Question by Geenaluz: What is your perspective in the future about televisions? The Good or the bad.
Answer by amp9C1 v2.0I would like to see CRT’s stick around for awhile, but by the end of the decade I wouldn’t doubt if all CRT production stopped. If/when Funai pulls the plug, that’ll be just about it. Mitsubishi called it quits way back in ’01, Philips/Magnavox has caved into Funai along with Sylvania and Emerson, Lucky-Goldstar/Zenith (LG) has called it quits, Sony has called it quits, Samsung has given up with its SlimFit CRT’s except in the Middle East and a few other places, Toshiba has given up, RCA seems to be phasing them out, Sanyo’s given up, Sharp gave up about two years ago, brands keep consolidating…
I would really like to see mass-production of SED or FED televisions. It’ll probably kill off the CRT for good, and probably accelerate the death of the plasma, and probably drag down LCD/LED as well. I’m a little more skeptical about OLED though. And DLP/LCoS projection will be gone sooner or later.
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As Apple and Samsung continue to wage war over patents, other tech companies like Google and Twitter are trying to make the patent landscape look a little bit less like a minefield. Microsoft is landing distinctly in the middle as it attempts to facilitate patent licensing by today launching a tracking tool that showcases its portfolio. The company implies that the new tool’s transparency will promote innovation, but the apparent intent is to make evident what patents the company owns so that individuals and other companies don’t get caught up by trolls alleging ownership over a certain patent.
Microsoft’s Chief Patent Council Bart Eppenauer told The Verge last year that the company monetizes its “currency of innovation” and research…
Last May, Incident Tech launched the gTar, a guitar with real strings that connected to a smartphone for some amazing sound processing. In the last few months, the founder, Idan Beck and his team have been busy preparing the 800 guitars he pre-sold on Kickstarter for shipment. Theirs is a story of creativity, cool, and the next generation in music technology. I spoke with Idan briefly about his Disrupt experience and how it felt to go from zero to shipping in less than a year.
TC: So how have things been going since Disrupt?
Idan: Things have been extremely busy and going well! Shortly after disrupt we shifted our primary focus on getting the gTar into mass production out in China. While we had already been going out there for nearly a year at that point, we spent the next 6 months hammering out every issue imaginable in production and learning about how much goes into making a thousand of something.
Now we’re starting to get units out of China in batches and fulfill them out to our amazingly supportive and patient Kickstarter backers. As a result of the last 6 months the product has really improved as well, with the end result and build quality far exceeding our expectations, since as a result of production we had to make certain changes to the design and architecture of the product, allowing us to make some significant improvements to the technology, along with the direct ability to upgrade the product in the future through iPhone delivered updates as well as hardware upgrades that our customers can install themselves.
TC: Tell us about the gTar before and after Disrupt. What did you think would happen before you got on stage?
Idan: Before Disrupt the gTar was still a relatively secret project being worked on in a closet-sized office in the flatland of Santa Clara. Before that I had originally started building the product in my garage in Cupertino and after that we were bouncing around for a while (even working for a month or so on an Icelandic ferry docked in the SF bay), but once we knew we were going to Disrupt everything sort of got official. Driven by the pressure to get things right, our team pulled together a really professional looking video and presentation in a matter of weeks while gearing up for what we felt was going to be a make it or break it point for the product.
TC: Were you scared? Excited? How does it feel to launch on stage? Idan: It’s definitely exciting and almost foreboding to get up on the stage, especially considering that you have such a short amount of time and it’s not really possible to leave much to chance. You’re somehow stuffing three years of work into such a short little moment, and hope that people understand implicitly what had to go on under the hood to make all of that happen.
It definitely has this sort of epic feel to it and we were definitely nervous as all hell. We spent every waking moment practicing and rehearsing every word and sentence we were going to say. Also, our dependence on our early stage prototype hardware was always something we were worried about. For example, the night before our presentation, Josh had to run out to get a Dremel tool that he somehow managed to find at the only open hardware store in Manhattan, so that I could make some internal tweaks for us to re-route some wires through the prototype to avoid any potential battery issues or audio problems that might pop up on stage.
That prototype is in a case now, and we’re planning to hang it up as a piece of art. It was very much a super early prototype (and the only fully functional gTar in existence at that point) and we easily had disassembled and reassembled it at least 10-20 times over those few days. In fact, we did it so much that we were ruining the screws holding on the pick guard and by the last day we only had 3 left!
TC: How many did you pre-sell that day? Idan: We launched the project around 2PM or something and we hit our $ 100K Kickstarter goal in just over 11 hours so by the end of the day we had pre-sold north of 200 gTars. The project ended up raising over $ 350k with about 850 people pledging to get a gTar.
TC: Why didn’t you play any really smoking hot-reggae jams on stage? Like “Stir It Up?” To be honest I think we could have chosen a better set of songs for our demos, but we were also playing it a little safe as well since we wanted to choose a song that I could play well enough knowing that I’d probably freeze up on stage. I think you can probably see my leg shaking if you look carefully enough in the video of the first presentation. We actually got a lot of feedback on that demo, so for the second presentation we did change up the songs around, which definitely was a good move.
TC: What’s next for gTar? Another version? Idan: We’re still working hard to get a gTar into the hands of everyone that backed us on Kickstarter, and are making solid progress and getting some great positive initial feedback. We’re eagerly awaiting another large shipment that’s on its way and on the ocean as we speak. We’ll be putting some serious effort into an Android dock and app, as well as Web browser based compatibility. We have done some light conceptualizations of how other instruments would work within our platform, but are mainly focused on the gTar for the moment.
We’re working hard to continuously make the gTar a better product, and as a result of some the design changes that went into effect during production, the units we are sending out today will also have the capability to benefit from those improvements as we roll them out. This includes continued improvement to our own app, such as a deeper exploration and development of the social aspects of the product.
A few weeks ago we launched an online store that is already generating pre-orders for the spring, and we’re developing retail distribution channels for the summer and holiday seasons. We’re also looking to expand our team over the next year as well!
TC: If Disrupt were an EBay account, what would you write in the review?
Idan: I would think that the comparison is much more likened to a summer fling. It’s a short, intense, and immensely rewarding experience that ends up surprisingly thrilling for everyone involved. At the end you might not end up being number one, but the experience will change you for the better.
Question by albert: Question about sending money to Philippines from USA? We need to know the cheapest best way to send funds to the philippines, We have used western union before but thats to much, is a bank to bank wire the cheapest way or is there other ways we don’t know about? I have seen on Philippine tv Xoom.com but said sight was under maintenance for now,we have been blessed for years sending to family here whom had a bank there and was just the cost of a 49 cent stamp, but they have emptied their funds I guess so we are back to sending the hard way. Thanks for the ideas people need advice.
Answer by Petosmoneygram, wire transfer, paypal
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The visiting family members have left, the Christmas tree is out on the curb and the New Year’s Eve party confetti is all vacuumed up. If only sharing your holiday photos were as easy to manage.
After watching friends and relatives struggle to navigate the complications of photo sharing using Facebook, Apple’s Photo Streams and Google’s social network, Google+, I’m here to help. In this column, I’ve organized tips and tricks that might surprise even the most share-happy shutterbugs, and will serve as a helpful guide for people who want to feel more in control and comfortable when sharing photos. While there are numerous alternative methods for photo sharing, including thousands of apps, I zeroed in on Facebook, Photo Streams and Google+.
People can share albums from Google+ with anyone, including people who don’t use the network, by generating a link that can be sent to others.Sharing With Friends Who Don’t Use the Network
Here’s an all-too-familiar scenario: You spend hours uploading, editing, captioning and “tagging” (identifying people by name) photos to create an album on Facebook, only to be asked by the one person who doesn’t use it if she can see the album. If you’re like most people, you say you’ll send the photos along, eventually. Then you change the subject to something more pleasant, like the cavity you recently had filled.
Unbeknownst to many users, Facebook, Google and Apple enable sharing with people who don’t use their services. Not surprisingly, these out-of-network sharing options are buried in an effort to force people into using the services. So where are they?
In Facebook, after creating an album, open the page that shows the album’s title and contents, select the small gear icon to the right of the album title and click “Share Album.” A Web link to the album will appear that you can copy and send to anyone, even if they don’t use Facebook or aren’t one of your Facebook Friends.
Facebook’s iOS and Android apps enable uploading multiple photos to existing albums, using the icon, above, or new albums.
Any Apple device running the company’s newest operating system, iOS 6, can create and view Shared Photo Streams. These are collections of photos on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch that you can share with friends via email. If your friends also use iOS devices, they can use them to view the Shared Photo Stream.
People who want to see these photos but don’t have an Apple device can still do so, as long as the album creator moves a slider labeled “Public Website” to the “on” position. This public album link is included in an email invitation, but it’s easily overlooked because it appears below a much larger blue button labeled “View this Photo Stream,” which only works on iOS devices. Be sure to click on the text at the very bottom of the email invitation that says, “You can also view this photo stream on the web.”
When people use Google+ to share photos, they’re immediately encouraged to click once and share to “Circles,” which are select groups of people within Google+. But they can also share with friends outside the network by adding their email addresses into the line that says, “Add names, Circles, or email addresses.” This enables sharing with friends who don’t use Google+ or don’t have Gmail accounts.
A Shared Photo Stream as seen through a public album link.
Entire albums can be shared outside of Google+: Within Albums, select one and click the “More” drop-down menu to find “Share album via link.”Sync Mobile Photos as You Go
Facebook, iCloud and Google+ allow people to wirelessly synchronize their mobile photos with their accounts, saving them privately until they’re ready to be shared.
To set this up on Facebook, you can use the mobile app or the website. From the app, select Photos on the left-side panel, then Sync at the bottom right of the screen. Tap the gear in the top right to set whether your phone will sync over Wi-Fi or cellular or just over Wi-Fi. From Facebook.com, open your Timeline, select Photos, “Synced From Phone” at the top, then follow instructions to share images. People can sync up to two gigabytes of images.
Anyone who buys an Apple or Android device is prompted during setup to turn on Photo Stream or Instant Upload, as the companies call their respective offerings. Shared Photo Streams don’t count against your overall iCloud storage, nor do they work against your count of photos in Photo Stream, which syncs the last 1,000 images across your iOS devices. Google+ stores its synchronized mobile photos under a section called Instant Upload; these remain private until shared with others. Google+ has an overall limit of 5 gigabytes, but standard-sized photos like those captured on smartphones don’t count against this limit.Other Helpful Tips
Facebook Camera is the free app that first made it possible for people to upload multiple photos to Facebook via iOS. Now, the main Facebook app also enables uploading multiple photos on Android or iOS, and images can be added to new or existing albums by selecting “New” or tapping a small album icon. Facebook also makes it simpler to post several photos at once in a status update using your Web browser: Users can now click a small “+” icon that appears beside uploaded photos to add more. Also, it’s now possible to drag and drop images right into the status box for sharing with Facebook friends.
If you’re ready to share your Apple Photo Stream with a broader network of friends, these can be uploaded to Twitter or Facebook, but the steps are practically hidden from view. Do this by opening Photo Stream and clicking the small, blue arrow to the right of the Stream you want to share. Make sure it has a link associated with it by switching the Public Website slider to “on,” then hit “Share Link” and select your preferred social network destination. Apple’s own message system, iMessage, is also a sharing option here.
Photo sharing should be more intuitive, and Facebook, Apple and Google are obviously still figuring out the best ways to pack multiple features into their websites and mobile apps. With any luck, your friends and family will have an easier time viewing your photos than you did sharing them.
Email Katie at Katie.Boehret@wsj.comRelated Posts:
Google and LG’s Nexus 4 has been such a coveted item this past holiday season, that it’s been in and out of stock since its release in mid-November. Because Google doesn’t publicly comment on device sales, it’s been hard to understand exactly how much OEM partner LG produced for the device’s initial launch.
However, a little sleuthing by some Android enthusiasts and Nexus 4 owners suggests that LG produced about 400,000 devices going into the end of last year.
How did they do it? They’ve taken the IMEI numbers of their phones and backtracked the production number of their devices using an LG mobile link that’s usually used for finding new firmware. An IMEI number, or International Mobile Station Equipment Identity number, is usually printed on the battery compartment of the inside of the phone. It can be used to prevent stolen phones from accessing a network.
If you take this link and put your IMEI number at the very end, this LG site will spit back out the IMEI followed by a long string of characters that looks something like this: “LGE960 ACAGBK 212KPHG188745 20121206 GLOBAL/GLOBAL N N”
If you break this string apart, you get: LGE960 = phone model A = ? CA = Country where the device was sold. (Others include ‘US’ for the U.S., ‘HK’ for Hong Kong, ‘AU’ for Australia and so on.) G = Storage (G = 16GB, 8 = 8GB) BK = Color 2 = ? 12 = Production Month (November) K = Production Country (Korea) PHG = ? 188745 = The line or production number, showing that phone was the 188,745th device made. 2012121206 = The production date in YYYYMMDD format
A number of Nexus 4 owners have been sharing and compiling the production numbers day by day (see below). It suggests that LG made about 70,000 devices in October, 90,000 in November and 210,000 in December. Google declined to comment on these numbers.
Still, they’re interesting for a couple reasons. It appears that Google and LG have been conservative with the Nexus 4 launch. LG has previously said that the Nexus 4 “had proven extremely popular, and as such retailers have been met with huge demand.” Google’s U.K. and Ireland managing director Dan Cobley likewise has said there have been communication problems on both ends with managing supply for the Nexus 4.
Keeping supplies tight have made the Nexus 4 debut a world apart from the launch of the original HTC-manufactured Nexus One back in 2010.
DEC 165000 264000 265133 14-th ADEUBK GERMANY 266133 15-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 267133 15-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 268133 15-th ADEUBK GERMANY 269133 15-th ADEUBK GERMANY 270133 15-th ASWSBK SWS Switzerland (looks like around 500 units) 271133 16-th AISRBK Israel 272133 15-th ADEUBK Germany 273133 15-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 274133 15-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 275133 15-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 277133 17-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 278133 17-th AHKGBK Hong Kong 279133 16-th AMYSBK 280123 17-th AMYSBK 289000 18-th UK 300123 19-th ADEGBK 305112 19-th ACA8BK 306000 28-Oct (?) AUSGBK, 211KPPB306000 “csn” is also very different from the “surroundings” 306001 8-Oct AUSGBK 211KPHG306001 esnoutgodate=null >>Never shipped? 306009 4-th Dec AUSGBK 212KPHG306009 esnoutgodate=null 306010 19-th AUS8BK 212KPYR306010 esnoutgodate=null 306020 19-th AUS8BK esnoutgodate=null 314001 19-th AFRGBK 314002 19-th ADEGBK 314050 19-th ADEGBK 314123 19-th ADEGBK 315112 19-th ADE8BK 319123 20-th ADEGBK 320123 20-th ADEGBK 321123 20-th AAUGBK 325112 20-th AUSGBK 330123 20-th AUSGBK 340123 21-th ACAGBK 350123 22-th AUS8BK 360123 26-th AUSGBK 365123 27-th AUS8BK 370123 27-th AUSGBK 374110 28-th AUSGBK
Question by Words Of Wisdom: I need an idea about a microcontroller project? Something in the robotics domain. Simple but not too popular. I saw that the internet is full of line-follower robot and maze-solving robots. So I really don’t want the same very common project. So, any suggestions?
Answer by doug_donaghueHow about a robot that ‘searches’ for small, black pebbles on a white floor. When it ‘finds’ one, it picks it up and drops it into a container. A ‘house-cleaning’ robot.
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Question by : I want to know something about charging a samsung windows phone? i want to know if i can always use my samsung windows phone while charging. Because i always use it all the time…..nothing haplens if i use it while charging?
Answer by ToToUsing your phone while on the charger will do nothing to the phone. I use my phone all the time on the charger no issues
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Question by surfoz5: What are the best things about the new Sony walkman X series? If you have a sony walkman X series or have been on one, what did you like about it? and what did you think was interesting or clever?
Answer by LakeI haven’t had to chance to use it much, but the OLED screen is pretty impressive. Other than that, it’s more or less an iPod Touch and in the same price range. On the plus side, it comes with premium noise-cancelling headphones, which can be very pricey. It also comes with 100 free songs from Sony’s music store. That’s nearly a hundred dollar bonus in itself.
IDK if Best Buy has them in the store or if they’re going to. Check them out at SonyStyle.com and read reviews there.
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I was never good at math and I’m still not now. 5 x 5 = 30. Okay that time I actually got it right, normally I don’t though. And now researchers have discovered that anxiety about doing mathematics causes a brain response similar to one when experiencing bodily harm. DO YOU HEAR THAT, MS. McKINLEY? You were killing me the whole time!
“For someone who has math anxiety, the anticipation of doing math prompts a similar brain reaction as when they experience pain — say, burning one’s hand on a hot stove,” said Sian Beilock, professor of psychology at the University of Chicago and a leading expert on math anxiety.
Surprisingly, the researchers found it was the anticipation of having to do math, and not actually doing math itself, that looked like pain in the brain. “The brain activation does not happen during math performance, suggesting that it is not the math itself that hurts; rather the anticipation of math is painful…”
Listen: I find the anticipation of doing math and the actual DOING of math equally painful. To me it’s like having your head in a vice and slamming your fingers in a car door over and over and over. While on fire. And being eaten alive by tigers. No — ants. It’s like that, but way worse and much more painful.
Thanks to Essi, who’s brain has a similar response to doing ANY kind of work. Same here!