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Piltch Point

Best and Worst Laptop Brands 2018 - Episode 166

2018-04-22

This week, Avram Piltch discusses our favorite topic of the year: LAPTOP's [url=https://www.laptopmag.com/articles/laptop-brand-ratings]Best and Worst Laptop Brands[/url]. Every year, the company creates a report card for the top 10 brands, with LAPTOP reviews, design, support & warranty, innovation and value & selection all factoring into the scores. This year, Lenovo once again reigns supreme, and Samsung and MSI sit at the bottom. Avram explains why and what it means for consumers.

F5 Live: Refreshing Technology

April 22, 2018 - Episode 498

2018-04-22

This week, mobile messaging gets more confusing, Capcom shows why free-to-play is annoying and AT&T announces a new streaming service under oath.

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Remarkably Superior Encryption on Drives by SecureDrive

2018-04-21

Encrypted external hard drives and USB memory sticks have been around for at least a decade, but most of the time it's either locked or unlocked: if you have the password, you're in. [url=http://www.securedrive.com/]SecureDrive[/url] has a solution that changes this binary reality, and makes the security better and more nuanced. Nuanced security means that, even if you have the password, you may not be able to access the device. SecureDrive specialize in hardware encrypted data storage. They've three product ranges with varying capacity (1 - 5 TB) to address different security and storage requirements.

  • SecureDrive BT, which uses Bluetooth and an app for authentication
  • SecureDrive KP, which uses keypad authentication
  • BackupDrive, which backs up files and encrypts them with built-in anti-malware
For the rapid transfer of large files, all the devices use USB 3.0, and for security, it's pending FIPS 140-2 level 3. That's pretty secure. The unique part of the SecureDrive solution focuses on the BT model, which uses Bluetooth and an authentication app. Instead of the drive only being locked or unlocked, the solution allows additional controls for geofencing and time schedules. For example, the SecureDrive BT can be set to only unlock between 9-5 M-F or only if the unit is physically within company premises. In addition, there's remote management so authorizations can be revoked and the drive remotely wiped. The drives are assembled in Ohio, USA, and they're available for purchase priced at $299-$499. The remote management feature is a subscription service. Interview by [livescottertz]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Keep Your Phone Clean and Germ-Free with PhoneSoap

2018-04-21

Think about all the things you touch in a day. You might use a grocery cart, push an elevator button, open a door knob, or shake hands with a co-worker. All of these things can put bacteria onto your hands. Next, you touch your smartphone and transfer bacteria onto it. [url=https://www.phonesoap.com]PhoneSoap[/url] can sanitize your smartphone, tablet, and more. PhoneSoap is a UV sanitizer for devices like phones and tablets. It uses UV light, similar to what hospitals use to sanitize devices. Put your smartphone into the device. Once you close the device, the light comes on. The UV light will stay on for about ten minutes. At that point, your smartphone is sanitized. The UV light will sanitize up to 99.9%. PhoneSoap also works as a charger, so you can charge your phone while it is being sanitized. It is priced at $59.95. There is also a PhoneSoap Wireless that is priced at $99.95. PhoneSoap XL is priced at $119.95. It can sanitize tablets and other objects that will fit inside it. Check out these models that are available at Amazon: PhoneSoap 3: https://amzn.to/2HMiEHf PhoneSoap 2: https://amzn.to/2qLNK9L Interview by [livedanielemendez]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Deep Force is Motivated to Protect Your Privacy

2018-04-19

Your privacy is important. Posting your photo, or other personal data, online can be an uncomfortable experience. How will that company use your likeness and information? [url=http://www.deepforce.com]Deep Force[/url] uses artificial intelligence to keep your personal information private. Deep Force powers artificial intelligence on our most favorite devices, our smartphones. They do this by leveraging deep learning, which is the most advanced AI available. Their face recognition accuracy is over 99.9 percent. Deep Force takes that model and uses it for heterogeneous computing. This process helps all the different parts inside a smartphone to work together more efficiently, which creates more computational powers within the device. Instead of requiring users to send their photos, videos, and audio over the internet, Deep Force enables smartphones to process all the information on the device itself. It works even if you are in a place that does not have Wi-Fi. Deep Force makes an app that their partners can use in their products. The app is not sold directly to individual consumers. Interview by [livedanielemendez]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Superior Tracking of The Most Important Environmental Conditions with Yes It Is

2018-04-19

Tracking environmental conditions is important for many industries. This is particularly the case with food & drink and pharmaceutical companies. Often products have to be kept below a certain temperature and any deviation above this means that the product is not longer deemed safe for consumption. French firm [url=http://yesitis.fr/]Yes It Is[/url] is working hard to provide a continuous unbroken record of the environment surrounding these types of goods. Traditionally the recording of environmental conditions is done by equipment installed in the building or the refrigerator. To match the data to a particular product means that the time in and out needs to be recorded so that relevant periods can be checked. Wouldn't it be better if the sensor was small enough and battery powered so that it could be packaged in with the product? There would then be a complete and unbroken record of the environmental conditions from production to use. The folks at Yes It Is are working hard on this problem and are developing [url=http://yesitis.fr/en/tag-sensor-award/]tags[/url] that have a year's worth of battery life, record the environmental data and can be scanned by a smartphone to retrieve the data. The plan is to have the tag small enough to fit in a label within a year! Interview by [liveallantesparks]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Get the Perfect Pint with HOPii Personal Micro-Brewery

2018-04-19

Microbrews and local brews have become a staple of restaurants and bars across the country. Wanting to get in on the action, many people have taken to trying their own craft beers at home. It is not, however, a hands-off process, meaning that the need for assistance is usually high, which is where homebrew technologies come in. Enter the [url=http://hopii.beer]HOPii Personal Micro-Brewery[/url], a device designed to help make sure your home brewing experience is the best it can be. If you are a novice beer brewer, you can use HOPii's self-guided option to receive the recipe, while the device does all of the work of brewing, monitoring and letting you know when the beer is perfect to drink. If you're more experienced, you can use the "Brewer's Mode," which is designed to allow you to be in charge. You can pick your ingredients, design your recipe and then ferment your wort, dry hops, etc., to determine the exact taste you want. Once the beer is ready, HOPii can even bring the beer to the ideal temperature of your choosing. The company is coming off of a $382,000 Kickstarter last year, and is currently taking pre-orders through [url=https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/hopii-your-personal-micro-brewery-diy-beer#/]Indiegogo InDemand[/url]. For $399, you'll receive a HOPii for 33% off (the retail price will be $600), with an estimated delivery of June 2018. Interview by [liveallantesparks]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Brilliant New Sunglasses That Double as Headphones

2018-04-18

We all enjoy listening to music when we're on the go, but headphones an get so cumbersome and even earbuds can be uncomfortable - and both block out the world around you. Echo Music solves this problem with their [url=http://www.music-lens.com]MusicLens[/url] sunglasses that give you a stylish option to listen to your tunes. MusicLens sunglasses let you listen to music through bone conduction technology. You don't have to wear headphones, and no one else will be able to hear that you are listening to music. Bone conduction technology is the conduction of sound to the inner ear through the bones of the skull, which can protect your eardrums while you listen to high quality music. MusicLens sunglasses use this technology to reduce the sound leak you would get from headphones. MusicLens connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth, but unlike traditional Bluetooth headphones, the music can be stored right in the glasses. Download music from your phone, or from the Echo Music app, to the MusicLens sunglasses., and use the buttons to turn it on or off, to adjust the volume, or to have the Echo Music app autoplay. In addition, MusicLens will automatically take your phone call within five seconds. There are several styles and colors of MusicLens to choose from. Pricing for MusicLens with prescription lenses is $88. Classic Ladies or Classic Mens styles are priced at $99. MusicLens Fashion style without storage is $120, or $199 with storage. Interview by [livedanielemendez]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Be In the Know of Radiation Around You With the Amazing Rium

2018-04-18

Geiger counters are great for detecting and measuring ionizing radiation but their biggest flaw is that they can't discriminate between the different types of radiation; alpha, beta or gamma. [url=https://www.icohup.com]Icohup[/url]'s Rium detector addresses this with a compact and stylishly wooden unit. Allante and Billy discuss the benefits of radiation detectors without mentioning a single nuclear disaster. Winner of a CES Innovation award, Icohup's Rium uses scintillation spectrometry technology to not only detect levels of ionizing radiation but also the type. This means that the Rium can determine if the radioactivity is natural or industrial, or if it's a Cobalt, Uranium or Cesium source. The Rium unit is about the size of a packet of biscuits and is tastefully made of wood. Not sure if there's a scientific reason for this, though it looks good anyway, and the small size means that it can be carried by a drone to record radioactivity in potentially hazardous areas. Data is collected and displayed by a nearby smartphone and with geotagging of the radiation information, maps can be built easily to show radiation hotspots. The data can be transferred either by Bluetooth or by USB. The Rium will be available shortly from [url=https://www.icohup.com/shop/]Icohup[/url] for EUR399 (about $500). The company is also currently in development of other detectors, such as carbon monoxide and radon gas, for future production. Interview by [liveallantesparks]. [ces2018sponsors]

PLuGHiTz Live - Special Events

Enjoy the Luxury of Music Your Way with Audioburst

2018-04-18

If you have ever used a music streaming service you know that the suggestions are less than perfect. Spotify and similar services use the trends of all of their subscribers to recommend music. Obviously this isn't working. [url=https://www.audioburst.com/]Audioburst[/url] has a better way to offer you exactly what you want to listen to and play less of the kind of music you do not want to hear. In partnering with your streaming service, Audioburst is able to create a personal profile of your likes and dislikes. By combining your profile with Audioburst's searchable index of audio content, your favorite streaming service or smart speaker can provide you with custom playlists that are based on your interests. Audioburst doesn't intend this to apply to just music. The technology can be applied to any type of audio, such as podcasts. Using the same personal profile, podcasts services might recommend other shows that you would like (and for once get it right). This product is designed to be integrated into audio platforms and not to be seen by the consumer. The company is currently working to be included in as many platforms as possible. Interview by [livemarissaschiereck]. [ces2018sponsors]

FIRST Looks

Hannah and Zaid with FLL 29141, Robo-Dragons

2018-04-16

On any [FIRST] team, thee are a lot of roles. Every team needs someone to build, someone to program, someone to design a logo, someone to keep the team organized, someone to drive, someone to help with outreach, and that is just a small selection of the tasks for these teams. When you're on an [FLL] team, you have to be responsible for more than one role, because with only about 10 students, there is not a single person for each responsibility. In the case of [FLL] 29141, Robo-Dragons, they like to show their fellow team members and competitors what responsibilities they had on the team. This is accomplished with badge ribbons for each role a member held. For Hannah, she held 5 roles, ranging from artist to master builder. For Zaid, he held 6 roles, not including being the mascot at the event. As with most [FIRST] teams, Hannah says that the team works really well together, and the team are all good friends. That is a positive statement for a member who has only just joined the team this year. Her interest in robotics comes from a different place from many of the students in the program: she wants to be an archaeologist, and is interested in automating some of the tools used. Zaid says that everyone want to be the mascot for the team, but he gets the honor of being mascot for the competition. In good mascot style, he was able to stay in good spirits and keep the team positive, even when the performance on the field was not perfect. He also says that his favorite part of [FIRST] is working with and learning from the members of his team. [firstlooks2018sponsor]

FIRST Looks

Landon with FLL 19359, RoboRaptors

2018-04-16

There are a lot of aspects to a [FIRST] team that go beyond just building the robot. When it comes to [FLL], one of those "More than Robots" aspects is called Core Values. Described by Landon from [FLL] 19359, RoboRaptors, Core Values is about both having fun at the competition, but also maintaining a good spirit while competing against and cooperating with other teams. Landon is the student in charge of Core Values for his team, as well as programming the robot. Landon is in his third year with his team, and is excited about the enhancements the team has made for the current season. Their goal was to be able to perform more than one mission at the same time, without having to have the robot return to base to get hardware swapped out. To accomplish this, the team added more sensors to the robot, as well as focusing on new building techniques to allow the robot to carry more attachments. Landon, like many [FIRST] participants, enjoys the social aspects of his team. It's a great place for kids to meet other kids who share a common interest and reach for a goal together. Personally, his favorite part of reaching for the robot goal is in building. He likes building the robot, building attachments - just seeing it come together. After this season, he is considering moving up to his school's [FTC] team, which he is excited about. He believes the additional challenge will help him in his goal of becoming a biomedical engineer in the future. [firstlooks2018sponsor]

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