Beercade replaces arcade coin slots with beer taps, rewards winners with brew

DNP Beercade The Last Barfighter replaces arcade coin slot with beer tap

Forget prize tickets or high scores. The minds at McKinney creative agency may have come up with the greatest reward for arcade victors — an ice cold pour of beer. Created as a marketing tool for Big Boss Brewing Company, the aptly named Beercade features The Last Barfighter, a Street Fighter-like arcade game set inside a biker bar. To begin, two players place their cups in the tray below their respective tap, which replaces the machine’s coin slots. Beer-thirsty combatants can do battle with a selection of five characters, all named after Big Boss brews. After three rounds of intense fisticuffs, fire throwing and unicorn horn impaling, the winner’s cup is filled with a sample of beer from a keg placed within the machine. Don’t believe us? You can click past the break for a video of the machine in action.

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Source: McKinney

Jack of all trades: Tempo Smart Calendar does a little bit of everything

Jack of all trades Tempo Smart Calendar does a little bit of everything

Sure, your phone’s built in calendar does a fine job of keeping track of meetings and chiming in with the occasional alarm, but can it tell you how to actually get to those meetings, or tell your colleagues that you’re running late? That’s the promise behind the Tempo Smart Calendar, a machine learning iOS planner that leverages the same SRI patents that fathered Siri. Tempo pulls information from the user’s contacts, email and apps to present a more complete calendar experience — associating scheduled events with specific people, or sussing out a meeting’s specific location based on limited information (such as “the Starbucks at mission”). The app even promises to ease your social obligations by wishing your Facebook friends “happy birthday,” when appropriate. As time goes on, the smart calendar app acclimates to the user’s patterns, streamlining how it associates information with appointments based on previous use. Check out the calendar’s full assortment of tricks in the press release after the break.

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Source: iTunes

Library of Congress unveils plan to preserve early US sound recordings

Library of Congress unveils plan to preserve early US sound recordings

Historic audio recordings aren’t exactly easy to access and play back since they’re often in obscure or aging formats and sit within giant repositories and private collections, but the Library of Congress is gearing up to help change that for researchers and the average joe. The outfit’s freshly announced National Recording Preservation Plan is headlined by a recommendation to create a publicly accessible national directory of sound recordings that’ll act as an “authoritative discography” with details regarding their production and where copies are housed. You’ll still have to take a trip to a library to hear the recordings for the time being, but the Library of Congress is hoping to hammer out licensing agreements that would allow for online streaming. Developing new preservation standards and creating university-based degree programs for audio archiving are also among the 32 short- and long-term recommendations spelled out by the document. Click the second source link to peruse the paper yourself.

[Image credit: Ray Tsang, Flickr]

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Via: Huffington Post

Source: Library of Congress, Council on Library and Information Resources

Scout security system monitors your pad without compromising your feng shui (video)

DNP Scout home security protects your pad without compromising your feng shui video

While home security systems are definitely making strides towards modernization, we haven’t seen many that look the part. However, Sandbox Industries’ Scout might be the first home protection option that manages to gel with even the most swanky digs. Available in three stylish trims (black, white and wood), this wireless setup uses a base receiver that communicates with its security sensor panels by way of your home’s network. Like most home protection systems, Scout offers remote control and monitoring via computer or mobile device, but the big draw here is its aesthetically pleasing equipment and simplified installation process.

Set to ship in August, packages start at $120 with additional à la carte purchase options depending on your household’s needs. For those of you looking to further secure your bunker, Scout’s hardware packs backup batteries in the event of a power outage as well as an optional 3G-powered monitoring service with plans starting at $10 per month. Of course, if you’re not feeling such a high-tech setup, you could always place toy cars and Christmas ornaments beneath your doorways and window seals. Hey, it worked for Kevin McCallister.

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Via: TechCrunch

Source: Scout

LG’s 55-inch OLED HDTV ships in Korea next week, has 100 pre-orders so far

LG's 55inch OLED HDTV ships in Korea next week, has 100 preorders so far

We saw all the 2013 HDTVs debut last month at CES and the first few new models are starting to reach shelves. One of the more interesting sets arriving is LG’s 55-inch OLED HDTV, the first of its kind at this large size. Shipments are starting Monday for the 11 million won ($10k~) television, and according to a press release, LG has notched about 100 pre-orders so far in its home country. For comparison, LG announced it sold 300 of its 84-inch, $20k Ultra HDTV in Korea as of last month. LG also mentioned it plans to sell as many as 15 percent more HDTVs in 2013 than it did in 2012, as it continues to push its Smart and 3D features. We’re still waiting for Samsung to release its own OLED HDTVs, while this one is still slated to ship in the US in March for $11,999.

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Source: Reuters, LG Korea, Yonhap News

USC battery wields silicon nanowires to hold triple the energy, charge in 10 minutes

USC battery wields silicon nanowires to hold triple the energy, charge in 10 minutes

There’s no shortage of attempts to build a better battery, usually with a few caveats. USC may have ticked all the right checkboxes with its latest discovery, however. Its use of porous, flexible silicon nanowires for the anodes in a lithium-ion battery delivers the high capacity, fast recharging and low costs that come with silicon, but without the fragility of earlier attempts relying on simpler silicon plates. In practice, the battery could deliver the best of all worlds. Triple the capacity of today’s batteries? Full recharges in 10 minutes? More than 2,000 charging cycles? Check. It all sounds a bit fantastical, but USC does see real-world use on the horizon. Researchers estimate that there should be products with silicon-equipped lithium-ion packs inside of two to three years, which isn’t long to wait if the invention saves us from constantly hunting for the nearest wall outlet.

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Via: Gizmodo

Source: USC

AutoTether for Android produces an instant in-car hotspot

AutoTether gives Android and Automatica users an instant incar hotspot

If you’re anything like us, you get slightly twitchy when you can’t use any of your WiFi-only devices when parked (or a passenger) in a car. You now won’t even have to think about whether or not you’re online, if you’re an Android user. Inrete’s new AutoTether app automatically invokes an Android phone’s WiFi hotspot as soon as the handset pairs up with a given Bluetooth device: step into a ride with a Bluetooth-equipped stereo and you’ll have an internet connection for every device inside, as long as you’re present. Inrete sees its app as a syncing tool for its Automatica car audio companion, but it clearly has uses for the kids’ Nexus 7 in the back seat or a significant other’s MacBook Air in the front. Check the Google Play link for what could be the next-best thing to a hotspot built into the car itself.

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Source: Google Play

Google countersues BT over alleged IP networking patent violations

Google countersues BT over alleged conferencing, quality patent violations

Google isn’t letting BT’s Android patent lawsuit go unanswered, even if it’s taking its sweet time. Over a year after BT struck first, Google has filed a countersuit against BT that claims the provider is infringing four patents relating to IP-based conferencing and quality of service delivery. The search firm makes clear that its lawsuit is leverage for a possible truce: it’s using the action as a “last resort” to fend off both BT and the patent holding companies that BT uses as proxies, according to a Google spokesperson. BT hasn’t had a chance to respond — or to be formally served, as of this writing — but we can’t imagine that a company which once sued over hyperlinks will simply agree to a stalemate.

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Via: Reuters

Source: TechCrunch