Leap Motion + Fleksy is Genius Typing in the Air

A post showed up on Engadget this morning that caught my eye.

Laser projected virtual keyboardsSo 2004. These days, tech firms are dreaming up completely invisible typewriters, or at least Syntellia is. By marrying a Leap Motion sensor with its own Fleksy predictive keyboard, the company has created a system that seems to let you type on thin air


Yet another crazy-cool thing coming out of SXSW this year. You might say I predicted this. Last week I wrote posts about each of these companies and how I was excited about the work they are doing. I ended my Leap Motion post remarking on the promising future the miniscule device has. I suggested it could read sign language and allow people with arthritis to control computers without the joint pain, to control of a television without a remote.

Fleksy_LogoThen, in my Fleksy post I suggested ways Fleksy could make the move out of touchscreen devices and incorporated into computers. I wrote specifically how it could be used to speed up typing and allow a dramatic increase in accuracy.

But what I neglected to put together was what would happen if Fleksy worked with Leap Motion. Well, turns out they were already thinking about this and have announced Fleksy integration with Leap Motion, and it’s pretty brilliant. Imagine controlling your AppleTV with the Leap Motion, swiping in the air through videos and songs. When it came time to do a search in the Netflix app, you’d have the ability to simply type in the air using Fleksy integration instead of the traditional, and painfully slow, method of input with the AppleTV onscreen keyboard.

I’m not sure if I’m a genius for thinking abstractly of these two ideas or dense for not thinking of combining the two. Either way I’m even more looking forward to the delivery of my Leap Motion. Apple being the silo that it is, we might have to work with some XMBC hackers to get the above integration working but it would be worth it.

There Are Two Rules…

When I’m working with someone who wants to start a blog, there are typically two rules I suggest they follow because they are the rules everyone says people should follow.

  1. Be consistent by update regularly and chronologically.
  2. Stay on topic or follow established, rotating topics.

Ironically, on my blog I follow neither of these rules. I post about things that are going to happen next week, followed by a post of what happend last month. The next post might be a review of some gadget or perhaps a political rant. With me at the helm, there really is no rhyme or reason to my blog. Though I do sometimes post some of the photos I’ve taken that I’m actually proud of.

I love how disorienting this photo is. It’s like Escher himself created this room, or this blog post for that matter. Let the fun continue! Continue reading

Why is iTunes Absent from the Mac App Store

Apple released the Mac App Store (MAS) back in January of 2011. Jobs and Co. rolled it  in the update to Mac OS X 10.6.6 and it wasn’t long before companies were clamoring to release their software on the new platform.

Apple's Mac App Store

There were some unfortunate hiccups with the new way of purchasing applications for the desktop Apple operating system. For instance, if you had already purchased a piece of software that is on the MAS, somewhere else, you will not get access to updates through this system. Even if you have a serial number from the purchase, you are kept out.

This is because Apple takes a cut of all purchases made through the MAS and have no real need to serve another storefront’s customers. Some developers worked around this by providing heavily discounted versions of their software initially to ease the cost of users transitioning to the new distribution service.

Of course there were some that not only didn’t offer this option, they even decided to stop supporting their applications’ updates unless they purchased them from the app store. Practices like this were quickly condemned by users for basically forcing them to pay twice for the same software.

I already posted about Apple’s great success on the MAS, check it out here. They manage to keep up around 50-90% of the top paid download on the MAS, out of the thousands of applications available there. On top of that, over 1,000,000 downloads of Mac OS X Lion went through the MAS within the first twenty-four hours!

A thought popped into my head today though. After pushing so hard to make the MAS a success, why hasn’t Apple put its most popular app into the MAS? The only way to get FinalCut Pro X or Mac OS X Lion is through the MAS and as of yesterday, Apple has begun to pull all boxed copies of their software from Apple stores.

Yet, for some reason, iTunes is not available on the MAS.

iTunes is Missing from the Mac App Store

Anyone dare to suggest why? I can’t think of a really solid reason for this. In fact, I’m surprised Apple hasn’t rolled out its developer portal to the MAS. Many developers* like me use the same Apple ID for both the MAS and our dev accounts.

Imagine how great this seamless integration could be for development teams.

Klipsch Image One Review

I cannot believe it has taken me this long to write a review of the Klipsch Image One headphones. It was last November that I first posted about these over ear headphones, the first on-ear headphones made by Klipsch. And yes, one of these days, I will write a review that doesn’t take an hour to read. Brevity is not my strength.

I’ve decided to edit the introduction to this review with a summary of my thoughts. The full review is posted below, but if you’re in a rush, digest the following. Continue reading

Klipsch Image ONE Preview

Klipsch released their first on ear headphones, the Image ONE, this fall. Klipsch entered the headphone market just three years ago and quickly shot to the top of nearly every gadget sites’ “Editor’s Choice” list. With the massive success of the Image S4i, their first iPhone optimized headphones, Klipsch is back with a new breed of headphone.

With a sound signature modeled after the Klipsch S4i, an iPhone/iPod/iPad remote control, carrying case and full-sized drivers, the Image ONE headphones are certainly ready to take on the competition.

Klipsch Image One Headphones with iPhoneI picked up my pair of Image ONE headphones yesterday and have only had a few hours of listening to them but here is what I can tell you so far.

  • The packaging is worthy of the Apple products these headphones are made for.
  • The carrying case is perfect.
  • The headphones are comfortable and incredibly light.
  • The headphones are so light they might feel cheaply made to some.
  • The sound isn’t cheap.
  • Isolation doesn’t compare to their in-ear headphones but works well enough.
  • The cabling is solid, best headphone cables I’ve had lately. Thick, well insulated and yet pliable.
  • Remote control is improved over the previous Klipsch iPhone headphones.
  • Headphones started out harsh but have warmed up after some time.
  • Similar sound signature to the Klipsch Image S4i, which was the goal.

I plan to post a review of these headphones after some more listening in different environments and after some tests with the microphone. Hopefully this will be done by tomorrow but no promises!

Exclusive! Fusion Garage Ripped Off JooJoo

I’m sure you’ve read about the controversy behind the Crunchpad, CrunchGear, Fusion Garage, Michael Arrington and Chandra Rathakrishnan.

Here’s a brief breakdown and then I’ll get into my absolute exclusive, breaking news story.

Michael Arrington and his blog CrunchGear had this idea of an Internet tablet.  He has an incredible pull in the tech industry with production companies, advertisers, publishers, the whole deal.  Arrington had this idea of an internet connected, totally open source tablet that would allow a user to have a total web experience without the big computer.  Most of your web experience doesn’t require a mouse or keyboard, really.  A multitouch screen, like that on the iPhone, has proven this.

Of course, Apple has a rumored tablet coming out too.  But lucky for Arrington, the Apple tablet, if it is indeed real, would be in a totally different market.  Arrington wanted the Crunchpad to cost around or les than $200.  There simply isn’t any way Apple would meet that.  When their tablet comes out, if it does exist, look for one at least $800.

Just days ago, Arrington broke the news that the company he had teamed up with to build the Crunchpad had bailed on him, that they planned to release the device without his backing and that lawsuits were pending.

Rathakrishnan, of Fusion Garage, the company behind the actual creation of the Crunchpad had a lot to say about this.  Here are his claims, which actually sound pretty legit.

  1. Arrington and CrunchGear had no contracts with Fusion Garage
  2. Fusion Garage was already working on bringing a tablet to market
  3. Fusion Garage owns all the intellectual property for the device
  4. The tablet would be released by Fusion Garage
  5. Arrington never had any formal, written, legal agreement with Fusion Garage or Rathakrishnan to engineer, build, sell the tablet.
  6. The understanding was Arrington would buy Fusion Garage and with it the Crunchpad but until he did so, had no rights to the device or its IP

His argument is pretty interesting.  If Arrington (a lawyer) didn’t sign any contracts and had no formal agreements, prior art, etc… he’s pretty much SOL.

So what about the name?  Arrington definitely owns the rights to Crunchpad.  Whatever will Fusion Garage sell this device as and for what amount?

It’s the JooJoo, which means magic and you’ll be able to buy it for $500.

It’s got a sleek, elegant, industrial design it plays back 1080p video, built in WiFi, five hour battery life, 5gb of built in storage and I want one.

However… upon closer inspection, something didn’t seem right.

I got to thinking about tablets and when I first heard such a thing and that’s when I realized, Fusion Garage totally, and I mean TOTALLY, ripped off the JooJoo from someone else.  Someone with a higher power at his side, even higher than Arrington if you can believe it.  I even have a photograph of the original tablet with two prototypes!  The first two were destroyed  after a lackluster adoption by the masses…

I give to you, the original “JooJoo” tablets.

Behold, the original JewJew tablets as modeled by the Fusion Garage of 1441 BC.  We all know the story of Moses, leader of the Jews, and his creation of the tablets with the intellectual property loaned to him by God.

Think of it this way. Michael Arrington is to God as Chandra Rathakrishnan is to Moses.  I’m pretty sure this will take the technology world by storm.  Look out CNet, ValleyWag, Engadget, Gizmodo and yes, even TechCrunch/Crunchgear.

You learned of this vast conspiracy here first.  Spread the word!

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Engadget… Why I Oughta!

My AppleTV has been acting up… I think it might have something to do with the fact it gets two trillion degrees…  There is a fan in there but damn, that thing gets hot.  I opened it up to replace the hard drive, using Engadget’s directions.

First, let’s look inside

Fan vent along the left, fan on the bottom left, audio/video, ethernet, usb, power inputs on the bottom.  Power supply along the right etc etc, nothing special (cough, this thing is fucking crazing).

Sadly, my upgrading of the measly 40gb drive to a 160gb drive didn’t go so well.  Engadget’s directions didn’t quite work.  Hard to mess up terminal commands…

dd if=/dev/disk1 of=/Users/justex07/AppleTV.img count=1335 bs=1024k

dd if=/Users/justex07/AppleTV.img count=1335 of=/dev/disk1 bs=1024k

2732016  309849759 

gpt add -b 2732016 -i 4 -t hfs /dev/disk1

diskutil eraseVolume “Journaled HFS+” Media /dev/disk1s4

gpt add -b 3141672 -i 4 -t hfs /dev/disk1

Plus a few gpt commands…  Well, no go.  Put the old drive in and it works well enough.  I’m just going to go the lame-oh way and have a kit shipped to be, pre-formatted hard drive.  Thanks Weaknees.com.

The thing is… After you get all of the tools, the Weaknees’s deal is as cheap or cheaper than doing it totally ourself.  Who knew?!