This is a video from Rhett and Link (whose honest mobile home commercial is a classic that I watch bi-weekly) explaining the rules of ‘Risky Settlers, Knights and Allies of the Lords of Dominion of Earth, Pandemic Edition’. It’s a jocular take on the difficulty of learning the rules of a game you’ve never played before. Me? I’ve sworn off board games ever since I was dishonorably discharged from my post as Dungeon Master after I was caught hiding weighted dice in my wizard hat. Thank God they didn’t search my magic pouch.
Hit the jump for the video.Related Posts:
This video was uploaded from an Android phone.Related Posts:
I’ve had most of the week to wear the $ 129 Jawbone UP and I thought I’d offer a few impressions for those unsure which model pedometer to buy. I’m a Fitbit man myself because I’ve gotten used to moving the minuscule dongle from pocket to pocket and I have only lost one in my travels. But – and this is a big but – I could be convinced to move over to Jawbone if they fixed a few niggling problems.
The UP, if you’ll recall, is a bracelet that senses your movement. This can be used during the day to see how much you run around and during the evening to see how well you’re sleeping. You can also log your food intake and mood, thereby giving you a fairly good picture of your calorie I/O and general state of being.
It holds a about a week’s charge in a package about as big as a bangle bracelet and there’s a single button to switch from day to night mode. It’s clad in rubber and is waterproof. It also has a silent alarm that will wake you gently from your slumber and a slacker alert that buzzes during a certain interval to remind you to leave your nest of sloth and walk around a little.
What else is different about the new UP? Well, Jawbone completely redesigned the innards, ensuring that no water can get in and that the constant pressure of taking it off and putting it back on wouldn’t break the connectors, chips, or battery. The changes are almost entirely internal but ideally this one will be far more rugged than the previous version.
Now here’s the rub: unlike the $ 99 Fitbit One and other devices, you sync it by plugging it into your cellphone’s headphone jack. There’s a little cap that covers the jack (which will, at some point, inevitably fall off and be lost) and a USB dongle that you use to charge it with a laptop. You don’t really interact with the UP on a desktop, which works well enough, but I’d love a way to sync wirelessly. Presumably the size of this device – and it’s surprisingly tiny – prevents that from being an option, but it could be a dealbreaker for some. There is, sadly, no external indicator of steps walked so you’re mostly in the dark when it comes to ambulation.
For others, slipping the thing off, popping off the cap, and plugging into a phone isn’t that hard. You don’t have to do it every day (but you’ll want to) and the app is cool enough that you can forgive it some of its drawbacks.
But with so many other devices on the market, why this one? Well, simplicity is a factor. This doesn’t look like a nerd device. It could actually masquerade as a piece of jewelry, provided you’re into rubber. The UP is also quite accurate, matching the Fitbit One almost exactly each time I checked it. In other words, it works.
I also like the reminder feature, which works a bit better than Fitbit’s quiet calm. A buzz on my wrist helps me get up and walk around a bit, which is a great thing.
In the end which is better? I’m not sure. These things are constant reminders of our failure as biological organisms. I do enjoy the UP’s simplicity but the Fitbit, with its stair sensor and comprehensive online interface still keeps me coming back. I’ll wear them both – I’m a dork like that – but I suppose the rule of thumb is simple in this case: if you tend to lose tiny things a lot, buy the UP. Otherwise, weigh the merits – price being one – and see which features you’ll use the most. There is sadly no one clear winner, but the surfeit of choice is great for folks living the quantified life.Related Posts:
Astronomers believe they may have just spotted the furthest galaxy ever, a little cluster named MACS0647-JD (his parents must have really hated him), between the Big and Little Dippers. That’s right, like THE furthest one. What’s beyond it? The restaurant at the end of the galaxy? A wall? God?
Scientists combined data from the Hubble space telescope with NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope to make the discovery. MACS0647-JD would have existed about 13.3 billion years ago, or roughly 420 million years after the Big Bang. This would place it around 200 million years earlier than previous candidates for most distance object ever spotted.
The galaxy is small, appearing to be about 600 light-years across, or 250 times smaller than our Milky Way. Small, early galaxies are thought to have crashed into one another and combined over billions of years to form the enormous cosmic structure we see in the present-day universe.
Wouldn’t it be cool if we could like, just go there and KNOW what was going on? I want to live in a time when we can do that. That’s why I’ve decided to be cryogenically frozen this weekend while I’m still in mediocre health so they can bring me back when we have the technology to get off this rock. Hopefully it’s sooner than later though because I only have enough money to stay frozen till New Years.
Thanks to legendaryxatdx , who’s so legendary even the aliens living in MACS0647-JD have heard about his exploits.
Samsung is in the process of launching a new Samsung Galaxy Note II, but we’ve just received strong evidence the original may be even better. Courtesy of a Craigslist Toronto classified ad (via Twitter), take a look at this beauty of a pitch that tells you everything you need to know about Samsung’s original phablet. In the words of the original poster, “Fasten your seatbelts assholes”:Related Posts:
Question by princess: Do you think we will ever have to enforce the three laws of robotics? Do you think we will ever have to enforce the three laws of robotics like we enforce our laws for human beings???… and im in school so can u plz help me now….
Answer by Free Stuff in 2012It is possible. They are nearly universal as rules for a non-sentient servant.
The truth is though that modern computers require a huge amount of programming to accomplish a similar effect. This leads to lag time and mistakes (similar to how the human brain works).
In the books/movies there was an invention, the “Positronic Brain”, that allowed robots to be given the Laws, then allowed to learn from their application while always keeping the Laws as the foundation (like morals).
ADD: For an example of how simple morals get bogged down with details, check out the Robocop movies for a better example of how the human (positronic like) brain can be given simple morals (like commandments) then confused by the details of the law.
Add your own answer in the comments!Related Posts:
This is a small series of digital paintings by artist Justin Turrentine called ‘Happy Endings for Disney Villains’. It features (you’ll never guess!) illustrations of Disney villains if they’d come out on top and not had their plans foiled by much younger, more attractive princesses. I especially liked this one here, but I thought Ursula should probably have a side of mermaid tail on the table too. Or a human leg, depending on the state of Ariel’s transformation when she was killed. BONUS FUN FACT: I’ve actually tasted human before, and as recently as last week. “Picking and eating scabs doesn’t count.” Yes it does too!
Hit the jump for four more.
Note: Worthwhile higher-res version HERE.
This is the eXtreme Deep Field, a composite shot of all the galaxies in a teensy view of space, taken by the Hubble Space Telescope’s two primary cameras over the past decade. Look at all those galaxies! And, I hope you’re sitting down — they’re all in this amount of space!:
Everything in the main picture is contained in that little box next to the moon. It’s estimated the universe is ~13.7-billion years old, and the eXtreme Deep Field depicts galaxies as old as 13.2-billion. Another 0.5-billion and we could see God flipping the light switch on! But that’s not what I came to talk about, I came to talk about aliens. If there are that many galaxies in that small amount of space, there must be all kinds of aliens out there. Big ones, little ones, green ones, purple ones — I bet the universe has them all! And, fingers crossed, strip clubs for every kind. Excuse me alien, but is this a male or female club? “Our species is entirely asexual, human.” Hoho, so both kinda! How much for a private dance?
Hit the jump for a video of a simulated fly-through the eXtreme Deep Field. Get high and pretend you’re in a spaceship!
Denis Medri (of rockabilly/1950′s Batman and steampunk Spiderman characters fame) is back at it, this time with the cast of Star Wars reimagined as characters from a 1980′s high school movie. He did well. I especially liked Han, Chewie, C-3PO and R2. Oooh — and Obi Won and Yoda. And Lando. I pretty much liked them all except the bad guys. Boo on you, baddies! Anybody wanna smoke some reefer behind the gymnasium?
Hit the jump for the rest.
Despite early hiccups Apple’s latest OS X release was downloaded more than 3 million times during its first 4 days of availability. The $ 20 upgrade brings a host of new features to compatible Macs including Airplay Mirroring, Game Center, system-wide sharing, and beefed-up iCloud integration, which now syncs iWork documents, notes, and reminders.
While Apple doesn’t speculate the reason for the huge download numbers, several factors likely led to the quick adoption rate. First, Apple priced OS X 10.8 to move. At only $ 20 the new operating system is a rather good bargain even if it doesn’t boast a lot of new features. Apple also made upgrading to Mountain Lion rather easy, which also likely led to more users jumping onto the system.
Thanks to the Mac App Store, upgrading to OS X 10.8 is downright easy. Users simply buy the new OS as if it was another application. From there, the update downloads in the background and prompts users to restart the system when its ready to install. It’s as painless as a system update.
“Just a year after the incredibly successful introduction of Lion, customers have downloaded Mountain Lion over three million times in just four days, making it our most successful release ever,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing said in a released statement today.
Mountain Lion was released last Wednesday on the Mac App Store for just $ 19.99. Read our review here.Related Posts: