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TheBolt

The official blog of Abt Electronics & Appliances

Archive for the ‘Technology News’ Category

TiVo Mini: A Whole Home Solution

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

tivo_mini

TiVo has officially launched the TiVo Mini, a DVR extender box that lets users of select TiVo DVRs watch their content on other TVs without needing to purchase another  TiVo recording device for each room in the house.

TiVo is releasing the TiVo Mini as a companion device to regular TiVo boxes, as it can stream both live and recorded TV.  It can even take advantage of services like YouTube, Spotify, Pandora and Hulu Plus ; set up recordings and more. This is perfect for those TiVo fanatics who have more than one TV in their home,.  Stay connected and use the great features TiVo has to offer,

PlayStation 4: What to Expect…

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

playstation 4 controller

Last night, Sony announced the release of their newest gaming console, the PlayStation 4.  The news has been 7 years in the making since the release of the PlayStation 3 back in 2006, and since then, rumors, mock-ups, ideas and opinions of the next console have been swirling around the internet ever since.  With great fanfare and a 2-hour unveiling, Sony goes over the meat of their newest console with great hype, but no image of the final product.  This only adds to the interest and general excitement for the impending PlayStation 4.  Here’s what we know, thus far:

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Samsung Meets SodaStream

Friday, February 15th, 2013

Samsung-refridgerator

At CES 2013 this year, it was pretty interesting to see appliances enter the fray of the world’s biggest electronics show.  One of the leaders in technologically advanced appliances has been Samsung.  They recently  announced their new 36” four-door refrigerator will have the industry’s first-ever automatic sparkling water dispenser.

It will be powered by SodaStream, which will allow you to pour yourself cold, bubbly water any time of the day.  The filtered sparkling water will come through the dispenser on the fridge door that already delivers water and ice.  Just add your favorite SodaStream flavoring and make soda in moments.

Jenn-Air Ventilation system brings iconic persona to your kitchen

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

A luxury kitchen is more than the sum of its appliances. A focal point of the home, it makes a statement about you to your guests. Appliances serve more than merely the expected function, but personify and reveal your personality. This February when Jenn-Air unveils its Accolade™ Downdraft Ventilation System, it will command attention for both its iconic design and its extraordinary performance.

This 36-inch, super-premium downdraft ventilation system will generate a lot of noise in the media, but not in the upscale kitchens in which it will silently premiere. Exquisitely fashioned from glass and stainless steel, the Accolade™ Downdraft Ventilation System has a timeless design that is reminiscent of the graceful, soaring curves of the Gateway Arch.

JXD7836BS Accolade in set

 

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Google Adds Ski Slopes to their Google Maps App

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

“Let’s hit the slopes brah!”  Probably a phrase you’ve never heard, nor ever said, but with Google’s new Ski Slopes Map App, you can check out nearby ski slopes and get your shredder on.

google-maps-ski-resorts

Google Maps app, available for free on Android devices and iPhone,  now includes 38 new maps of ski runs and lifts from some of the most popular ski resorts in the United States and Canada.

The way it works is that the app marks green, blue and black runs — the colors ski resorts use to indicate a slope’s difficulty — which appear on the screen as solid colored lines.  If you are looking for ski lifts, they are registered as dotted lines.  The app is excellent if you are looking to start with the slope that best suits your needs, or if you end up getting lost in the snow.  If you are  a skiing aficionado, this app is perfect for you.

3D Printer Creates Winterfell from Game of Thrones!

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Winterfell from Game of Thrones is brought to life by 3D printer

Seriously, it seems like we can post about the awesome things 3D printers can do every day.  From our first story about the Epson 3D printer, to recreating epic dinosaurs, 3D printing is getting a LOT of press.

Recently, Daniel Ammann, the Executive Vice President of Research and Development at u-blox, a Swiss semiconductor company.  Ammann decided to create Winterfell from the incredible Game of Thrones books based on the model from the HBO series.  Ammann states, “It was the MakerBot article in Wired which brought me to the idea of buying a 3-D printer”.   “And then time over the Christmas break, together with watching the second season of Game of Thrones and the desire to learn a CAD tool sparked this project.”  A little technical ingenuity, love for a great TV show, and access to a 3D printer and voila!

3d printed winterfell from game of thrones

 Image courtesy of Wired.com

Pretty impressive indeed.  3D printing is starting to become more readily available to the general public and people are becoming more creative with the results.  What would you like to see created on a 3D printer?

Dyson Airblade Tap: Revolutionizing Hand Drying, Again

Monday, February 4th, 2013

The Dyson Airblade Tap further improves upon the company’s innovative hand dryers

Dyson is best known as the maker of powerful bagless vacuum cleaners and the “Air Multiplier” bladeless fans. But many consumers don’t realize that Dyson also makes an innovative restroom hand-dryer, known as the Airblade.  The Dyson Airblade subverts the thinking behind traditional air hand dryers, which use heated but slow-moving air to dry your hands. Instead, the Airblade shoots air out of a pair of opposing slots at nearly 400 miles per hour. These curtains of powerful air envelope your hands, squeegeeing the water off in just 12 seconds. The process is more sanitary and energy-efficient than normal hand dryers, and more environmentally-friendly than using paper towels.

We thought it was a pretty awesome concept, enough to not only carry the Dyson Airblade, but also install it in all of our store bathrooms. Well, Dyson has spent the last few years making the Airblade even better. They did this by integrating the drying technology right into an automatic faucet to create the Dyson Airblade Tap.

dyson airblade tap

The Dyson Airblade Tap dispenses water like a traditional automatic faucet.

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PBS documents world of “professional” video gamers who get paid

Saturday, February 2nd, 2013

Who says playing video games is a waste of time?  Personally, i remember many hours upon hours, sitting with my friends racing, shooting, or fighting each other.  All in digital form of course.  From Nintendo, to Sega, to PlayStation, they have consumed many a childhood and, for some, even their adult lives.  Video gaming is becoming more and more recognized and respected, sometimes surpassing the quality and stories of blockbuster movies.  Heck, video games have even been trouncing Hollywood these last few years.

For all the parents out there who have shouted at their kids to “stop playing video games and go outside!”. Or for the parents who took away video games to punish obsessive players, PBS has a short document that may make them think otherwise.  PBS’ web series entitled, PBS Off Book showcases the world of video game competition.

An intriguing documentary, with a variety of input from MIT sociologist T.L. Taylor. And it offers up a good glimpse for those of us who love to play video games, but will still get beaten by some kid you’ve never met, across the world.  What do you think?  If you had a chance, would you practice video game playing like you would a sport?

4K TV Broadcasts Have Arrived. Kind of.

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

 4K TV Broadcasts get one step closer to reality

LG EVENT 1

We’ve been talking a lot about Ultra High Definition TV, aka 4K TV, on the Abt Blog lately. The first UHDTV sets made their way into our showroom in the last few months and were met with quite a bit of excitement, with several already having been purchased. All possible superlatives have been used to describe the image quality; it’s been established that 4K video is out of this world.

But, as with any bleeding-edge technology, there’s been lots of talk about the downsides. Chief among the complaints is the glaring lack of readily available content, and how unlikely it is that we’ll see a 4K TV broadcast anytime soon. Well, it’s possible that you won’t have to wait as long as feared to watch the biggest football game in the world in glorious 4K.

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Thunderbolt Technology Transfers at the Speed of Lightning

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

One of the developments from CES 2013 that didn’t get much fanfare was the noticeable increase in product support for the Thunderbolt standard. Because it’s just an interface, it didn’t attract the attention that flashy TVs or flexible smartphones may have. But the growing adoption of the Thunderbolt technology is something that will greatly benefit everyone who consumes large amounts of data.

thunderbolt-logo

Thunderbolt is a new computer peripheral connection standard that was created as a collaborative effort between Intel and Apple. It’s a multi-function interface that can transfer data (like the current USB connection) or video (like DVI/VGA ports on your computer monitor). We’re going to skip over most of the technical specifics of the technology, and jump right into the two areas we think Thunderbolt will benefit you most: speed of data transfer and ease of connecting peripherals.

Thunderbolt and lightning, very very frightening (speeds)

A Thunderbolt connection increases transfers speeds of data by about 2000% over the standard USB 2.0 connection on your typical home computer. Yes, 20 times the speed. What that means for you is greatly reduced wait times when, say, moving photos from your memory card to your computer. The Thunderbolt connection will be able to transfer a 4GB card filled with photos in a matter of seconds. No more waiting around for 15 or 20 minutes while an entire vacation-worth of photos slowly moves onto your hard drive. (more…)