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Let a Robot Clean Your Floors While You Pack For Your Trip

February 24, 2016 by  

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The truth is, I’m not new to robots. I was introduced to early functional robots in the early nineties, consulted for a few products over the years, including Keecker’s Smart Connected Robot and Willow Garage, whose PR2 robot can not only fetch a beer and knows how to dance as well. And, this and last year’s CES demoed a ton of robots, for a myriad of things ranging from helping the handicapped and flying drones to more functional uses like cleaning your house. Ahhh yes, what woman doesn’t love a little help to get a sparkling clean house? Having grown up with a conventional oh so English grandmother, we used to get on our hands and knees and scrub floors before guests would arrive — a mop simply wasn’t enough for some reason! Today, I have less time than ever to clean the house, especially with so much travel on the schedule. Just because I love to travel and travel often, it doesn’t mean I don’t want my house to be dust free — in fact, I’d argue that a product like iRobot’s Roomba Vacuum Cleaning Robot (above) is a…

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5 Travel Apps to Bring You Into Genuine Local Experiences

February 24, 2016 by  

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Today, there is no shortage of travel apps that can help you organize your trip. That being said, it can be difficult to sift through the dominant generic information to find suggestions for local, ethical and authentic travel experiences. Every location has its unique charms, but that uniqueness can get lost in the mass of information. That’s where the following apps come in to simply your travel planning. authentic travel Image courtesy of eva101 via Spotted by Locals.

1. Spotted by Locals

Who better to tell you how to explore a place than the people who actually live there? Spotted by Locals features easy-to-follow travel advice for all kinds of cities, compiled by locals. Use this app to find places you wouldn’t hear about otherwise, recommended by people who really know their stuff. Image courtesy of oneinchpunch via Shutterstock. Image courtesy of oneinchpunch via Shutterstock.

2. Grouper

Any travel guide can send you to a well-known restaurant or a new bar. And while there’s certainly nothing wrong with that, Grouper can offer you a more personalized dining, partying or bar-hopping experience. The app links you up with locals or…

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TEDxBerkeley 2016 Looks to Solutions to World’s Imperfections on Feb 6

January 26, 2016 by  

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From innovative surgery and extraterrestrial intelligence to reporting from war zones and Grammy-Award winning music, this year’s theme for TEDxBerkeley 2016 – Finding X, which will be held at Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley CA on February 6, will look to solutions to our world’s imperfections. Sixteen riveting speakers will address how we identify these problems and make sense of them in the larger systems where they belong. Whether it be voyaging into uncharted technological or scientific territory, reconciling our diverse perspectives of the human condition, or unearthing the parts of ourselves that give our lives direction and meaning, we all hope to make an impact on this world by Finding X. Now in its 7th year, this prestigious TEDx event will bring together thought leaders, visionaries, innovators and 54 performers who will enlighten and inspire more than 2,000 attendees across core disciplines impacting the world, from medicine and education to technology and diversity. TEDxBerkeley strives to curate an outstanding group of inventive and provocative speakers who can shift global conversations in a way that makes the world a better place, central and core to TED’s mission. The goal is to get us all to re-think

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Harman’s AKG N60NC Noise-Cancelling On-Ear Headphones for Travelers….

January 13, 2016 by  

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We’re fans of both AKG and JBL headphones by Harman and were excited about their latest – the Everest Elite 700, which we included in our annual Holiday Gift Guide round-up this past year.  We thought we’d also look at the AKG N60NC headphones since they are noise-cancelling on-ear headphones designed with travel in mind. The AKG N60NC headphones deliver AKG superior sound while also utilizing best in class active noise cancelling to minimize the disruptive sounds encountered on everything from planes to trains. The other fabulous feature for travelers are their 30 hours of battery life, a godsend for those long flights and layovers. And, apparently when immersing yourself in your music for long stints, the N60NC can still be used in passive mode after the battery dies out. Accented with premium material such as aluminum, memory foam and leather, it is also fairly lightweight as well, another great feature for avid travelers. In addition, these premium headphones come with a 3D-Axis folding mechanism, a fully-accessorized travel package, a one button universal remote/mic cable and a USB charging cable.
The headphones reduce ambient noise especially when travelling to create


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Lens Gear Review: Sigma 35 mm DG HSM Art

December 26, 2015 by  

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The Sigma 35 mm f 1/4 lens is the archetypical telephoto lens that is widely used on Safari, to something a little more, well, little. In the wilderness, it’s not all about the tight close-ups of eyes, or the head-shots of beautiful big cats. Sometimes we need to take the whole landscape into consideration, or focus on the little things that cross our path. Variety is the spice of life, and today we are spicing things up with a review of the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art prime lens. Nick Kleer headed out into the bush with this lens to play. Amanda Ritchie: Being used to using the larger telephoto lenses for shooting wildlife photography, what was your first impression of the Sigma 35mm? Did you do anything differently as a result? Nick Kleer: I paired the Sigma 35mm for Canon with my Canon 7D Mark II . It has been interesting using a short lens as I have never shot with one before. It has forced me to use my imagination a little more and has resulted in a few shots that I would normally not take. AR: Being a smaller lens, how did it feel out in the testing conditions


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EMF Effects From Cell Phones, Wifi & More are REAL

November 16, 2015 by  

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Recently, I wrote about products that help protect us from harmful electromagnetic fields (EMFs) aimed towards our bodies.  Certainly many of you have heard that cell phones may be harmful when placed close to your head somewhere on a passing news report or morning talk show, but the segment is so short lived that you may pay attention for a moment or two, mention it to someone later and then move on with your daily lives. Unfortunately, the naysayer technologists will go to great lengths to prove that any report saying that they’re unsafe is unfounded and not reliable. Photo credit: www.boldognapot.hu and http://media.portland.indymedia.org/. And so it goes. It’s not unlike the absurd arguments that cigarette smokers had in the early days when negative data came out — after all, if you were a smoker at the time, you’d likely go to great lengths to prove that the literature isn’t legit just as my prolific technology user friends are doing today. One day this will change, but it will take time just as it took time for Austrian born Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis to prove that the higher rate of death for infants and mothers in upper…

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Protective Products That Reduce Harmful EMFs To Your Body

October 20, 2015 by  

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Let’s be honest, the use of wifi and other technology products are going up every day. Daily, I receive notifications on new connected devices that monitor everything from my sleep to alerting me when my toast is done. Some families have 4-6 mobile phones with wifi signals in one home at any given time and that’s not counting all the emissions coming from their laptops, external wifi devices, wifi-enabled printers, microwaves, Smartphones, iPads, smart meters and more – all this under one roof.  While any one of these devices within a safe range from your body may not be alarming alone, the problem is the compound interest effect of the volume of devices around us on a regular basis. If you live in an urban area, it’s impossible to ignore them — people are talking on their cell phones in trains and buses, at airports and while you’re waiting in line for a coffee. Wifi routers are in nearly every building in the modern world and often, there are dozens of them on one floor of a building alone, never mind the fact that the very same building may have a smart meter or several emitting harmful rays into your…

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Cruz Cell Phone Cases Tout Protection From Harmful EMF Effects

October 18, 2015 by  

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You’ve probably heard that cell phones may be harmful when placed close to your head somewhere on a passing news report or morning talk show, but the segment is so short lived that you may pay attention for a moment or two, mention it to someone later and then move on with your daily lives. The naysayer technologists will go to great lengths to prove that any report saying that they’re unsafe is unfounded and not reliable. In my circles, which is in the heart of Silicon Valley, I have these conversations all the time. The moment I bring up the issue of EMF issues for cell phones, the conversation always gets a little weird…..people suddenly start fidgeting and looking for any excuse at all to change the subject, as if I’m the party pooper aka the big elephant in the room they want to silence. After all, who wants to talk about the negative effect of cell phones when you know yourself that you just spent the last 5, 10, 15, 20, maybe 25 years using one, all without protective measures? Let’s face it – “it’s not a fun conversation.” Above is the case for the

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