Tag Archives: electronics

Nov 4th, 2012: Trends in Electronics and Urban Planning

Hey trendwatchers! This time, Nora Young talks about PredictGaze, software that can be incorporated into electronics such as TVs. It tracks your eyes so that you can, for instance, stop the TV when you walk out of the room. Also, marketers could use its facial recognition capability to see how you’re reacting to what you watch (via Digital Trends) It brings together several trends: facial recognition technology, ‘relationships’ with our technologies, and non-touch interfaces.

Meanwhile, Cathi Bond talks about [Y/N] Design Studio’s concept plan for London’s old canal system: turn it into lanes for swimming! (Via Gizmag) The charmingly wacky idea reminds Nora and Cathi that here in Toronto, we often lose sight of our history, in spite of attempts like the Distillery District. Nora herself just discovered “The Ward“. Who knew?

Trends From CES: Internet TV and Robots Galore

In this trendwatching podcast, Nora Young and Cathi Bond survey the news from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.  There was lots of buzz about Internet TV.  Technology Review has a great round-up of on demand video and the limits of Internet TV, at least so far.  Internet TVs are also expected to have apps available.  That reminded Nora that Twitter is looking to have a presence on many more devices, and platforms, including TVs (via Read Write Web).  Will all that video delivered via the Internet actually cost too much if it exceeds your bandwidth cap?  Michael Geist points to this study that Canadians who have started using Netflix may have “sticker shock”.

Meanwhile, Cathi Bond looks at another cool thing from CES:  the latest version of Pleo, the robotic dinosaur pet!  Nora is intrigued by the idea of toys and devices with downloadable upgrades, rather than tossing something in the landfill.  What do you think?  Would you have a robotic pet?  What about the lessons of Trilogy of Terror!

Trends: A Retro Special

In this podcast, Cathi Bond has two very cool retro-meets-digital techs. First is the wonderful Tableau, by designer John Kestner, a nightstand that can turn the digital physical, and vice versa. Pop a physical image into the desktop and it scans it, or it will print out a digital image. Cathi and Nora yap about the merits of digital vs. analogue. (Via Gizmodo) Cathi also has an iPhone dock shaped like an old timey phone, for when you’re at home. (Via Gizmag) What do you think the appeal is of the retro phone trend we keep seeing?

Meanwhile, Nora Young says get the party started with a cool speaker setup from TDK that looks like a sleek version of a boom box (via Coolhunting)

What do you think is fueling the retro electronics trend?

Trends: Extending Brands Into Apps and the Electronic Hearth

In this trendwatching podcast, Nora Young talks about Muji extending its brand into iPhone apps (via Core77). Yes, who needs another calendar app, but is this the future of marketing? The sketch app reminds Cathi of the Apple Newton. What do you use to sketch out ideas? Cathi loves her Moleskine and Nora’s now hooked on her Muji paper notebook. Nora talked about the advantages of paper on a recent episode of Spark.

Meanwhile, Cathi Bond talks about Jason Eppink’s electronic campfire (via PSFK).  Cathi wonders why we don’t just have more real campfires, but Nora thinks it’s cool. What do you think?

Trends in Electronics and Global Finance

In this trendwatching podcast, Cathi Bond mentions the movie Crash: the David Cronenberg one, not the Paul Haggis one.  In the “one more damn thing to worry about” file, Nora Young discusses the news that we have done such a poor job of recycling the metals used for electronics such as cell phones, that we’re at risk of running out of them (via New Scientist).

Meanwhile, Cathi mentions this wacky trend: vending machines for gold!

Trends: Hands Free Cellies and Do-It-Yourself Electronics

In this trendwatching podcast, Cathi Bond mentions the Sanwa and US Special Forces ‘throat mics’, so you can talk on your cellphone without wearing one of those clunky Bluetooth thingies on your ear. (via Engadget).

Meanwhile, Nora Young mentions ifixit, a new site with lots of video and a forum to help you fix (or just monkey with) your (mostly Mac) electronic gadgets. (via Core77)

Finally, Cathi talks briefly about Google Talk.  Would you use it? Is it a potential Skype-killer?

E-Ink Returns and India Arrives

Welcome back to a new season of our trendwatching podcast, thesniffer! This time, Cathi Bond talks about a couple of ‘e-ink’ stories.  First, Esquire magazine’s October issue features an e-ink cover with an ad that moves! (via physorg) e-ink is also behind Plastic Logic, a new e-reader designed for reading documents for business (via Gizmag).  We also wanted to know if you use a portable electronic reader.  Let us know what it’s like.

Meanwhile, Nora Young talks about a couple of developments with Indian industrial giant, Tata.  First, protesters have suspended protests at the West Bengal site of the new Tata Nano factory. The government has agreed to make sure farmers are properly compensated for land that was taken over to make way for the factory, it appears by returning land or giving back nearby land.  As well, Nora and Cathi remark on the fact that Tata also now owns the high end of the car market, having bought up Land Rover and Jaguar from Ford in the Spring. What an interesting time for Indian development.  How far will the Nano go?