Add one more reason to doubt the iPhone hype: It appears that Apple's uberdevice utilizes a totally proprietary 1.5:1 aspect ratio. While that's wider than the standard square-ish 1.33:1 (4x3) aspect ratio found on older TVs, PC monitors, and iPods, it's 15 percent narrower than the 1.78:1 (16x9) screen dimensions found on most HDTV and DVD programming.
You may be tempted to drop-kick, drown, or otherwise abuse the new Dell Latitude ATG D620. That's not because of any sort of personal animosity--the ATG stands for All Terrain Grade, and it's Dell's first semirugged laptop.
The ATG isn't exactly a new system built from the ground up. It's essentially a Dell Latitude D620 with a new case and a few other rugged extras. It has a magnesium-alloy shell with high-durability textured bumpers built onto the edges, a shock-mounted hard drive (a 1.8-inch drive in a cushioned 2.5-inch drive bay), a spill-resistant … Read more
This phone might work fine, but even the most ardent Star Wars aficionado might balk at using it on a regular basis. Just answering Nikko Japan's "Lightsaber" VoIP phone could cause major damage in close quarters.
The handset, if it can be called that, connects to the computer by USB (doesn't everything?) and is cradled in a base that bears the Star Wars logo in blue LED. The phones, part of an ensemble seen by fellow Craver Will Greenwald at CES last week, can even make the familiar Lightsaber swooshing sound. We were thinking of pre-ordering … Read more
Showing that you were a football fan in the past was easy and inexpensive. You just had to paint your naked torso blue and silver and then yell for two hours in the shivering ambience of Cleveland in the winter.
Now, you have to go the distance, and this includes dressing up your laptop. For $29.95, Skinit will decorate the outside of your laptop with the logo of your favorite NFL team. The company is working with Circuit City too, so when you buy a laptop there you can buy the decoration. You can get a personal photo too, … Read more
Subscription music services may be slow at garnering mainstream acceptance, but I--and others--still think that they have a lot of potential. There's something to be said for paying a flat monthly fee for virtually unlimited music discovery. Besides, I don't really need to own that hot song of the moment when I'll probably be sick of it in less than a year.
That said, an iPod-dominated MP3 player market means an iTunes-dominated digital music domain, and it must be tough for competitors to nail down a decent buck in such a closed environment. How does the … Read more
As Apple made clear with the iPhone last week, touch screens are the next evolutionary step in the development of mobile handsets. But Sony Ericsson is going after another one of the human senses: smell.
The company is making a line of aroma phones for Japan's NTT DoCoMo, according to Reuters, "to relax the users while making calls." (So Japanese in so many ways.) The handsets come with your choice of nine "scented sheets" accompanied by different designs.
Why, one might ask, would anyone want a scented phone? Perhaps it has something to do with … Read more
There was a time when technological "convergence" in the home was defined by a combo device that merged television with computing. Now, it can be anything from a table-refrigerator to a smart coffee maker.
And the pace of innovation is furious. Just a few days after posting an item on a combo speaker lamp, we discovered that it's already been trumped by a combination lamp, speaker and air purifier, according to Chip Chick. The tower-shaped "Rigel," by Italy's Artemide, has a mirrored finish that gives way to colored lights when in use. But at … Read more
Retro chic is one thing, but then there are just some people who refuse to let go of the past. That's our take, anyway, on the cult-like pressure to continue producing "Single-8" cartridge film.
Fuji has agreed once again to let the format stave off extinction, even though sales totaled an estimated 14,000 cartridges last year. Retro Thing reported that the company, which had earlier scheduled to cease production of the film in March, relented after protests both from professional cinematographers and amateur hobbyists. We're considering campaigns to bring back 8-track tapes and Betamax too.… Read more
If digital gaming can truly help people lose weight, as some claim, than this could be the equivalent of a personal trainer. The "Dream Machine" is a "personal simulation system powered by the computer game player's own body," according to Australian Simulation Control Systems. A better way to describe it is a cross between a game simulator and an adult version of those baby jumpers that hang from the door frame.
Either way, it's supposed to combine exercise with entertainment as you bounce and twist your way through gaming systems of any type with &… Read more
Netflix has fleshed out some details of its newly announced movie download service. The Watch Now instant viewing service is scheduled to become available to all Netflix subscribers by June. It will launch with just 1,000 titles (movies and TV shows), but the selection will expand thereafter--slowly but surely--to encompass as many of the 70,000-plus titles in the Netflix database as possible. The online viewing feature will be a free addition to existing accounts, with subscribers getting a monthly allotment of online viewing time based on their subscription level. For instance, an $18-per-month plan (three DVDs out at … Read more