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Tech Gadget Niche



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Thursday, August 11, 2005

The Ambient Orb

The Ambient Orb is a device that slowly transitions between thousands of colors to show changes in the weather, the health of your stock portfolio, or if your boss or friend is on instant messenger. It is a simple wireless object that unobtrusively presents information. Imagine if you had to go to your computer and type in your zip code whenever you wanted to check what time it was. Your important information should be as accessible as looking at a clock, now the Ambient Orb can make a variety of information just a glance away.
The Orb arrives set to indicate the Dow - glowing more green to indicate market movement up and red to indicate movement down, or yellow when the market is calm. If the market is up or down more than 1.5% the Orb will pulsate. It can be customized to a set of free channels, such as market indices (Dow, Nasdaq, S&P 500) or weather in select cities. Optionally, you can upgrade to access more premium channels, such as your customized portfolio, local weather, pollen count, or IM buddy watch. There's also a developer interface where any semi-savvy web programmer can control the color of their Orb with a simple http "get" call. Track how full your hard drive is, traffic on your website, Slashdot posts, or your credit-card debt.
The Ambient Orb is simply plugged into any standard 110V power outlet and it is up and running on a nationwide wireless network - no internet connection required. The Orb does not attach to a PC. The channel for the Orb can be selected via a web interface and will update in a short period of time. Depending on which channel the Orb is monitoring, it will receive updates every few minutes, or perhaps once per hour for some channels.

The Ambient Orb has these features:
LED lighting that can produce thousands of color combinations
Orb can also produce color pulses
The Orb is made of glass
Pre-configured to monitor the Dow - can be reconfirgured online or through an 800 number
Premium content available for about $1/week
Does not require a computer, phone or internet connection
Three brightness level settings
Includes power supply, power cord, and glass Orb
Can monitor: Stock market, weather, pollen count, IM buddies, or custom data
One-year manufaturer warranty

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Calorie Monitoring System

I How to measure calorie burn accurately. Alex’s Bodybugg has two simple components – the Bodybugg armband (a small device worn on the upper arm) and the Bodybugg web interface – which work together to tell you exactly how many calories you’ve burned and consumed every day. It gives you the information and puts you in control of your weight loss goals.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Walk away and your PC is locked

The USB Wireless Security lock is a simple yet effective means to ensure computer access is limited to an authorized user. Each kit is composed of a USB receiver dongle connected to the computer, and a battery-powered access transmitter, which is to be carried by the authorized user. When the user moves more than 2 meters away from the computer, the security dongle will disable access to the computer until the user carrying the transmitter has returned within the vicinity of the computer.
The Wireless PC lock is superior to conventional security dongle and password-protected screensavers, because it requires zero user interaction to initiate and release security protection. This completely eliminates common user errors, such as unauthorized users accessing the computer before security timer expires on the screensaver, or user forgets to remove security key/card from the system before leaving the station. Should the access transmitter ever be lost, the computer can be unlocked by a 5-level password-protected system.

The USB Wireless Security lock is available at ThinkGeek Gadgets

Also has these great features.
Automatically locks PC when the user is physically away from the computer
PC resumes automatically when user is within range (2 meter range)
Grant access to authorized user within 2 meters of the protected computer
Requires zero user interaction to initiate/release security protection, eliminating user error
Password override can unlock PC if transmitter is lost
Reliable Radio Frequency wireless technology
USB interface, compatible with USB 1.0/1.1/2.0
Easy to install and use
Software works with Windows 98/SE/ME/2000/XP
Note: not designed for dual screen systems

Monday, August 08, 2005

Creative Zen Vision Portable Video Player

Creative have just officially announced the Creative Zen Vision Portable Video Player, The saga ends, it's out!
Gorgeous Magnesium-Encased Player Delivers Eight Times the Image Resolution and More Than Three Times the Screen Size of the Apple iPod Photo*
Creative Technology Ltd., a worldwide leader in digital entertainment products, today announced the Creative Zen Vision MP3 player with a 3.7-inch SharpPix(TM) high-resolution 640x480 262,144-color screen for photo viewing and digital video playback. Featuring a transflective screen that provides excellent image and video quality even in bright sunlit conditions, the 30GB Creative Zen Vision carries up to 15,000 songs, tens of thousands of photos, or up to 120 hours of video. Available in either pearl white or black, the Zen Vision measures 4.9 by 2.9 by .8 inches and weighs only 8.4 ounces. It is available today for pre-order at www.creative.com for only US$399.99.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Stonepallete

Tucked inside the “me too” mighty mouse design is a tiny projector lamp focused on a polished riverbed stone producing rainbows worthy of your bedroom wall. It comes equipped with a timer and 3 pattern modes: variation, slow, and vivid.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Cell Phone Headset for Motor Cycle Riders

Cardo Systems Launches Headset That Provides Wireless Freedom to Motorcyclists
The New Scala-Rider Bluetooth Headset by Cardo Systems, Inc. Offers Unmatched Wireless Capabilities, Hands-Free Use of Cellphone While Riding a Motorcycle
Cardo Systems, Inc., a leading developer and manufacturer of wireless Bluetooth devices for the consumer market, today began shipping the Scala-Rider, a unique Bluetooth headset for motorcycle helmets.
Specially designed for motorcycle helmets, the Scala-Rider includes a wind-resistant microphone that provides clear audio for communicating while riding a motorcycle at speeds of up to 75 m/h. Unlike any competing product, the scala-rider also offers unique voice control functions that allow users to accept or reject incoming calls without the need to let go of the handlebar. To add further safety the scala-rider also features an embedded sensor that adjusts the volume level according to driving speed and ambient noise.
The fashionable Scala-Rider kit works with all Bluetooth mobile phones* and offers superb functionality ease of use and assembly. The unit attaches to the helmet without glue or other intrusive means and its super slim speaker fits all helmets.

Scala-Rider Bluetooth Headset For Motorcycle Helmets at MobileWhack.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Softimage Face Robot

Avid Technology today announced that it will preview Softimage Face Robot, its revolutionary new facial animation technology at the Siggraph 2005.

Face Robot software is the first technology that allows 3-D artists to
achieve realistic, lifelike facial animation for high-end film, post and
games projects. The Face Robot software supports both keyframe animation and motion capture, the primary techniques used for digital acting today. The soft tissue model
at the core of the technology removes the need to manually create dozens or even hundreds of 3-D shapes for different facial expressions and allows animators to work with an optimal number of control points. More details in this press-release.

Videos and background information on the technology are available here. Information about the famous Siggraph conference can be obtained here.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Mobile Phone Door Lock Roll-out In Japan


A Japanese Apartment complex is installing a door lock system that works via mobile phone. It is not based on RFID (Radio Frquency Identification Technology) like the locks I discussed about recently. The door opens via a code typed into the mobile phone. The key code is apparently managed centrally by the company. So the code needs to be transmitted somehow. The article is not going into details here. Such a system is more expensive to install, but saves money on the long run, because locks do not have to be exchanged and no keys have to be made.

To get rid of keys is a good idea. The mobile phone is more and more becoming the universal device. Some of the already existing mobile phone functions are: camera, music player, pda, payment and now access control.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

RFID Door Lock with built-in alarm and keypad


It comes with 8 RFID (Radio Frquency Identification Technology) smart keys. The RFID lock also has a keypad to be able to get in when you forget the keycard. This lock also has a built-in alarm that will deter thieves at the door itself, if the door is forcefully entered. The RFID Door Lock sells for $299.99 on ThinkGeek Gadgets

Monday, August 01, 2005

Snore Stopper Gadget

Snore StopperDo you lie awake while your beloved emits a sonic boom that confuses wildlife? (Thought this funny heh!!) But Nah, many of us need one of these to get the deep sleep for whole night.

The Snore Stopper is worn on the wrist. A sensitive micro-sound detector will detect snoring and send harmless electric signal without disturbing sleep patterns.Apparently after some time the body should automatically stop snoring to avoid the electric shocks. There is no guarantee that this stops snoring, but it is the gadget way to try fight it.

Snore Stopper Gadget is available at Gadget Universe for $59.95.