Reviews

  • Not Quite Smart, The Luminox ANU Chronograph Is At Least Quite Bright

    Not Quite Smart, The Luminox ANU Chronograph Is At Least Quite Bright

    This weekend’s watch review comes to us from Luminox, a manufacturer well-known for their amazingly bright luminescent hands and pips. Luminox uses small tubes of tritium coated with phosphor. As the tritium decays it excites the phosphor, allowing the tubes to glow for years without “charging” in sunlight. It’s a neat trick and it affords amazing readability in the dark. Read More

  • Yelp Hooks Up With Startups To Offer A Larger Selection Of E-Commerce Bookings

    Yelp Hooks Up With Startups To Offer A Larger Selection Of E-Commerce Bookings

    As part of its ongoing efforts to transform itself from a reviews site into an e-commerce platform, Yelp announced today that it has partnered with startup Vimbly to offer activities bookings on its site and apps. Other startups it will work with include GolfNow for golf outings; online florist BloomNation; Vagaro, which books spa treatments; and TableList, which Yelp says is its first… Read More

  • FTC Closes Its Yelp Investigation Without Taking Action

    FTC Closes Its Yelp Investigation Without Taking Action

    One of the biggest and most influential review platforms in the world, Yelp has constantly been hit with claims that it manipulates reviews so its advertisers get higher rankings. This led to an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission in early 2014 after 2,045 complaints were filed against the company. Now Yelp says the FTC has closed its investigation into Yelp’s business… Read More

  • The Blackberry Classic Is A Noble Throwback To The QWERTY Era

    The Blackberry Classic Is A Noble Throwback To The QWERTY Era

    It’s 2003. Outkast’s “Hey Ya” is playing on your Archos Jukebox as you take the train into work in the near dark. At your hip is strapped a Blackberry 7200, one of the first color smartphones in the world. Your belt buzzes – it’s an email from your boss. You tap out a response without thinking, your fingers sliding along the angled keys like a jackdaw nipping… Read More

  • The da Vinci 1.0 AiO Is The Future Of All-In-One 3D Printers

    The da Vinci 1.0 AiO Is The Future Of All-In-One 3D Printers

    As we enter the second half of this, the Decade of 3D Printing, we are coming to a crossroads. On one hand the Rebel open source RepRap crowd are clamoring to keep 3D printing free, man, while the Imperial forces of 3D Systems and Stratasys – along with countless imitators all attempting to commercialize 3D printing and create the first popular home printer – are locked in a race… Read More

  • The Galaxy Note Edge Is A True Cutting-Edge Phablet

    The Galaxy Note Edge Is A True Cutting-Edge Phablet

    Samsung either plays it entirely safe – see most of the Galaxy Tab line – or entirely gonzo. Whether it’s the chimerical Galaxy K Zoom or their curved TV, it’s as if the company has one floor dedicated to making vanilla ice cream an another dedicated to making unicorn-tear-flavored gelato. And it’s on that latter floor that the Galaxy Note Edge was born. First… Read More

  • William Gibson’s ‘The Peripheral’ Is A Wild Ride Into The Future

    William Gibson’s ‘The Peripheral’ Is A Wild Ride Into The Future

    If any writer defined our collective nerd future and made computing cool it was William Gibson. As accessible as Raymond Carver and imaginatively dark as Philip Pullman, Gibson made it easy to dip into a continuum that every future IT department drone could understand. Rather than giving us flying cars and robo-dragons, Gibson pulled all of our current technologies out like candy… Read More

  • Amazon’s Fire HD 7 Is A Low-Priced Tablet For The Avid Reader

    Amazon’s Fire HD 7 Is A Low-Priced Tablet For The Avid Reader

    The Fire HD 7 is the latest in the long-running Fire line of LCD ereaders. Amazon has taken great pains to make this new model lighter, smaller, and more robust and, for my money, I’d say that this $139 reader is the best dedicated reader on the market, barring the e-ink Kindle line. Let’s look under the hood. Basics 7 inch 216 ppi 1280×800 pixel display 11.9 ounces Up to… Read More

  • For Those About To Rock The Jamstik, We Salute You

    For Those About To Rock The Jamstik, We Salute You

    I love stringed MIDI instruments. After messing with the gTar two years ago I’ve been looking for the perfect portable MIDI device that allows me to meld my inability to play keyboards with my sub-par guitar skills. Perhaps I’ve finally found my perfect match. We first met the Jamstik last year and I’ve been waiting to get my hands on a unit since. The team is finally… Read More

  • Motorola’s Moto X Should Be Your Next Android Phone

    Motorola’s Moto X Should Be Your Next Android Phone

    As we enter the era of the ubiquitous Big Phone, it’s refreshing to hold something like the slim and light second-generation Moto X. Priced at $500 unlocked and about $99 with a contract, this 5.2-inch phone with 1080p OLED screen and Gorilla Glass front is a step beyond the latest from LG and, while not as feature-rich as the Samsung Galaxy S5, well worth a look as an upgrade to… Read More

  • The Das Keyboard 4 Is The Hacker’s Choice

    The Das Keyboard 4 Is The Hacker’s Choice

    One of the defining images of the cyberpunk movement of the 1980s and 90s was William Gibson’s cyberspace decks. Although never explicitly described, they seemed to be something like a self-contained keyboard with electrode leads hanging off and a sometimes unmarked keyboard that hackers used to jack into the Matrix. I remember running around in my parents’ basement with my… Read More

  • This Monstrous Linksys WRT1900AC Router Is For Folks With A Real Appetite For Networking

    This Monstrous Linksys WRT1900AC Router Is For Folks With A Real Appetite For Networking

    There are wireless routers, and then there are wireless routers with a 1.2GHz dual-core Marvel Armada SoC processor and 256MB RAM that supports USB 3.0 drive transfer speeds and has four massive antennae that can blow wireless connectivity through almost any environment. The $250 Linksys WRT1900AC (which you can win here) is the latter. So what’s so special about this massive wireless… Read More

  • The Ultra-Dense Seagate Fast 4TB Portable Drive Is A Speedy Hunk Of Storage

    The Ultra-Dense Seagate Fast 4TB Portable Drive Is A Speedy Hunk Of Storage

    With the rise of the cloud, external hard drives have nearly gone the way of the dodo. After all, who needs a fiddly, easily broken hard drive in an era of always on, high-speed Internet. But sometimes you want a super-dense, high-speed hard drive for backups and storage and the $299 Seagate Fast HDD USB 3.0 4TB fits the bill. Read More

  • Garmin’s Vivofit Has Some Neat Features, But How Does It Compare To Other Wearables?

    Garmin’s Vivofit Has Some Neat Features, But How Does It Compare To Other Wearables?

    Garmin had the world by the tail. With their amazing in-car GPS devices and great sports watches, it looked like things could only go up. Until every phone on the market got a GPS chip and Google mapped the world. Now, Garmin has to play catch-up and they’re coming after one of the most popular wearables to date – the Fitbit. Their new band, called the Vivofit, looks like a… Read More

  • YC-Backed Orankl Gives Small Vendors The Same Tools As Amazon

    YC-Backed Orankl Gives Small Vendors The Same Tools As Amazon

    Customer reviews are the backbone of sites like Amazon (where they have turned into a platform for some of the most inspired comedic writing on the Internet), but it can be difficult for smaller retailers to convince shoppers to leave feedback. Orankl, a Y Combinator-backed startup, wants to give all e-commerce businesses the same tools as their larger rivals. Read More

  • Building On The Solidoodle 4, A Sub-$1,000 3D Printer With Solid Hardware But Sad Software

    Building On The Solidoodle 4, A Sub-$1,000 3D Printer With Solid Hardware But Sad Software

    3D printer prices are falling steadily, something that shouldn’t surprise anyone familiar with the vagaries of the electronics market. What cost a few thousand last year is now hovering at less than a grand while knock-offs are going for around $500 or less, depending on the model. It’s a great time to be a 3D printing hobbyist. But are these new printers worth picking… Read More

  • Minecraft, The Book

    Minecraft, The Book

    If you read one book this year about green pixelated monsters that were originally supposed to be malformed pigs, make it Minecraft by Daniel Goldberg and Linus Larsson. This slim volume by two Swedish tech journalists tracks the creation of Minecraft from the bedroom of a quiet, driven programmer named Markus Persson to the ballroom of the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas where thousands… Read More

  • Hands On With The Afinia H-Series 3D Printer, A Rugged Printing Rig For Home And School

    Hands On With The Afinia H-Series 3D Printer, A Rugged Printing Rig For Home And School

    In the kennel of 3D printers, I’d equate the oddly-shaped and homegrown RepRap printers to lovable mutts. The Makerbot is a golden retriever, ready to please. And the $1,599 Afinia H-Series is a solid, scrappy Jack Russell terrier, willing to get dirty and able to take on all comers. The H-Series looks like it was built by the same industrial design team that built the original… Read More

  • The Makerbot Digitizer Is Nearly Magic

    The Makerbot Digitizer Is Nearly Magic

    When I was a kid I was amazed by advances technology. I went to a friend’s house when I was in fifth grade and his father had a PC – an IBM PC, I believe – with a built in hard drive. We loaded King’s Quest and Colossal Cavern in seconds and he even had a menu of apps that you could select by tapping a key. As a kid who grew up with tapes and later floppy disks, this… Read More

  • Trainspotting: Hands On With The Mondaine Retro Automatic Watch

    Trainspotting: Hands On With The Mondaine Retro Automatic Watch

    This weekend’s watch review is focused on the Mondaine Automatic, an older model that hovers right about the $500 price point – a rare departure into the bargain section for this series. The model I tested is unique for a few reasons although, in the end, this watch is less about the feature set and more about the iconic design. Read More

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