The holiday season is approaching fast, and there's no shortage of cool new music devices out there for the aspiring producers, gadget freaks, and all around audiophiles in your life. Whether you're looking to get your younger sibling a new set of speakers to blast the new Drake record on, or you're ready to spend that iTunes gift card on a really cool app, here are some of the best bits of technology coming from the music world.
Altec Lansing Custom In-Ear Monitors
Imagine a pair of headphones designed exclusively for you? Well, if you're a professional musician or hardcore audio nerd and are willing to shell out serious cash, Altec Lansing is offering a series of custom in-ear monitors. While the monitors are super pricey at $1000, $750, and $500, those who purchase them will be able to consult with an Audiologist to create the perfect mold to fit their ears, meaning your live sound and secret Britney Spears playlist will both sound clearer than ever.
It's hard to believe that as a people we've endured two decades of Sir Mix-A-Lot's Baby Got Back: The song itself is fine-- balanced, catchy, energetic. But as we know, the song, as a karaoke mainstay, and bar top necessity, has scarring implications. It takes nothing but strength to conjure up an image of 'those' 10 homely girls who, drowned in hours of Coors Light, hear the commanding anthem for the first time. As if every song leading up BGB was sport. A scrimmage, a hip warmup, a gluteus maximus practicamus-- in anticipation for that conversation with Becky. Time stands still during this arresting prelude, and in this moment said singles ascend to their Jaeger-stained alter. And if any one's ever stepped inside a strip mall pub, well bombastic displays of unfounded pride and peculiar sexuality ensue. Thanks alot, Mix-A-lot.
Think about how many cell phones you have owned. Probably a lot, no? Whether you dropped it in the pool, lost it at a party, or simply upgraded to the amaza-7G-unlimited-magic-phone, you've gone through quite a lot of these little devices.
And here's my next question: what did you do with your old phone?
It is estimated there are over half a billion discarded cell phones in the US - either hidden deep in your dresser drawer or thrown away in landfills. In 2008, a survey by Nokia in 13 countries found that only 3% of people recycle their mobile phones.
Last Thursday night, the Penthouse at the Thompson Hotel was a heaven for tech-savvies and entertainment and advertisement savants. The reason? A promotion for the new LoKast iPhone social media app. This iPhone application allows users (you, music bands, businesses, etc) to create profiles rich in media content. LoKast allows you to create an aggregate of information by adding videos, music, photos and any media links. The app finds other users in your proximity (300 feet) and puts you in contact with them so you can share the portals you've created. LoKast can be used for both social and professional purposes. You can network at business events by sharing profiles and exchanging information with anyone who is relevant to your company. As an individual user you can connect with people around you who listen to similar music, who attend similar events and even those who like to link similar news articles.
Such a social app deserved a proper party. The event at the Thompson LES included stunning views of the city, great music and lot of media connections.
The economy is still facing some tough times. Those fresh out of college are doing anything to keep their heads above water, and with good reason. It’s hard to find a job right now, for everyone. Gigwalk is putting a new spin on the word “freelance” with their new App. which finds users menial tasks that companies need done on the fly for a few bucks of spending cash.
Odds are some of us have already spent a wad of cash on food or fireworks to celebrate Independence Day over the long weekend. No worries. iPad, iPhone, and iPod users can still feel like they’ve got disposable income no matter what today. EA Games is having the biggest sale in its history and users can get some great games for under a dollar. Usually around ten dollars, most of these are 90 % off. They’re not alone. Joining them on the sales front is NAMCO, Gameloft, Glu, and several other publishers.
These are some of the biggest developers for phone gaming, so many of these are a big steal. Classics like Tetris, Pac-Man, Galaga, The Oregon Trail, and Tamagotchi are on the list. Extremely fun and popular modern games such as I Love Katamari, Rayman 2, Mass Effect Galaxy, and Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies are slashed in price. For those that prefer games that increase intelligence and flex their mind’s muscle, there are games like Brain Challenge HD, Brain Exercise with Dr. Kawashima, and Scrabble available.
Here is the list of recommended games according to Engadget:
Movie lovers and fans of cool tech unite! An App. is on its way to smart phones that allows users to point their phones in the direction of any location and see a scene of a movie that was shot on that very spot. The App. allows its users to travel around and see entire scenes superimposed over the actual scene in front of them.
So far the App. is a prototype. Its focus right now is different areas of London, but soon users will be able to find scenes from locations around the world. This is an extra nifty toy for those struck with wanderlust and big fans of travel. Like a tour bus host in your pocket, this App will let its users know about all the scenes filmed in certain locations and allow them to see the scene right on the screen. Those in L.A. or New York would have thousands of scenes--enough to turn the App. into a pop culture scavenger hunt tool. Still, even those who don’t travel would be interested in seeing what sort of films have taken place in their towns.
Which leaves us thinking, why can't every fashion company launch a mobile app? Given we spend more time on our phones than anything else these days, it seems like the logical (and profitable) thing to do. The more easy companies make it for us to shop, the more we'll buy. Thankfully, Coach is ahead of the game. They've launched a new mobile application that will allow customers to not only shop, but pick up their purchase at their local store. No more waiting for shipping --how convenient! The company did a "soft launch" on May 17th, and has already seen an increase in m-commerce sales, further proof that mobile shopping apps are the way of the future.
For those who do their grocery shopping at the Stop n’ Shop, there is now an app that could make even self check-outs fast. The app is compatible with their rewards coupon and can scan every item in the grocery store itself. The price of each item will show up in the app. When customers are done shopping, they head to a checkout aisle, scan their rewards card, and pay the total.
You may have seen self check-out aisles at one or two larger grocery stores in your local area. They are more often than not an empty check out aisle where customers can scan their own items and interact with a computer to determine the payment. The problem with these is that when prices per item are wrong, there is no human to make the proper adjustment. The time saved by having the self check-out there in the first place is lost when encountering any problem with the machine. Cashiers, more adept to the task of scanning groceries, are much faster than people. The app removes that problem by having up to date price changes and eliminating the need for a final scan of items.
ViewMasters could be found in just about any kid’s room during the 80s and 90s. They’re toys that are either remembered as complete fun or downright educational depending on the disks parents bought their children—and there were many. Still, one thing remains true no matter what—ViewMasters turned slide shows into a fun and vibrant near 3D experience. To the disappointment of many, it seemed that with today’s technology, the ViewMaster would become extinct.