Snowboarding and Skiing Goes High Tech with Recon’s Snow2

For those avid snowboarders and skiers out there who want to record, time, and gamily their experience on the slopes you are going to want to check this out.

Recon Instruments is a leader in the heads-up-display (HUD) market for sports and they just announced the availability of their 4th-gen Snow product called the Recon Snow2. Snow2 is basically a pair of smart goggles for skiers and snowboarders. Past generations of Snow have sold over 50,000 units according to Recon.

Whats great about the Snow2 is that it is designed to work with existing goggles from the world’s leading manufacturers including Oakley, Smith, Scott, Uvex, Alpina, Briko and Zeal. The Snow2 is also available for sale as a stand-alone unit.

Recon’s Snow2 has the following features right out of the box:

  • Performance Stats: Vital information from speed, vertical descent, jump airtime, navigation and distance are calculated and displayed using a built-in precision GPS and an integrated suite of sensors.
  • Navigation & Buddy Tracking: Built-in GPS that enables full resort navigation, and when paired with a compatible Android or iOS device, provides real-time buddy tracking.
  • Smartphone Connectivity: Pairing it with a compatible Android or iOS smartphone will allow users to receive texts, display calls and access music player controls all from within the HUD.
  • Data Viewing and Social Media Connectivity: Users can review and store stats and achievements, and share them via social media accounts.

You can check out the Snow2 on Recon’s site or at Apple.com which is also selling it.



Proof of concept wearable tech project from MIT Media Lab is a trackpad that can be fitted to the nail of a thumb:

Researchers at the MIT Media Laboratory are developing a new wearable device that turns the user’s thumbnail into a miniature wireless track pad.

They envision that the technology could let users control wireless devices when their hands are full — answering the phone while cooking, for instance. It could also augment other interfaces, allowing someone texting on a cellphone, say, to toggle between symbol sets without interrupting his or her typing. Finally, it could enable subtle communication in circumstances that require it, such as sending a quick text to a child while attending an important meeting.

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You’re looking at a video clip recorded on a prototype camera that powers itself without needing a battery or electric cord. This innovation might represent the early stages of something big, not just for snapping selfies or recording the latest funny thing your cat is doing, but more as an enabler of the ubiquitous sensing that will be at the heart of the Industrial Internet.

The Columbia University computer scientists and engineers who created it say they are aiming to build computer eyes that can last forever without a tether. Their breakthrough came in marrying the fundamentals of how a solar panel operates with the light-capturing function of video camera image sensors.

“Digital imaging is expected to enable many emerging fields including wearable devices, sensor networks, smart environments, personalized medicine, and the Internet of Things,” said computer scientist Shree Nayar, the head of the Columbia Vision Lab and inventor of the device. “A camera that can function as an untethered device forever—without any external power supply—would be incredibly useful.” Learn more and see pics below.

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Wearable Device Reads Text for the Blind

FingerReader is a wearable ring that scans written text and reads it out loud to visually impaired readers.

The prototype is created by MIT Media Lab’s Fluid Interfaces Group.  As readers trace lines of text with their finger, the camera determines the words on the page and translates the text to speech to recite each word out loud to the reader. The ring will vibrate if the user’s finger starts to shift off the correct line of text, or if they’ve reached the end of the line.

When moving to a new line, the device compares the words it’s already processed to make sure it doesn’t repeat a piece of text.

While only in the prototype stage, if successful, this piece of wearable tech could render braille books obsolete.  What other types of technology have you see that help those with disabilities?


The Potential of Google Glass

Creative agency, Purple Rock Scissors, has put together a great concept video really showing the potential of Google Glass. Their ideas span across a number of everyday activities including:

– Food & Diet
– Instructional
– Educational
– Social
– Productivity
– Entertainment
– Athletics & Training

Which one of these are you most excited becoming a reality?

Didn’t get an iWatch?

Other awesome wearable tech pieces to covet

The most hyped wearable tech accessory yet goes to Apple’s iWatch out on April 24th. Between Karl Lagerfeld’s custom-made $32,000 version to Beyonce’s only-two-in-the-world gold band iWatch, fashion is all over it.

Beyonce snapped wearing her custom gold iWatch.

But what if you can’t justify springing for the iWatch or don’t wear a watch? Check out these other super cool wearable tech devices that can be incorporated into a very stylish OOTD.

‘UP24®’ Fitness Wristband

Tory Burch for Fitbit Fret Double Wrap Bracelet

Tory Burch Tory Burch For Fitbit Silicone Printed Bracelet

Fitbit Pendant Necklace

FITBIT Hi-tech Accessories

With new options from some of fashion’s biggest designers including Rebecca Minkoff and Michael Kors, look out for more to come in 2015!

NEW ON WANTERING: Check out how your favorite wardrobe must-haves are doing on social media with our new social hottness score. Just search and click on any item on Wantering to see who’s been sharing and wearing it.   

Official Blocks News

by Giulio Minotti, Phonebloks

The development of the first modular smartwatch proceeds apace. In the last newsletter the Blocks team presented a second functional prototype smaller than the first and more powerful. As with Project Ara, the modules can now be customized with interchangeable covers. The Blocks team presented new prototypes of the modules with a new design and new colors. The pre-sale of the first modular smartwatches went very well with 1000 units sold in just two days! The team has also won the People’s Choice Award at Intel’s Make It Wearable finals and there presented the first prototypes to the CEO’s of Intel, Nike and Louis Vuitton. On a side note: Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, is also excited about Blocks! 


Wearable Tech: Head & Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Think Wearable Tech is just about Pebble and Google Glass? This infographic by footwear retailer Brantano, breaks down this technology by body part to give you the real lay of the land.

Awesome to see InteraXon’s Muse on the list as well as the Apple Smart Shoe.

Source: http://mashable.com/2013/05/04/wearable-tech-fashion/

'Wearable devices—technology that people will want to display on their bodies, for all to see—represent a new threshold in aesthetics. The tech companies that mastered design will now need to conquer the entirely different realm of fashion. And that could require technologists to unlearn a great deal of what they think they know.'


Okay, well, maybe “computer” is a stretch, but this ring abacus is from the Qing Dynasty, which reigned in China from 1644 to 1912.  The ring, which is a fully functional counting machine at 1cm x 0.5cm big, is made of seven rods with seven beads that are seamless in their construction, even when viewed under a microscope. 

HTC to release wearable device this year, feels ‘positive and optimistic about 2014’

From Bloomberg:

HTC Corp. (2498) said an updated version of the One smartphone, its first wearable device and a renewed focus on marketing will help turn around the company this year after two straight annual declines in revenue.

“We feel positive and optimistic about 2014 when compared to 2013,” Chang Chialin, chief financial officer and head of global sales for the Taoyuan, Taiwan-based company, said in an interview yesterday at Bloomberg’s headquarters in New York. He declined to provide a forecast ahead of an investor conference call scheduled for Feb. 10.

Once the leading smartphone maker in the U.S., HTC’s sales dropped 30 percent last year as product delays and a shrinking marketing budget caused it to lose share to LG Electronics Inc. and Lenovo Group Ltd. A wearable device will be available by this year’s Christmas shopping season after years of development and technical challenges, Chairman Cher Wang said.

Read more by clicking on the source link.

Image credit: CNET


by Giulio Minotti, Phonebloks 

At its 2nd annual developers conference, held in San Francisco, Samsung announced Simband, a new modular smartband. Samsung says that Simband is “capable of integrating the most advanced sensing technologies in the world”. Simband is an open developer platform, consists of a smartwatch unit and a wristband connector that holds custom sensor modules. Developers can modify, build and integrate their own custom modular health sensors.

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