Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 14th 2014 Contents SBG16 TECHNOLOGY
SUNDAY BUSINESS GUARDIAN www.guardian.co.tt DECEMBER 14 • 2014
If you were naughty this year, you might
end up with something big and boring,
like a vacuum cleaner. If you were
good, you might ask for one of these
little high-tech gems instead.
Asus S1 LED projector (US$330):
Yes, there is a digital projector that can fit
into a Christmas stocking. That, in itself, is
an accomplishment. It s also a hearty performer
for its size.
The Asus S1 weighs less than a pound and
has a battery that can last up to three hours.
That claim held up well during my tests, which
included hosting a children s sleepover viewing
of "Frozen" on a large wall.
I successfully connected an Android smart-
phone and an Xbox 360 and used the S1 to
project what s on those screens. The most fun
came when I plugged a small Roku Streaming
Stick directly into the projector s HDMI port.
Within minutes, I was watching Netflix and
playing "Angry Birds" on large walls throughout
my house, with no power cords in sight.
The S1 has a nice built-in speaker, but I
tethered it to a large portable speaker for movie
Cogito Classic smartwatch
If you re going to buy your loved one a nice
watch, it might as well talk to your phone.
The Cogito Classic does just that, connecting
to your phone via Bluetooth and alerting you
when text messages, social media updates or
phone calls come in. I often tuck my phone
in a back pocket or backpack when I m walking
around town or on assignment. With a quick
glance at the Cogito, I can see who s trying
to reach me. I also get calendar alerts with
some details about upcoming meetings.
Unlike other smartwatches that require daily
recharge, the Cogito Classic uses standard
watch batteries that should last for months.
It also has traditional analog hands alongside
a digital time display.
There are a lot of smartwatches, but the
Cogito Classic stands out by blending classic
handsome styling and just enough smart noti-
fications to keep you informed without over-
burdening you with gobs of information to
Orbotix Sphero 2.0 smart ball
The Sphero is a plastic ball full of smart
electronics and sensors. With
a phone or tablet, you can make
the ball spin, swim, chase your
dog and even dance in response
to completing challenges. For
the rugged outdoors, you ll want
to outfit the Sphero with a
knobby rubber cover, which is
sold separately for US$15.
The Sphero comes with a
couple of jump ramps. It can
quickly reach top speed and go
flying off the jumps, or you can
create your own robot obstacle
course out of ordinary objects.
It is the smart round robot of
Intel Edison and Arduino
Breakout Kit (US$100):
The Edison is an Intel-chip
Linux computer about the size
of an SD memory card. It has
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities built in, mak-
ing it ripe for developing portable or wearable
devices, or just fun side projects.
I tried a kit that included an Arduino expan-
sion board, which allowed me to program the
Edison using both a Mac and a Windows com-
puter. I connected the Edison to my home
Wi-Fi network and got a few
lights to blink in sequence.
From there, I can incorpo-
rate small speakers, proximity
sensors and other small add-
ons to flesh out the project of
This kit and other Edison-
related products are great for
seasoned electronics or soft-
ware enthusiasts who like to
brew their own projects around
the house. The online retailer
SparkFun Electronics sells
these kits, along with a mul-
titude of Arduino-friendly
NuForce Mobile Music Pump
The amplifier in your smartphone likely
isn t strong enough to drive high-quality head-
phones. That s where a portable headphone
amplifier can be useful.
This matchbox-sized amp from NuForce
pumped up the volume for me while retaining
clarity and limiting distortion on several larger,
over-the-ear headphones I tried. My head-
phones plugged into the amp, and the amp
plugged into my phone. My music suddenly
had more bass and more acoustic range.
The NuForce MMP is a nice affordable com-
panion for the audiophile on the go.
MOS phone cables (US$30 Lightning
of Apple; US$20 Micro-USB for
The good news? Your smartphone came
with charging and syncing cables. The bad
news? They don t always last very long, given
the daily use we put them through. Give the
gift of durability with these tough cables from
I tried the company s Lightning cable for
the iPhone 5s and Micro-USB cable for a Sam-
sung Galaxy S4. They re better than the stan-
dard, out-of-the-box cables thanks to a spring-
relief sleeve where the cable meets the plug
and a rugged woven sheath that protects the
full length of the cable. They re smartly finished
with sleek, anodised aluminum heads housing
the connector ends. If cables can be sexy, these
MOS cables are sexy. Ron Harris for AP
The Sphero robotic ball. The Sphero is
controlled with an app on a smartphone and
can roll, glow, spin, shake and dance, all under
the direction of the user.
The Cogito Classic smart watch. The watch
contains Bluetooth technology and can
communicate with a smartphone to deliver
social media notifications as well as email
and calendar alerts.
The NuForce MMP, a small headphone amplifier. The amplifier increases the volume of audio
coming from small portable devices to optimise the performance of high-quality headphones.
The Intel Edison, a small programmable computer the size of an SD memory card, seated on an
electronics expansion board. The Edison has both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology built in, as
well as a full distribution of the Linux operating system.
The MOS smartphone charging cables. The cables are
reinforced with strong woven material along their length and
anodised aluminum protection at the connector ends.
Links Archive December 13th 2014 December 15th 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page