Wi-Fi Alternative Could Help Build The Internet of Things

Taylor Alexander, a robotics engineer, has developed a work-in-progress project called Flutter as a Wi-Fi alternative. This “second network” can cover 100 times as great an area, with a range of 3,200 feet, with little power used. The project came about after Alexander attempted to connect sensors to one another during an app redesign on a project and found that Flutter could expand the potential of the Internet of Things, where all devices despite their size are connected to the Internet. Continue reading Wi-Fi Alternative Could Help Build The Internet of Things

Wearable Tech: NFC Ring Designed to Unlock New Possibilities

A Kickstarter-funded UK company led by app developer John McLear has created a piece of jewelry with built-in RFID technology that can be used to unlock doors and mobile phones, start a car, transfer information, link people and more. The NFC Ring, which never needs charging, provides users with the option of public and private inlays for secure information sharing. The Kickstarter campaign concluded last week and dramatically exceeded its target goal by raising about $380,000. Continue reading Wearable Tech: NFC Ring Designed to Unlock New Possibilities

Smartwatch with Google Now May Be Best Contextual Device

Most smartwatches currently on the market or in development are essentially extensions of one’s smartphone. But a really attractive smartwatch will be one that can offer contextual information when needed. Larger companies may have the edge in providing sources of data for using this type of information. An example of this potential functionality is a watch that integrates with Google Now, Google’s contextual search and personal data assistant. Continue reading Smartwatch with Google Now May Be Best Contextual Device

SmartThings Launches Online Market for Internet of Things

In an effort to promote its own Internet-of-Things devices, startup SmartThings is launching an online marketplace that offers starter kits and an array of devices and solution sets that help manage the home. SmartThings first launched its products via Kickstarter in September, including a hub and variety of sensors to track movement and manage devices, providing users with home automation solutions controlled largely by smartphones. Continue reading SmartThings Launches Online Market for Internet of Things

Omate SmartWatch Project Reaches Funding Goal On First Day

Omate’s TrueSmart is a standalone, water-resistant smartwatch that hit its $100,000 Kickstarter funding target on the first day (at press time, the project had raised $249,722 since August 21). The Android-powered TrueSmart — which will compete with upcoming devices from Samsung, Apple, Microsoft and others — features a TFT by LG display, multi-touch capacitive touchscreen, 5-megapixel camera, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and 2G/3G data connectivity abilities. Continue reading Omate SmartWatch Project Reaches Funding Goal On First Day

Will Independent Musicians Survive in Streaming Music Era?

In the era of online streaming music, many bands and musicians have formed their own labels in order to maintain control, resulting in both risks and benefits. As a result they may lose traditional industry support, but gain more artistic and business freedom. The Internet is seen as an equalizing force that provides musicians with new ways to engage with their fans and distribute their own music. However, it remains to be seen if this model is sustainable. Continue reading Will Independent Musicians Survive in Streaming Music Era?

Kickstarter Project Makes Cloud Storage as Simple as a Plug

Plug is a small network connected device that enables users to convert a portable hard drive into private cloud storage that can be shared between PCs, smartphones and tablets. The creators are looking to create a more secure alternative to services such as Dropbox to store, preserve and share data. With 38 days remaining, the Kickstarter campaign has already significantly exceeded its original $69,000 goal (as of press time, the total was $736,790). Continue reading Kickstarter Project Makes Cloud Storage as Simple as a Plug

Industry Leaders Share Thoughts at the Aspen Ideas Festival

Now in its ninth year, the Aspen Ideas Festival (June 26-July 2) gathers thought leaders from a wide range of areas such as economics, policy, environment, science, education, arts, global affairs and philosophy. Presented by the Aspen Institute and The Atlantic, this year’s event includes discussions on a number of compelling media topics. We’ve gathered some of the more interesting quotes from leaders in social media, film and television, online distribution and more. Continue reading Industry Leaders Share Thoughts at the Aspen Ideas Festival

Ouya and Nvidia Releasing Android-Based Gaming Consoles

This week, game console startup Ouya and interactive graphics company Nvidia are introducing Android-based gaming systems that can be connected to big screen TVs, and looking to take advantage in the growth of mobile device gaming. Ouya is looking to challenge Microsoft and Sony with its own low cost gaming console. Nvidia has developed Shield, a mobile device with a built-in display, which can also be connected to TVs and computers.  Continue reading Ouya and Nvidia Releasing Android-Based Gaming Consoles

Will Tumblr and Twitter Define the Future of Television?

Goldman Sachs recently reported that TV ratings have dropped by 50 percent over the last ten years, “the sharpest pace on record.” Ratings in the coveted 18-to-49-year-old demographic fell by 17 percent last winter compared with the previous year. Since 2004, studies have suggested that TV viewing would be one of the first leisure activities to be impacted by the Internet. However, while TV remains the dominant medium, digital natives are also turning to new forms of entertainment. Continue reading Will Tumblr and Twitter Define the Future of Television?

New Milestone: 100,000 Projects Crowdfunded via Kickstarter

Kickstarter announced yesterday that the crowdfunding service has reached a new milestone by launching more than 100,000 projects. Nearly 44 percent of the projects have been successfully funded by a total of $535 million. The top categories for launched projects include Film & Video, Music, Publishing, Art and Games. If its current funding rate continues, the service could raise its first billion as early as sometime this year. Continue reading New Milestone: 100,000 Projects Crowdfunded via Kickstarter

TV Veteran Questions Value of Kickstarting Known Artists

Veteran television writer/director/producer Ken Levine suggested on his blog last week that Big Hollywood has no business financing projects via Kickstarter, an approach he believes should be reserved for the little guy. He references actor/filmmaker Zach Braff, who has raised nearly $2.6 million through the crowdfunding site to finance “Wish I Was Here,” his follow-up to “Garden State.” Levine believes offering Braff money “defeats the whole purpose of Kickstarter.” Continue reading TV Veteran Questions Value of Kickstarting Known Artists

Vimeo On Demand Gets Exclusive Distribution of New Movie

Actress Kristen Bell may soon become the poster child for a new era of film production and distribution. Following the success of a new “Veronica Mars” project crowdfunded via Kickstarter, which reached its $2 million goal in just 10 hours, Bell’s upcoming indie film “Some Girl(s)” is slated for a June 28 release in theaters and online through Vimeo’s new VOD platform. This could mark another change in the digital distribution of media. Continue reading Vimeo On Demand Gets Exclusive Distribution of New Movie

Kickstarter-Funded Lynx 3D Camera Works as Advertised

Since a group of students from the University of Texas unveiled the Lynx A 3D camera project on Kickstarter earlier this year, it has raised far beyond the project’s $50,000 fundraising goal. And as of last week, Lynx Laboratories was getting ready to ship out the first cameras. At the DEMO Mobile SF event, Engadget had an opportunity to demo a prototype, watching firsthand as the camera scanned a person’s head in real time. Continue reading Kickstarter-Funded Lynx 3D Camera Works as Advertised

Veronica Mars Movie Funded on Kickstarter: New Model?

As of this writing, the Kickstarter campaign for the “Veronica Mars” movie is over. It broke fundraising records and took in more than $5 million in crowdfunding. Launched just one month ago by show creator Rob Thomas and actress Kristen Bell, the campaign has raised the topic of whether or not fan-funded projects could change the way films are being made, particularly for projects with rabid fan bases. Continue reading Veronica Mars Movie Funded on Kickstarter: New Model?

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