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Archive for March, 2010

AT&T adds rugged Airo Wireless A25is to offerings

Posted in AT&T by Shane McGlaun on March 18th, 2010

Folks that work in harsh environment like fire fighters, field workers and oil field workers need a device that is strong enough to survive life in the field. Drop your iPhone and the thing is probably dead. Rugged phones however, can withstand drops and tumbles.

AT&T has added a new phone to its line for users needing a rugged handset called the Airo Wireless A25is. The device meets MIL-SPEC 810-F/G. It can survive repeated drops form as high as 50-inches, up to 95% humidity, and harsh vibrations for up to 1000 miles.

Fired car lot employee hacks system and disables over 100 cars

Posted in Automotive by Shane McGlaun on March 18th, 2010

A car lot in Austin, Texas finances cars to people with credit that might not normally get them approved. Rather than running around with a tow truck repossessing all the cars that people miss payments on, the dealer has a system that disables the car and can make the horn honk if payment isn’t received.

The lot fired an employee this week that had a password to access the computer that controlled the cars. The man was able to disable over 100 cars and made the horn on some cars honk uncontrollably.

Kindle app finally arrives on Mac

Posted in kindle by Conner Flynn on March 18th, 2010

Amazon’s Kindle has released apps for both the iPhone and the PC. And now its arriving on the Mac. The Kindle app is free, and hooks you up with Amazon’s bookstore where you can buy books or check out previews of books.

With these apps, Amazon has done the smart thing and taken the ebook store as far as it will go, which is a good thing since the iPad will shake things up. I wonder what the ereader market will look like in one year.

Crazy scooter lawn mower concept turns up

Posted in Concepts by Shane McGlaun on March 18th, 2010

I hate mowing my lawn in the summer. I live in Texas where it’s roughly as hot as the surface of the sun in the summer. Go outside for 5 minutes and you are dripping with sweat. Walking a back and forth across that lawn for an hour mowing is no fun.

A new concept mower might help us get our kids to mow without money changing hands. The concept is called the Lawn Mower Scooter and is just what it sounds like. The thing is a combination of a scooter and a mechanical mower.

Google Set-Top Box coming soon

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 18th, 2010

You knew that Google was looking to take over your living room at some point and the NYTimes has the details on Google TV, a platform to deliver web content to Android-based set-top boxes and TVs through partnerships with Sony, Intel, and Logitech.

Google hopes that the platform can succeed where many others have failed to seamlessly integrate web content onto TVs, bringing services like Twitter and sites like YouTube, and of course games, webapps, and more.

Green Zero Charger from AT&T drives stake through vampire power’s heart

Posted in AT&T by Shane McGlaun on March 18th, 2010

The power used by devices that we think are turned off goes by several names. Some call it parasitic power, some call it vampire power, and others call it phantom power. In the end, they are all the same and describe electricity consumed by devices when they are not in use.

AT&T has a new green charger coming in May called the Zero Charger that will stop phantom power use at a place most of us don’t even think about it — your cell phone charger. AT&T says that most chargers draw power from the outlet even when a phone isn’t attached.

Commodore name licensed for a line of keyboard PCs

Posted in Keyboards by Conner Flynn on March 18th, 2010

We remember the good old days of computing. The old Commodore of the 1980s brings back some good if graphically challenged memories. Barry Altman, President and CEO of Commodore USA, now has the rights to the Commodore name. And now, if we are lucky we can have a keyboard computer with the Commodore logo slapped on it.

Apparently it’s based on the Cybernet ZPC-GX31, the exact configurations and pricing are not available yet, but hopefully soon.

Steampunk Harley Davidson

Posted in Automotive by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

We’ve seen our share of steampunk devices around here, but we’ve never seen a steampunk Harley Davidson. Until now. The bike frame looks like a Steampunk skeletal structure more than a frame. There’s also a cool T-Sable Spring engine and of course a Harley-Davidson transmission.

It goes by the name “Barro”. I would call it a sort of minimal interpretation of steampunk, but it works and makes the bike look as if it’s alive.

Internet Explorer 9 adds HTML5, ditches Windows XP

Posted in Browsers by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

If you love Microsoft’s browser, here’s some good news. The next version of Internet Explorer adds a bunch of features. Internet Explorer 9 will add support for HTML5, which is one of the new standards on the net, and allow the browser to run more complicated video and graphics.

IE9 is also getting hardware acceleration, allowing more resources to work with for a speedier browser. There’s also a new JavaScript engine which will make sitesl more responsive.

PayPal 2.0 “Bumps” money between iPhones

Posted in Paypal by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

PayPal has released an update for its iPhone/iPod Touch app. You can now “bump” money from your PayPal account into a friend’s if they are close by. If you both have PayPal accounts, you don’t all need iPhones to “bump” your money. You can still send money the traditional way by loading up the app and entering an email address, or choosing from a recent contact.

But if you have two iPhones running PayPal, it’s easier to set a dollar amount, move them close, then confirm that the “bump” means you’re transferring that cash.

Panasonic 3D TVs sell out in the US

Posted in 3D by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

Whatever you think about 3D, the new sets are selling. Panasonic has confirmed that it has sold out of its 3D TVs in the US, just a week after they went on sale in Best Buy stores.

And now Panasonic is taking back orders from retailers instead. Panasonic’s 50-inch plasma TV went on sale at Best Buy, bundled with a pair of 3D glasses and a 3D Blu-ray player for $2900 on March 10th. Panasonic is the first manufacturer to get these products to market even though there is very little content available to watch.

iLuv ISP150 iPad Speaker

Posted in Speakers by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

iLuv is offering the ISP150 Bar Speaker, which will turn your iPad into a music box. It will work with the iPad, notebook and iPod. The integrated speakers can be powered by either USB or four AAA batteries.

Some other features include a 3.5mm audio jack, USB connectivity, a power switch and volume control. It will cost you $34.99. Judging by the image it doesn’t look all that portable. It doesn’t seem like something you want to be carrying with your iPad.

Typeface personalized font

Posted in News by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

We all like to stand out from time to time. We have our own personal style, etc. Now you can have Typeface personalized fonts that are based on how you look. It’s a new business concept that will analyze what your face looks like and convert it into a personal font.

So, if your font is unreadable, does that make you unattractive? If you have a beautiful font, are you beautiful? What if it’s a cat face? So many questions.

Apple pulling all protective screen film products from stores

Posted in Apple by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

You can choose from a bunch of protective screen films at Apple’s online or retail stores, but probably not for much longer. iLounge is reporting that Apple will stop selling all protective screen film products starting in May.

That includes film-only products and cases that have a protective film built into them. Apple hasn’t given any reason and hasn’t even confirmed it yet, but ironically the most popular iPod “case” in the Apple Store right now is a protective film for the iPod touch. Go figure.

Avatar 3D Blu-ray coming in 2011

Posted in 3D by Conner Flynn on March 17th, 2010

Avatar is coming to DVD/Blu-ray as early as next month, but it will be a no-frills 2D release. If you already bought your 3D TV for it, too bad. Avatar will have its first DVD/Blu-ray release on April 22, but you won’t find a single bonus feature anywhere. None of the stuff you love, like trailers, making-of featurettes, or commentary

Sources at Fox are saying that this is because they want all available storage space to be used for the best picture and sound possible. If you want all of the extra stuff, there’s a Special Edition coming in November, possibly with two discs.