davidology: (Default)


is pleased to announce

the birth of a bouncing baby Roomba 550,

on October 28, 2007, at 15:27,

in Manhattan Beach, California, Costco,

weighing in at 12 pounds, 8 ounces,

13.5 inches, 36 MHz

Haven't chosen a final name, but thinking "Doral" since it's a 5th generation Roomba, and that's the name of the 5th Cylon model.

I've had to robot-proof the house. I keep having to chase it and yell at it for going the wrong way. So far Doral has managed to knock over things, lock itself in my bathroom twice, unplug my laptop about 5 times, and get stuck under the couch. It really hates the yoga ball.

I can't wait 'til it grows up and takes over the world.
davidology: (Default)
SQUEEEEE! Helloooooo, Moto!

Motorola finally released the S9 headphones I've been dying to try out. Unfortunately, my last pair of BT headphones didn't quite live up to their usefulness. The fact is they were simply just too big. I felt like Princess Leah wearing the things. On top of that, they were a little on the heavy side and, well, the needless blinking blue lights on either side made me worry about jets trying to land on my head.

Enter the S9!

Motorola S9 Bluetooth Stereo Headphones

These things are, so far, the most practical I've seen. First of all, thery're earbuds, of which I'm a fan. My Sony FONtopias are by far my favorite headphones. They pretty much rawk anything inexpensive I've tried, and the bass is unparalleled in an earbud. Secondly, they're much more nondescript than the last ones. I'm pretty much of the belief that headphones should be heard and not seen.

My music player and earphones aren't fashion statments. I almost never wear white headphones that stand out (unless I'm wearing a white shirt). Otherwise, my little black wires run underneath my shirt and into the pocket where my music device is hidden. Considering there's a battery, charging port, and power switch, these aren't a bad compromise.

Motorola S9 Bluetooth Stereo Headphones

Sound Quality

I have to admit, when I first tried them, they sounded pretty bad. I remembered how my FONtopias are very sensitive to positioning, so when I noticed replacement earbuds, I popped off the directional ones and placed the straight ones on. The difference in bass was immediately noticeable, and the sound in general improved 100%. I guess it probably depends on your ears as to which will work best for you, but, although a little big for my ears, the replacement mushroom-looking buds sound much better in my ears. The difference was immediately noticeable and it wasn't subtle. I'm not sure why Motorola preinstalled the other buds, but perhaps my ears are different. I won't say the sound is as good as my FONtopias, but there are a lot of factors that can be influencing the quality. I'm going to try a different music player on my mobile that has an equalizer later.

The buttons to answer calls and pause/play are on either ear. The next track and volume buttons are touch sensitive, so you just have to press your finger against them (this will take a little getting used to as every time I grab them, I'm setting something off).

The mic is embedded somewhere in the right ear bud. [I'll try this out later and fill in how that works]. If it works anything like the HT820s, the mic won't be an issue. When a call comes in, the music of course pauses, and you can take the call right in the headphones. Once the call ends, the music automatically picks up from where it left off.

Motorola S9 Bluetooth Stereo Headphones

Another great feature of these, the device can pair with up to 8 different devices! So you can use them as headphones for your computer at work, your cell phones, your notebook at home, home stereo, mp3 player, etc.

Motorola S9 Bluetooth Stereo Headphones

Anyway, so far I'm a fan. I'm going to try these out at the gym tonight (if it isn't too cold). It'll be nice to finally put the music playing capabilities of my cell phone to good use.

Oh, yes, and there are no obnoxiously large blinking lights on this one—just a little unobtrusive one that is underneath the battery compartment in the back.

Also, major props to Motorola for carrying this feature over: standard mini-USB charging jack.

[Additional Info -- 2007-04-19 21:49]
I had noticed some clipping on higher frequencies that was disconcerting, however, this appears to be limited to the software on the mobile device. After pairing it to the Windows installation on my ThinkPad, I can say the sound is VERY good for wireless headphones, and I've noticed no clipping at either low or high frequencies. So far this is the only other device I've tried it with. Although I successfully paired it to my Macbook as a headset, Apple's Bluetooth implementation on the Mac is incomplete and does not support the A2DP profile (which is required for stereo over BT).

davidology: (Default)
Moto HT820I reflashed the firmware in my cell with the latest version about a week ago. The new version supports A2DP Bluetooth profiles, which basically means, I can use Bluetooth stereo headphones with it now.

I've kind of been conflicted about the usefulness of these though. On the one hand, it's just cool. On the other, wireless headphones are much more obtrusive when compared to my earbuds. Sure, the earbuds are wired, but that wire is run down under my shirt and into my pocket. When I'm not using them, they just dangle at my collar. Perfect.

Back to the "pro" side, I would be able to use the media player on my phone and not carry around an mp3 player at the gym (the earbuds that came with my phone are horribly uncomfortable, and it's a proprietary plug to accommodate the mic).

Anyway, I grabbed a set of the Motorola HT820s from CompUSA and am taking advantage of the 21-days to try them out to see if I like them.

For the positives, I have to say, I do like being able to use my phone as my mp3 player. Since I carry my phone anyway, it's one less thing in my pocket. The other really wicked feature is for taking calls. If I forget to silence my ringer, I don't have to worry about the "I love Tito's Tacos" jingle blasting at full volume in my pocket annoying people, while I'm obliviously listening to my mp3 player. With the headphones, the music is paused, and the caller is announced in my ear so I can take the call. When the call is over, my tunes pick up where they left off.

Where the Moto shines above the others is in the mic. Instead of a boom that you have to lower on most of the BT headphones, the mic is located in/behind the USB/charger port (very nice use of space). USB, of course, is another bonus. I think from now that is going to be a requirement for all my cell products—makes traveling easier, and my roommate and I can leave chargers all over the house.

The negatives? Well, they're big. They're certainly not as nondescript as my earbuds, and I'm just not one of those guys who wears his mp3 player on his arm. I'm all about the technology being disguised. It's a little hard to do with these cups sitting off your ears. The little pulsating blue "M" on either ear doesn't help either. Fortunately, that can be turned off if you remember. Only problem is, it turns off all the indicator lights. Why Motorola can't just put a tiny little flashing status LED is beyond me, but they seem to prefer the "ZOMG LOOK AT THIS THING ON MY EAR" blinky light on most of their BT products.

Anyway, I'm still checking them out. The one thing I haven't tried yet is pairing it to my laptop. Supposedly, it can pair to two devices at once, which would be cool, but I'm concerned it will only use the handsfree profile with the phone once I do that. I'll play with that feature later. At this point, I'm leaning towards keeping them, but I wouldn't mind trying out some others (I'm so afraid of commitment).
davidology: (hyper)

The sunroof on my car has gone retarded. It will randomly open on its own (generally at freeway speeds), and sometimes prefers not to open or close all the way. It's been getting worse, so I brought it to the dealer this morning where I think they've ordered it a new brain.

While I waited for them to tell me what was wrong, I started looking again at the G35 coupe, since I've been considering that as a replacement when my lease is up. I was disappointed as the coupe is missing a few things (like memory seats). As I was sitting in it, I also wasn't sure if a coupe like that was really "me." It just didn't feel right. I'd never really considered the sedan because (a) it has had a weaker engine than the coupe; (b) it is was generally less-feature rich than the sedan; (c) is was too boxy.

Until 2005.

The new front of the G35 sedan looks almost identical to its sister coupe

I hadn't been paying attention, but Infiniti has raised the bar on the sedan. They've given it more aggressive styling (the front is nearly identical to the coupe now). They've added a sport-tuned suspension and upped the gadgets so that it now surpasses the coupe in some regards. They've even given it the same engine now, so there are no horsepower differences between the two.

Infiniti G35's new Intelligent KeyIn fact, they've given it Infiniti's new Intelligent Key. I held my poker face as he told me, but truly, I nearly creamed my pants. This effectively makes the key obsolete.

The way it works is, as long as long as the fob is in your pocket, and you're within 2 meters of the car, you can open the doors, trunk, and even start the ignition! You never have to remove the fob (or its hidden key) from your pocket! (Although there isn't much room, because I so have a boner thinking about this).

The bad part is, I pretty much think I want this car (unless someone has some other suggestion). Infiniti has a deal right now where you can supposedly get out of your old lease a few months early. I may try to take them up on it.

Honestly, luxury can kiss my ass. When it comes down to it, I'm just such a technology whore.

Where's the dotted line so I can sign my life away?!


davidology: (Default)

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