Posts tagged gadgets

New Android Wear features announced.
Google have detailed new features for Android Wear in a blog post, with changes that will see runners or cyclists in particular excited.
Offline music playback and GPS support have been announced for the system, meaning you can go for a run or a bike ride and track your activity without taking the connected smartphone. Music can be streamed to bluetooth headphones directly from the watch. It’s worth noting that the GPS features will only be available in watches with a GPS sensor - at the moment that’s only the recently announced Sony SmartWatch3 (pictured on the right above), which Google says will be available ‘later this year’.
Another new feature is downloadable watch faces. Although some watch faces are currently available in the Play store, they have to be installed via an app on the phone and are difficult to develop. The new update will make new faces easier to develop and install, which should encourage more developers to create them.
I’ve been wearing the LG G watch for a few weeks now and really enjoy the voice commands, which weren’t available on my old Pebble watch. For me the only major flaw is the design, but judging from the look of the four new watches above, designs are rapidly improving already.

New Android Wear features announced.

Google have detailed new features for Android Wear in a blog post, with changes that will see runners or cyclists in particular excited.

Offline music playback and GPS support have been announced for the system, meaning you can go for a run or a bike ride and track your activity without taking the connected smartphone. Music can be streamed to bluetooth headphones directly from the watch. It’s worth noting that the GPS features will only be available in watches with a GPS sensor - at the moment that’s only the recently announced Sony SmartWatch3 (pictured on the right above), which Google says will be available ‘later this year’.

Another new feature is downloadable watch faces. Although some watch faces are currently available in the Play store, they have to be installed via an app on the phone and are difficult to develop. The new update will make new faces easier to develop and install, which should encourage more developers to create them.

I’ve been wearing the LG G watch for a few weeks now and really enjoy the voice commands, which weren’t available on my old Pebble watch. For me the only major flaw is the design, but judging from the look of the four new watches above, designs are rapidly improving already.

Galaxy Note Edge is a real phone that looks like a concept.
When I first saw this I thought it was another concept design photoshopped by some fan, but nope, this is a real phone coming soon to stores.
The Galaxy Note Edge was unveiled today alongside a new, regular Galaxy Note device by Samsung. The ‘Edge Panel’ is said to offer functions that many of the phone’s stock apps will take advantage of, although it’s not clear if regular apps will also wrap around the edges or simply display in on the front of the screen.
I can see it getting pretty annoying pretty fast having your fingers accidentally performing actions while just trying to hold the phone, plus it seems like just another part of the phone to damage if the phone is dropped or scratched, although it does look pretty futuristic.
Edit: The display only wraps around one edge of the phone.

Galaxy Note Edge is a real phone that looks like a concept.

When I first saw this I thought it was another concept design photoshopped by some fan, but nope, this is a real phone coming soon to stores.

The Galaxy Note Edge was unveiled today alongside a new, regular Galaxy Note device by Samsung. The ‘Edge Panel’ is said to offer functions that many of the phone’s stock apps will take advantage of, although it’s not clear if regular apps will also wrap around the edges or simply display in on the front of the screen.

I can see it getting pretty annoying pretty fast having your fingers accidentally performing actions while just trying to hold the phone, plus it seems like just another part of the phone to damage if the phone is dropped or scratched, although it does look pretty futuristic.

Edit: The display only wraps around one edge of the phone.

'Chairless Chair' exoskeleton.
The Chairless Chair attaches to the thighs and hips, and while it allows for generally normal motion when not powered on, it can be turned on anytime to lock into place and act as a chair the user can sit on. The creator claims the device can hold a required pose for about 24 hours on a single 6 volt battery.

'Chairless Chair' exoskeleton.

The Chairless Chair attaches to the thighs and hips, and while it allows for generally normal motion when not powered on, it can be turned on anytime to lock into place and act as a chair the user can sit on. The creator claims the device can hold a required pose for about 24 hours on a single 6 volt battery.

CNN

DIY Johnny 5 robot kit available.
The US$1,400 kit lets you create a fully functional model of the robot from the 80s movie Short Circuit.

The robot is made from Servo Erector Set aluminum brackets, custom injection molded components, and ultra-tough laser-cut Lexan structural components. The torso is fully articulated utilizing 8 x HS-645MG, 3 x HS-475HB / HS-485HB, and 3 x HS-422 servos, and our SSC-32 servo controller. By utilizing heavy duty polypropylene and rubber tracks with durable ABS molded sprockets the robot has excellent traction. It includes two 12vdc 50:1 gear head motors and the Sabertooth 2 x 5 motor controller.
The combo kit includes the powerful Lynxmotion Sequencer Program for PC. You can control the robot from a PC with the included DB9 cable, or use our DFRobot bluetooth/APC220/Xbee modules for wireless PC control. 

DIY Johnny 5 robot kit available.

The US$1,400 kit lets you create a fully functional model of the robot from the 80s movie Short Circuit.

The robot is made from Servo Erector Set aluminum brackets, custom injection molded components, and ultra-tough laser-cut Lexan structural components. The torso is fully articulated utilizing 8 x HS-645MG, 3 x HS-475HB / HS-485HB, and 3 x HS-422 servos, and our SSC-32 servo controller. By utilizing heavy duty polypropylene and rubber tracks with durable ABS molded sprockets the robot has excellent traction. It includes two 12vdc 50:1 gear head motors and the Sabertooth 2 x 5 motor controller.

The combo kit includes the powerful Lynxmotion Sequencer Program for PC. You can control the robot from a PC with the included DB9 cable, or use our DFRobot bluetooth/APC220/Xbee modules for wireless PC control. 

Jawbone data shows which Bay Area residents were woken by the quake.
Interesting chart from anonymized data taken from Jawbone UP trackers, showing just how many residents of each area were woken by Sundays 3:20am quake.

Jawbone data shows which Bay Area residents were woken by the quake.

Interesting chart from anonymized data taken from Jawbone UP trackers, showing just how many residents of each area were woken by Sundays 3:20am quake.

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uBeam allows wireless charging, at a distance.

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Baxter is an (almost) affordable industrial robot.

Rethink Robotics industrial robot is notable for being only US$25,000, which is pretty surprising for an industrial robot.

Video: Jibo, the family robot.

Jibo’s makers claim it’s the ‘World’s first family robot’. The device sits on a table or bench, and uses two high resolution cameras, 360 degree microphones, and an HD touchscreen to recognise faces, take photos, tell stories, deliver hands free messages, and more.

What’s really striking about the device though is it’s movement - it looks like a cute cousin of Wall-E straight out of a Pixar movie. According to the team, it’s from their “ deep expertise in animation and social robotics with Huge Design’s stellar talent in sophisticated and cutting-edge industrial design” - check it out in the video above.

Jibo has just passed US$1,000,000 and is still taking pre-orders. They don’t expect to ship the first units until December 2015, although that’s still ahead of a planned public release in 2016.

Check out the Jibo Indiegogo page here.

Robotic device gives users extra fingers

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A robotic device developed at MIT mimics the movements of a users hand, essentially giving them two extra fingers.