Posts tagged with "gadgets"
The second I found in my Usability feeds and thought I'd share. It's a "3-D touchpad" that doesn't really require touch- but you can hover your hands over. It looks like you can embed this under a keyboard and would be (according to the creator) inexpensive to implement. Difficult to imagine this replacing a mouse, but definitely nice for gestures! Very interesting
I've been debating the full write up, as it's probably only interesting to other BB Pearl users, but then again, even a full year and three months later, the Motorola RAZR post is still getting comments (last was today!):
So I might leave a full review for posterity and historic archiving, but I bet I'll land somewhere in between as I begin typing. This will probably be between the minute details of the phone, and the general *usability) point of view. In either case, as regular readers already know, this won't include technical details or call quality or any of the other stuff you can likely get anywhere else in reviews. Generally, this is usability/UI review that focuses on the user experience and UI design.
Even though I may love a product, I still tend to write negative things quite a bit because I think there's room for improvement or discussion, not because I'm knocking the product. That said, I'm very pleased with the BlackBerry 8100. I've found a device that lets me converge where I want my devices to converge and sacrifice where I'm willing to sacrifice. Even after I saw the announcement of the iPhone earlier today, I still stand behind my purchase (for now- I'll wait until I can try out the all touch screen interface- I'd prefer some keys to tap), I just thought I'd share some interface thoughts I had.
To this end, you may have noticed me link to Gizmodo on more than one occasion in the past, but now I've added another source to my arsenal of potential gadget fodder and I suggest you do too...
my.opera.com's very own: Org's Tech Times (Tech Oddities and Gadgets-a-plenty!) currently adorning the Opera Community front page. With any luck, I'll liberally point to this site whenever the next-big-gadget-thing comes out.
Without further ado, here's a cool alarm clock that I was meaning to make reference to. I was going to mention the fact that this has a wonderful visual cue to let you know that it's currently set: you pull the handle/string down on this wall mounted clock to set it. Most alarm clocks just have a small LED which could easily be confused with the AM/PM light.
This clock is a clever idea... unless of course you have a cat that likes to pounce on things dangling from strings.
BTW- if you're wondering what "plug & chug" is referring to... it could be any one of the following:
- Plug this address into your browser and chug along on your way.
- Plugging another site because I'm too busy chuggin' beer to write something of my own.
...take your pick, I haven't really decided yet.
..it's nice to see someone harnessing the power of the sun to relieve us from...well, the power of the sun.
Whether or not this solar powered fan (warning- as with all "as seen on TV" webpages, it's horrible) does in fact keep your car cooler is not something I really care about- after all *I* live in Minnesota. I know, I know- feel free to email me when January rolls around and you're wearing shorts, sandles and sipping on margaritas. We'll call it equal.
No- I'm more concerned with the weather stripping that accompanies this gadget. Is my understanding correct that you have to lay out the weather stripping on your window every time you want to employ this thing? Seems labor intensive and not very user friendly. That might be why you can hardly tell from the commercial that you have to use it (they only show it twice in the video and rolled up at the end of the commercial).
Anyway, still a funny, strange, heart-in-the-right-place type of gadget. I'd be curious if anyone is dedicated enough to lay down the weather stripping and mount this thing instead of just cracking a window on your way into the grocery store to just grab some eggs. Seems like too much trouble for a what is probably not that terribly large of a problem.
As an update to this post-kmaage points out an "AskTog" (great articles there BTW) article on child safety seats and the "out of site out of mind" of children in the backseat. Buried in the comments is this great quote that goes along with this post-
The simple solution is a system that automatically keeps the interior of the car cool without compromising security. A small solar panel providing electricity to the A/C fan, to keep the air circulating, is cheap and simple. It has the additional benefits of preventing cracked windshields, keeping the car bearable for when you enter it, and reducing gasoline consumption from running the A/C at maximum when you get into a car that feels like an oven. All of these benefits accrue to those without children or pets in the car.
I don't see any need for fancy controllers--the more sun that hits the solar cell, the faster the fan turns. Sunlight is an excellent proxy for heating of the car's interior.
*Or nature is cycling through another "hot spell" or there is no problem at all. Take your pick depending on your beliefs- but dangit man, it sure is hot out there.
Here's an idea that seems to make a good deal of sense. A small device called the "Turbo Charge" not much bigger than a "AA" battery that takes.. you guess it, a single "AA" battery and will give your phone another couple hours of usage. I've always stayed clear of cellphone battery boosters and the like because, they too require you to have some pre-planning available.
So from a user centered POV- this is good because: AA batteries are pretty universal. I seem to need a charge most when I'm travelling, and airports and hotels et all have access to a battery. It's also nice because it's portable- you don't have to anchor your phone anywhere or find a plug. It's tiny. This could easily be carried around with no impact. You never have to worry about having *it* charged up before your trip like you would with other backup/boosters.
The bad side is, you have to remember to have it with you :) Yet another gadget that you have to remember to pack with you. I will also put the website down as a negative. It's like watching an infomercial and frankly, takes a great deal of credibility away from the product (assuming it's credible!).
I recently travelled to Egypt and brought my phone (international roaming) for emergencies. I kept it off the whole time because I was concerned about battery life. I didn't bring the charger because that would have meant bringing a converter, so this would have came in handy there!
Of course, I've never used or seen this product, so who knows- it may be a big pile of garbage, but I like the idea the idea.
Older stuff we wrote...
My stove has a crappy UI
Mental mapping of a stove UI
Riff on riffs.com
Browser checking on websites.
Cable Co Menu guide
My cable box has the most frustrating UI
The phone you have a work sucks
- When will maps think like us?
- Nail clippers with a catch
- Bad Idea for a Software Interface
- Toothpaste Cap
- Lunch Soup Containers from Hell
- Turbo Tax Usability
- DAPs- Focus on Cord Management
- My posts on MNteractive
- A Brighter Outlook
- Short interview w/Donald Norman
- "Terms of Service" on different types of websites
- Vacuum cleaner
- New Spin on Voice Mail
- Mobile Phone Trackball- Great usability
- BlackBerry Pearl Review
- Pie Menus and Mouse Gestures
- iTunes as a podcast manager
- Collection of Usability Principles
- Web App Forcing Functions
- Techie Toys Series
Usability In the News -Usernomics.com
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