Editor Mike Haney is training for the New York City Marathon with all the help from high-end running tech he can get. Read his previous posts here.
Despite my geeky leanings, I've typically run with tech no more complex than an Ironman watch. But in the spirit of the title of this column, I've recently been testing a number of sports watches, from Suunto, Polar, and Garmin, to see if I could gain anything from monitoring my effort (or lack thereof). So far, the one device I find myself frantically searching the house for before I head out is the new Garmin Forerunner 405CX. And not for what it puts on my wrist, sleek as it is, but for what it puts on my monitor later.
Though it may not be much comfort as you use it on the usual round of chores, inside the new Dyson DC31 vacuum cleaner is a motor that's ten times faster than a jet engine, and much quieter. At 104,000 rpm, the DC31's digital switched reluctance motor actually spins faster than any motor on earth.
Google Voice is one of those technical advancements that could change your way of communication. With it, you can sign up for a single phone number that rings every phone you own. Then you can hand out the number to everyone you know.
Earlier in the week, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen announced that a mobile implementation of the full Flash Player 10 would be making its way onto several smartphones by October. In addition to Android, other mobile operating systems, including Windows Mobile, Palm's WebOS, and Symbian have signed on. Missing from that list, to absolutely no one's surprise, is the iPhone.
In the ongoing quest to turn real-world objects into iPhone applications, HP has released a calculator app that is a near perfect imitation of the original HP15C. Released in 1985, this full-function scientific calculator had a root-solver, could handle matrix operations, and supported numerical integration. It also lasted about six months on one battery-–or about five months and 29 days longer than the iPhone. But save for that sacrifice to modernization, the HP15C on the iPhone is pretty slick.
The dropping price of laptops and netbooks has resulted in a proliferation of computer use in public spaces. Whether at the airport, in a cafe, or on the Chinatown bus, more and more people are using their computers in the view of others. This has made protecting personal data from eavesdroppers a high priority. Sure, a couple of dollars can get you a polarized screen that offers some protection from the wandering eye of the person next you, but for people with sensitive military, industrial, and intelligence information on the screen, that simply isn't enough.
Enter Oculis Labs. This software company has married face-recognition technology with encryption, to create two programs that protect on-screen data from prying eyes.
Kids these days. It seems that they were born into a society that spends 90 percent of its time staring at glowing rectangles, much to the chagrin of parents everywhere. Playing outside just seems like too low-tech of an option for them to bother wasting their time with. However, Bulpadok, an Australian app company, might convince them to take the screen with them outdoors, with The Hidden Park, a new iPhone-based scavenger hunt.
Do you live in a magical wardrobe where you constantly reread Edith Hamilton's Mythology hoping one day to transform into a centaur? Thanks to artist Kim Graham, you can now strap on some robotic horse legs and live the fantasy.
The problem with the great outdoors has always been the lack of full mobile connectivity, electric lighting, and a power source for your laptop. The Orange Solar Concept Tent, which will debut in the UK starting today, in time for the Glastonbury rock festival, tackles these critical problems.
I'm still waiting for the technology that finally does away with my need to sleep. But since I do need my nightly dose (I've tried going without, and it's ugly), I'd like to make sure I'm doing it as efficiently as possible. A new device called the Zeo promises to help stamp out bad sleep and wasted time in bed, by bringing deep analysis of sleep patterns, formerly the province of professional sleep laboratories, into the home.