Monday, November 30, 2009

Voice Interactive Coffee Maker

This coffee maker takes coffee drinkers to a new level. Hammacher Schlemmer offers the first voice-interactive coffee maker that asks, "Would you like to set the clock or set the coffee brewing time?" and operates in response to your verbal commands.If you are feeling lazy to make a coffee, this Voice Interactive Coffee Machine could pass for a maid or servant that will whip up your daily brew according to your wishes.

Simply saying, "Set the coffee brewing time," or "Set the clock," will prompt the machine to reply, "Please say the time, including AM or PM." It uses an advanced voice recognition system to identify any time of day you speak, eliminating the hassle of fussing with buttons. The included reusable, dishwasher-safe plastic filter is specially designed to allow the water to thoroughly saturate coffee grounds, maximizing the richness and aroma of coffee.

The coffee machine brews up to 10 cups at once and allows you to remove the carafe during brewing to pour a cup. To prompt the coffee maker to speak, simply press the "Talk" button; can also be operated manually. Stainless steel housing. 13" H x 9 1/2" D x 6" W. (4 3/4 lbs.)


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Stackable Furniture for Future Houses

Not much room in your living room? Buy stackable furniture! It's stylish and futuristic design is no doubt a work of art and a space saving solution. With this, you can simply turn a paved patio in a designer lounge.

This stacking lawn furniture tower -- called Obelisk from Dedon -- was featured at a Paris furniture salon, and it was pretty stunning even without the ocean backdrop, with its four chairs and coffee table that could be piled into a sculptural object when not in use. It creates an object of visual interest, unobtrusive but present, when not used as chairs.

Lawn furniture has become incredibly high-tech, often as comfortable and expensive as its indoor counterparts. But the Obelisk from Dedon could also work in an unconventional studio apartment -- perfect for a dancer, maybe, who could put away her living room during the day so she could pirouette around the open floor space. Or for an artist who likes visitors to stop by his little studio for coffee breaks, but always frets that he doesn't have enough room for chairs and a coffee table.
Stackable furniture 07
The Obelisk Chairs is four powdered coated aluminum frame chairs with white cushions and a table which can stack into one piece made out of woven polyethylene. With both larger and smaller versions available, two to four seats along with a coffee table all emerge from a single sphere or obelisk shape. The table alone sets this apart from most transforming/collapsing chair sets, but with the passable style and transforming functional of this set one could also imagine cramped interior spaces benefiting from one of these designs. And yeah, it's cool!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

5 in 1 Bond Pen: Be A Spy For Only $10

It may look like an ordinary fountain pen, but today, a seemingly innocent writing instrument was unmasked as a James Bond style spy gadget. This Ultimate 5-in-1 Geek Pen does more than you average pen in that it features extras that would make James Bond film fanatics smile with delight.

1. Twist the shaft one way and you get a ballpoint pen

2. Twist it the other way and you get a stylus tip for style using stuff.

3. Press the top button to turn on the laser pointer.

4. Press the bottom button to cycle through the flashlight and UV light.

5. The flashlight even comes on a flexible shaft for precision aiming.

If you are wondering what is being talked about, allow me to confirm you its a pen. A pen that works 5 ways just like James Bond’s gadgets do. So if you have already read an article about the ultimate Bond watch, won’t you just love to increase your collection?

Here is a brush up of the things you can get with $10.
  •     Ballpoint Pen (replaceable)
  •     Stylus
  •     Bright white LED flexible-shaft flashlight
  •     UV light
  •     Red laser pointer
  •     Batteries: 3 LR41 button batteries (included)
  •     Dimensions: 5.25″ long

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

E-Ball: A Complete Computer in a Ball

  How about taking whole computer in your pocket all the time?  This ball predicts the future of computing. You might have seen many things like this but the unique feature of this ball is that when it is closed, no one can guess that whole computer is hidden inside this ball. Much like the 5 in 1 Pen drive which was fetured in this blog earlier.

The concept PC is called E-Ball designed by  Apostol Tnokovski. It’s shaped like a sphere because in Tnokovski’s opinion this is the best shape in nature and it draws everybody’s attention.

E-Ball will feature a dual core processor, 250-500GB HDD, 2GB of RAM, integrated graphic card and sound card, 2 x 50W speakers, HD-DVD recorder, wireless optical mouse and laser keyboard, LAN and WLAN card, modem, Web cam and integrated LCD projector.

The E-Ball PC supports a paper holder and the paper sheet on the holder could act like a screen where you can watch movies or something. This concept PC will measure 160mm in diameter and it was designed for Microsoft Windows OS. For the moment, there is no word on pricing or when it’s going to be available. But upon release,  it will surely hit the markets as everyone would like to see a small spherical PC like this one.

The spherical shape may not be practical. A sphere isn’t a very good idea for an object that needs to dissipate heat. Spheres have the highest volume/surface area ratio possible (which is why bubbles are spherical) and so would have the hardest time getting rid of waste heat. But hey, the most important here is that someone is pushing the envelope of PC computing and getting bigger ideas. It takes a brilliant mind to think these ideas which engineers then bring to reality. Sure there are some very dodgy concepts like the round mobo etc, but if nobody demands that engineers stretch their imagination we would still be having dinner with a pick axe out of stone.


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Drive on Land and Water Thru Aquada Car

Aquada Watercar 03The Saleen Aquada, as you may be able to fathom from its name, is a convertible sports car that also
happens to drive just fine along the surface of water. It is a cross between a Jet Ski and a quad bike.
which can reach speeds of up to 40 mph on land.

Switching between the two modes is as simple as hitting a button. When you are approaching waters,
just hit a specific button and drive straight into water. The wheels automatically rise and as you press the
accelerator, nearly a tonne of thrust pushes the Aquada onto the plane. Within 12 seconds the Aquada
can turn into a boat that can zoom up to 30mph on water.
Aquada Watercar 02 Saleen will be conducting manufacturing design and engineering work required to bring the Gibbs Aquada
and Quadski to the North American market. Gibbs plans to introduce the models late in 2009 or early in
2010. Saleen is also looking at ways to improve their performance.

Python Water Car is now holding the record for the world's fatest amphibious car. Aquada may not be the
fastest, but it has one of the most sleekiest design among the amphi cars available in the market.
Rinspeed's sQuba Car is still on the top of my list.

Watch the car in action:

While it may not be able to go underwater like some other cars, it's still pretty cool that you can get this
vehicle to serve both as a speed boat and a sports car. Not bad for being the first.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Toyota's Robot Quartet Band

The most talented instrument-playing robots out there just got an upgrade from Toyota's engineers, who also make some pretty good cars.

Toyota's robot quartet consists of Harry (trumpet), Dave (trumpet), Chuck (tuba), and Ritchie (drums). Songs played include: "The Theme of Lupin III", "Moonlight Serenade", "Stompin 'at the Savoy", and "A train to go".Honda's ASIMO may have picked up the baton to conduct an entire orchestra, but Toyota has just outperformed the little guy with its suite of robo-musicians. the part-wheeled, part-bipedal quartet recently performed a concert where they actually played a trumpet, tuba, drums, violin and trombone.

Awesome, but no passion. Just plain machine music. Music with no soul. They get all the notes and the right beat and stuff. It's a little too perfect but it doesn't have the feel or atmosphere of a real band. This video may be entertaining, but I hope that the efforts that go into making these robots aren't just for music, because I don't think that's the kind of thing robots should be doing.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Printbrush - The World's Smallest Mobile Printer

Although it seems that print technology is going obsolete as more information goes online, there is still a need for printers. When you search for a good quality printer, some of the things you consider are speed, size and background noise level.

Printbrush is an interesting portable printer designed by PrintDreams. The handheld printer remembers its positional coordinates as it prints. When you run Printbrush over a piece of paper, it will deposit black and white printer ink on the page in 600 DPI (dots per inch). The device uses Bluetooth communication and includes rechargeable batteries for people on the go.

The PrintBrush will be by far the smallest printer device in the world that can print full size formats (A4 or letter size). In many ways it will be even better than stationary printers or other so called "mobile" printers. For example, it will be possible to print directly in notebooks or other media that would never fit into a conventional printer device. It will also be completely silent allowing you to print during ongoing meetings, etc. On top of all that, no wires, no cables, no mess!

The device is not just limited to printing on plain paper. Rather, it can print on any flat surface including fabric material and letter envelopes. There’s no need to use the manual feed on an office printer if you have one of these.

Preliminary product specifications
  • Resolution: 600dpi monochrome
  • Print technology: inkjet and RMPT™ Full
  • Max. speed: 250mm/sec
  • Volume: Approx. 200cc
  • Weight: Approx. 250gm
  • Interfaces: USB 2.0, Bluetooth, IRda
  • Power supply: rechargable Li-Ion battery
Printbrush is expected to retail by the end of 2009 or early 2010 for $199.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Toyota Robot Violinist

Toyota have unveiled a new robot that can play the violin. Toyota's robot violinist has 17 computer-controlled joints in its arms and fingers, which allow it to hold the violin, gently draw the bow, and correctly press the strings against the fingerboard. In a recital held at a Toyota showroom in Tokyo on December 6, the 152-centimeter (5-ft) tall humanoid entertained guests with a rendition of "Pomp and Circumstance."

The rendition was note perfect, but was described by some as "stilted". "Over the next two to three years, we will put the robots to the test through trial applications and see what kind of business possibilities they present," Toyota president Katsuaki Watanabe told The Guardian.

Robotics will become a core business for Toyota by 2020. The company will unveil medical robots next year, and plans more advanced "partner robots" for domestic duties, nursing, healthcare and short-distance personal transport by 2010.

Toyota is a comparative newcomer in the robotics field compared to manufacturers such as Honda. Demand for robots is strong in Japan, particularly in the domestic and medical fields.

Watch the robot in action:


Sunday, November 8, 2009

sQuba - The Car that Dives & Drives Underwater

Who Said Cars Can't Dive?

After the Python Watercar, here comes the sQuba Car... taking car hobbyist to the next level!
Rinspeed sQuba Car 04 The Swiss designers from Rinspeed have created the sQuba, which comes complete with scuba-like breathing equipment for both the driver and passenger, allowing you to enjoy a James Bond moment at depths of up to 30 feet below the surface of the waves.

With the “sQuba,” the world’s first real submersible car, the movie animations now becomes reality for visitors of the Geneva Motor Show (March 6th - 16th, 2008). Rinspeed boss Frank M. Rinderknecht (52) is known for his extraordinary automotive creations. The acknowledged James Bond enthusiast and Swiss automobile visionary kept revisiting this scene in his mind over and over: For three decades, he tried to imagine how it might be possible to build a car that can fly under water. Now he had made this dream come true.

Rinspeed sQuba Car 05Rinspeed sQuba Car 02

It is this submerged stabile flight at a depth of 10 meters that sets the “sQuba” apart from military vehicles. While the latter can go under water, they are limited to driving slowly over the submerged ground. “It is undoubtedly not an easy task to make a car watertight and pressure resistant enough to be maneuverable under water. The real challenge however was to create a submersible car that moves like a fish in water”, said Rinderknecht.

It also had to be a sports car that was converted into a diving dream in the facilities of Swiss engineering specialist Esoro. In a first step the combustion engine was removed and replaced by several electric motors. Three motors are located in the rear. One provides propulsion on land, the other two drive the screws for underwater motoring.  They are supported by two powerful Seabob jet drives in the front, which ‘breathe’ through special rotating louvers from HS Genion (for opening and closing the water intake). The rotating outlet jets were designed to be extremely light yet twist resistant by using high-tech nano materials, so-called Carbon Nano Tubes.

Rinspeed sQuba Car 01 Rinspeed sQuba Car 06

It is a sure bet that the “sQuba” will steal the show from any ‘Baywatch’ beauty on the beach. And easily, too: You drive the car into the water and the car floats. That is, until you crack the door to let the water in. Immediately the “sQuba” starts on his way to the underwater world. The occupants’ breathing air comes from an integrated tank of compressed air that divers know from scuba diving.  Rinderknecht: “For safety reasons we have built the vehicle as an open car so that the occupants can get out quickly in an emergency. With an enclosed cabin opening the door might be impossible.”

Watch the car in action:

Safety wasn’t the only reason for choosing an open-top design: With an enclosed volume of just two cubic meters of air the vehicle weight would have to increase by two tons to counteract the unwanted buoyancy, giving the “sQuba”  the land mobility of a turtle. Without occupants the “sQuba” surfaces automatically. It is even capable of autonomous driving on land thanks to a sophisticated laser sensor system from the Hamburg company Ibeo - without any help from the driver or passenger.


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