The timing of my visit was perfect, I strolled into Alex DeTurk's studio at Masterdisk just as he was cutting an LP. DeTurk was moving to the music, totally engaged with the sound as the big record mastering lathe was literally cutting the groove into the disc. After the side was complete he examined the grooves with a microscope. DeTurk then said, "Vinyl is the most consumer-friendly high-resolution format around." Right, more people are buying LPs than true high-resolution 24 bit/192 kHz files, the ones that can sound better than CD-quality FLAC or Apple Lossless files. … Read more
Apple has cautiously been dipping its toes into the mobile payments pool. But a freshly-published patent filing describes an entire backend system designed to secure electronic payments made through your phone.
Published Thursday by the US Patent and Trademark Office, a patent dubbed "Method to send payment data through various air interfaces without compromising user data" envisions how electronic transactions would securely travel using your existing mobile phone's technology.
You'd start out by paying for an item using your phone. The retailer's point of sale (POS) device would be connected to a backend system designed … Read more
Watching 3D printing evolve reminds me of the nascent days of desktop publishing -- now complete that deja vu with Adobe jumping into the market. The company thinks 3D printing is on the cusp of going mainstream and sees a coming inflection point in the consumer market once full-color printers, full-color content, and a robust marketplace for third-party downloadable models emerges. Adobe sees its role as providing the tools for helping generate the full-color content -- that makes sense given its users and applications.
LAS VEGAS -- More Wi-Fi, more NFC, wearables, and fewer traditional cameras and camcorders. That pretty much sums up CES 2014 for digital imaging and video.
If you own a smartphone and haven't picked up a regular camera in a long time because of it, you're probably not surprised that CES didn't have a ton of camera news. However, because of smartphone adoption, camera and camcorder manufacturers have finally stepped up wireless features, giving consumers more reasons beyond zoom lenses and resolution to buy.
In fact, every camera and camcorder mentioned in the rest of this story … Read more
Say a doctor orders an MRI scan of a child's brain to try to determine what might be at the root of a list of troubling symptoms.
She eyeballs the results to look for abnormalities that might indicate certain diseases or disorders, but nothing seems terribly amiss. So she submits the scan anonymously to a database that includes thousands of other scans of children with healthy and abnormal brains to find matches. She then gets the medical records -- anonymously, of course -- of kids with similar scans and voila, she makes a diagnosis that involves a lot less … Read more
It appears that digital sales could breath new life into the movie industry.
According to data from Digital Entertainment Group, consumers spent $18.2 billion on digital home entertainment in 2013, an increase of 1 percent from 2012. While that doesn't sound like a big increase, if you look specifically at digital movie sales, you can see a 47 percent rise over last year to $1.19 billion.
"Stability in home entertainment continued for the second straight year in 2013 as total consumer spending rose nearly one percent to $18.2 billion," Digital Entertainment Group director Lyndsey … Read more
LAS VEGAS -- The connected car brings many advantages to the driver, but will also mean degraded music quality as people increasingly use streaming audio-services. At CES 2014, Harman announced Signal Doctor, a digital signal processor technology that attempts to restore fidelity to compressed audio.
Typical digital audio tracks bought from Amazon and iTunes are compressed to 128 or 256Kbps, and streaming audio from the likes of Pandora and Spotify is often down to 64 or 96Kbps. That much compression means a lot of lost information from a music track, which diminishes the sound quality.
Signal Doctor analyzes the audio … Read more
LAS VEGAS -- Jigabot's developed an intriguing system for action shooting, the AIMe, composed of a wearable (or mountable) IR transmitter -- called EmIT -- and a motorized mount that pans and tilts your camera (or camcorder, or smartphone) to follow the subject. You can attach multiple Emitters to the subject, and they've got a range of up to about 150 feet. The mount rotates 360 degrees horizontally and tilts 120 degrees up and down.
This has a boatload of potential applications. Though the initial version will require line-of-sight, the company has plans for RF, and non-line-of-sight IR … Read more
LAS VEGAS -- CTA Digital already conquered the realm of the bathroom with a toilet paper holder that doubles as a tablet stand and the iPotty, an iPad toilet-training arrangement for kids. Now the company has set its quirky sights on the kitchen with a line of cutting-edge tablet holders.
For people with precise knife control skills, there's the $34.99 Bamboo Cutting Board with Stand for iPad and Knife Storage. It elevates your iPad just a bit above the cutting surface and includes knife slots along the side. Just be careful when you're slicing away not to peel a bit off your screen. For people who may be a little more klutzy, there's a $24.99 bamboo cutting board with a screen shield that should also keep your precious tablet protected from flying vegetable peels and meat juices.… Read more
LAS VEGAS -- The Samsung WB2200F Smart Camera, announced at CES 2014, is more than just a big lens (though it certainly has one of those).
To keep the new camera from blending in with all the other megazooms on the market, Samsung gave it a dual-grip design allowing you to comfortably shoot portrait or landscape. A secondary set of controls are on the bottom right of the camera, too, so you won't be struggling to get your shot regardless of your grip.
The 60x 2.8-5.9 20-1200mm lens will give you plenty of reach so you can … Read more