Conwayclaire’s Blog
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Apr
20

So it does look bright and colorful but also extraordinary and childish. This recently announced MP3 player by Lego and Digital Blue is something I think children will love listening to there favorite tunes on. The physical appearance of the device mimics a piece of Lego and as you can see add ons of Lego can be added to the top and bottom of the MP3 player. The device connects through USB 2.0 and has 2GB worth of internal memory (1000 songs is plenty for children). It also has a built in rechargeable battery and comes with earphones, a USB cable and user guide.

The device comes in multi color and various pink colors (for the more girly children) and is selling at approximately $39.99 which is reasonable. I think it is an interesting piece of technology as it morphs together the toy that was ever so popular before technology entered children’s worlds and what is now being demanded – MP3’s, Hannah Montana merchandise, etc.

Apr
20

Kyocera a company seen mostly to develop kitchen products and solar generating systems have come up with a concept for a folding OLED phone which is causing a lot of interest. That’s right a phone that can change shape to suit your needs and it’s totally feasible. It is made of a semi – rigid screen and can be folded into a variety of shapes such as flat for widescreen or a more laptop like shape. Kyocera EOS Phone Concept

 

Other advantages of this concept are the keys and the battery. Unlike your average mobile phone this would not be powered on a rechargeable battery but instead by kinetic energy, powering itself on your movement. The keys on the phone are another huge feature as they are shape shifting buttons that can become flat if necessary. This shape memory idea allows the keys to pop up when needed and otherwise blend back into the device.

I like the concept for this phone although I am not sure how viable aspects like the battery that powers itself of your movement is. Also if the keys do as has been portrayed by Kyocera I think they would prove to be useful in many touch screen devices and would help solve the problem of not having a keyboard. Obviously the phone has no release date at this point but Kyocera say they will be using aspects of this concept in devices in the future.

Apr
19

HP have developed a novel color-matching technology which can be used in conjunction with mobile phones providing beauty consultation. The smart beauty advisor can be installed in any mobile phone that has a built in camera. Using the personal beauty consultant dubbed ‘Color Match’ is easy. All one has to do is take a picture of themselves holding a specialized color chart and forward the image as an MMS to a server. Here the picture is analyzed in detail and color corrections take place for camera and lighting differences. Skin pixels are then extracted from the image and matched with the most suitable skin tone of ‘real people’. Soon after registering your picture the user will then receive information on the most suitable make-up shades for there skin tone.

 

HP's Color Match Technology

The idea is one which I think will be very popular among those who shop for cosmetics as the service provides them with a virtual beauty consultant. I also like the idea as it uses both old and new technologies – the system draws on existing HP face-detection technology and uses experience in color and imaging technology to make the service successful. The technology will also work with other aspects of every day life that involve color such as choosing what to wear, interior design, etc.

We find the reference model whose color best matches yours and then with very high confidence we can say you wear the same foundation that she does.

Nina Bhatti

Apr
19

Firstly I came across the strange and unique looking Imation Flash Wristband which i thought to be a bit strange. It basically consists of a USB Flash Key designed in the shape of a bracelet so that you can wear it and carry it around on your person. Personally I don’t see the problem with your typical flash key which can usually be simply attached to a set of keys. However the ‘one size fits all wristband’ is said to provide an easier way to transport your precious data. It consists of a rubber moulded shell and locking band that protects the drive from accidental damage. If it really protects and makes transport of the Flash Key that much easier maybe it is worth wearing it on your wrist!

 

Wearable data storage market evolves

Moving on from the Flash Key wristband I stumbled upon something even stranger, would you believe it a Wristband Computer! This wristband is equipped with a 3.5 inch touch screen display, a backlit keyboard and  a changeable battery. It is also suitable to be connected using Bluetooth, WiFi and GPs. The creators of the device at Glacier Computers say the device, “overcomes the physical limitations associated with normal hand-held computers. This allows users complete freedom to continue everyday activities using both hands while having full computer access at all times.” If or not I am still undecided but one advantage is that it may get computer nerds out and about that bit more!

GX 1500 Industrial Computer

Apr
19

Honda have developed a new walking assistance device which reduces stress on weak leg muscles, making walking a less painful and hard experience for some. It i a motor driven device which measures the stress level of joints in the legs e.g. the hips when people are walking. From this is gives the appropriate support to the user making the simple act of walking easier. It is the second of such devices that Honda have created that supports body weight and helps improve mobility – helping with walking up and down steps and staying in crouching positions.

The robotic looking pair of legs consists of a seat, frame and shoes which are easily adjustable  for various shapes and sizes. The system also has a motor, computer, gears, batteries and sensors embedded into it. The device itself is still in the testing phase and Honda have released videos and images of workers using it at a Honda factory working in line ups and crouching under cars.

The device is an interesting one and may prove very useful in the coming years as an alternative to hip and other joint replacements. Using the device does require a bit of practice as with most new inventions in today’s world and has been compared to learning to ride a bike. The release date for the new development is still unknown and the public won’t be able to get there hands on the device for a few years to come but hopefully the device will eventually help people walk world wide!

Apr
17

The winner of the 24/7 Sandwich Shop Food for Thought competition was  Milos Milivojevic from Serbia who’s idea of a cafe connection wall is very popular. The best way to understand his idea is to imagine going into an internet cafe and not seeing computers everywhere. Instead the wall/walls of the cafe are made up of screens and speakers and so technically you could go to the cafe and have a cup of tea with your best friend in Australia! The concept behind the winning idea is that essentially you can dine with your friends and family anytime and anywhere. The connection wall would appear to be the opposite side of a table where your friends or family could dine with you, although the people across the table would be in front of the same connectivity wall technology somewhere else in the world.

 

Food for Thought most definitely. This idea is one which I predict will be very popular in the future as families and friends are spread further and further across the world. Also because the technology for the ‘connectivity wall’ is already out there I don’t think it will before we see these worldwide interactive Cafe’s popping up. I think the concept and the idea is a great one which is original , inspiring and encourages the relationships among food, people, design, and technology.

Apr
15

Nikon D5000 DSLR

Announced just a few days ago there is already huge interest in Nikon’s new baby the D5ooo. The new DSLR is definately set to be a winner featuring  a 12.3MP sensor and ISO up to 6400, a 2.7-inch Vari-angle LCD monitor, EXPEED image processing system, Lione-button Live View, D-Movie video capture with up to 1,280x720px HD videos, record 720p HD movie clips, 19 Scene Modes, continuous shooting as fast as 4 frames-per-second and GPS geo-tagging. Most shocking is all of this is priced at approximately $700. So the camera that contains most of what the $900 D90 has and more.

What’s most exciting about this new camera is video and a new swivel-screen. The movie setting shoots 720p video at 24fps and the 2.7inch LCD swivel screen always you be much more versatile with shooting. You can rotate and move the screen meaning that the user can take shots with the camera while holding it over head but yet you will still be able to view what is being shot using the screen.

Apr
15

It seems that watch faces may become a thing of the past. Designer Hiranao Tsuboi who works for 100% has designed a watch which has no face. The faceless watch uses LED lighting that shine through the gaps in the metal wrist band in order to show the time. Some of the advantages of this are that the time is digital and so one does not have to read the time in binary form and secondly it is likely to prevent some people asking you for the time!

However, this watch was only created a a once off! The designer only came up with the concept for Tokyo Design Week 2008. Personally, I love the basic concept behind the idea and I  how the spaces between the links on the watch make up the character display using  an LED light. Such a simple, elegant  design. The watch has received a lot of attention since the Design Week most of which is extremely positive and so hopefully some retailer will buy and create the unique design.

 

Apr
14

UDance developed by Hasbro is one of the first games that brings motion capture technology to your own living room. The game replaces the old dance mat with straps that are attached to your shoes. When the game is plugged into your television and your ready to start you can dance to your hearts content. Each step taken is recorded by the equipment andis represented by footprints on screen. The controller for the game is attached to you so essentially there is none as the company who created UDance puts it you literally step into the game. The game allows you freedom to dance in your own way allowing you to step, jump, slid and even cross-over.

UDance

Not only does the motion tracking game allow you to dance without being confined to a mat or controller but it also contains a workout option and lounge area. I think this game is very interactive but yet versatile as it is totally wireless and utilizes some of the latest technology in a compact console and foot straps. Unlike other previous dancing games that have been invented when playing UDance the user actually appears to be dancing rather than just jumping about on a mat.

Apr
14

The Australian Design Company(EcoSmart) brilliant at creating everything that is modern and eco-friendly for your home have really developed something very special, a portable fireplace. These fireplaces designed by John Dimopoulus are clean, fresh, visually intriguing and best of all environmentally friendly. These fireplaces are completely portable meaning that you can bring the heat with you to anywhere in your home. They are fueled by one of the latest renewable modern energy Ethanol (undrinkable alcohol) which as well as being cheap is practically maintenance free.

 

Not only is this one of the greenest inventions in today’s world but the fireplaces are beautifully designed, ultra-modern and elegantly styled. It is truly unique and designed to combine form and function ingeniously. The glass surroundings of the fireplace also allow for light to be released from the moveable fire again adding to the sleek, impressive invention. The fireplaces themselves almost stand alone as art pieces making them a perfect piece of furniture for any home.