In The News: Gaming & Tech, Reviews by Zackary

Tech Friday, Now With Yuletide Cheer!

Traditional Santa

 

 
It has been a little while since my last installment of this wonderful column, I apologize if I caused undue stress and mental torment from the wait…your life may resume and continue on as originally scheduled now!

What brought me out of hiding? I’m glad you asked, I love this season! Whether it’s Christmas, Yule, Chanukah, or one of the many other clonesque versions of the same holiday season,  it is just so much fun!  Of course it would be much easier to get into the holiday spirit if I wasn’t currently living in the barren subtropics of the deep freaking south US, but I digress.

Images of a large jolly man spreading cheer and good will, it is just so heartwarming. Unfortunately, the older (and more cynical)I get I can’t help but feeling this image is more accurate in this modern culture.

Spending santa

In any case I love it all, I just wish it was more akin to a Victorian Christmas, or the little house on the prairie Christmas, not, half of the contents of the local bestbuy, and toy r us under the tree. So my three kids could appreciate things a bit more.

One year all their gift were mostly homemade, but they were younger, and we lived in a house where I had my full woodworking shop set up. I was able to craft all good quality wooden toys. But alas, they are older now, and i don’t have a shop(or time). A 10 year old wouldn’t appreciate a wooden kitchen, kapla blocks, or full wooden castle with knights, like a 5 year did. Plus that was before the kids discovered computers, and the kindle fire.

I suppose posting about a candy stick, new tin cup, and a rag doll would make for a lame tech-centric blog post. So on that note, On dasher, on danc….ehh you get the idea.

 

 

 

 
 

 

Amazon Prime Drones


amazon prime drone

 

 

Amazon delivery drones. I’m sure you have heard of this already, if you haven’t well shame on you. I may have to remove  your geek badge with one more infraction like that.

I think it’s an ambitious idea, very Jetsons of them. Just imagine, if you will, sitting at your computer placing your monthly order of canned unicorn meat(yes it is on there…prime eligible too) . Wait it will take traditional shipping 2 entire days to get here?!?! Preposterous! I demand new and improved drone prime, in 30 minutes I can be enjoying my daily recommended unicorn rations.

Of course I think its ridiculous for the reason of faster delivery. However I do think it will happen sooner or later. And it could possibly be a better method than fleets of trucks traversing the globe.

< tin foil hat> It could always lead to the increased presence and acceptance of government drones in our daily lives. For what purposes? Monitoring, tracking, and controlling/exterminating so called insurgents(read anyone they deem a “threat”). Oh you don’t think that possible, or our ever trusting uncle sam would do that to us? That’s so cute…oh by the way, I have a lovely bridge in brooklyn for sale, I will give you a great deal!</Tin foil hat>

 

 

 

  

  

 

Need a gift idea for a techie…or yourself?


touch screen gloves

 

 
So even down here in the south sometimes it gets cold enough for gloves, and of course the northeast and northern part of the country gets bitterly cold. Why such an obvious statement? What is the bane of every smart phone or tablet user? Gloved fingers of course!

Wait so why get a techie gloves if they won’t be able to use their cherished touch screen devices?!?! Oh ye of little faith, I shall enlighten you.

Yes there are gloves that allow us to use touch screens just fine. But first a little geekery, if I may.

Modern touch screens are capacitive screens. In order for that to work your finger(skin) must touch the screen, whether physically or by way of complete circuit, of a conductor. What sorcery allows gloves to conduct electricity? It’s just conductive thread or fabric with a low enough resistance.

There are quite a few companies selling gloves like this already. Here is an example, Now I have no idea of the quality, i’ve never tried them myself, and have no connection with the website what so ever. But they give you the general idea.

Want a better idea? You can turn any pair of gloves into conductive touch screen capable gloves in a few minutes. So you can buy a fashionable pair for a gift, or convert your favorite already broken in pair for every day use.

What’s the catch? nothing really you just need to buy conductive thread, and be able to make a few stitches by hand. no it’s not hard, you aren’t sewing a dress or making a quilt, just a few simple stitches through the finger so the conductive thread makes contact with your finger, and can touch the screen. Here is an instructables link for a good detailed how to. It gives links for thread sources too! Read the disclaimer about buying fake thread.
 

 

 

 

Gps on a ring


gps keys

 

 

Key ring that is! Have you ever found yourself so lost you couldn’t find your car after a day of shopping, or hotel after sightseeing? Me neither, but I do know for a fact there are directionally challenged people in this world.

Would the benefit from a gps device connected to their key ring? Theoretically, sure! But I have a different theory, now keep in mind I have no scientific data to back up my claims.

I bet we could do a study, and determine people that tend to get lost that frequently they need to by a tiny keychain gps to find their way wouldn’t have a freaking clue how to use such a device. Further more if they managed to operate it successfully, they would be the kind of people to follow the directions directly off a cliff, into oncoming traffic because it told them to, or 35 miles down a dirt forest service road.

Of course that means they don’t fall into the subgroup of test subjects that forget their keys all together or lock them inside said vehicle they can’t manage to locate!

My apologies to the rare breed of tech literates that don’t fall into the categories outlined above. I don’t think you really exist, more like bigfoot, or sheepsuqatch, but I will give you the benefit of the doubt since it is the holiday season and all!

So why do gadgets like this get sold? Well what do you get the person who has everything, or giving hope to the hopeless?

 

 

 

 

 

Obligatory clown post!


northampton clown

 

 
You didn’t think I forgot did you? Well the creepy clown hasn’t been very active in the past two weeks. Apparently a lot of people don’t see the humor in what he is doing and harass him. As creepy as I think it is, I know its all in good fun, and he is actually doing wonders for the local economy and tourism there.

Follow him on facebook, send encouragement, or flame and keep him away if you must.

 

 

 

 

 

Have a Merry Christmas and keep the holiday spirit up!

 
This week my family will be decorating, I think we usually do it the weekend right after thanksgiving, but we are slacking this year a bit.

Here is an age old debate, those of you that celebrate with Christmas trees, live or artificial?

That wraps up this Tech Friday Yuletide edition,
happy shopping, stay safe, and under budget!

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