Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New wheelchair designed to encourage seated movement

New wheelchair designed to encourage seated movement: Wheelchair prototype

If you sit behind a desk in an office all day then you'll be all too aware of the effects from not changing your position regularly. Wheelchair users spend the majority of their day seated, with long periods in the same position, resulting in severe pain, deformities, and even bedsores. Roger Hochstrasser, founder of r going, plans to improve the situation with a new adjustable wheelchair.

Hochstrasser has teamed up with Swiss research group Empa, and the pair have developed an ergonomic seat for electric wheelchairs which helps users move around frequently. The wheelchair, which is undergoing testing, consists of ribs and movable joints inside an articulated backrest that match the contours of a user's body. The unique backrest, powered...

Continue reading…

Friday, January 13, 2012

The iPen May Be The iPad Stylus You’ve Been Looking For

The iPen May Be The iPad Stylus You’ve Been Looking For

Using a stylus with your iPad to write or draw can be hit or miss. You may get more precision with your stylus than with your finger, but it still doesn’t compare to an actual pen-on-paper experience. Many note-taking and drawing apps lack wrist support, meaning you need to have your hand hover over your iPad while drawing or writing. The apps that do have wrist support are still buggy sometimes and allow unwanted input from your wrist. If you’re still searching for a stylus that suits your needs, the Cregle iPen may be just what you’re looking for.

“iPen is the first active digitizer stylus that allows you to write with precision directly on the iPad. Unlike the passive digitizer used in the typical iPad stylus, iPen writes like a real pen with accurate positioning and palm rejection features that passive products simply cannot achieve.

With the Cregle iPen’s active digitizer, the attached receiver picks up the iPen’s signal and its precise position as it hovers above the screen (whereas a passive stylus can be located only when the user touches the screen). This crucial advantage allows iPen to actively transmit 60 samples per second to pinpoint the pen’s exact location.”

Every iPen comes with an external receiver that plugs into the iPad’s charge/sync port. The receiver then gathers ultrasonic and infrared information from the iPen to pinpoint it’s location on the iPad. The iPen currently supports a handful of great note-taking apps, such as NotesPlus and GhostWriter Notes, and is aiming to be compatible with many more apps by February.

Cregle Inc. has already surpassed their $35,000 goal by receiving over $162,000 in pledges. Head over to Kickstarter to make a pledge if you’re interested as iPens are expected to ship this month.

Plantronics Clarity Fortissimo speakerphone hands-on (video)

Music aficionados will recognize the term "fortissimo." It's used to signify belting out the tunes as loud as humanly possible, which is exactly what Clarity is hoping to achieve with its speakerphone that uses the name. The Clarity Fortissimo is geared toward those who are mobility-challenged, offering a massively loud 95dB speaker, huge buttons, voice activation, Bluetooth and DECT connectivity, and a large touchscreen display. The Fortissimo offers Plantronics' Vocalyst technology, which has the ability to push emails, messages and even social network updates. It also has a dedicated button that automatically dials Clarity's support center, where a rep can then program the phone remotely for you. Expect to see the Fortissimo available this spring -- we were quoted April / May -- and will retail for $500. We have images and video after the break.

Continue reading Plantronics Clarity Fortissimo speakerphone hands-on (video)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Panasonic unveils new line of Bluetooth-enabled hearing aids

Panasonic unveils new line of Bluetooth-enabled hearing aids:

Panasonic R1-W

Hearing aids aren't the sexiest gadgets on Earth, but Panasonic has done some interesting stuff with its R1-W series of in-ear audio-boosters. For one, they come packing Bluetooth for directly tethering to a mobile or landline phone using the Hearing Hub and have an add-on audio transmitter than can beam content from a TV or other source directly to the aids. The Hearing Hub also has a voice memo feature so that wearers can take notes for themselves and play them back in an easy to hear format. All that and it manages a pretty impressive 300 hours on a single set of batteries. Check out the complete PR after the break.

Continue reading Panasonic unveils new line of Bluetooth-enabled hearing aids