Ok, so maybe the Higgs Boson, something theorized in physics for a VERY long time, has a very weak connection to cellphones or electronics. But darn it! It’s so cool! If you don’t know what the Higgs Boson is and why it is important to everything physics, I’ll explain simply. The Higgs Boson is something that gives everything that has mass, mass. Something like a photon, that comes from the sun and can sometimes be a wave and sometimes be a particle, doesn’t have mass. But most particles have mass, we just didn’t know how. But thanks to CERN we may have finally found the Higgs Boson, which was theorized to exist because… We exist, and this planet exists, and mass exists. Everything that holds us all together is attached to the theory that the Higgs Boson is real.
For the first time in my life, I find myself jealous of African technology. Stuff published an article about how solar powered cell phones in Africa are greatly benefiting the country’s people who have very limited access to traditional power sources. The article does a great job of illustrating how local farmers and independent businessmen are benefiting from the solar technology, but what I want to know is: why the hell don’t we have it in America?
Apparently in Uganda, 92 percent of the country’s 32 million plus population do not have access to an electrical power grid, so, obviously, they have an enormous need for a product like solar powered cell phones. But what about us? I mean, we’re trying to go green here, right? Hey Nokia – I would like a solar powered cell phone too.
According to the article, Samsung makes a model called the Solar Guru, which features an FM radio, MP3 ring tones, embedded games, and a torch light that sells for 60 US dollars. How is this not in the hands of Leonardo DiCaprio on the cover of US Weekly? And getting off topic a bit, if a solar paneled cell phone is so cheap, why is it so expensive to solar panel the roof of your house?
I suppose that even though I don’t have access to one yet, it’s nice to know that companies are at least trying to develop more globally conscious products. Sony Ericson and Nokia are developing phones that use lower energy consumption, recycled materials, smaller packaging, and electronic user manuals. Until these products hit our market, though, don’t forget that the best way to go green with you cell phone is to purchase a refurbished cell phone!
The loudest buzz in the Blackberry community is all about the soon to be released Blackberry 9700 Bold, also being called the Onyx. The much-anticipated model is expected to be released before the end of the year. Originally, the device was thought to be an AT&T exclusive, but Al Sacco of CIO.com has recently released information from, according to him, the PR department of T-Mobile USA, which states that the Onyx will definitely be released on T-Mobile in the near future. T-Mobile is reported to have said:
“The BlackBerry ‘Onyx’ sports a premium experience and design with a high-gloss black finish and leather grain detail on the back. Boasting features such as high-speed 3G Web browsing, Wi-Fi calling, visual voicemail and support for corporate and personal e-mail options, the ‘Onyx’ will satisfy all your on-the-go needs. Also the phone comes preloaded with mobile applications from BlackBerry App World, including Amazon MP3 store for quick and easy music downloads and TeleNav GPS Navigator for turn-by-turn directions.”
Other rumored details of the device that have been posted on Crackberry.com include Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE , UMTS/HSDPA, 480×360 resolution display (Bold 9000 has a 480 x 320; 9700 display should be the same or very similar to the screen on the Curve 8900), Wi-Fi a,b,g, OS 5.0, QWERTY keyboard, 3.2 megapixel AF camera, and Bluetooth. The Onyx is also said to support WIFI calling, which is great for people who have come to use applications like Skype and Google Voice.
What seems to have Blackberry addicts most excited is that the 9700 Bold will be released with the new “Track Pad” instead of the traditional scroll ball. The track pad from the Curve 8520 has been getting great reviews, so enthusiasts can rest assured that they will not have to revert back the trackball. The new Bold is believed to have 256MB of application memory and the battery is expected to last much longer than the Blackberry 9000.
Undoubtedly, Blackberry Onyx will look great and perform it’s ass off but what has me concerned is the Bold’s faux leather back. I am all about taking risks and switching things up a bit, but what exactly are they going for here? I suppose the faux black leather looks alright in an “I’m in my grandmother’s SAAB” kind of way, but I saw a picture of a prototype with a brown faux leather, and the image that immediately came to mind was 80’s porn star. Hopefully, you’ll be able to opt out of the leather option entirely.
Would you hang up your cell phone in the car for a dollar? If so, drive to Boston where Jeff Larson is paying people who are driving and talking on their mobile phones a dollar to hang up. Jeff is the president of Safe Roads Alliance, a nonprofit group in Boston. His group has been trying to raise awareness about the dangers of using a mobile phone while driving through this roadside campaign that has been named “Bucks for Hang Ups.”
Larson has been standing on the side of the road near the Columbia Road exit off Interstate 93 South for about a week with a sign that reads: “Please, please, please, hang up and drive.” The back of his sign reads: “I’ll give you $1 if you hang up that call.’’ And he will. Larson has given away over a hundred dollars in a week, and he is prepared to give away four hundred more. Unfortunately for Larson, most people respond to him as they would to a homeless person panhandling for change. Even though he dresses in a suit and tie, Larson has been getting the finger all week. He says that people have actually been turning down the money.
Although no one likes being pestered at a red light, Larson’s cause is just. In addition to giving out a dollar for hang ups, he is handing out flyers that to inform drivers that they are four times more likely to get into a car accident if they are talking or texting while driving. The Harvard Center for Risk Analysis reports that 636,000 crashes and 2,600 deaths a year are related to cell phone usage. Larson commented that, “People just don’t drive well,” and I’d have to agree. There are already plenty of distractions for drivers like food, make up, and iPods. With BlueTooth earpieces being so cheap these days, it seems ridiculous to have to add cell phones to the list.
Larson plans on taking his campaign to Washington this week where US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood will be holding a summit on distracted driving. If you’ll be driving in the area, look for the guy in the suit trying to give away money. Wendy’s still has a dollar menu, right?
Yes, cordless electronics are great. No one wants to get off the couch to change the channel or have to constantly duck and dodge a web of curly cord while they’re on their house phone. And, yes, being able to talk on your cell phone in your car without a cord dangling from your ear is great, but where in the hell did people get the idea that wearing a Bluetooth headset at all times is a cool thing to do?
I consider myself a peaceful, logical, and generally accepting individual but when I see someone, obviously not talking to anyone, walking by with a hunk of blinking plastic hanging out of their ear, I am overcome with the urge to just smack the the thing off their face like a golf ball off a tee.
I mean, I understand that Bluetooth technology is great and that it’s very helpful to have use of both hands at all times, but how hard is it to keep the stupid looking thing in your pocket until you’re actually on the phone? It seems that people now feel that wearing a Bluetooth headset in your ear at all times has somehow become fashionable, but what I don’t understand is – according to whom? When asked about why giant fake diamond earring are cool, gelled up bros at the Jersey Shore can reference T.O. or the kids on Growing Up Gotti. And orange teenyboppers with sunglasses covering half of their faces have Lindsey Lohan and Nicole Ritchie to glorify as they regurgitate their cesar salads before fifth period. But who is the celebrity sporting their Bluetooth 24/7 that these people are imitating?
If famous people aren’t wearing Bluetooths, why do I feel like going grocery shopping is like being stuck in some Star Trek
convention? The devices aren’t expensive, so it can’t be a status symbol thing. Are there really that many doctors and drug dealers in my neighborhood who absolutely cannot miss a call?
There are now companies making “designer” Bluetooths for women that are supposed to look like big earrings. Great. Now there will be even more people standing behind me in the bank who I think are talking to me but are, instead, just on their invisible cellphone.
I admit, I have a Bluetooth, but I feel like an ass even using the thing in my car where it belongs. I think we need to come to a common understanding that hanging an electronic from your face is something that should be done as little possible in front of as few people as possible. America, trust me on this one.