When I saw “Taxi Driver” for the first time, I was too young to fully comprehend, and appreciate, the incredible characters, biting social commentary, or tightly structured plot. What I did take away from Scorsese’s second best movie (first is “Goodfellas”, naturally) is the sheer coolness of those spring loaded, sleeve hidden gun launchers that main character Travis Bickle wielded.
Of course, like all great over the top movie inventions, someone will eventually find a way to incorporate them into our everyday lives. Those hidden gun launchers are no exception, but even still I found the manner in which inventor Showta Mori worked that technology into the real world to be…a bit odd, as he demonstrates in this gut bustlingly hilarious video.
Not only is that device that can shoot your phone, via forearm pressure, into your hands from your sleeve stupendously moronic, entirely superfluous, and even irresponsibly hazardous, it’s also completely awesome and on sale via the inventor’s Etsy shop, where it retails for about $80 and is compatible with the iPhone 4, 4S, and 5.
Before you completely dismiss the validity of this device, be sure to consider that in an increasingly pop culture obsessed world that is already way too in love with their smartphones, and value any device that will allow them to use them with minimal physical effort, this device could, against all odds, actually make a sale or two.
Of course, if you do buy one, you are required to occasionally pop your phone into your hands and answer it by saying, “Are you talking to me?”
The mention of a rocking chair conjures many images. Among them are old men whittling away the hours on slow country nights, creepy horror movie sets, banjos, swamps, and of course, people looking infinitely relaxed. Of all the images though, none of them would probably be that of top of the line technology. Instead rocking chairs are a relic of a simpler time, and thankfully always will be.
On the arm rest is a standard Apple dock for your iPad or iPhone. Plug into the dock, and as long as you continue to rock the chair, your device will keep charging. Specifically, the makers of the chair estimate that rocking for 60 minutes will charge an iPad 3 to 35%, although as long as it’s in use your device will continue to charge and can also store energy. There is also a nice pair of 25 Watt speakers on either side of your head for a completely integrated media experience. It also comes in 5 different colors, although it’s hard to argue against the standard Apple white.
Now obviously the appeal of this device is going to be niche to say the least. However, I think that you’ll be surprised by the depth of potential buyers. Groups that include:
- The Rich
- The Eccentric
- People who love their iPads way too much
- Your rich, eccentric grandfather who loves his iPad way too much.
- People in areas with really, really, unsteady electrical output
- Minamilists that are secretly tech-freaks
- Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin? Yeah, you see not only was he an innovator in the field of electricity, but he’s also rumored to have created the rocking chair. So I think he might appreciate this device.
Actually no, even he’d probably think it’s ridiculous.
Although, you’ll still need a lot of him to get one
The new iPhone 4S is a massive hit, so if you got one, you should be in the market for a cool case or two. Check out this review of the new XtremeMac Microshield. If you like a smooth and slick cover, this one will be perfect.
As with any new Apple release, the iPhone 4 brought along a menagerie of options for the accessorizing individual. Everyone likes to talk about cases, but the thing I look for first is usually a cradle or a dock – something I can set on my nightstand for charging and use with the phone’s alarm clock.
The Konnet iCrado is about as simple a cradle as you’ll find. It’s a curved piece of metal with a slot for you to use your own cable as the actual data dock. There is a little more to it, though. The curve of the device is designed to improve sound quality for use as speakerphone. I have to say, I thought it was a gimmick at first, but it is nice to have the sound directed toward you. It doesn’t really imrpove much, just aims the sound at your face.
Unfortunately, I’m not much of a speakerphone guy. For the most part I’ll use a headset if I need to do some hands free work, so that isn’t a big selling point. I also don’t like that it requires you to provide the cord. The unit comes slotted for the owner’s cord with a small plastic clip that holds the cord in place. Your phone then sits upright, attached by the cord and leaning against the high back of the unit. I would much prefer that they give you a cord or have the cord connected to a jack at the back. The current method is inconvenient for traveling, and if you lose the piece that holds your cord in place, you’ve got a $30 paperweight with an iPhone-cord-shaped slot in it.
Speaking of price, that’s really the biggest setback. I would forgive the smaller flaws if it didn’t cost $30. At $15 this would be a fine little stand, available in whatever color strikes your fancy.
The Joby Gorilla Pod has become one of the most popular tripod solutions that allows you to mount a camera almost anywhere. Joby’s taken that idea and shrunk it down to provide the same flexibility for mobile applications.
I’ve always been impressed with the quality of Joby products and the Gorilla Mobile is no exception. The joints hold up well, even under constant use (I used mine to entertain an 18-month old for a couple hours). Joby has also added extra functionality by including interchangeable mounts for different devices. There’s the standard camera mount – which is perfect for your point and shoot or a Flip video – an adhesive mount for anything without a camera bracket, and a suction cup which is for anything with a smooth surface (yeah, it’s pretty much for the iPhone, though your Blackberry might be alright there).
There’s really nothing bad to say about this little tripod. It’s functional, fits most any device, and can be tucked into a pocket. My only hang up was getting the suction cup to fit the phone, but a quick cleaning and little spit gave it a solid hold. My one piece of advice is to make sure the interchangeable lock is in place before setting your camera anywhere. If you don’t have the locking ring in place, any kind of tilt could send your camera/phone sliding to its death.
Looks like somebody really thinks the iPhone should have a physical keyboard. So much so, in fact, that they made one. The company is Mobile Mechatronics and the product in question is the iTwinge, a physical keyboard that plugs in to the dock connector on your iPhone and lays over the screen where the keys would normally be.
Why Mobile Mechatronics felt the need to make this little device is beyond me. It’s ugly as sin, and the fact that it draws power from the phone makes me cringe. There’s also the fact that it covers almost half your screen, meaning you’ll need to remove the thing and stuff it in a pocket for regular phone use. To cap things off, MM wants you to spend $30 on the thing. All I can say is good luck. It’s probably not gonna happen.
I think I want that too. Alereon has been trying to push wireless USB for a while now, a cause their new device will surely help.
The device (referred to henceforth as “the device”) remains unnamed and unphotographed, which makes me wonder why they made the announcement. From what they say, though, the device plugs into your iPhone or iPod touch charge port and allows you to sync up with iTunes wirelessly. Pretty snazzy. It also offers some additional battery power to make sure you get a good sync.
Apparently future iterations of the device will allow you to stream video and pics to TVs, also wirelessly. Of course, no one has any idea what the thing looks like, how much it will cost, or pretty much anything else. The idea, though, seems pretty cool.