Unevenly Distributed: Why CES Is Hell


During next week's CES, you'll rarely hear a single word about why you should really care about the devices debuting there... but is that really so surprising when even the electronics makers at CES can't answer as simple a question as why their gadgets matter?

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Disintegrated Digital Frame Reverse-Engineers Ektachrome


The DIA Parrot wireless photo frame by Nodesign deconstructs the LCD, separating the backlighting from the display unit to create a luminous projection effect. Usually, an LCD unit is sandwiched with its opaque backlight, hiding the display’s smoky windowpane quality. By separating the two, the DIA Parrot celebrates the qualities of the LCD while providing a new/old lightboxing effect. The ...

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No Empty Gestures: Touchless Interface to Demo at CES


The Norwegian firm Elliptic Labs’ booth at CES next week will feature several implementations of a touchless, gesture-based interface for tablets and mobile devices, according to the company. Unlike the Kinect, Elliptic’s interface, called Ultrasonic Touchless Input, graphs hand movements using echolocation. Bathing the user in a silent ultrasonic torrent, it measures the return time of rebounding sonic impulses to ...

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Unevenly Distributed: Disillusionment, Clark Nova, The MacBook Air & The Perfect Writer’s Machine


After fifteen years I've finally found the perfect writer's machine in the new 11.6-inch MacBook Air. It fuses together both the best software and hardware of which a writer could ever dream, while boasting all of the slender and effortless portability of a composition journal. It is a writer's terminal in the purest sense: with its excellent battery life, ephemeral weight, satisfying keyboard and instant-on capabilities, the new MacBook Air is perfectly suited to be the nexus into the inner chaos of my own thoughts, feelings, hang-ups, pretensions and emotions as a blank page. So why isn't writing any easier?

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Scintillating Evergreen


At the Atlantic, Alexis Madrigal tells how the Christmas tree helped to domesticate the terrifying energies of electricity around the turn of the last century.

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James Burke, Prince of Serendip


James Burke is the Carl Sagan of Serendipity. Now his Connections series, which tells technology's history as a record of sagacious discovery, is available for free viewing. Video after the jump.

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