Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 28, 2013 02:42 PM
You may soon need to be extra careful when you wave your hands around—and it’s not because you might hit somebody. You may be sending your computer and every other digital object you own a message of some sort or another thanks to the growing market for gesture controllers.
Nintendo’s Wii got the world swinging its body around to control images on their screens. Microsoft’s Kinect allowed users to control their Xboxes and PCs with hand gestures and now a new wave of controllers and interfaces are planned to hit the market this year.
In May, the Leap Motion 3D gesture controller, which allows users to control their PCs with hand gestures, will be found in Best Buys for $80. The company sees itself as different from Kinect because its controller can follow "all ten fingers up to 1/100th millimeter at up to 290 frames per second" and is "200 times more sensitive than existing motion-control technology," according to pcpro.com.
Thalmic Labs is releasing MYO, which goes around a person’s forearm and can sense their movements, allowing for control of actual devices rather than just computers. QZ.com has it that “this raises the stakes in the gestural interface game.” It’ll be on the market in late 2013 for $149. Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 25, 2013 05:03 PM
Sony’s tablets have had some pretty funky designs, such as the dual-screen, clamshell-like P Tablet and the S Tablet’s asymmetry, but its newest—the Xperia Z—introduced Monday at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, looks a lot more conventional: a black rectangle.
Sony contends it’s not just another 10.1-inch tablet. This one is said to be lighter (1.09 pounds) and thinner (6.9mm) than all the rest and will retail for $499 for 16GB and $599 for 32GB (about the same as an iPad) when it hits store shelves this spring, according to CNET. Sony is pushing one point that does seem to make it significantly different from the rest, though. This baby can go underwater! Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 25, 2013 04:14 PM
True&Co may be every woman’s answer to the sturm und drang of buying a bra.
Joining the growing list of e-commerce breakthroughs—think Zappos and Warby Parker—True&Co has scaled the most personal mountain of buying intimates online. Their model asks new customers to take a 15-question quiz, then selects three different styles for them to choose from. Then, an algorithm interjects to pick two additional bras to send out, giving a customer five bras to try on at home, no obligation to buy, priced from $45 to $62.
The quiz asks the basics; band and cup size and the brand of her current “best fitting (and beloved) bra,” as well as questions like, “Do your cups runneth over?” and “What is your shape?” with these choices: Well-Rounded, Bottom Happy, Taking Sides and Bottom & Sides.
“We have an algorithm that defines 2,000 body types,” said co-founder Michelle Lam, who started the company with Dan Dolgin and Aarthi Ramamurthy.
It’s a brave new world where mathematics and marketing can determine and deliver anything from brasseries to orange juice suited to consumer preference, taking into account countless decision variables. Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 11, 2013 02:45 PM
Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died before seeing two of his big ideas – an iCar and an iWatch – become reality. But word is that one of those visions may be coming to fruition in the near future.
The computer giant “is experimenting with wristwatch-like devices made of curved glass,” according to The New York Times. The watch will have some of the same functions as a smartphone, but the bulk of information about the gadget – when it might appear, cost, features – remains a mystery.
“Apple’s certainly made a lot of hiring in that area,” Sarah Rotman Epps, a Forrester analyst who specializes in wearable computing and smartphones, told The Times. “Apple is already in the wearable space through its ecosystem partners that make accessories that connect to the iPhone."
She cautioned that an iWatch probably wouldn't be landing on store shelves anytime soon, though.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on January 14, 2013 11:04 AM
The National Retail Federation's annual conference is in full swing in New York, with retailers, brands and vendors convening at the Javits Center to take a closer look at how digital technology is bringing brands closer to consumers at the point of sale.
In 2011 at the NRF "Big Show," Intel unveiled its vision of the “Connected Store,” featuring interactive demonstrations from leading retailers including adidas, Best Buy and Kraft Foods that aim to integrate the best of online, mobile and in-store shopping with traditional retail environments. Adidas demonstrated its adiVerse virtual footwear wall powered by Intel, featuring a touchscreen interface and 3-D rendered graphics.
At last year's NRF Expo, Intel continued to highlight technology innovation through work with retailers including HSN and Macy’s, delivering more relevant and entertaining experiences to shoppers. Intel's booth showcased Macy’s BeautySpot digital experience as a means to offer customers a helpful and fun way to evaluate cosmetics across multiple brands.
And in 2013 at the National Retail Federation Expo, Intel (as you can watch below) is showing its work for McCormick, adidas and Costa Coffee, harnessing intelligent systems to help digital shoppers "quickly and easily research products, find reviews, compare prices, share experiences with friends." The goal, says Intel, is creating "fun and memorable brand experiences as well as new ways to ensure the goods customers want are immediately available," as demonstrated in 2013 NRF Expo video, below.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on January 7, 2013 08:55 AM
Brands and marketers are heading to Las Vegas for the International CES show this week, which is expected to be an "evolutionary" showcase for "phablets," smart cars, mobile entertainment, celebrity-gawking and trend-watching. So what's in store for this year's edition of "the mother of all trade shows"?
A lot of noise from the many brands looking to make some noise in Vegas, including:
Posted by Andrew Chan on January 2, 2013 10:31 AM
Samsung's latest teaser spot for its 2013 Consumer Electronics Show news has some observers wondering whether the Korean electronics giant plans to turn the TV industry on its side by introducing portrait (instead of landscape) Smart TV monitors. In any event, it's wooing consumers with a smart TV upgrade kit. Look for more clues in the brand's pre-CES videos, below.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 17, 2012 03:29 PM
Smartphones are pretty smart as it is now. But in five years’ time, they could be smelling you to see if you have a cold, allow users to feel objects from across the globe, and see such things as cell structures that are likely to turn into a melanoma. Not too shabby, right?
Some of IBM’s top researchers share the news on these potential capabilities – and plenty more – in the company’s new list of five predictions of innovations that will change our lives in the next five years. The annual "Smarter Planet" look what’s coming down the pike in the world of technology this year is grouped around cognitive computing, another name for trying to get computers to behave more like humans.
“With all due respect to current technology, our computers today are just large calculators,” said Paul Bloom, the CTO of Telecom Research at IBM. “They calculate very fast and lots of data, but they really don’t think.” That is about to change. IBM has released five videos (watch below) to showcase how computing may change each of the five senses — hearing, smelling, tasting, touching, and seeing. Researchers, for example, are getting closer to “hearing” mudslides and other natural disasters before they actually occur.
"This is really an assistive technology," commented Dr. Bernard Meyerson, IBM's VP of research. "It can't go off on its own. It's not designed to do that. What it's designed to do, in fact, is respond to a human in an assistive manner. But by providing a human-style of input, it's freed us from the task of programming and moved to the task of training. It simply has — not more intelligence — but more bandwidth, and there's a huge difference between the two."Continue reading...