My mind is already racing…

If you like computers but live in the physical world you need to check out Phidgets.  The development kit they provide allows you to easily create sensor and display interfaces for your PC.  They have a basic USB interface which plugs into sensors (force, light, motion, etc.) as well as USB interfaces for server motors, LED systems, LCD displays and (for you big brother types) RFIDs.

Now that you have all this cool USB hardware, you can create an computer control for it.  Phidgets are interfaced via their supplied VB APIs (other languages are rumored to be in the works).


Additional fees may apply

Hey, cool, I could time share a Learjet from FlexJet for $4,600 a month!  That’s pretty spendy, but much lower than I’d expect, so I decided to take a closer look at the ad in USA Today (America’s “I wouldn’t read it if it wasn’t for the Hotel giving it to me” newspaper).


Okay, there’s the “*”, I knew there’d be a catch.  What’s the extra damage?  There’s a monthly management fee of $6,485 and an hourly rate of $1,760.  I love it that their monthly fee has additional monthly fees.

You know guys, you could get many more customers if you just said:


Gear Tech

But what if we need you again?

Well folks, the guy who invented ctrl+alt_del is retiring.  The good news, we can still use his stuff.  David J. Bradley is retiring from IBM after more than twenty-eight years of service.  More on the inventor, David J. Bradley.


Honey, I shrunk the laptop!

Here’s just what you need to get your geek buddies to drool: a 1 GHz laptop not much bigger than the power adapter powering your current laptop (4.9”x3.4”x.9” and 14 ounces).  It has all the goodies you’d want, Bluetooth™, 802.11b, USB, FireWire™ and more.  Dock it and it’s a full PC.  It’s not as small as a PDA, but it’s close, and it’s running Windows XP.

One problem, there are a bunch of other things I’d rather spend 2 grand on.

Visit OQO to find out more about their ultra personal computer (uPC).


On the level

For those of us who like to do projects around the home but hate having to try to get things level Zircon has come up with a really cool product. 
The Laser Vision Cube System (yeah, the product name is a bit wordy) is a great combination of several different technologies, it combines an auto leveling base with magnetic, laser generating cubes.  The cubes come in three flavors, line, dot and cross.  The base powers the cubes which project a laser line(s) or dot on your wall or ceiling.  using the projected line you can line up pictures, shelves or any other item you wish to attach. 
To use the LVQS you put the base unit on either a table or the optional pole mount.  The unit will then automatically level the top surface.  The top metal surface is one pole of the power source, drop a magnetic cube onto the top of the base and stick the wire from the cube to the side of the base and it’s ready to go. 
Next time I have to put up a set of hooks and have to measure down from the ceiling or draw a line on the wall I’m going to wish I had this.  

(clickie for biggie)


Killer product for plant killers

Here’s a really cool product for people who like to travel or who simply forget to water their plants:  DriWater is a gel made of water and vegetable matter which, when it comes in contact with dry soil, will become water.

To use, simply water your plant well then wrap one of these gel-noodles around the base.  DriWater comes in 30 and 90 day varieties as well as other flavors targeted at professionals.


Beam me up Scott-e

Scott e-vest

Exhibit A:  I’m a geek.
Exhibit B:  My wife has great fashion sense.

For Christmas this year (yeah, we celebrated a little early) my lovely wife bought me a very cool SCOTTeVEST (SeV).  These stylish jackets would not look out of place on any snowboarder or sullen teenager yet are a wonderful bit of clothing for your favorite geek. 

The SeV (taking advantage of the “SUV” craze?) is rife with nooks and crannies for all your favorite gear.  Most pockets can be accessed from both inside and outside the clothing.  There are also built-in channels to route wires for your own PAN (personal area network).

My Version Three.0 Stealth Fleece has 12 hidden pockets… including a spot for a CamelBak Bladder!

For a list of all the features, check out the glossary of terms.

Gear Music

Sweet LP player for all you old-skool music buffs

I was going to sell my wife’s car to buy this… but she won’t let me. What kind of wife won’t let a guy buy a $10,000 record player? Details: ELP Laser Turntable

Gear Tech

My firewire ate Tokyo

Geek link: Check out the Firewire Dino, a Godzilla-looking Firewire hub with light up eyes and mouth. It’s cool enough to warrant buying a Firewire card and some devices if you don’t have any. Firewire Dino from Charismac Engineering.