For decades, tech companies have been trying to create a digital pen that appeals to the masses. But after years of effort, the world isn't exactly overrun with high-tech quills.
A new crop of companies, however, say it's too soon to write off the idea.
This week, Irvine, Calif.-based Iogear announced plans for a digital pen that can work with standard paper. Last month, educational computer maker LeapFrog introduced the FlyFusion, its second go at the digital pen. And later this year, Silicon Valley start-up LiveScribe plans to introduce a $200 device that can not only take … Read more
Pentax very quietly announced two new cameras late yesterday. The first, an 8MP model called the Optio Z10, marks new territory for Pentax with a sliding lens cover that moves sideways and, like the sliding covers on Sony cameras, turns the camera on and off. Sony often gets credit for the sliding lens cover design in digital cameras, but many compact film cameras incorporated sliding lens covers years before Sony started using them in its digital cameras.
While those film cameras often had mechanical issues due to their extending zoom lenses, this Pentax has an internally zooming refraction lens. The … Read more
The rumors have been fierce--and some of them have been true--yet now Nikon has made it official. Their new weather-sealed, top-of-the-line dSLR, the 12.2MP D3, will have a full frame CMOS image sensor, which Nikon has dubbed the FX format. Well...OK, it's almost a full-frame sensor. It measures 36mm by 23.9mm; just 0.1mm vertically shy (does that make it vertically challenged?) of the technical full-frame spec, but we'll let that slide. I know that any Nikon owners with DX lenses must be reeling right about now, so it pays to mention that the D3 … Read more
Just in case the announcement of the pro-level D3 isn't enough for you, Nikon has also announced a big brother for its D200 called the D300. The D300 will sport a 12.3MP DX format (24x16mm) CMOS sensor, 3-inch 920,000-dot (307,000-pixel) LCD, and sensitivity of ISO 200 to ISO 3,200 with a Hi-1 mode that extends that to an equivalent to ISO 6,400 and a Lo-1 mode that extends down to ISO 100. Many of the D300's features are the same as the ones found in the D3. For example, the D300 has the … Read more
With Nikon's two new high-end SLRs announced today, it makes sense that the company would want to update its pro lenses to go along--and Nikon has delivered, with five new pro lenses covering a wide range of focal lengths. All of these new lenses include Nikon's new Nano Crystal Coating to minimize internal lens reflections, indicated by a badge with a prominent N on the lens, as well as Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass elements to cut down on chromatic aberration. Plus, all five lenses will hit stores this November, just in time for the new SLRs. Let's … Read more
Parents already have a way to monitor kids' phone calls and text messages, and soon they might have the means to track children wearing school uniforms.
An English manufacturer of uniforms is considering adding satellite tracking devices to its line of school clothing so that parents can locate their child's whereabouts at all times, according to an article from the Daily Telegraph in Australia. The manufacturer, Lancashire-based Trutex, believes there is a demand for such clothing. In a recent survey of its own, the company found that 59 percent of 800 parents surveyed were interested in buying uniforms with … Read more
Seriously, this just gets more pathetic every day. Now the Macalope reads that Real and -- are you read for this? -- MTV are joining forces against iTunes.
Yes, it's the greatest team-up since Ant Man and Tigra!
But, wait. Didn't Real already try partnering with some other has-been juggernaut?
A year ago, analysts loved the idea that Microsoft appeared to be challenging Apple's powerhouse music store, iTunes, by joining forces with a music-industry icon in MTV.
Ah, analysts! And they're never wrong.
But MTV's Urge music service fell flat.
One reason may have been … Read more
(This is the second post in a series written "live" from Hot Chips 19 at Stanford University.)
Vernor Vinge is best known as a science-fiction writer, but he's also a computer scientist; he retired from his professorship at San Diego State University five years ago. (I mentioned his participation in a panel at Siggraph earlier this month here.)
Vinge's talk was titled "Digital Gaia," a reference to the Gaia Hypothesis. (I see Vinge used the same title for a January, 2000 essay in Wired, here.) Vinge described several scenarios for the future of the integrated-circuit industry, building on some… Read more
Instead of talking about the digital home today, I thought it might be fun to relive the days of old and help us all develop a greater appreciation for the 'digital' in digital home.
Some people have asked me what the digital home is and what makes it up. Sometimes I'll go with the obligatory, "Well, imagine a home that's full of the most advanced technology money can buy. And in the process, imagine your home making your life just a little better. That's the digital home." Other times, I'll try a more direct … Read more