• Using captchas to digitize old, damaged books

    Those dumb captchas may actually serve a purpose now. A gentleman by the name of Luis von Ahn at Carnegie Mellon University (Biggs went there!) has devised a system whereby software-unreadable words are sent to captcha providers. Since the software is unable to discern what the words are, captchas then step in, and we humans get to identify them when logging into our favorite sites. As… Read More

  • New girls-only earphones unveiled in Japan

    Accessory maker Radius today unveiled [JP] new earphones specifically designed for girls. Two different models in 6 colors will be available on the Japanese market starting at the end of this month. The 6.4mm fiore Elegant (HP-WHF3) will cost $18, while the 10mm fiore Cute (HP-WHF11) will be priced at $27. The fiore Cute version is available in either red or purple.  The fore Elegant… Read More

  • FCC Greenlights First Android Phone (HTC Dream)

    The only thing holding back the launch of the first Android-powered phone, the HTC Dream, was approval from the Federal Communications Commission. That approval has now come through, and T-Mobile can launch the phone. The filing asks for a November 10 release date, but (as Matt Marshall at VentureBeat points out) T-Mobile could launch it earlier. This means that Android will be on track to… Read More

  • Canadian movie theaters rent screen time to gamers

    If you live in Canada, have 11 friends, and like to play Xbox 360, then you’ve got what appears to be a dyn-o-mite formula for what I’m about to tell you. As of last Friday, Cineplex Entertainment, which owns 29 theaters across Canada, started renting out screen time for playing Xbox 360. The theaters have a library of games, too, so you don’t have to worry if you don’t… Read More

  • Final Fantasy XIII demo to be two-plus hours long

    Remember this demo? Japan’s Famitsu magazine reports that the upcoming Final Fantasy XIII demo will be upwards of two hours in length. A two-hour demo, people! Who has that kind of time nowadays? Well, I do, but I don’t have a PS3, nor do I have any intention to get one, so… The demo, remember, comes with Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete (on Blu-ray, ergo the demo… Read More

  • Google Uses YouTube To Try To Rally Public Support For WiFi 2.0

    The fate of an important chunk of wireless spectrum in the U.S. is being decided by the FCC, and Google wants to rally public support for turning this spectrum over to unlicensed uses, just like we do today with WiFi. The spectrum in question is the “white spaces” in the analog TV broadcast signal that will no longer be needed once all TV broadcasters shift to digital signals. … Read More

  • ‘Subtle but noticeable’: Toshiba XD-E500 upconverting DVD player

    Toshiba may be out of the high definition disc war altogether (not that many people are participating anyway), but it knows there’s plenty of life left in plain ol’ DVD. To that end the company has been showing off its $150 XD-E500, an upconverting DVD player that’s supposed to, I don’t know, beat the pants off other upconverting players. The AP uses the phrase… Read More

  • Aiming your startup at the US – without leaving the UK

    Four guys in Edinburgh now run a site aimed entirely at the US. Even the UK section of the site appears under “International”. What have they learnt? The following is a guest post by Nigel Eccles, co-founder and CEO of Hubdub, the prediction trading game. Many start-ups in the UK face the challenge that their major market is the US. While Hubdub is based in Edinburgh, 75% of our… Read More

  • A 6X telescopic lens for the iPhone 3G's camera

    Brando, synonymous with weird nonsense, now has a telescopic lens for your iPhone 3G’s camera. The 6X zoom can takes photos like this—not bad, but not something I’d depend on 24/7. It is cheap, though, and for $20, you could well keep the thing in your pocket and whip it out when you spot, I don’t know, Bigfoot or something. Read More

  • Del.izzy Does What Del.icio.us Won't: Search The Full Text Of Your Bookmarks

    When you search your bookmarks on del.icio.us, all you are searching is the tags, titles, and descriptions. If you want to search the full text of the underlying bookmarked pages themselves, you have to go to Del.izzy, a site out of Melbourne, Australia that was hacked together in three days. Del.izzy takes each page that you’ve bookmarked and puts it through a Google custom search to… Read More

  • Samsung T919 en route to T-Mobile

    The Samsung T919 (or Tocco, or Roxy, or today’s name…) or will, in fact, be coming to America. Exactly when, or for how much, we don’t know yet, but rest assured it’s on the way. Look for it on T-Mobile. The touchscreen cellphone has a 5-megapixel camera, built-in GPS and e-mail support. A simple phone that just so happens to have a touchscreen then. via Boy Genius Report Read More

  • Redesigning For A Reason: Towards Better Conversion Rates

    Mint, an online personal finance site, has gotten a facelift. The new site sports a much cleaner design than the previous iteration, and appears to be focused on describing what Mint actually does rather than presenting pretty (but somewhat overwhelming) graphics. For now the improvements are mainly on the external portion of the site (for non-members), with the members’ portion… Read More

  • Jitterbit: An Open Source Project That Bridges Data Gaps

    Jitterbit, a service that helps companies bridge and integrate data from different sources, has released a new 2.0 version of its software along with a new pricing model that it hopes will make it more appealing to businesses and consumers alike. Jitterbit is an open source project that allows users to efficiently use and modify data from multiple sources that may not typically communicate… Read More

  • Review: Sprint KATANA Eclipse by Sanyo


    Also making its way into CG HQ is the Sprint Katana Eclipse from Sanyo. This too is a simple, yet effective flip phone. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s the tiny details that make this particular device stand out from the crowd. Said tiny details are the two light bars on the front flap that can be customized for contacts, messages, phone calls, etc. in one of 40 different variations… Read More

  • Review: Sprint MOTORAZR VE20 from Motorola


    Landing in the CG office is the latest flip phone from Motorola to hit Sprint, the Motorazr VE20. My first reaction to the VE20 is that it’s very thick, but that’s in comparison to the original RAZR line. The VE20 may be fatter, but it certainly has more features. The VE20 is equipped with a 2-megapixel camera capable of video recording. The camera loads up rather quickly once… Read More

  • CrunchGear Week in Review: In Buenos Aires Edition

    Ten Days of CrunchGear
    My day with Bigfoot
    This robot has a rat brain
    iPig: Not what you call Steve Jobs when he pinches your buttock
    Got 5 minutes and an old pair of sunglasses? DIY Terminator shades, baby
    Air and noise monitors to be placed throughout Buenos Aires Read More

  • Pouring Our Heart Into TechCrunch50

    TechCrunch50, where fifty new startups (give or take) will launch, is less than a month away. The conference team is fried after reviewing over 1,000 applications from companies preparing to launch. We’ve been interviewing these startups for weeks, often scheduling calls in the middle of the night because there just weren’t enough business hours to schedule everyone in. The NYTimes… Read More

  • I Don't Understand Y Combinator Hate

    The vast majority of entrepreneurs I’ve spoken with who’ve been funded by seed stage VC/incubator Y Combinator are happy that they took the investment. And the ones that applied but weren’t selected generally have nothing bad to say, either. So I continue to be surprised to see journalists write stories that suggest that the deal Y Combinator offers to entrepreneurs is… Read More

  • Yearbook Yourself For A Good Laugh

    Find a picture of yourself looking straight at the camera and then go to YearbookYourself for a good laugh. The site morphs your picture into a classic looks from 1950 – 2000. A few of the ones that it created for me are in the image to the right (and the middle left one is my new Facebook profile image). It’s free and ad supported. Full disclosure, I had that hair in the bottom… Read More

  • Review: Razer Piranha headset

    I’m new to the video review thing, so forgive me if the thing above is too long by half, which I’m pretty sure it is. I’ve included a traditional text review as well, in case you don’t want to look at my smirking video-face. Anyhoo, I’m reviewing Razer’s Piranha gaming headset. If you’re in the market for a headphones/microphone combo, this is a… Read More

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