Tag Archives | Gadgets

Breakthrough! Japanese Inventors Introduce a Remote Kissing Device

I don’t know how to even start with this one, so I’ll give it to you straight — a group of researchers at the Kajimoto Laboratory at the University of Electro-Communications in Tokyo have developed a “Kiss Transmission Device.” Yes boys and girls, its exactly what it sounds like: a new way to make out over the Internet.

Here’s how it works: A plastic tube projects out of a device that is connected to a motor, which is then connected to the computer. The person in turn moves the tube with his tongue, which moves the straw on the other end, and vice versa. The researchers claim that this should accurately portray the feeling of a french kiss.

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Tunebug Turns Tabletops Into Boom Boxes

A little smaller than a hockey puck and triangular in shape, a Tunebug turns pretty much any hard surface into a decent speaker for digital music from any device it can connect to via a standard audio jack or, depending on the model, Bluetooth.

While David Pogue at the Times recently took a look at Bluetooth speakers, they were (as I understood it) conventional speakers. Tunebug’s SurfaceSound technology makes the surface part of the speaker.

The company offers a wired version, the $70 Tunebug Vibe, that connects to a digital audio source (e.g. iPod, laptop, MP3 player) with a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. Tunebug says the Vibe’s internal rechargeable battery can power the device for up to 5 hours.

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The Best Gadgets of 2010: Your Nominations Needed

In a couple of months at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Technologizer will cohost the 2011 edition of Last Gadget Standing, the awards ceremony that’s been a CES highlight for ten years. The goal is to find and celebrate the single coolest gadget at the show–we define “gadget” as any device that’s small enough to carry without too much trouble–and we need your help to identify contenders.

As usual, the CES show floors will be dense with stuff, including thousands of products introduced since the last CES. So start chiming in with nominations, please: What are the coolest, most interesting most innovative gadgets of 2011? Feel free to name either the ones you think have changed the industry the most, or the ones that have simply made your life better.

As we LGS judges draw up our list of contenders, we’ll draw on your recommendations. Thanks in advance, and let the debate begin!


Contour's GPS-equipped Helmet Cam An Interesting Duo

Helmet cams are popular among the extreme sports set as a way to capture live action shots from the perspective of the athlete him/herself. Contour is one of several companies offering these cameras, and already had a $280 1080p HD model out for quite awhile now. However, in an effort to differentiate itself from the competition, Contour has added GPS to a new higher end model which was released earlier this month.

The ContourGPS works the same as its more basic brethren, however as it records the camera saves the cameras location with the video data. What results is a awesome mash-up of video and data that is sure to delight many. Now when your skiing buddy calls you a liar than you shredded 3,000 feet of vert like it was nothing, you can now prove it to him as the system will have recorded your location, speed and even elevation.

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Just How Dirty is Your Cell Phone?

Put the bottom of your shoe to your face. Now, before you ask “has Ed gone plum crazy,” hear me out. Putting your cell phone there is just as unsanitary: that’s how much bacteria lives on those devices according to some microbiologists. Now that you’re thoroughly grossed out, here’s a possible solution–Violight’s UV cell phone sanitizer.

The company has been producing UV toothbrush sanitizers since it’s founding in 2004. Ultraviolet light is a fairly reliable sanitizer, and has seen increasing use when aiming to kill off bacteria. Violight claims its own system eradicates about 99.9 percent of these bad guys, including e.coli, strep, salmonella, listeria and even the H1N1 flu virus in a matter of minutes.

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Nümi Key Looks to Cure Loyalty Card Hell

As a way to generate return visits, more and more retailers are developing loyalty card programs. There’s just one problem with this: after awhile, the consumer is carrying possibly dozens of the things, and they easily get lost. I know I frequently never have the right one when I need it, or just forget altogether to bring it in the first place.

Cupertino-based Mobeam saw a potential market here and has capitalized on it by creating the Nümi Key, a keychain device that includes a patented LED system which “beams” the loyalty card information into a checkout scanner in a readable format. Altogether, the device holds about 50 different barcodes.

Using the device is as simple as using the navigation buttons to find the store’s loyalty card, pointing the device at the barcode scanner, and pressing the red button in the center. As long as the store uses a laser checkout scanner, it will work, at least in theory.

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What’s Your Favorite Tech Product of All Time?

Over on Twitter (where I’m @harrymccracken), I asked my pals to tell me what their favorite tech product they’d ever owned was. I got scads of responses–and while this wasn’t a contest, the iPhone/iPod Touch got more mentions than any other item. Take a look at the Tweets after the jump, then chime in by leaving a comment about your most-loved gizmo, gadget, PC, software, or service…

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Tech You Can Wear. If You Dare!

The World's Wildest Wearable GadgetsOnce upon a time, dressing like a geek meant using a pocket protector and taping the bridge of your glasses. Today, my friends, it can indicate that your shirt keeps you cool with USB-powered fans. Or doubles as a Wi-Fi finder. Or has a built-in spy camera. I’m pleased to announce that JR Raphael is joining Technologizer’s esteemed group of contributors with a look at high-tech clothing and wearable accouterments, from head (sunglasses with flash storage) to toe (Facebook-compatible shoes). There’s some pretty darn nerdy stuff in there, some of which I wouldn’t be caught dead in. But I confess that I’m taken with Timex’s prototype of a disposable translucent timepiece you wear fastened to your fingernail…

View World’s Wildest Wearable Gadgets slideshow.

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