January 2014





Here’s Why You Always Ski with a Buddy in Avalanche Country

This December 2013 YouTube video of skiers at Utah’s Alta ski resort shows the importance of skiing with a buddy within avalanche prone areas – and proceeding downhill separately.  This GoPro footage  shows a skier spotting his brother becoming engulfed in an avalanche leaving him buried to the very top of his ski helmet. All caught on video.




Want to Knock Off Some High-End Goods? Here’s a Step-By-Step Guide

Our friends at Skooba Design and Saddlebck Leather both go the extra mile to create bags that last and last. Creating durable, long-lasting products isn’t necessarily great for business since it cuts down on repeat and replacement purchases. Knockoffs however, that’s where the real money is. In this video Saddleback Leather shows you how to get started.




2K and Bethesda Duo Packs Release on February 11

2K and Bethesda will offer duo packs for players who missed Borderlands 2 and Dishonored or The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and BioShock Infinite for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. These treasures will cost $29.99 each (North America only) and include the base games without any downloadable content (DLC). This special team-up team will release February 11, 2014.


Rdio and Spotify Open Up Time Limits on their Free Services!

If you’re a casual web user of Rdio or Spotify, chances are you’ve hit against their limits on occasion. Aside from not getting to do ‘on demand’ listening, you get ads and time limits as well as some other minor limits. This week both services set aside limits for web users and now offer unlimited use of their radio services.




Can You Blog from a Nexus 7 with a Bluetooth Keyboard?

I recently purchased a new case with a bluetooth keyboard for my Nexus 7. After a while, I really started to like using the keyboard.  There will be a full review of the case coming but I wondered: Could I use it to write posts here on Gear Diary? The answer is yes!  However, it does have some quirks.


Need Storage? The SanDisk Connect Wireless Flash Drive May Be for You!

My iPhone-shopping brother-in-law wrote, “I think I know the answer, but is 32GB enough capacity for normal users? I do not have tremendous amounts of data and generally don’t store much in the way of videos.” iPhone storage capacity is a potential issue, but it is one that’s easily resolved thanks to the SanDisk Connect Wireless Flash Drive.


Microsoft Surface 2 Back in Stock Online at Microsoft Store

If you were searching for a Microsoft Surface 2 online around holiday time there’s a good chance you had trouble finding one – at least in stock at the Microsoft store.  After writing down almost $1 Billion of the original Surface models Microsoft was understandably cautious about estimating demand for the follow-up Surface 2 and Surface Pro. 


Dirty Music? Clean It Up with the Cambridge Audio DacMagic XS

I visited the Cambridge Audio suite during CES 2014. I put on headphones. I listened. The sound stinked. I put a Cambridge Audio DacMagic XS USB DAC / Headphone Amp between the headphones and laptop. The sound was amazing — you might even say magical! The recording was fine. It was the laptop amp and the DacMagic that made all the difference. It turns out the audio amp on a laptop is an amazingly cheap component of most computers. It is fine for notifications and the like, but when it comes to listening to music the amps fall short. They…


Bardbarian for iOS Combines Strategy and Tower Defense, Review

Gamers love tower defense games, and fantasy action-combat games. Bardbarian has all of this and more. Based around the hero Brad and his Axe guitar, this light-hearted romp has you summoning companions and special attacks as you work to fend off the invaders and protect your village. For a bargain price you will get loads of fun!


Can the New Intel Based Tablets run Linux?

I was at Staples the other day and saw some of the new Windows 8 based tablets that have recently been released. Specifically, the Dell Venue 8 Pro. It is based on the new quad core Atom chip and uses a whole lot less power than the chips they used in netbooks. The question is: Will it run Linux? The answer is complicated.


iFace – a Fab Case Company That You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

One of the things I love about CES is that it gives me an opportunity to wander aisles filled with products from companies that I might never have discovered otherwise. Tucked in an out of the way area that we almost didn’t explore, Dan and I found iFace; they make some of the best-looking protective cases available.