Thursday, 31 July 2014

Qi wireless charging



It's becoming increasingly and more common to discover mobile devices with wireless recharging capability , either as an in-built feature or incorporated into third-party cases . Progress continues to be somewhat hampered , however , by the truth that no universally adopted standard is available . Of the 3 major groups trying to corner the market , Qi -- a standard produced by the Wireless Power Consortium ( WPC ) -- has certainly been the most successful at courting producers and carriers ( over 200 have signed up so far ) . The problem is , it is abilities have been restricted because it only uses a method called inductive charging ; put simply , you can power up your smart phone as long as it's sitting on a charging pad . Wireless , sure , but it's nevertheless only marginally more convenient than simply plugging the handset in . Thankfully , Qi's adding some crucial functionality later on this year that will allow you to charge your device from nearly 2 inches away . 

With version 1 .2 , the WPC is adding resonance recharging to Qi's features . This makes it so the recipient ( the device that needs to be charged ) and the transmitter ( the charging pad or surface that's pushing the energy to the device ) won't need to literally touch each other anymore ; right now they can be up to 45mm ( 1 .77 inches ) apart . The brand new standard is backwards-compatible , so if you already have a smart phone or tablet with Qi built-in , you'll have the ability to charge them up from as much as 35mm away . The standard additionally allows multiple devices to charge up at the same time , provided they're both of them within range , and it know how to pushing as much as 2 ,000 watts to larger products like kitchen appliances.

Qi's newfound capability to charge your gadgets from a distance may appear far more convenient for end users compared to what its current products offer . Using this technology , you may be able to place charging pucks under tables so your telephone starts charging whenever you're nearby ; you could put several gadgets in a Qi-compatible bucket , which would be particularly handy placed in between the 2 front car seats in your car ; and you won't have to worry about putting your device on a precise spot to get it to charge . 

Two competing wireless recharging standards , Rezence and the Power Matters Alliance , already have implemented resonance charging , but the WPC claims that Qi is more power economical and has a larger number of partners and products . Reps couldn't give specific stats on power efficiency yet , since the introductory products are still in development and outcomes will vary from one device to another ; that said , their initial estimates were somewhere between 70-80 percent . ( Qi's inductive chargers average about 85.) 

We ought to be prepared to see the very first v1 .2 items arrive sometime later this year , even though kitchen appliances using the regular likely won't hit the market until 2015 .



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Automatic Link Tracks Your Car's Health and Fuel Efficiency




Certainly one of the hottest topics in technology this year is digital health , which include gadgets like the Fitbit One that continuously keep track of your body and allow you to exercise , eat , and sleep better . But how about your car ? 

Automatic Labs , a San Francisco-based startup created last year , today unveiled the Automatic Link . It's a combination iPhone app and also dongle that plugs into your car's ODB-II port , which is the identical one mechanics use to run a state inspection or even check your car when it's in for service . Each and every car from 1996 or newer sold in the U .S . has this port , and it's generally located underneath the dashboard to the staying of the steering wheel . To set up Automatic Link , you download and read the iPhone app , plug in the dongle , and then set the two via Bluetooth 4 .0 . 

Whenever you drive somewhere , Automatic Link at the same time hooks into your car's onboard computer and your smartphone GPS and information plan to act as a "smart assistant ," as the organization puts it . What does that do for you ? Automatic Labs says its device can learn your driving style after which give you audio cues to help you drive more efficiently , for example avoiding forceful braking ( except in emergencies , of course ) , not speeding , and not accelerating too quickly . It assigns you a rating each week to allow you to improve and save money on gas . 

There's additionally a Trip Timeline , which shows you where you drove during the week , how much time you invested in the car , and your genuine miles-per-gallon average , which I'm presuming it will estimate based on the kind of car , engine , transmission , and trim degree you have . It's pretty complicated , so we'd have to test it to see precisely how well it does . The Automatic Link also knows when you've filled the car with gas , and can help you track local gas price ranges to find cheaper places to fill up ( though a lot of apps already do that ) .

Automatic Link also offers some CarMD-like features , for example helping you troubleshoot engine trouble codes , but unlike CarMD , Automatic Link will in addition let you clear the codes and not have to take the car into the store . It can also help you find well-reviewed mechanics near the area . The app can also send push announcements whenever the check engine or other idiot light comes on . 
One very important feature is currently in beta : the ability to act as an OnStar-like emergency call-in . The Fully automatic Link includes an accelerometer , which can detect different kinds of crashes . If it detects one , it will make use of your phone's data connection to report the crash to a local 911 unexpected emergency service with your name , location , and vehicle type . Then it can text family or even friends to let them know something happened , where you are , and that help is on the way . 

Most of the time , you need to buy a new or late-model used car to get emergency services built-in . However newer third-party products like Splitsecnd and OnStar FMV allow you to add this to any existing car ; this is the least expensive one I've seen yet . 
Definitely , Automatic Link helps you remember exactly where your car is parked , and doesn't require a manual check-in . Just leave the vehicle ; if you want to find it again , you may check the app and it will highlight where the car is . It also keeps track of many people driving the car , so every person can show the other where the car is . 

Automated Link is available for pre-order for $69 .95 direct from the company , and will be shipping and delivery in May ; mercifully , it requires no subscription fees . Stay tuned for a full review as soon as we can get one in .


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Interactive Magic Mirror




We certainly have seen our reasonable share of interactive mirrors in the past ( which includes an augmented reality one ) , but this individual model hails from the research & development lab at the New York Times that results in a page from the future . This mirror is unique as it not only helps you stay away from getting nicks whenever you shave , but it surely is also capable of sending different kinds of mass media content to your eyes at any time stand in front of it . It is speculated that a Philips Mirror TV is in use here , in which is connected to a Microsoft Kinect sensor that could be located right on top of the mirror . 

Relying upon both voice recognition and movement sensing from the Kinect , the Mirror TV will let you check out what exactly are the big ticket news items featured on the New York Times that day , although allowing you to view the calendar for your prearranged appointments , peruse through a burgeoning inbox , and even keep on being up to speed with the latest Facebook and Twitter updates . Apart from that , you will additionally be able to know just what the weather is like for the day – although sometimes this kind of predictions aren’t too accurate because of global warming that throws our weather almost all out of whack . 

The mirror also can scan RFID tags so that you can retrieve further information and facts concerning a sample product . Whenever used for online clothes shopping as you have seen above , the mirror will depend on the Kinect digital camera to scan an image of your body type , to ensure that different clothing items could be overlaid on your body before you actually make a purchase decision . 

This continues to be a prototype as at press time , but it would go to show just how far the Kinect system can be executed in everyday life .

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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Open-sounding headphones are exciting to listen to




The SR325e is the high quality model in Grado's Prestige Series , which has been updated for 2014 . It retails for $295 ( readily available for £300 in the UK and $450 in Australia ) and also gives some of the most open , detailed sound you'll discover at this price , and is a remarkable pair of headphones overall . 

Grado , that is certainly based in Brooklyn , N .Y . , and builds most of its solutions there , has not changed the iconic exterior style of the headphones and like its SR325 predecessors ( the previous model was the SR325i ) , his model has the same firm , bowl-shaped foam pads that employ a little more pressure to the outer edges of your ears than the less complicated foam pads of the step-down $99 SR80e , which are certainly more comfortable . The SR8oe headphones are considerably lighter , but not of the same build high quality as the SR325e model . Some people similar to Grado's earpads ( they're user-replaceable , but overall we'd state this model's comfort level isn't up to the degree of its sound quality -- it's good but not great . 

Like all open-back models the SR325e earphones don't block external noise and they also leak sound , so they're not well suited for travelers or cranking your songs in an open office environment . Regrettably , they don't ship with a carrying case . And with the industrial-grade cord and also beefy plug , the reality is that they're designed for house rather than mobile use ( read : it's probably too stubby to fit into your smartphone's headphone jack port , especially if you have a case ) .

Performance 
Grado earphones are known to have an exciting audio and the new SR325e kicks that excitement up a notch . This new product balances the energy with a richer and satisfied tonal balance than previous generations of Grado's Reputation headphones . Thanks to the open-back design , its stereo system imaging is more spacious and broader than that of closed-back headphones like the Sennheiser Momentum and Beyerdynamic T 51p , as well as the fairly pricier Bowers & Wilkins P7 . The SR325e headphones are also more immediate , brighter , and more detailed-sounding than those several models . But the SR325e's bass is nowhere as full . If you crave full bass , this isn't the one for you . 

On Nine Inch Nails' "Hesitation Marks" album the SR325e's low-end was beautifully described and clear , but the T 51p appeared to be more powerful and its weightier quantities also better tamed the harshness of NIN's percussion . Meanwhile , the P7's bass spirit clobbered the SR325e's , but the P7's vibrant punch is nowhere as lively as the SR325e's . These two versions sound very different -- the P7 is "dark" and subdued while the SR325e clear and bright . 

Conclusion 
To put it briefly , the Grado SR325e is great headphone , with noticeable , dynamic , open sound . It's simply not a bass lover's headphone . Still , you'll be hard-pressed to discover a headphone in this price range ( $300 ) that offers better clarity and more spacious stereo imaging . Exactly what YOU'LL PAY


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Modbook will let you convert your Retina MacBook Pro to a tablet



Modbook , the corporation behind those aftermarket Apple tablets , just released a Kickstarter campaign for its latest product , the Modbook Pro X . After paying out a pre-order price of $1 ,999 today , backers would be able to convert their own Retina MacBook Pros into a tablet starting early next year . The conversion includes the laptop's original hardware , with components moved from the lower half of the computer to just behind the 15 .4-inch 2 ,880 x 1 ,800-pixel LCD .

The Modbook Pro X facilitates pen input with 2 ,048 pressure levels , along with tilt and rotate functionality . You may also interact with the gadget using the rear-mounted shortcut keys or the detachable keyboard set stand , both of which will be readily available for an additional cost . And , since your Apple company warranty won't be valid , you can buy a three-year warranty through Modbook , which offers complete coverage for the first year free of charge . If you'd choose to avoid supplying your own MacBook , you'll additionally be able to pre-order a complete device from $3 ,999 and up , depending on the model . 


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