in addition to donating money to charities for each "waste" item that it receives. Consider the Frito-Lay Speakers, for example. These funky speakers are made from discarded chip bags. And they are functional. They are foldable speakers that don't require batteries and plug into your mp3 or other portable audio player with a 3.5 mm universal plug. TerraCycle sells them online at $19.99.
So the next time you toss out that used chip bag, think new and send it to over to these sensible folks at TerraCycle - you would have earned $.02 for a non-profit organization or school of your choice, plus the right to brag that you helped create the world's cleanest speakers.