Posts Tagged ‘Beautiful’
After launching Street View Trekker last year, Google is now starting to show us what we can expect from its loaner program. What you see above are some pictures from the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, which were taken by Google’s first Trekker…
…one PVC patio chair, 14 chair feet, one flowerpot, one umbrella base, two bike tires, 30 cans, many pieces of PVC pipes, one acrylic globe lights, some car body parts, a few pieces of garden hoses and about 1,000 devoured human souls.
I think the human souls thing was supposed to be a joke. Now, let’s gather junk from around the house and make our own. Then when we’re finished we can look at our creation and realize what a shitty job we’ve done because he have no business trying to make our own Cthulhu sculptures. I’ll still make all my guests look at it, but I won’t be proud. You know those painting classes that groups of girlfriends go to where they all paint the exact same flowery scene? It will be like that, except it will be the worst looking painting of all the friends. Wow, Cathy, who knew all these years you had so much artistic talent! “It sucks, doesn’t it?” It might be actually be the worst painting in the world. Keep going for a ton more pictures including the piece looking magnificent hanging in a bar.
Despite HTC’s recent blast of Desire phones, the company admitted that it still needs to push harder in the lower price tiers. Lo and behold, here’s a leak of an upcoming “New Desire 8″ series mid-range device, courtesy of Chinese site MyDrivers and…
HiddenRadio was one of the first crowdfunding successes. The original model nearly hit $ 1 million on Kickstarter in 2012 and spawned legions of fans. The creators, John Van Den Nieuwenhuizen and Vitor Santa Maria, built a small Bluetooth speaker that offered excellent frequency response and acceptable bass with a very cool design aesthetic. Now they’re back for more.
HiddenRadio 2 is the pair’s latest creation and it’s already well on its way to funding. The new model offers surprisingly rich sound out of a case that is about as big as soup can. However, unlike a soup can the HiddenRadio looks great and will remind some of the new Mac Pro with its staid styling, touch-sensitive top, and simple setup.
I got a chance to sit down with Van Den Nieuwenhuizen last week and heard the new HiddenRadio in a nearly empty bar. He compared it with a few popular speaker systems including the Jambox and I was duly impressed. While we couldn’t set it too loud, you could definitely hear a nice presence in the HiddenRadio 2 and excellent bass.
The pair have also added some new features to the device including a far better port placement as well as a way to connect two $ 119 HiddenRadios together to create a stereo pair. None of their competitors have these features. That is has a noise-cancelling microphone and can act as a speakerphone are just gravy.
The design is very impressive. The outer shell is chromed and there is a touch-sensitve top that allows you to spin a finger to control the volume or tap to turn the music on and off. A single tap will also raise the lid off of the speaker grill for listening.
It’s fascinating to watch mass CE products like this make it in Kickstarter. Whereas the really geeky stuff tends to take off – Pebble watches and Udoo boards are surprisingly popular – the interest peters out once you enter into speaker territory. However, with high-design and low cost items like HiddenRadio you can definitely see a move in a more general direction. I’d love it, for example, if Sony or Samsung put a product up for crowdfunding. It would show a definite interest in the audience and could be a very successful move.
A guy, as they say, can dream.
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The PS4 is a lovely gaming kit. It’s sleek. Monolithic. And relatively small in comparison to the Xbox One. Sony did its 4th generation console right. iFixit found in its teardown that the gaming system is nearly as beautiful on the inside as it is on the out. But that shouldn’t be a big surprise. It’s a Sony product and Sony knows how to build things. However, iFixit did find something somewhat shocking: The latest PlayStation is very user serviceable.
On iFixit’s scale of 1 to 10, the PS4 scored an 8 meaning most users can expect to rip the system open and tinker away. Most importantly, the hard drive is very easy to access, giving owners options to upgrade to a larger or faster option. The hardest thing to service, per iFixit, is apparently the fan which is buried deep the system’s innards.
iFixit and others have yet to teardown the upcoming Xbox One. That should be in the coming days. Hopefully Microsoft designed it with the same thought as the Xbox 360E, the last model of its generation. That model was simple to open up. In fact, all of Microsoft’s gaming systems from the start have been trivial to crack open and tinker around. The original Xbox’s modability was a significant factor in its widespread adoption. Let’s hope Microsoft hasn’t forgotten that.
With the gaming world entering the 7th generation, there is hope that hardware makers, namely Sony and Microsoft, have learned from past mistakes and gamers shouldn’t have to fear a red or yellow light of death caused by shoddy hardware design.
This is a short video created by Youtube user adamanimates of Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes dancing around in the woods. It’s good. Plus I liked the song. The whole thing really brightened my day. And I needed that because my day has been pretty dark so far. I don’t want to go into details, but I’m bleeding and if it doesn’t stop soon I might even have to go to the hospital. “WHERE’S THE REST OF YOUR ARM?!” Like I said, pretty dark so far. Hit the jump for the video. You’ll like it, I promise.
Apple introduced two new iPads this month at a special event in San Francisco on October 22, and the first of those to go on sale is the iPad Air, which is in stores and on virtual shelves this Friday, November 1. After a week with Apple’s newest 9.7-inch device, it’s clear there’s a new champion of the large tablet market, and one that breathes new life into Apple’s original slab-style game-changer.
- 2048 x 1536 (Retina) 9.7-inch display
- 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB
- A7 processor
- 802.11n dual-channel Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
- 10 hours general use Wi-Fi surfing, 9 hours on cellular
- Starts at $ 499
- Thin and light design is a huge improvement over 4th-gen iPad
- No battery life sacrifices required
- Hard sell over the iPad mini with Retina, which also now has A7 power
The design is the star of Apple’s iPad Air refresh this time around; the 9.7-inch Apple tablet has had the same form factor for two generations now, and that one actually made the design worse – it got heavier, and it got thicker. This new iPad mini-inspired look sheds both size and weight, giving the iPad Air a 43 percent smaller bezel, a 20 percent thinner case, and making it 28 percent lighter, at just one pound.
It’s a difference that you feel, all numbers and measurements aside. The iPad Air is much, much more comfortable to hold than the iPad 4th-gen it replaces; This isn’t strictly a one-handed device, but it’s as close as you can get with a tablet that still has a gorgeous, expansive 9.7-inch Retina Display.
The aesthetics of the iPad Air are also improved: That smaller bezel better showcases the screen, for instance, and the mirror finish Apple logo is a nice touch. The silver version I reviewed is very nice, though I personally prefer the space gray finish in this device based on comparing them both at the Apple event itself. Plus, the speaker design is improved both in terms of looks and sound quality.
The screen on the iPad Air is a Retina display, which means that when viewed from a standard distance, the human eye shouldn’t be able to make out individual pixels. The actual pixel density of that 2048 x 1536 9.7-inch display is 264 PPI, which is much less dense than the iPad mini, but you’d have a hard time telling the difference when you’re actually using the thing. In short, both are excellent, and lead the market in terms of quality when you factor in color rendering, viewing angle and other visual attributes.
Having used primarily an iPad mini for the past year, there’s no question that coming back to the 9.7-inch Retina display was an uplifting experience. It felt a little like getting your prescription adjusted and realizing you’ve been seeing everything poorly for a long time. Video shines on the iPad Air, as does image-rich content like comic books and photos.
There’s no question that coming back to the 9.7-inch Retina display was an uplifting experience.
Not to mention that all that extra space makes for a much more comfortable browsing experience, and offers a lot of benefits when it comes to content creation. It doesn’t feel arduous doing work on the iPad; you can start to remember why people touted the iPad as a PC-killer when it debuted, and it edges ever closer to being able to truly replace notebooks for the majority of everyday users.
Apple’s iPad Air has some new powers compared to its predecessor – chief among those is the new A7 64-bit processor, and the M7 motion coprocessor that goes along with that. This means that like its cousin the iPhone 5s, it’s a “forward thinking” device, but it also brings benefits right away, thanks in large part to Apple’s own redesigned first-party apps.
When using the new iLife and iWork suites, performance is considerably bolstered by the 64-bit retrofits they got with their recent redesigns – everything feels faster and more responsive. 64-bit processing doesn’t mean that every app necessarily gets a 2x boost in performance over those made for the traditional 32-bit architecture used in previous iPads, but it does mean that software made for those processors will feel even more instantly responsive than it has in the past.
Also new to the iPad Air are dual microphones which help out with sound quality on audio and video FaceTime calls, and the motion coprocessor means that you’ll start to see more activity tracking built into the iPad, too. It may seem an odd feature for a tablet, but the iPad is designed to go with you where you go, and it might be even more representative of your general activity level since it won’t be triggered so easily as a phone worn close to the body.
Cameras also get an update with the iPad Air, which is to be expected. The real gem here is the FaceTime HD camera that offers 1080p video calling instead of 720p on the last model, which does make a difference. It also has a new 5-megapixel shooter that gets bigger pixels on the sensor, which does lead to better photos. I feel no less ridiculous taking photos with a 9.7-inch tablet than I did before, however, but if that’s the type of photography you go in for, you’ll be better served with this device.
The iPad Air may be a lightweight device physically, but it’s a heavyweight when it comes to performance. Benchmarks tell only one side of the story, and the one that most users will be more interested in is around how the tablet work under normal, everyday usage conditions. Put simply, Apple’s latest iPad soars.
Put simply, Apple’s latest iPad soars.
Other performance tweaks from the A7 include support for OpenGL ES version 3.0 graphics, which makes it possible to build effects into games that were previously only available on the desktop. This iPad is a really strong gaming advice I learned based on my testing with Batman: Arkham Origins on the tablet, and you really get the sense that developers are just cracking the surface when it comes to what they can do with these new graphics capabilities.
The version I tested also supports LTE, and this iPad supports the most frequencies of that network technology than ever before. I was able to test out those claims right away, thanks to taking the device from San Francisco out to London. The iPad Air worked perfectly on both AT&T and on EE LTE, making this a world traveler’s best friend and constant companion. Thanks to FaceTime Audio and third-party apps like Skype, this could easily operate as someone’s international travel phone, letting people escape costly roaming charges.
The iPad Air’s battery offers up to 10 hours of continuous usage, according to Apple’s official published specs, and I’ve found that it easily matches up with the high bar set for power by previous generations. On average, I found myself getting around 10 hours of actual use on Wi-Fi, and slightly less on LTE networks. Standby time seems to have improved considerably with this generation, also, as the iPad Air seemed to positively sip battery life while unplugged but with the screen asleep.
Part of the iPad’s magic is the fact that you can put it down and forget about it for days, then pick it up and still have nearly a full charge. That’s still the case, and it’s made all the more impressive based on the physical changes Apple has made to the case design, which theoretically should leave less room inside for actual batteries.
Apple has two cases for the iPad Air, and they follow in the footsteps of those that came before. There’s the Smart Cover, and the Smart Case, both of which feature a magnetic closure with a multi-panelled front. The Case, as its name implies, also has a back component, but the Cover just protects the screen.
The Smart Case comes in leather variants, while the Cover is only offered in polycarbonate materials now, though both are offered in multiple color schemes. In almost every single instance where an Apple device is involved, I’m a fan of not using a case at all; the bumps and scratches that inevitably ensue help give the great design character, in my opinion. But if you’re going to get a case, I’d opt for the Smart Cover, as it adds virtually no bulk and protects the part of the iPad that is most important to protect – the glass.
The Smart Case makes the iPad Air feel quite a bit more bulky, in my opinion, and is fairly difficult to get off once its on. On the other hand, it’s definitely more protective than the Smart Case, and it’s still relatively svelte. Apple has also nailed its leather case designs in terms of putting out a product that feels very high quality, and that’s what they’ve done here, too.
The iPad Air is a huge improvement over the iPad 4th-gen, or the iPad 2, pictured in the gallery. Its form factor is the best currently available for a 10-inch tablet, and it provides a great blend of portability and usability that leans towards the media device end of the spectrum.
When Apple introduced the iPad mini, I feel in love and felt that I’d never be swayed back to the other side. The iPad Air makes the argument anew that there’s still room for big tablets in people’s lives, and it might just help usher in an era of computing where households own more than one kind of iPad, and PCs are harder and harder to find.
We may be constantly staring into our phones and laptops, but Livescribe CEO Gilles Bouchard says pen and paper are more popular than ever — and he has data to back it up. We want to write and draw the way we always have, he says, but we also want all the sharing, instant access, and searchability that come with our many apps and websites. So Bouchard and Livescribe set out to build a device to bridge that gap, and today it’s announcing the result — the new Livescribe 3.
Livescribe pens have long favored form over function — last year’s Sky was a tiny computer but a huge, awkward pen — so Bouchard and his team decided first and foremost that the Livescribe 3 would be a high-end pen. For the first time ever, the company worked…
It’s a rare day that Apple chief of design Jony Ive works on a product that doesn’t bear his employer’s logo. But he’s done just that for a charity auction, working together with famed industrial designer Marc Newson to design a very special edition Leica M rangefinder camera. The one-of-a-kind camera is expected to fetch between $ 500,000-$ 750,000 at auction at Sotheby’s, with the proceeds going towards (RED), the charity founded by Bono to help fight HIV and AIDS. The partnership between the designers and the charity was announced last year.