Archive for January, 2008

Digital Book

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

Digital BooksAmazon recently released the Kindle digital book reader. It looks to have many good features, but for international travelers the biggest drawback is Sprint’s national high-speed (EVDO) data network. While in the US this isn’t a draw back, but once outside its ability to wirelessly obtain books. This can be worked around by connecting to a computer, but triggers the inconvenience factor. For now a WiFi connection or Bluetooth connection makes more sense. This way when traveling or at home one can obtain new content.

Self-setting Clocks

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Self-setting clockThere is confidence in knowing your wall clock is self-setting and self-correcting. Pull it out of the box, and within a few minutes the time sets itself. That is if the clock can receive the 60kHz signal broadcast by WWVB from Ft. Collins, Colorado. However, the signal only is reliable in the continental United States, and not all the time even there. If you take your clock with you to another country, the time updates are not received and the clock begins to drift.

Digital Grocery Shopping

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

LCD Price TagOur local grocery store uses digital price tags on the shelves for all products. These tags update wirelessly whenever the prices change. They even start blinking when the product is on sale. This reduces the likelihood that the price I pay at the register will differ from what is displayed on the shelf. Labeling systems like this are great for the store, but only slightly help us as consumers.

Digital Wallet

Monday, January 28th, 2008

Overstuffed WalletToday my wallet is too thick, but does it need to be? I have cash, receipts, pictures, business cards, credit cards, ATM cards, insurance cards, store loyalty cards, and more stashed in there. I would love just to have a single card and a few photos, or even better everything in my cell phone. This expectation is not a stretch considering that this service is already mostly available in Japan via O-saifu Keitai (Mobile Wallet).

Today’s Digital Menagerie

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

Today’s camera is a bit more convenient now that it has gone digital, but it definitely has not taken full advantage of its digital potential. Ideally after taking a picture it would be possible to transfer the picture to a cell phone to send to those who posed for it. Makes it a convenient time to make sure all the addresses are available, and prevents one from having an excuse for forgetting to send the picture out.