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Philips DirectLife Activity monitor

Posted in Exercise Gadgets by Conner Flynn on October 21st, 2009

Philips DirectLife Activity monitorPhilips DirectLife Activity monitor is exercising the geek way. As a geek, I don’t understand fancy concepts like calories or body mass index or push-ups. What I do understand is status bars. I know when something is fully loaded, half loaded or almost there. And that’s all I need.

I depend on status bars to tell me how close I am to a goal. Philips knows this. The Philips DirectLife Activity Monitor looks like a pedometer and has the status bar in green LEDs on the front. Using the software that comes with the device, you enter your fitness goals and then go about your day. Then just look at it to see how close you are.

Bayer Contour USB Meter

Posted in USB by Conner Flynn on September 23rd, 2009

Bayer Contour USB MeterThis is a useful device for those suffering from diabetes. The Contour USB meter from Bayer Diabetes Care is the only blood glucose monitor that plugs directly into a computer. This will give users instant access to information that can help them with their diabetes management. Knowledge is power.

The device comes with Glucofacts DELUXE software for easy retrieval of data and longer-term tracking and analysis of blood glucose test results. The Bayer Contour USB meter holds up to 2,000 test results so that patients can see trends and patterns in their blood glucose levels.

3M Littman Electronic Stethoscope with Bluetooth

Posted in Healthcare by Conner Flynn on August 23rd, 2009

3M Littman Electronic Stethoscope with BluetoothThe stethoscope is one of those doctor’s tools that has remained unchanged forever, but now the 3M Littman Electronic Stethoscope will do more for doctors and help them to better diagnose various health conditions. Some features include noise cancellation and sound augmenting, so they can hear better.

The device also has the ability to record heart and lung sounds and file them so that they can be checked later by software like Zargis Stethassist to understand any beating patterns and irregularities.

GPS Shoes keep track of Alzheimer’s Patients

Posted in GPS by Conner Flynn on June 10th, 2009

GPS Shoes keep track of Alzheimer’s PatientsAnyone who has ever had an older family member in their lives who has Alzheimers, knows how difficult it can be just to keep tabs on them. It’s sort of like having a small child. They tend to live in their own world and can wander off the instant you divert your attention.

Rather than having to keep searching for lost Alzheimer’s patients, Aetrex Worldwide and GTS Corp have teamed up to put GPS transmitters inside shoes. A simple and brilliant solution. A wristband might be even better as some won’t bother to put on their shoes.

Grossan HydroPulse Nasal Irrigator

Posted in Health by Conner Flynn on April 30th, 2009

Grossan HydroPulse Nasal IrrigatorSwine Flu got you down? This gadget may help clean your nose from harmful bacteria and other nasty stuff. The Grossan HydroPulse Nasal Irrigator shoots warm saline through your nasal cavities to flush out all the stuff which can cause problems.

Only $149.95. A clean nose is a healthy nose. Many people swear by clearing their sinuses in this way. These days with the pig/bacon/bird/swine flu you can’t be too careful.

Piezoelectric Nanowires could power your future iPod with blood

Posted in News by Conner Flynn on March 29th, 2009

Piezoelectric NanowiresA world where gadgets are powered by blood? It could happen sooner then you think. It won’t be long until our gadgets are full fledged living entities soon after that. Maybe. In a not too distant future Piezoelectric nanowires may reside in our blood vessels. They would use the energy created by blood flow to power gadgets. Stuff like pacemakers, iPods, anything designers can dream up really.

It sounds pretty amazing, but the reality is that it may cause some sort of new diseases in our bodies or make us more susceptible to them. These things never work out the way you think. If it happens at all, it won’t be for a long long time hopefully.

Magic Mirror: See your muscles while you work out, or lack of

Posted in Health by Conner Flynn on March 2nd, 2009

Magic Mirror: See your muscles while you work out, or lack ofResearchers at the University of Tokyo have created what they are calling a “magic mirror”. It shows you your muscular activity in real time so you can visually see how hard your muscles are working while you exercise. The system can currently monitor the activity of 30% of the body’s 300-some skeletal muscles.

Sadly the user has to wear all of those little balls etc, to get the readings. At the moment it’s a medical device, so it won’t be showing up at the gym anytime soon or on Wii-Fit. But one day soon you’ll be using your mirror as an actual health device. Not just a surface for your popped zit juice.

Swiss scientists identify PlayStation-induced skin disorder

Posted in Health by Conner Flynn on February 24th, 2009

Swiss scientists identify PlayStation-induced skin disorderAh, the Swiss. While Germans have been busy doing useful things with street lighting, the Swiss have been busy treating people who actually still play a Sony console for injuries.

Here’s the story. Swiss scientists have ID’d a new skin disorder that they believe came from prolonged gaming. They’re calling it “PlayStation palmar hidradentitis,”, a condition where painful lumps appear on the palms. The diagnosis came when a 12-year old girl visited a Geneva hospital with hand lesions. Allegedly from a gaming marathon that lasted hours. She fully recovered after a ten-day break from the PlayStation.

Wii Check-up Channel will let you get a second opinion from Dr. Mario

Posted in Wii by Conner Flynn on January 27th, 2009

Wii Check-up Channel will let you get a second opinion from Dr. MarioSince everyone is using the Wii these days, I guess it was inevitable that we could get house calls from Dr. Mario. Nintendo Japan has announced a new Wii “Check-Up” channel that is scheduled for an April launch. The system was developed with the help of Hitachi, NEC, and Panasonic, with a health insurance company providing 2-way communication between users and health professionals who will give you “healthy guidance”.

Let’s face it, you could use some of that after playing video games all day. Apparently it will work in conjunction with Wii Fit and the Balance Board. You can also use NEC’s mobile phone health platform.

Steve Jobs taking leave of absence from Apple due to health

Posted in Apple by Conner Flynn on January 14th, 2009

Steve Jobs taking leave of absence from Apple due to healthSadly, we kinda saw this one coming. Apple has issued a statement saying that Steve Jobs will be taking a leave of absence due to health reasons. Jobs sent out a letter to Apple employees today that stated that his previously-explained health problems are “more complex” than he first thought, and that he also plans to return in June.

Not to worry, he will still be around for major strategy decisions and the like, and Tim Cook will take over the day-to-day stuff while he’s away. Whether an Apple fan or not, most of us admire the man and what he has accomplished. Here’s to hoping he makes a complete recovery and things get back to normal. Check out the letter below.

Hands On with the iTami FiTrainer virtual coach

Posted in Exercise Gadgets,Review by Darrin Olson on January 7th, 2009

iTami FiTrainer headsetReviewing a technology gadget is usually is fair amount of work anyway, but trying out the FiTrainer from iTami turned out to be a little more than I had bargained for. The FiTrainer is essentially a customizable, virtual fitness coach with direct access to your current level of exertion and your ears.

The device is essentially a pair of somewhat-large headphones with a built in heart-rate monitor, music and voice prompts to continuously keep you in the “right” zone for your workout. Users enter in the type of workout and their age and then start exercising. The voice inside the headset guides you through the rest.

Steve Jobs’ health decline reason for canceling Macworld?

Posted in Apple by Conner Flynn on December 30th, 2008

Steve Jobs’ health decline reason for canceling Macworld?So many Apple rumors. Who can keep up with all of them? Most revolve around the latest gadgets from the company. The latest rumors are regarding Apple CEO Steve Jobs decision to not be a part of Macworld, cite to the state of his physical health as the reason. According to sources, “Apple misrepresented the reasons behind Macworld and Jobs’ keynote cancellation.” The real cause is said to be his rapidly declining health.

With this recent alleged news Apple has chosen to remove the “hype factor” instead of letting it later destroy the company when the news of Jobs’ health surfaces later this spring. Apparently, no longer needing Macworld is just a cover designed by the worldwide “loyalty” department.

DIY colonoscopy is not a good New Year’s Resolution

Posted in Health by Conner Flynn on December 25th, 2008

DIY colonoscopy is not a good New Year’s ResolutionColonoscopies are not fun. They require nakedness with another man in the room(meaning your doctor). Even if you have a female doc, that’s just as bad. It’s all like a strange consensual alien abduction, only your memory isn’t erased. Sadly, they’re very necessary and can detect and prevent colon cancer. But there has to be a better way.

Wait. There is. Just do the procedure yourself with this harmless looking gadget that bears a lightning bolt and the name of a crap beer. A few beers before hand might be a good idea, before you get all up in your own business. And hey, you’ll feel better about it since you can use this thing in all kinds of dark tight places, not just your fat can.

Are some Mac Pros bad apples?

Posted in Mac by Conner Flynn on October 2nd, 2008

Are some Mac Pros bad apples?A French newspaper, Liberation, has published claims that some Mac Pros have been releasing toxic odors. Apple is apparently investigating claims that its the desktop is full of “seven volatile organic contaminants,” like “styrene, benzene and its derivatives.” The odor apparently takes a few different forms, described as everything from “new car smell” to “cannabis”.

The culprit is believed to be the result of a resin coating on some circuit boards and disappears after a period of time. Apparently once the product has burned in. The phenomenon seems to be only in systems built before this year. Liberation cited an anonymous researcher from the French National Centre for Scientific Research, who had his Mac Pro desktop tested for toxins after he smelled some strong odors emanating from the machine.

Japanese inventor creates cheap, painless injection

Posted in Health by Conner Flynn on September 29th, 2008

Japanese inventor creates cheap, painless injectionIf there’s one thing people hate and fear, it’s needles.(Aside from snakes and politicians) There’s some good news. A Japanese inventor has created a needle-free and painless injection that will allow you to get your vaccinations without fear. It even has a nice name. “Mother’s Kiss” uses tiny plastic ampules to deliver medicine. I hear ya. It’s painless, but it must be expensive.

Nope. It’s cheaper and safer than regular syringes, which also makes it perfect for developing countries, because shared needles spread diseases like crazy. Assuming they can get costs down low enough, you may soon see this in your doctor’s office. Though I’m sure he’ll just find another way to scare you.