Posted in Computers
by Joel Levin on January 31st, 2008
As you may know, the MacBook Air uses specially developed Intel Core 2 Duo chips that are much smaller than regular chips. These processors may soon start appearing in other PCs as well. The chips could potentially be used to create competition for “the world’s thinnest and lightest notebook” (which as far we’re concerned is fantastic news – anything that pushes the market and the industry forward through competition is highly welcomed).
Company names weren’t specified, but as of now there are 2 manufacturers already working the design into their next machine.
We look forward to seeing what kinds of portable and lightweight laptops will come out of this, as they will have a hard time competing with the good looks and classiness of the MacBook Air.
Tags: chip, core 2 duo, cpu, intel, macbook air, pc, processor
Today Garmin announced their brand new nüvifone, a GSM HSDPA smartphone running Garmin’s own operating system centered around GPS navigation.
The phone will feature a 3.5 inch touchscreen display with three primary icons displayed on it – “Call,” “Search,” and “View Map.”
As far as data, the nüvifone will use a 3.5G connection to power an integrated web browser, data connectivity, personal messaging, and personal navigation functions. The device will also tap into Google local search to provide all sorts of points of interest close to the user.
“The nüvifone is an all-in-one device offering unmatched integration of utility and function in a single mobile device,” said Cliff Pemble, Garmin’s president and COO. “This is the breakthrough product that cell phone and GPS users around the world have been longing for – a single device that does it all.”
We’re excited to see this thing on the shelves in late 2008. It looks like it has great potential to compete with the iPhone, especially if it’s priced just right.
Tags: 3.5g, 3g, display, garmin, google, gps, gsm, hsdpa, iphone, nuviphone, touchscreen
Posted in Gadgets
by Alex on January 30th, 2008
Livescribe has announced its Pulse Smart Pen which lets you digitally record anything you write and hear. Packed in the pen are two noise canceling microphones and an infrared camera to help you digitize your notes.
The pen can keep track of what you’re writing and where on the paper you are writing it, as well as exactly what was being said at that time. It can then play back the recording when you touch the same areas on your paper in playback mode. The pen will also create a fully digital version of your notes that you can view from a computer.
There is also a program being developed that will translate what you write in English into Spanish text and audio which you can see on the pen’s LED screen or hear from the pen itself. This feature is perfect for anyone trying to learn Spanish.
The Pulse Smart Pen is certainly impressive. Pack in a display and web browser and you’ve got yourself a full-blown laptop in a pen. The Smart Pen will be available in March with a pricetag of $149 or $199 for the 1GB or 2GB versions, respectively.
Check out some demo movies here.
Tags: livescribe, pulse smart pen, smart pen
Posted in Computers
by Alex on January 30th, 2008
Western Digital (WD) has introduced its new line of My Passport Essential portable hard drives today. The new models are small but still pack a big punch in terms of storage space.
The hard drives weigh in at a paltry 5 ounces and are powered through the USB bus instead of an external power adapter, making these drives ideal on the go.
“The newly designed My Passport Essential drives are the perfect travel-friendly storage device to hold the rich media content generated by higher resolution photos and HD videos and music,” said Jim Welsh, vice president and general manager of WD’s branded products group.
The drives are available in some stores now, starting at around $180.
Tags: hard drive, portable hard drive, usb, wd, western digital
We all know that Apple products aren’t the cheapest around, but according to a report by research firm Piper Jaffray that could change soon. The best part? The “coolness” factor doesn’t have to go.
In a report to clients, Piper Jaffray claimed that Apple saw the worst year-over-year growth rate in the history of the iPod. To change this, the firm thinks that Apple will have to change its strategy.
“In order to achieve this level of year-over-year iPod growth, we are expecting Apple to introduce cheaper, innovative iPods with Wi-Fi and multi-touch technology,” analyst Gene Munster wrote. “We believe that, despite a slowdown in growth in the MP3 market, Apple’s vision of the iPod line-up becoming a mainstream Wi-Fi mobile platform will have two results. First, it will spur growth in the portable media player market, particularly from the replacement cycle. Second, if Apple is able to lower prices on Wi-Fi connected and possibly touch-screen iPods, it will be able to maintain or grow its leading market share position,” Munster concluded.
Apple has yet to respond on the matter, but considering the company’s close ties to Piper Jaffray, these predictions are probably not that far-fetched.
Tags: apple, ipod, mp3, multitouch, piper jaffray, wifi
Lite-On has designed a concept mouse that lets you mold it into whatever shape is comfortable. It is made of lightweight modeling clay with a flexible polyurethane and nylon fabric cover.
Not only can you change the shape of the mouse, you can also move the buttons around. The clickers are radio-frequency controlled and can be stuck anywhere on the mouse. The touch-sensitive scroll pad can jump around too.
The concept was so innovative that it won a 2007 Red Dot Design Award in the category of Productivity and Work.
This mouse is absolutely great and we hope to see it come to life soon. It’s ergonomic, fun, and perfect for a long day of computing, not to mention the cool factor!
Tags: ergonomic, lite-on, mouse, productivity
This bamboo-inspired speaker design (with pics) by Soohyuk Im has some great features: WiFi, wireless speakers, an LED screen, MP3 line in, remote desktop syncing, radio, and a CD player. Not only does it have more than the expected features, but it also sounds great due to the acoustics of cylindrical objects. The setup includes left/right wireless speakers, a control ring, and a base station that houses the subwoofer.
The base station can be setup to wirelessly sync with your computer. The Bamboo’s charge lasts for 12 hours.
We think this thing looks like an awesome speaker setup, and we really love the computer syncing feature. Too many times people need to use an iPod for the sound systems they use in their house, when in reality all modern sound systems should have features to sync with a person’s computer and make it as easy as possible to manage music.
Tags: bamboo, led, mp3, sound, speakers, sync, wifi
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University are working to create mini robots which are capable of morphing into virtually any form by clinging together. These “claytronic” robots, as they are called, use electromagnetic forces to move around, communicate, and even share power.
The team is also experimenting with using electric instead of electromagnetic forces to help the robots cling together, as magnetic forces are less efficient at smaller scales.
But software, not hardware, may be the group’s biggest challenge, says UK scientist Alan Winfield. “Right now we just don’t know how to design a system that produces a higher overall intelligence from a group of simple agents.”
[Via NewScientist] Video after the jump. Read more »
Tags: carnegie mellon university, mini robots, morphing, shape shifting, swarm