These days, there isn’t much our iPhone camera can’t do – except feel like an actual phone. Despite years of steadily increasing resolution and image sensing technology, we’re still taking shots awkwardly with two hands, fumbling for the shutter button. Leave it to an avid photographer to design Shuttercase, a versatile iPhone case that solves that problem and more.
Most significantly for photographers of any experience, the Shuttercase moves the shutter button to the side – just like the classic 135 point-and-shoots. It further replicates that feel with the case itself, which supplies enough heft that you can grip it and shoot with one hand. It also packs an embedded stand, and – because long photo sessions can drain your phone like nothing else – a 3,000 mAh battery that will charge as you go. Now you’re set to unlock the full potential of your camera, whether that’s panoramic vacation shots or perfectly composed family photos.
2019 started off with a rather interesting tweet from Elon Musk. He was showing off the “Starship test flight rocket” from SpaceX. This thing evokes a strong bit of imagery that has been so deeply integrated into our culture through science fiction for so many years that it just feels… right.
Just look at that thing! Well, as you can imagine, seeing that beautiful piece of work inspired me to yank out some retro science fiction and look at the old illustrations. There are so many examples that you could just swap the test rocket into and they’d seem nearly untouched. The issue I’ve chosen for today’s Sci-Fi Sunday is one of these.
Publication: Analog Science Fact – Science Fiction
Issue: December 1962, Vol: LXXX, No. 4
Cover Art: Schoenherr for Blind Man’s Lantern
When I scan one of these, I’m always curious what the public was thinking and seeing about space. NASA has a convenient website where you can go and see details on major events. In December of 1962, the public was hearing about how Mariner 2 had flown by Venus, which was a pretty huge deal considering this was the very first time we had “conducted a planetary encounter”. Just picture that for a second. When someone was relaxing and reading this issue, we had not yet put a human on the moon. Read the rest
Knobs! Shiny candy-colored knobs! The last stand of skeuomorphism is smart light switches! Everyone loves knobs, but when you’re dealing with vintage equipment with a missing knob, the odds of replacing it are slim to none. That’s what happened to [Wesley Treat] when he picked up a vintage Philco tube tester. The tester looked great, but a single knob for a rotary switch was missing. What to do? Clone some knobs! You only need some resin and a little bit of silicone.
The process of copying little bits of plastic or bakelite is fairly standard and well-tread territory. Go to …read more
Despite a lot of advances in battery technology, lead acid batteries are still used in many applications due to cost and their ability to provide a lot of surge current. But they don’t last forever. However, [AvE] shows that in some cases a failed battery can be restored with — of all things — epsom salts. If it makes you feel funny to use the stuff grandpa soaks in when he has a backache, you can call it magnesium sulfate.
You can find a complete explanation in the video below (which includes [AvE’s] very colorful language), but fundamentally, the magnesium …read more
The lathe is a simple enough tool to understand, but requires much practice to truly master. During the turning process, it’s often necessary to inspect the workpiece. This generally necessitates stopping the lathe, waiting for everything to spin down, and then starting again. This can be a major time sink when added up across the full scope of a project. However, the magic of strobes can help.
The basics of [Darcy]’s project will be familiar to any hacker who has worked with rotating machinery before. The rotational speed of the lathe is measured, in this case using a reed switch …read more
Some aspects of humanity affect all of us at some point in our lives. Whether it’s getting caught in the rain without an umbrella, getting a flat tire on the way to work, or upgrading a Linux package which somehow breaks the entire installation, some experiences are truly universal. Among these is pulling a few squares of toilet paper off the roll, only to have the entire roll unravel with an overly aggressive pull. It’s possible to employ a little technology so that none of us have to go through this hassle again, though.
[William Holden] and [Eric Strebel] have …read more
MIDI was introduced at the 1983 NAMM show as a means to connect various electronic instruments together. Since then, our favorite five-pin DIN has been stuffed into Radio Shack keyboards, MPCs, synths, eurorack modules, and DAWs. The standard basically hasn’t changed. Sure, we have MIDI SysEx messages to configure individual components of a MIDI setup, but at its core, MIDI hasn’t changed since it was designed as a current-loop serial protocol for 8-bit microcontrollers running at 1 MHz.
Now, ahead of the 2019 NAMM show, the MIDI Manufacturers Association (MMA) in conjunction with AMEI, Japan’s MIDI Association, are announcing MIDI …read more
Amidst the vast expanse of sand dunes in the Namib desert, there now exists a sound installation dedicated to pouring out the 1982 soft rock classic “Africa” by Toto. Six speakers connected to an MP3 player all powered by a few solar powered USB battery packs, and it is literally located somewhere down in Africa (see lyrics). The whole project, known as TOTO FOREVER, was the creation of film director [Max Siedentopf] who himself grew up in Namibia.
“I set up a sound installation which pays tribute to probably the most popular song of the last four decades…and the installation
There have been rumors floating around since last fall that the S10 would come in three variants: the S10 and S10+ with a curved OLED screen, hole-punch selfie camera, and in-display fingerprint scanners, with a third (presumably the S10E), serving as a cheaper edition without all the bells and whistles. The company is also rumored to have been in discussions with Verizon to bring a 5G version of the phone to the US. A leak from…
Last September, Apple officially stopped selling its iPhone X, iPhone SE, and iPhone 6s models, following the release of the iPhone XS and XR. This weekend, MacRumors noticed that Apple has quietly begun to sell the iPhone SE once again in its clearance section.
The 2016-era phone is available in 32GB and 128GB sizes, with $100 and $150 knocked off the price, respectively. The phones are available in space gray, rose gold, gold, and silver colors.
It doesnt appear that Apple has made the iPhone X or iPhone 6s for sale once again, but if youve been missing a decent phone with a headphone jack, this might be the time to pick one up.
Fortnites latest mystery is finally starting to unravel. Not long ago a floating sphere made of ice appeared in the game, leaving many players to wonder just what was going on. Now we have an answer, sort of: it exploded and a mysterious figure inside called the Ice King created a massive storm, which covered the entire island in snow.
It was a dramatic moment that included a towering, ghostly apparition appearing around Polar Peak, which kicked off the storm. In addition to the shift in weather, there are now ice monsters in the game called ice fiends which spawn from glowing blue stones scattered across the map. The new creatures also come with a new set of challenges where players can earn wintery gear and other bonuses.
The month or so after the holidays have always been a great time to pick up some interesting gadgets on steep clearance, but with decorations and lights becoming increasingly complex over the last few years, the “Christmas Clearance” rack is an absolute must see for enterprising hackers. You might just luck out like [ModernHam] and find a couple packs of these dirt cheap wireless light controllers, which can fairly easily be hacked into the start of a home automation system with little more than the Raspberry Pi and a short length of wire.
In the video after the break, [ModernHam] …read more
I finally got around to watching Roma the other week. Its a fascinating film, telling its story in a way that few others do not quite through the intimate portrait of one character, but through a world of contrasts and colliding events.
Honestly, I couldnt quite get a grasp on how to understand Alfonso Cuaróns approach until I saw a tweet from Guillermo del Toro the other day. In every sense, Roma is a fresco, a mural, not a portrait, he wrote.
And its true. The background of each shot matters as much, if not more, than the foreground, and frequently theyre playing off one another in one big, looping narrative. I do wish the film had gotten closer to its main character, but del Toros analogy helps me appreciate its grander…
Neil Gaiman says Edgar Allan Poe should be read aloud, and he’s right: he recorded this video of him reading “The Raven” in 2016 as part of Pat Rothfuss’s Worldbuilders charity drive. It’s Poe’s birthday today, and I can think of no better way to celebrate it than to listen to it again.
2019 has delivered some pretty decent deals already, and this weekends roundup showcases the wide range of tech thats available for less. Super Bowl LIII and the Academy Awards ceremony loom, which means that some great deals on home entertainment gear like TVs and soundbars will be coming soon. But until then, lets take a look at this weeks best deals.
Newegg is offering $40 off of the PS4 Pro with the offer code EMCTUUD67 used at checkout. Any discount on Sonys 4K-ready console is rare, and given that 2019 will be another big year for the console (The Last of Us Part II, Death Stranding, Judge Eyes, and Ghost of Tsushima are expected to launch this year), its worth picking it up if you dont have one yet.
Fans of 80s-era computer printing technology are few and far between, but Apple’s ImageWriter II was a beast of a printer. This tractor feed dot-matrix printer is nigh-indestructible. The print quality was actually pretty great. It was loud as hell, which is a mark of quality electromechanical components. It could do color, and color dot-matrix art on tractor feed paper is the aesthetic we need. If you’re not convinced yet, you can also take off the perforations from tractor feed paper and make a cool little paper snake.
[Dandu] isn’t one to let things like serial printers and obsolete color …read more
Dolby has been quietly testing a new mobile app for recording and cleaning up audio under the codename 234, as first spotted by TechCrunch. The app, which was available through a website sign-up form, lets you record audio (a la Voice Notes), cancels background noise, and then apply presets, with names like Amped, Thump, and Bright, to theoretically make your recordings sound more professional.
The sign-up site, which has since been deactivated, advertised the app by saying: How can music recorded on a phone sound so good? Dolby 234 automatically cleans up the sound, gives it tone and space, and finds the ideal loudness. Its like having your own producer in your phone. Those are big claims. Luckily, I snagged a copy of the app…
Behold, the LEGO Chevrolet Silverado. The full-size truck is basically a giant ad for Chevy and the new LEGO Movie, which is due out in February. Apparently they have to fight Duplo blocks from outer space. No, seriously, thats the plot. Anyway, the 2019 Silverado is six-feet tall, weighs 3,307 pounds and took 18 builders […]
Still determined to keep those New Year’s health resolutions? If you’re going to stick with the exercise plan, it’s enough of a challenge to budget your time. No need for your financial budget to take a hit, too. Here’s a more convenient – and cheaper – alternative to a gym membership or Peloton bike: Two of our favorite virtual fitness clubs, tailor-made for any schedule and any income.
The wealth of content on this streaming service should be enough to keep you sweating well into your fitness goals and beyond. Along with daily exercise challenges, there’s 24 /7 access to on-demand workouts in yoga cardio, strength training and more. And because it takes more than sweat, this service offers peer support through their Live Streaming Fitness community, plus meal plans, cooking shows and recipes made by certified nutritionists.
For a more traditional touch, Fitterclub replicates the personal trainer experience with all the convenience of streaming. Answer a simple questionnaire, and the service builds you a workout regimen and nutrition program suited to your goals and body type. From there, it’s on you: Access your daily, curated workouts and enjoy the flexible, tailored meal plan. Fitterclub tracks your progress and adjusts your plan every month using complex data analytics, so things never get too hard or easy.
In 1991, Apple released the Quadra line of computers, named after their utilization of the new Motorola 68040 CPU. The Quadra line initially consisted of two models, the Quadra 700 and the Quadra 900. These two models, and the Quadra 950, released as a slight upgrade to the 900, were the peak of performance. You could conceivably load these machines up with 256 Megabytes of RAM, in an era where hard drives hovered around 80 Megabytes. This much RAM would cost as much as a house. These were powerhouses, the first ProTools workstations, and they ran Jurassic Park. If you …read more