This week was packed with some great video highlights, including a brand-new episode of XCAR featuring the hotly anticipated Toyota GT 86. Was it worth the wait? Brian Tong also fills us in on the latest iPhone 5S and 5C rumors in this week's Apple Byte. And Always On makes a return as we get ready for back-to-school with an unboxing of the new MacBook Air and Samsung's Galaxy S4 Mini. The S4 Mini also takes a major kicking in another epic torture test, and we check out the latest in higher education and online learning, for free.… Read more
For many people living with Parkinson's disease, the mere act of chewing and swallowing can be a challenge. One way to deal with this is to blend foods up to minimize the need to chew. But what if it's difficult merely bringing the spoon to one's mouth without spilling its contents?
Enter the Liftware Spoon by Lift Labs in San Francisco -- poised to hit the market in September -- whose patented spoon technology actually helps stabilize tremors in people with Parkinson's, essential tremor, and related disorders.… Read more
The Internet of Things is open for business, and SmartThings wants to be the hub that connects developers and device makers with consumers. The startup launched the SmartThings Shop, a marketplace for hardware and apps that do everything from unlocking doors and turning lights on or off to keeping valuables safe and triggering a siren sound when a dog jumps on the couch configured with an embedded sensor.
SmartThings is building what CEO Alex Hawkinson calls a "physical graph," an analog to the social graph for the Internet of Things. Hawkinson's notion of a physical graph comes … Read more
Being careless with your wallet or purse is an easy way to have your cash -- and your identity -- stolen. Here's a smart wallet that will tell you when items have been removed or not been returned promptly.
Ping is a minimalist aluminum case for your ducats, debit cards, and credit cards that links to your phone and alerts you in case of theft or loss.
Two of the most interesting products this year are built around the same idea: now that so many people own a smartphone or tablet, why not use that screen to control your TV?
It seems like a logical progression, with Logitech's Harmony Smart Control promising to turn your smartphone into a true universal remote and Google's Chromecast relying on mobile devices to serve up content to a compact streaming stick.
But what sounds like a good idea doesn't always work as well in practice.
That's been my experience with touch screens in the living room, which … Read more
"Smart bins" are bin and gone. The City of London Corporation has called for Wi-Fi-enabled, data-sniffing bins to stop recording your movements as you wander the streets.
Twelve recycling "pods" with LCD screens showing adverts have been sniffing out details of your phone as you pass and tracking your subsequent movements. But with the local authority flagging the bins to the Information Commissioner's Office, trials of the technology have been suspended.
Mrs. Cheapskate's minivan doesn't have Bluetooth. I don't even have a line-in jack. I know: the horror! Thankfully, there are gizmos that can bridge the gap between smartphone and car stereo, thus making it possible to enjoy playlists, Pandora, audiobooks, and other audio treats.
And one of the best such gizmos is now available at a Cheapskate-exclusive discount. Through Wednesday, you can get the Accessory Genie GoGroove FlexSmart X3 Bluetooth FM Transmitter for $44.99 shipped when you apply coupon code FLEX3 at checkout. Regular price: $59.99.
Like its predecessor, the FlexSmart X2, the X3 plugs … Read more
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Peter Holm and Brandon Williams from Capacitron came by the CNET TV studios this week to demo the world's first smart LED guitar pick, the Firefly Pick.
The pick comes in four versions. The Firefly Pick Original flashes rhythmically as you pluck the strings on the guitar. The Firefly Pick Air responds to hand motions as well as guitar picking for awesome air guitar sessions. The Firefly Pick Duo flashes a color on the down stroke and a different color … Read more
Being able to control the environment inside of a house is one of the hallmarks of modern living, yet for many years it was simple; turn on the heat or turn on the air conditioning and that was that. Considering the dynamic nature of hot and cold -- along with humans' inherent desire for control -- it should make perfect sense that on and off simply wasn't enough.
Tooling around San Francisco in a convertible, taking in sights such as the Golden Gate Bridge, is a real treat. Doing it in an electric convertible car fits the city's compact dimensions and progressive, high-tech culture even better.
And the only car for this mission is the 2013 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive, mostly because it is the only electrically driven convertible on the market.
Smart brought a selection of its Fortwo Electric Drive vehicles to San Francisco for a press event, and I grabbed the Cabrio, in Rally Red. The Fortwo Cabrio is sort of a half-convertible. The cloth … Read more