Tech Gifts for the Low-Tech Dad

June 16th is fast-approaching! For this Father’s Day, usher dad into the modern age with some gift ideas that are perfect for the one man you know who still doesn’t own a smartphone. ABCey pulled together a list with items of varying price to help drag dad out of his cave and into the technological world!

1. Sony Action Video Camera | $179.99 | Every dad knows how crazy life can get and that no gadget is safe from kids dropping it in the pool or knocking it down the hill on a family hike. Luckily, the Sony Action Video Camera is as tough as they are. It’s weather-proof, shock-proof, and mountable for the dad who has his hands full with sippy cups and dollies. All the while, this little camera is shooting high-quality HD videos. 

2. Insignia LCD Digital Photo Frame |$59.99 | At their core, dads are family men who love to be surrounded by their loved ones. Show him that you’re always there in his office or on the mantle with a digital photo frame like Insignia’s eight-inch LCD screen. Downloading files from the computer to the frame is easy and will let him see all the pictures from the last family reunion at any time. You could even program photos in beforehand so it’s ready to go when he opens it!

3. Hot Rod Heated Travel Mug | $19.99 | When dad’s on the go and needs his morning cup of coffee to properly function, he’ll reach for his Hot Rod mug. During his morning commute, he can plug his thermos into his car’s cigarette lighter to turn the heater on and keep his coffee hot! The thermometer on the side shows the temperature of the drink inside so you don’t drink cold coffee or burn your tongue.

4. Sennheiser RS 160 Headphones | $199.95 | It’s not quite a vintage record machine, but we think dad will like these more. These Sennheiser headphones boast great features that’ll amp up his musical experience, like interference-free wireless sound quality, digital volume control, and resistance to interfering other wireless networks. Set-up is almost too easy: plug it into your audio source and start listening. 

5. Under Armour Armour39 | $149.99 | For all those active daddies out there, we know how much you love to brag about “killing it” at the gym! For you, we suggest Under Armour’s newest fitness-monitoring technology, Armour39. This device goes around your waist to measure all the usual suspects (calories burned, heart rate, and real-time intensity), including a new measurement called WILLpower, which scores your true athletic performance from 0.0-10.0. Do you think your dad can score a perfect 10?

Would your dad love any of these gifts? Tell us in a comment or on Facebook and Twitter!


Startup Monday: Silent Storm

Startup Monday is ABCey’s weekly post that features some of the best and brightest companies in the Bay Area. They are often companies that we have our eye on or have worked with in the past that we would like to share with the friends and followers of ABCey Events. 

Picture this: you get to the nightclub to see your favorite DJ perform. When you open the doors expecting to be blasted by loud music, you instead walk into a completely silent room where everyone around you is dancing and listening to headphones. This, my friends, is a Silent Disco, a unique musical experience sweeping the bay area by silent storm. Silent Storm Sound System is the company  bringing you the awesomeness of a concert with none of the hassle.

Silent Storm Sound Systems offers its attendees the ability to customize their concert experience through the silent disco medium. Everyone gets their own set of headphones that lets them control the volume and even the music they want to listen to. There are two “battling DJs” that you can switch between as often as you like! Headphones also mean you no longer have to push your way to the front of the stage to get the best sound quality from the performer or scream until you’re hoarse to get your friend’s attention. 

Besides being incredibly fun, Silent Storm’s silent discos are also extremely practical. The performers trade off lugging in their expensive amp equipment for hundreds of wireless headphones for the crowd. Because these events produce very little noise, events no longer require amplified sound ordinances or result in noise complaints. That means you can take silent discos anywhere from parks to parties or any venue of your choosing. You can dance away your disco fever almost anywhere!

Have you ever been to a Silent Storm silent disco? Tell us about it in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter!


The 5 Oddest iPhone Gadgets

Since we always seem to have our iPhones in hand, it was only a matter of time before we started inventing alternate uses for them. At ABCey, we’ve scoured our Pinterest for the most outrageous and downright absurd uses for iPhones out there. These just go to show that in the tech world, no idea is too far fetched!  

1. Fan | The Doc Fan for iPhone is technically the “coolest” accessory available! Simply plug the fan into the charger inlet of your iPhone and switch it on for a nice breeze during your rush hour commute. Although a fan would be nice sometimes, it must be a serious battery drain!

2. Ultrasound | Who needs a doctor when you own an iPhone? The MobiUS SP1 Ultrasound System is designed to bring affordable and available ultrasound imaging to anyone, anywhere. You can even use this device to take and send pictures to your doctor or relatives but, please, don’t make your unborn child a Facebook page. 

3. Bottle Opener | Since we never put down our iPhones anyway, we might as well put them to good use! Next time you’re having brews with your friends, why not use your Intoxicase iPhone case’s bottle opener to help you out? Nothing screams “iPhone replacement” like bending your phone repeatedly over carbonated liquids!

4. The Anti-Lonliness Ramen Bowl | No, we aren’t being sassy. There is really a product with this outrageous name! If you’ve ever had to make the crippling decision between using your hands to eat or to prop up your iPhone, help has finally arrived. Uses include using the bowl’s speaker function to listen to music, video chat with friends, or podcast the morning news over a bowl of cereal. 

5. Toilet Paper Holder | Imagine installing this in your bathroom! This iPod speaker system and toilet paper holder combo is for the special consumer who spends a considerable amount of time singing in the shower and requires back-up music. Just try to keep it from falling in, please!

Are these gadgets too bizarre, or would you like to own one? Tell us your thoughts in a comment or on Facebook and Twitter!


Tech Tuesday: The World’s First Digital LoFi-Fisheye Camera

Tech Tuesday highlights the best and brightest ideas in the tech world. ABCey would like to recognize these up and coming companies for their innovative ideas and ability to think outside the box!

Ever since the first digital camera became available, we haven’t been able to stop taking pictures. As consumers became more and more enamored with the ease and accessibility of digital cameras, analog models with their film and fuss were pushed out of the spotlight. That was the case until Greg Dash combined the best of both digital and analog worlds and created the first digital LoFi-fisheye camera. But be warned: what you’re about to see is terribly cute!

 This little guy doesn’t look like he can do much more than fit in your pocket, but  Dash designed his camera to have a 170 degree fisheye lens, two to twelve megapixels, and an HD video mode. It can even take time-lapse photos and has a removable battery for your convenience. Even though it is too small for a screen to review your snaps, accessing your pictures is incredibly easy. All the files are stored on a micro SD card that you can insert into your computer and see instantly. Plus, at only sixty-five British pounds (about $100 USD), this camera is a fraction of the cost of traditional dslr lenses. With this camera, you get the quality of analog lenses with the convenience of a digital camera. What’s not to love?

This project, as you can see, is still in its infancy. Dash is a one-man operation driven by a desire to create a fisheye camera with mobility and produced only a thousand cameras for the product’s launch on Indiegogo. Every camera was snapped up in seconds and, in order to meet market demands, Dash is developing new cameras for consumer use. 

Would you buy this product? Tell us in a comment below or on Facebook and Twitter!


Tech Tuesday: Ninja Blocks

Tech Tuesday highlights the best and brightest ideas in the tech world. ABCey would like to recognize these up and coming companies for their innovative ideas and ability to think outside the box!

This week, we’d like to credit a certain San Francisco company for daring to look inside the box for inspiration. Meet the Ninja Block, your new personal assistant.

The Ninja Block has a basic “if this, then that” command feature. If the sensors pick up an event in your real life, like a baby crying,  the Ninja Block triggers a tech life reaction, like calling the parent’s cell phone. By programming in a command in the rules app (ex: turn on the light if I play music), this handy device can do almost anything for you.

The Ninja Block works as a medium between the sensors you install and the electronic world. Sensors available for purchase include motion, temperature, humidity, and contact sensors. Ninja Blocks also helps you manage your online social presence by automatically sharing the input the sensors with social media. Don’t worry, it won’t say anything you don’t want others knowing! Its message is one you program in advance in the rules app. 

 

If you’re someone who loves to techify your life and home, Ninja Blocks is the perfect way to do so! ABCey loves this company because it bridges the gap between your online and offline lives and automates how the two interact. We’d love to use the feature that tweets a photo of every person entering the door at one of our events!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3RGRIS_Rqiw

What do you think of Ninja Blocks? Tell us in a comment or on Twitter and Facebook!


Tech Tuesday: The Pocket TV

Tech Tuesday highlights the best and brightest ideas in the tech world. ABCey would like to recognize these up and coming companies for their innovative ideas and ability to think outside the box!

Tech companies are always coming out with all sorts and sizes of new and innovative gadgets! A few months ago, Apple released the iPad mini and it’s no secret that most smartphones possess the most basic functions of a tablet. Today, we’re featuring The Pocket TV, a connecting dongle that creates a regular TV screen into a “smart” TV. 

The Pocket TV is a clever device that is portable (hence the name The Pocket TV) and useful. The concept is brilliant and the ways in which it can be used is numerous. With this dongle, you can easily transform a TV screen into a projector so you can give presentations during a meeting, edit a document as a team, stream videos during an event, and of course, do all your leisurely web browsing activities. With The Pocket TV, you don’t have to spend extra money renting a blank screen or a projector but simply hook up an unused TV screen to add visual flair to your next meeting or event!

The Pocket TV is miniature powerhouse that has the potential to transform your next event! What do you think about The Pocket TV? Is this something you would invest in? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter


Tech Tuesday: SOSCharger

Tech Tuesday highlights the best and brightest ideas in the tech world. ABCey would like to recognize these up and coming companies for their innovative ideas and ability to think outside the box!

They say time is money and with your phone, you’re definitely able to maximize your time. But there are those unfortunate days you forget to charge your phone and the battery dies when you need your phone the most. At ABCey, we know how important your phone is (we’ve been reviewing the most helpful apps, after all!) and on today’s Tech Tuesday, we’re featuring SOSCharger, the self-powered smartphone or iPhone charger!

Especially for all you super organized, schedule-conscious people out there (we’re talking to you, event planners), losing your phone in the middle of the day can create some serious roadblocks. We love recommending apps for you to use, whether it’s for an upcoming wedding or a holiday occasion, but with a dead phone, the apps are dead too! The SOSCharger lets you charge your phone on-the-spot, so you don’t have to search for an outlet if you’re on the road, in the house, on the plane, or in the middle of nowhere. All you need to pack is the SOSCharger and your usual USB cable. 

We recommend the SOSCharger because it’s best to be prepared for the worst, and sometimes, the worst is when your phone dies right before an important meeting, or event! Is the SOSCharger something you’d fine worthwhile? Let us know in the comments below and Facebook & Twitter!


Tech Tuesday: Nomad Go Everywhere

Tech Tuesday highlights the best and brightest ideas in the tech world. ABCey would like to recognize these up and coming companies for their innovative ideas and ability to think outside the box!

What’s a morning without coffee? And a meeting without coffee? And a morning conference without complimentary coffee? Days without a steaming cup of brewed coffee seem challenging at best for those coffee lovers out there, but  you’ll never be coffee-less again with the Nomad Go Everywhere espresso machine.


Tiny in size and efficient in coffeemaking, the Nomad Go Everywhere can travel short and long distances literally in your handbag. The Nomad is roughly the size of a 6 inch cube and weighs about 2 ½ pounds. The pump lever produces up to 9 bars of pressure and enables users to have control over the usual mechanical features including water temperature, pressure, flow rate and volume.

All you need is access to hot water, and you don’t even need electricity! Just add your favorite ground coffee to the hot water and pump to get your daily dose. And, it gets better! The Nomad can be accessorized with the True Crema Valve which turns normal coffee into quality espresso.

What does this mean for you? Well this means you’ll never have a cranky morning again. The Nomad can accompany you and your next event whatever the occasion. Whether you’re in a meeting or on the road, or simply need to provide guests with the familiar espresso, rest assured your coffee can follow along wherever you go.

Is this something worth investing in? Let us know what you think of the Nomad Go Everywhere in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter!

 

 

 


Tech Tuesday: The Vamp

Tangled wires, bulky cables, heavy soundboards? No thank you! We understand there’s a lot going on during an event and music is always a must. But, providing music at an event can quickly become complicated if you don’t have the funds to hire a professional DJ. Luckily, the new Bluetooth speaker The Vamp, makes this easier.

The Vamp gets its name in its mission to “Revamp” old speakers. In its most basic form, The Vamp is a sound receiver that is portable, stylish, and affordable for any event that is in need of a quick background music fix. The concept is simple: it connects to any speaker (old, new, small, or large) through an audio cable and plays music from the nearest Bluetooth device such as your smartphone or laptop.

The high quality of sound is not compromised by its low price and it supplies its own energy source with a built-in battery that eliminates an annoying external power chord. The tiny size also allows it to host special events or simply tag along to a friend’s house for a jam session. What we love most about The Vamp is the fact that its inner magnetic bottom allows it stick onto any metal surface – quirky and useful! 

The Vamp is revamping not just old speakers, but also music production at events! What do you think about The Vamp? Will you be testing it out? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter!


Illuminode: Mind Glowing Social Technology

Are you looking for something to “brighten up” your next event? Let us introduce you to Illuminode, where lighting meets art, technology and a completely new type of media for socializing. Illuminode creates full-spectrum, interactive LED illumination for fashion, brands, events, artists, architects and beyond. Since we’re fairly concerned with events over here at ABCey, we thought would look into it more for you...

They aren’t just creating “pretty lights” for an event; their initiative is to create a new way for devices to connect and communicate wirelessly to form social relationships the same way that people do. The Illuminode team consists of  electrical engineers, logistics specialists, and designers who create these large scale social technologies. One of their first prototypes and one of our favorites are the “Social Umbrellas.” The LED umbrellas are inherently social and will not work alone. When joined by two or more noded umbrellas they explode in a brilliant display of sequenced light!

We also absolutely love the Billion Jelly Bloom projects where Illuminode integrates their wireless Blinkternet modules into the wonderful creatures to provide a brand new interactive experience!

Illuminode devices should have particular appeal to event planners with their easy and simple set-up. Do you think you will try this “mind-glowing social technology” for your next event? How do you think your audience/guests could use these devices to interact, or to help facilitate and reinforce relationships? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter!