Ray Guns are a weakness.

From top left, clock­wise, the pro­to­type for the XZ-31, the XZ-31 itself, and the XZ-35 “Wilma Deer­ing” Rock­et Pis­tol of 1935.

I want every sin­gle one of these. I’m a ray gun freak. I’ve got a cou­ple ter­rif­ic plas­tic ones. I have a desire for more.

Jambox from Jawbone Jams

Jam­box jams! Sit­ting here lis­ten­ing to Yo Yo Ma on the iPad. Well, actu­al­ly on through the iPad on the nifty new Wave Blue Jam­box sit­ting on the cof­fee table. I real­ly love that every­thing con­tin­ues to shrink. I can car­ry a con­sid­er­able amount of enter­tain­ment in a small bag. Now with the Jam­box which is a mere six inch­es long, I can enhance the sound of games and net­flix instant play. I catch up on my e‑mail on my iPad, which now that it allows mul­ti­task­ing, lets me lis­ten to my itunes playlists at the same time.

I just keep star­ing at this lit­tle box with this real­ly big sound. It amazes me.

For com­plete unbox­ing pics and a take on the design check out my post at our stel­larvi­sions blog : IDEA*orange.

Really yellow case for the iPhone

On Face­book today I read a post from my cuz that said plainly:

just watched stacey’s iPhone get run over by a pick-up truck on the bypass. .…. Phone is fine. How?.…Otter Box. Enough said.

That’s pret­ty mean­ing­ful. So I point­ed my brows­er to www.otterbox.com . Some pret­ty impres­sive prod­ucts if you have the need to pro­tect any of your mobile tech­nol­o­gy devices. I think I would want this crazy yel­low case if I want­ed to cov­er up my iPhone or iPod.

I’m into see­ing the beau­ty of my Apple prod­ucts. This is tempt­ing though.

iPad platform ready for tablet publications

This video is being shared all over the place as the next com­ing. Not all that imag­i­na­tive. These are all pret­ty sim­plis­tic ways of adding inter­ac­tiv­i­ty once you have a touch screen. So, will you care after the first three times you use it? Will you want to inter­act with con­tent this way on a reg­u­lar basis?

How will a read­er be able to avoid the adver­tis­ing is the ques­tion that comes to mind. Will adver­tis­ers want to invest the resources need­ed to make adver­tis­ing for these kind of pub­li­ca­tions? Adver­tis­ers a con­sis­tent mod­el to build ads. For pric­ing and pro­duc­tion. Seems like a big barrier.

With each pub­li­ca­tion design­ing it’s own inter­ac­tiv­i­ty where is the com­mon interface?

Just not con­vinced that this par­tic­u­lar mod­el is sustainable.

a book nook takes on kindle-ing


OK. Now we’re talking.

I would buy this device. I know it only does books — a one trick pony. But it let’s you lend your books to oth­ers and it does­n’t look like a Texas Instru­ments cal­cu­la­tor. This device looks like BN hired some prod­uct design­ers and some inter­face design­ers, and a mar­ket­ing crew that knows how to do point-of-purchase.

Barnes and Noble have lis­tened to the crit­i­cism of the Kin­dle and have brought a more sophis­ti­cat­ed and attrac­tive device into the fray.

  • The price is rea­son­able from the start.
  • Design is clean.
  • Mul­ti-touch.
  • Col­or nav­i­ga­tion pan­el (for swip­ing through book cov­ers, a la iTunes)
  • You can buy it in a BN store. (many dis­tri­b­u­tion points — one a few blocks from me)
  • You can browse dig­i­tal books
  • You can lend your book to oth­ers on a num­ber of devices
  • It has a mem­o­ry expan­sion slot
  • It can play MP3’s
  • It can read PDF’s (essen­tial)

Did I men­tion that the design is clean? The device is a bit thick­er and weighs more than the Kin­dle. The oth­er impor­tant part is mov­ing away from pro­pri­etary formats.

Lend­ing is good.

I’ll be head­ing down to the Barnes and Noble to check it out. I’ll let you know if I am as impressed when I can touch it.


iPhone app encourages inner abstract expressionist

Jackson Pollock application

What kind of draw­ing and paint­ing tools are avail­able for artists in a dig­i­tal space? I don’t know. Because some­times I actu­al­ly am under a rock. Why did­n’t I know about this cool app so I could vote for it in the Web­by’s? Some­times you just miss cool stuff until most peo­ple think it’s old and tired. Well, It’s new to me. Here is a cool app where you can get your inner Pol­lock out.

I spent hours play­ing with this soft­ware toy. You prob­a­bly will too.

Paul Jack­son Pol­lock (Jan­u­ary 28, 1912 – August 11, 1956) was an influ­en­tial Amer­i­can painter and a major fig­ure in the abstract expres­sion­ist movement.
see the arti­cle here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jackson_Pollock

How about mak­ing the paint­ings on your iPhone? Here’s a lit­tle movie of the appli­ca­tion in action.

Try it or down­load the iPhone app here : http://jacksonpollock.org/

EVDO and me

This is the sto­ry of try­ing to get high speed inter­net access where i live in philadelphia.

Let’s start with Verizon.
Call them up. Give them the address. Can’t find the address in their data­base. Hmmm. We’d like to see if we can get FIOS. Wait­ing on hold. Time pass­es. The rep can’t find our address. Three peo­ple have lived there before us. Still can’t find our address.

Ok so no Ver­i­zon. If they don’t even know our address that spells bad news for the whole process.

Try Com­cast. (I can’t stand Com­cast. I don’t like their iden­ti­ty, I don’t like their new build­ing, I don’t like that they got a huge tax break to build it. I don’t like their cul­ture.) But, I need high speed inter­net ser­vice. No tele­vi­sion, just internet.

Ok, they know our address. They’ll have some­one out to install tomor­row at 11 am. They’ll bill us. Excellent.

We’re mov­ing and our inter­net ser­vice will be up and run­ning before we move in. This is ter­rif­ic. While unpack­ing we can work from home. Cross that off the list.

Ok, I’m pack­ing and my part­ner is at the new loca­tion to talk to the painters and wait for the Com­cast guy/woman. Believe it or not the guy shows up on time. Ok, lets hook ya up he says.

Bad news.

Cable isn’t run to our new abode. It’s out on the pole but they can’t run it from the pole. New con­struc­tion has to run it under­ground and it’s in our court­yard some­where. His­to­ry is that Com­cast have been out five oth­er times to try to hook up cable. Some­how our cable has been paved over. We could pay to dig and find it. I don’t think so. We rent.

Now what to do? How can this be. This is Amer­i­ca we have tele­com com­pe­ti­tion that’s bet­ter for cus­tomers. We get choice.

I won’t rant on how I think tele­com is a pub­lic util­i­ty. But what am I to think when no one real­ly wants to make an effort to give me service?

I call CTO Phil. Mr. IvesDigital.
He says EVDO.

Hmmm, this is a very inter­est­ing alter­na­tive. This means I can take my net­work con­nect to places that don’t have free wire­less inter­net. This is a REALLY GOOD idea.

Now I can stop freak­ing out.

Mar­garet goes to the Ver­i­zon store. She gets an EVDO card, she buys a plan and she heads to the office. We install the soft­ware and plug in the card. We put in the password.

We’re on the net!

Shar­ing my air­port network.

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compact-fluorescent menace : one big bad idea


Do you use these light­bulbs? Do you like the light they cast? What do you when one breaks? Got any small childeren?

I’ll answer first. No I don’t use them. No I don’t like the light. Don’t have to wor­ry about it. No kids.

Did you know these bulbs con­tain mer­cury? You may remem­ber that ther­mome­ters with mer­cury were banned. Ok so it’s only a lit­tle bit of mer­cury, but a lit­tle bit is more than enough. Mer­cury does not go away. Don’t want to eat fish with Mer­cury do ya? When the bulb breaks the mer­cury is released into the air… yep.

With con­gres­sion­al man­dates we’ll be see­ing lots more of them.

I hate these things. Not because of what they look like I think the phys­i­cal shape is sort of cool. I hate them because peo­ple can’t even recy­cle or dis­pose of glass bot­tles or paint cans — just imag­ine mil­lions of these poi­son light bulbs.

I’m stock­ing up on incan­des­cent bulbs.

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