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Author Archive for Paul Grunwald

Magnetic Organization System (MOS) review

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In our house, we have an iPhone,  an Android phone, an LG phone, 3 iPods, two Nooks, and a digital camera.  Something is always on the charger, and almost every device has a unique plug.  Keeping the cables accessible and organized is a challenge.   Enter the Magnetic Organization System (MOS) to the rescue. Read More →

Securus SpotLite 2.0 GPS Pet Locator review


If your family is anything like mine, the dog is not just a pet, it is more like a child.  We celebrate birthdays, they get Christmas presents, and whenever possible, they are with us.  For dedicated pet parents, there is nothing worse than having a pet go missing.   Securus makes a number of GPS locating products for tracking and monitoring people, possessions, and pets.  The SpotLite 2.0 is Securus’ second generation pet GPS tracking device.  They have teamed with the American Kennel Club Companion Animal Recovery (AKC CAR) program to provide 24/7 recovery of your lost pet. Read More →

Penpower Worldcard Link pro Complete Contact Management Solution review

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In both my personal and professional life I have collected stacks of business cards. When I was offered the opportunity to review the Worldcard Link Pro business card scanner and software from Penpower, I jumped at the opportunity.  Let’s see how it works. Read More →

Leatherman One Hand Tool (OHT) – Use it with one hand tied behind your back

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Leatherman has released another tool in their Military/EMT-aimed multi-tools.  The 16-tool OHT is designed so that both the blades AND the pliers can be operated with one hand.  The OHT has both needle-nose and regular pliers with wire cutters, 4 blades including a strap cutter, saw, can opener, bottle opener, screwdrivers,  threaded attachment for  #8-32 Cleaning Rod, and O2 bottle wrench.  It is available in Desert Tan, Black, and Silver.   It comes with Leatherman’s 25-year warranty and has a street price of ~$70.

TSA relaxes ban on knives and sharp sticks on planes

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Though you still can’t carry your complete Zombie Apocalypse toolkit with you on a plane (my personal favorite, the Dead On Annihilator Superhammer is shown), as of April 25th, 2013, the TSA is changing the rules on small pocketknives, toy bats, ski poles, hockey and lacross sticks, pool cues, and golf clubs. Now, if I could just have those 3 Leatherman Squirts that I have donated to the government back…

NVIDIA releases the Titan graphics card


Saddleback Leather Company now offering an iPad Mini case


Saddleback Leather Company has released the iPad Mini case (affiliate links).  It has a hand strap on the inside cover for holding your iPad in a one-hand grip.   The cover also folds back to make a stand.   It is made from the same fine leather and industrial heavy-gauge marine-grade thread as their other products.   The iPad Mini case is available in Carbon Black, Chestnut, Dark Coffee Brown, or Tobacco Brown with pigskin lining. It sells for $88.

Google opens up Project Glass to non-developers


Google has announced that they are starting a contest for non-developers to purchase Glass ahead of the retail release.  Explorers are required to submit in 50 words or less to Twitter or Goggle+ what they would do with the interactive, web-enabled glasses.  The deadline for applications is February   27th, 2013.  It is not cheap however!  If selected, the glasses are $1,500, and you must attend a pick event in New York, San Francisco, or LA.

Ubuntu on Phones preview now available

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IOS and Android finally have some real competition! Ubuntu has announced that the Touch Developer Preview will be available at the Mobile World Congress. The first phone to be supported with Debian Linux derivative operating system will be the Nexus 4. Other phones will, including existing models, will be support later in 2013. Detailed information can be found here.

Wirelessly control your Celestron Telescope with the SkyQ Link WiFi Adapter


New for 2013 is the SkyQ Link WiFi Adapter from Celestron, which allows wireless control of most Celestron motorized telescope mounts that use the hand control computer. There is an IOS interface with telescope alignment mode and a planetarium interface that immediately aims at any celestial object you tap from the SkyView screen. SkyTour generates the best objects to observe based on your location and the current time. For use with a laptop, the unit interfaces with the NexRemote hand controller emulator program. The unit is powered from the mount and does not require any batteries. The SkyQ has been named one of Sky and Telescope’s 2013 Hot Products. It retails for $99.95.

larklife tracking fitness wristband tracks activity and sleep patterns

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lark has released the larklife tracking bands. The $149 package included a daytime activity band and a nighttime sleep tracking band integrated with a IOS coaching app for logging diet, exercise and alerts.  The application tracks the users actions, diet, and sleep patterns. The data is analyzed on the back-end servers and makes suggestions and tips to improve performance.  It celebrates your achievements with a light show on the wristband and reward icons in the application.   The larklife is available at lark and at the Apple Store.

Casio G-Shock G-Aviation Mutli-Mission Combi (MMC) watch review


After a long stretch of wearing mechanical, self-winding watches, I got the urge for a state-of-the-art timepiece.  An international trip where I needed to keep track of multiple time-zones was the final straw.  After a lot of research and window shopping, I decided on the Casio G-Shock G-Aviation Mutli-Mission Combi (MMC), the GW3500B-1A (#5173). Read More →

Adafruit Gemma miniature wearable electronic platform


Adafruit , run by the 2012 Entrepreneur of the Year Limor “Ladyada” Fried, has announced the Gemma, a wearable micro-controller board with just a 1” diameter. The Gemma uses an Atmel Attiny85 and is programmable with the Arduino IDE through a micro-USB cable.

It has three programmable I/O pins, one analog input, and two Pulse-Width Modulated (PWM) pins for driving LEDs. The Gemma is perfect for DIY wearable art and fashion projects. It is based on the existing Flora board but is smaller for more compact designs.

You can sign up for a shipping notification at the Gemma page link, above.

Bring connectivity to your devices with the Electric Imp


The Electric Imp is now out of beta and shipping developer kits. The Imp is an SD-card sized WiFi (802.11b/g/n) module with built-in antenna, 6 I/O, Arm Cortex M3 Micro-controller, and a Cloud-based infrastructure for programming and control. The I/O supports serial, I2C, SPI, A2D, D2A, and PWM interfaces. The Imp uses the Squirrel programming language, which is a small footprint C/C++ derivative for embedded devices. The programming interface is entirely web-based and offers both local, and server based API.

The “April” breakout board offers an SD Socket, 3.4-16v battery/DC input power supply, and USB power connections. There is also an Arduino Shield for interfacing to the Imp Card. All I/O is brought out on 0.1” headers for easy bread boarding and experimentation. The Imp and developer kits are offered at AdaFruit and SparkFun Electronics, starting at $29.95. What do you want to wire up to the web today?