Gear Bits

GD Quickie Review- Atomic9 RumbleBuds

When I was asked if I would take a look at the Atomic9 RumbleBuds I was intrigued. I’ve had the opportunity to check out a wide range of different kinds of earbuds but these were the first that claimed to be “gaming” earbuds that give you a “totally immersive, deep-reaching soundscape you love about your games and music.” Let’s take a look GD Quickie-style… From the Company- Just because you’re on the go doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice that totally immersive, deep-reaching soundscape you love about your games and music. Feel the good vibrations of subwoofer-style bass wherever you…


Anne Frank’s Life As a Graphic Novel? Yes, Please

all photos courtesy of Smithsonian Magazine When I was growing up, one of my most beloved books was a translation of Anne Frank‘s Diary. Then and now, the story of her life before her family went into hiding and what happened after they were betrayed evoked feelings that are impossible to describe. In 2007, my daughter Sarah and I visited the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. If you are ever in Amsterdam, you must go … simply must. Ernie Colón and Sid Jacobson, the duo behind The 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation, again teamed together and accepted the “challenge of…


GD Quickie: Politics and the Power of Image Cropping

What is going on in Egypt is powerful and scary stuff, and I don’t seek to demean it in any way. Nor do I seek to diminish or trivialize anything that happened or is currently happening in Iraq. However this contrast of images is simply stunning. The image above is a split of top down pictures of supposed ‘democratic revolutions’, one in Egypt right now, the other from 2003 in Iraq. In the upper left of the lower image we see the focus on the toppling of the statue of Saddam Hussein – this was the widely shown image at…


Scion and XLR8R Update City Guide App

Here is a bit of info Gear Diary received recently regarding a Scion-related app update. It is not a Scion owner-specific app, rather it’s one that seeks to enhance the lifestyle of the Scion demographic. The City Guide app now offers more than 15 locales in the database, but Dallas/Fort Worth, who is hosting the big game this weekend, is not among them. I did check out the Austin guide as I was visiting the capital city recently, but the place we had dinner and drinks at (The Highball) was not listed. It was a cool restaurant/bar/nightclub/bowling alley complete with…


GD Quickie: Can You Guess Who Is Buying Google’s Priorities?

When I first heard that Google wasn’t going to auto-complete searches for Bit-torrents and other file sharing methods I was pleased. But then it became clear that it was less a matter of taking an anti-piracy stance, and more about satisfying the corporate interests of those who feed Google loads of cash. So this image was very telling – and it also shows where the priorities are at Google … if you have the cash, you get to set the moral compass. Source: Techi via Buzzfeed


GD Quickie: Yeah, it IS That Kind of Day!

For a large part of the country, this image pretty much sums things up. It is from the stretch of I-93 on the New Hampshire side – 93 runs from Southern NH straight into downtown Boston and is one of those infamously clogged highways. For more images, check out page at BuzzFeed!


Kindle Singles

Kindle singles have been available for about a week, and my household has been brave enough to give them a try. Not only did I read one, but I convinced my dear wife and non-ebook fan Sarah to try one as well! I read a non-fiction title (Lifted, by Evan Ratliff), while Sarah read Leaving Home: Short Pieces by Jodi Picoult, who is one of her favorite authors. I enjoyed Lifted immensely. It was quick-paced, interesting, and read like a longer magazine article. What I really enjoyed was that it cut right to the important bits. If Lifted had been…


iPhone App Quickie: DropVox Lets You Record Voice Notes and Auto-Save to DropBox

I’m always searching for new ways to use my iPhone to create voice notes and turn them into text. I have found a number of good solutions — primary among them Dragon Dictation. But I’ve always wanted to be able to record a long voice note on the iPhone (Dragon is limited to just 60 seconds at a time) and then 0nce I’m back at my desk, apply the application MacSpeech Scribe to transcribe a long audio recording. The problem I’ve always run into is the fact that many voice note applications don’t record with a quality or a format…


Angry Birds Head Way South…to Rio!

Have you beaten all the “regular” Angry Birds levels, and even conquered Angry Birds Seasons? Do you open the game and admire all your 3-star levels and awesome high scores? Well, get your flinging fingers limbered up…because a new Angry Birds is coming this spring! Fox has the new animated movie “Rio” coming out this spring, about birds…Rovio has a game about birds. It’s a match made in casual gaming heaven! No word on the exact release time beyond March 2011, but the trailer makes me very excited for the game! Via Androidcentral


GD Quickie: Yurbuds Gets Another Convert…

I wanted to do a quick follow-up post on my post-CES piece on Yurbuds because the company just gained themselves a new fan. The Yurbuds are special earbuds that stay in your ears during exercise and although they are priced below $50 sound like earbuds costing much much more. So here is the thing, my wife Elana hates wearing ear buds. She finds them uncomfortable and, at times, even painful and hates them coming out all the time. As a result she won’t wear them. This poses a problem for her since she works out all the time and would love…


Incipio’s Bespoke Cases

While at CES, Dan gave me a code he had picked up at Incipio’s booth to create one of their “Bespoke Cases” for free. Curious about the product and the resulting case, I decided to give it a try with a picture I’d been holding onto for a while. Granted, the picture wasn’t as high resolution as I might have liked, but I thought it would be cool to see it on a case. After downloading the Incipio Bespoke App, I went through the customization process and added my picture. Although the option was present in the app to “move…


Timing is Everything

How cool is this? While having my morning coffee I read a post that it was one year ago today that the iPad was first introduced. That’s right, one year ago today all the speculation about an Apple tablet ended, the computer world was turned on its head, and my all-time favorite gadget was announced. It was a huge day that will rightly be seen as a watershed moment in computing when people look back years from now. Then I saw a second post entitled, TV Hit the Public 85 Years Ago Today. So let me get this straight. 84…


Borders Gives New Meaning to “Everything Must Go!”

I am going to say up front, I have no idea the circumstances under which this transaction took place…but in catching up with an old Borders co-worker, she mentioned that Borders apparently sold everything down to the studs when they closed down our old store. After exchanging a few jokes about who would want the café display case, she said she’d heard Borders sold a toilet seat and a urinal. Borders is so broke they sold someone a urinal. If that’s not a frightening sign, then I don’t know what is!


Be Safe Out There!

Music is great. It can keep you motivated on a run, or help you maintain a certain speed. Plus having music can help the time go by quickly. But please, please, please, be aware of your surroundings. If you’re running outside, stick to the sidewalks in well-lit areas, or leave the headphones home. This story is really sad, and while yes, most people don’t run on train tracks, it’s just as dangerous running on the side of the road with music blaring. The news is a few days old, but I thought about it on my run today; I try…


Checking out the ASUS Eee PC 1008P Seashell Karim Rashid Collection Netbook

I was selected to be one of a group of bloggers who’ll get the use of an ASUS Eee PC 1008 netbook for a year. This isn’t quite the typical netbook though, as this is a “Seashell Karim Rashid Edition” … and before you ask, no — I had never heard of Karim Rashid until I saw his name attached to this netbook. With that said, this is easily one of the most intriguing case designs I’ve ever seen. The entire surface of the netbook is covered in Karim Rashid’s soft-touch “Techno-chic Digi-wave design”, and instead of being the type…


Kickstarter Project Focus- The Vere Sandal Company

I’m really digging this whole Kickstarter concept. If you are not familiar with Kickstarter, it is an online threshold pledge system for funding creative projects. Kickstarter has funded a diverse array of endeavors,ranging from indie film and music to journalism and food-related projects. One of a new set of fundraising platforms dubbed “crowdfunding”, Kickstarter facilitates gathering monetary resources from the general public, a model which circumvents many traditional avenues of investment. Project owners choose a deadline and a target minimum of funds to raise. If the chosen target is not gathered by the deadline, no funds are collected (this is…


Borders Appears on ’10 Most Likely to Disappear in 2011′ List

Carly Z has written quite a bit about ailing Borders, including a recent look at why Barnes & Noble shouldn’t buy them. Turns out she was prophetic, as a DailyFinance article today listed them as one of the 10 most likely companies to disappear in 2011. Here are their thoughts: The large bookstore chain is almost gone already. The only question remaining is whether it will be dissolved or sold to a related retailer like Barnes & Noble. It appears Borders has little choice other than to go bankrupt, given its debt and cash-flow situation. Two ominous signs for the…


The BulletTrain Express Keyboard Platform; Thankfully Someone Was Listening

I have been using a Mac laptop of some kind for a relatively short amount of time — only since March 2008, but since then there has always been a MacBook nearby, whether it was the 15″ MacBook Pro, a first generation MacBook Air, a second generation MacBook Air, a 17″ MacBook Pro, or more recently an 11″ MacBook Air. I’ve been pretty vocal stating my opinion that Mac makes some of the best hardware available, even if I am pretty agnostic about whether their operating system is better than Windows or not. Beyond the all metal bodies and slimmer…


Kobo eReader Gets Featured on the Office!

Tonight on The Office our friends at Kobo snuck in a great bit of product placement! I won’t spoil the whole scene, but it’s very amusing and manages to add in a pitch about how many books the Kobo Reader can hold! We’re working on getting a screenshot, but until then head over to the official Office site to catch the episode online!


TikTok Creates an Evolved “iPod nano as Watch”

The TikTok Multi-Touch Watch Band that took-off on Kickstarter.com is now shipping. The goal was to raise $15,00 in pre-production pledges and, in the end, they raised over $940,000. With that kind of money and press it would have been kinda rotten if the actual product was … well, rotten. Well mine came today and it is anything but. This band actually makes the iPod nano look and feel LIKE a watch. It is easy to pop the mp3 player in, and it doesn’t feel all that bulky. The actual watch band is sturdy but soft and the hardware is…


Mac App Store Opens Door to App Store Convergence

With the arrival of the Mac App Store it is easier than ever to see and purchase Mac applications. Having spent some time perusing the App Store over the last few days I was pleased to discover that some of my favorite iOS app are also available for OS X. Of course there is the Mac version of Angry Birds (truth be told, playing it on a touchscreen device is MUCH more enjoyable), but there are also apps like SketchMee. It is the app that that let me make the above picture in a matter of seconds. I love being…