Cable management is an ongoing battle for many road warriors. Some of us just stuff our cables into various pockets in our bags. Others actually have small, individually labeled bags to keep their piles of cables separated and ready to unleash at a moments notice. Meanwhile, accessory companies continue to release more and more cable-management systems. They’re usually just a piece of plastic that you wrap the cable around once, then realize you’ve wasted your money and toss it aside. But the Quirky PowerCurl manages to actually be useful, and it strikes a good balance between easy and OCD. And wow… it’s orange!
Firemint's Real Racing was already one of the most buzzed-about iPhone apps, but the extra screen real estate and speedier processor gives Real Racing HD for the iPad much more room to shine, resulting in a true showcase title for Apple's new tablet.
Finding a laptop bag that does it all is not a simple task, and we
often have to make compromises between style, utility, and comfort.
Speck’s CorePack Fly nails two out of those three, faltering a bit in
the comfort department. The CorePack’s black-and-white pinstripe design
(also available in a blue-gray check pattern) makes it a fashionable
laptop bag that pairs well with our favorite--and only--pair of
designer shoes. This lightweight bag also offers good protection and
storage for our stuff without adding much extra heft when we’re hauling
around our MacBook.
It wasn’t that long ago that we burned files onto CD-Rs and were amazed
by their gargantuan 702MB of storage. But even they seem antiquated
now--we routinely carry around several gigabytes of data in our pockets
on USB flash drives. Verbatim’s new line of Tough–’n’-Tiny drives takes
flash drives to the next level of shrunkeness, reducing them to a speck
of plastic and embedded electronics that seems barely big enough to fit
into a USB port.
Like X-ray glasses and sea monkeys, vacuum tubes are the stuff of 1950s
pulp-fiction cool. They even glow in the dark! And it turns out that
they can improve the sound of modern digital music--if you stick with
high-quality, lossless files, that is.
In my ongoing quest to never again leave the house without my iPhone,
I’ve tried to adopt the zealous-organizer habit of using a landing
strip inside my front door. This island of unclutteredness is supposed
to give me a place to stash my can’t-forget-’ems--I’m thinking the
modern trinity of keys, wallet, and phone, or anything essential that
regularly hitches a ride in my pocket. Once I’ve fully trained myself
to deposit those items there without fail, I’ll be more apt to remember
to take them every time I leave. And avoid running around searching for
my keys while the carpool idles outside and considers leaving my
lagging behind… well, behind.
Fanny packs may have gone the way of mom jeans, but while they were in vogue, they were pretty darn useful. The modern equivalent is the Armpocket Sport 20, a Velcro-strapped pouch that enables you to carry your iPod touch or iPhone and other small items on your arm when you’re working out or just traveling light.
Great-sounding headphones that don’t cost an arm and a leg are kind of
like aliens--you’re pretty sure they’re out there somewhere, but
they’re really hard to find. Yamaha’s EPH-30 earbuds should come
packaged like a flying saucer--they offer a terrific listening
experience at an affordable price.
A dozen new kinds of point-and-shoot cameras flood electronics stores
each year, and that’s often just from a single company. To distinguish
itself, Nikon took an interesting approach with its Coolpix S1000pj.
Instead of focusing on pictures, this camera shines--literally. It can
project photos and movies on a wall so everyone can see them. We like
the concept and had fun presenting instant vacation slideshows while
still traveling. But the average quality of both its photos and its
projection make this camera purely a technoholic’s toy. Discerning
photographers and home buyers on a budget should think twice.
The iPad isn't just a big toy, dig? Yes, it's an amazing e-reader and rocks for watching videos, but it's very possible to get some work done with the iPad too. Apple's iWork productivity suite has been redesigned for the iPad, with Keynote, Pages, and Numbers available in the App Store for $9.99 each. These apps let you create documents that can be synced to your Macs and shared via iWork.com, although if you're familiar with the Mac versions of these apps, there are constraints you're bound to hit quickly.