The blog is dead!!! We plan to resurrect it, sometime, but I don’t know if that’s going to happen anytime soon. Maybe in the meantime you could watch this video about how to make a robot out of a toothbrush:
No, this is not some techy thing from an actual different country, as the title might lead you to believe…. it’s Shana’s first ever Tech Tuesday post! Don’t worry though, pigs are not flying, this is as much “alternative transportation” related as it is techy.
Anyway, check it out: this morning, Autoweek (yeah, I definitely don’t read Autoweek, it was forwarded to me) featured the following headline:
… with a gallery full of pictures, including this one:
You know, a lot of us have been saying for a long time that you don’t need a whole big, gas guzzling car to go five blocks up the road and pick up a bag of groceries – cars are, as the article states, “overengineered” for a lot of everyday situations. This baby can reach speeds up to 35mph and lasts for about 35 miles between charges… yep, that’ll get you to the g-store and back, with a lot less wasted along the way.
Anyway, they’re apparently not actually legal to drive on either streets or sidewalks at this point… which leaves us with… golf courses? Just so long as it’s not bike lanes. Anyway, they’re not commercially available yet, we’ve got lots of time to iron out logistics.
Also, on totally unrelated note, my birthday’s in September, so… if you haven’t decided what you’re getting me yet…
Watching the above video brings back fond memories of a computer game I used to play in elementary school called “The Incredible Machine.” In those days, it represented the best of consumer-class computer physics simulations. I didn’t have this game for my 286 IBM Compatible at home. Instead, my experiences with it were confined to those all too infrequent moments at school when I had a chance to use our classroom’s one computer workstation–a cutting-edge Macintosh LC.
To put all things in perspective a bit here, we’re talking about a machine that’s running at about 1/40 the processing power of the cellphone in your pocket, and yet the Macintosh LC represented the pinnacle of computer hardware in my life at that time. Of course, I was running at about 2/5 the life experience of what I have today. All that to say, “The Incredible Machine” instantly became the highlight of my day whenever I was allowed to play it. Ahh, those were the days…
While waxing nostalgic, I decided to see if there was perhaps a way to relive some of that childhood magic — a quick googling of “The Incredible Machine” seemed to present only false hope as I discovered a 2007 remake of the game in one click and learned of it’s mid-development cancellation in the next. Bummer.
Not being one to give up after a single googling, I persisted …a virtue that, for me, hasn’t been very rewarding lately (without getting too far off topic, it should suffice to say, I’ve spent far too much time stuck in the infinite regress of our natural gas companies arcane automated telephone system lately). Of course, this being such a trivial endeavor, I met with success! I’m pleased to be able to share with you, that the original “The Incredible Machine” game is indeed going to be re-released after all! … as a cellphone game!
I wonder if it will run 40 times faster….
Let’s get straight to the point.
We just made a new technology purchase:
After MANY hours of research, we landed on the camera you see above: the Canon Vixia HG-20. It’s just about the best consumer class full HD camcorder available on the current market. This thing has a small army of features that should impress even the snobbiest of video aficionados. Aside from the ability to shoot in full and glorious 1920×1080 HD, it can do so in any number of different modes, including 24p, 30p and 60i — there’s also and optional “cinemode” for rich mid-tones and a more cinematic feel. Apparently while there’s no explicit macro mode, this camera nonetheless has an natural ability to take breath-taking macro footage. It’s amazing Optical Image Stabilization feature utilizes some new technology and manages to work miracles making the shakiest of shots look like it they were taken from a tripod. From a tech geek perspective, the number one thing that I like about this camera is that it’s implementation AVCHD (the controversional, compressed HD video format) can record at 24Mbit/s instead of the standard 13 Mbit/s. That’s a huge quality gain. Without getting into too many more details, let the following video suffice as evidence of the camera’s solid performance and quality.
Yes, the Canon Vixia HG-20 can make even a stupid video of a squirrel look impressive.