Luci Lux and Luci EMRG by MPOWERD

Luci LIteAs a mom of two Cub Scouts, one of whom is becoming a Boy Scout this month, I’m excited to have the opportunity to review these two solar lanterns from a CES 2015 Innovation Awards Honoree for the Luci EMRG.

These inflatable, solar powered lanterns are waterproof- a great solution for the outdoor life. They are compact when deflated. and lightweight, so they would be great to carry in a pack for an overnight camp-out. They’re also good to have in the car or around the house for emergency lighting during a power outage.

The Luci Lux is slightly bigger than the EMRG with 10 LED lights. It has 3 settings- bright, super bright, and flashing. It still only weighs 4 oz, and will run 12 hours max on the bright setting. 8 hours is the full charge time on the solar panels. You can purchase the Lux for $19.99.

Luci Lux - 2The EMRG is smaller and more compact with 4 LED lights that still are pretty powerful. This one has 4 settings- bright, super bright, flashing, and an SOS mode-which flashes red and white light. It weighs 2.5 oz. It can give up to seven hours of light if at full charge, and if not used, it will keep 95% of it’s charge each month, so you can use it straight out of the drawer or bag, even if you have not charged it that day. The EMRG is well-priced at $9.99. You can buy these and other Luci lanterns on their website

The most impressive thing about this company is their goal to provide their product to developing countries- those in need of “Solar Justice.” You can help put lights into the hands of those living in energy poverty by giving a donation of $14.99 for the first light, and $9.99 for each additional light. You can learn more about MPOWERD’s Give Luci program here.

Kidz Gear Wired Headphones

Kidz Gear

Jayden likes his new headphones!

The kids always enjoy when Mark comes home from CES bearing gifts of product samples and swag from the convention. This year, we had the privilege of receiving a set of headphones for each of our three children from Kidz Gear.

Kidz Gear headphones are designed with kids in mind. The main feature is the KidzControl volume limit that maintains a safe limit of volume of up to 80% of maximum volume. There is a built-in volume knob to control the range of volume(within the safety limit). It puts a parent’s mind at ease that young eardrums are being protected.

These headphones are offered in a variety of colors, and at a great price of $19.99. They are very good quality and comfortable- even for this grown-up who sometimes steals her kids’ headphones on occasion.

Kidz Gear1There are also these headphones with the built in boom-microphone for $29.99. My daughter got a pair of these, and they are good for her on-line school since she needs to use a microphone to communicate in the virtual classrooms. The microphone can be moved out of the way when not in use.

Go check out these products at http://www.gearforkidz.com. You can get a free carry bag with the purchase of the headphones, and a free splitter when you order two- which can come in handy when you have more than one kid wanting to listen to something on the computer at the same time, and you want the peace and quiet.

Solowheel and Hovertrax from the Inventist

hovertraxToday’s review is of two new, cool gadgets that will propel you around and get you where you are going in style!  These were items that Mark came across at CES.  Next year, I’m going with him so I can experience all these cool things firsthand.

Hovertrax is like a light-weight, “look-Ma-no-hands” Segway! I could see people on the college campuses in our area riding around on these.  That is, if they want to pay $995 for one.  The Hovertrax goes 5 mph and will get you 8 miles before you have to charge it for 45 minutes.  This item is due to come out this year.

solowheelAnother thing that can move you at Inventist.com is the Solowheel.  If you have a little more money to spend($1595), you can ride this motorized unicycle without a seat around town, or around campus, too!  It’s a bit faster than Hovertrax- between 10 and 12 mph.  It runs for about 10 miles, and will need to charge for 3 to 5 hours after that.  The weight of the Solowheel is 24.25 lbs, and will hold up to 220 lbs.  It is supposed to be good for your core and balance.  When they reviewed it on the show “The Doctors,” the new rider reported it as being quite a workout, and, of course, it takes a little practice to be able to control it.

Solowheel Extreme promises higher efficiency in power, more sleek,an LED light for nighttime riding, and built-in Bluetooth capabilities. Apps for smartphones, tablets and watches will be available in the near future. The Solowheel Extreme is more expensive at $2,295. You can pre-order this item, and order all other items at The Inventist website.

We are here at CES 2015!

untitledWell, it is another first week in January, which means we are here for CES. If you are not familiar with it, it is a big consumer electronics trade show that occurs annually in Las Vegas, and The Geek Church is here.

Generally, I never really know what I am going to see here. The big names like Samsung, LG, Panasonic, and other of the big names will be making appearances, and some will have so much stuff on them I won’t be able to fit it in one article. Whatever the case, I will attempt to record it here.

Please remember that I am going to be doing double duty as I am also covering the event for The Gospel Herald. You can read my posts there for some of the most up-to-date information.

What I would expect at CES 2015, an extended Back to the Future II joke

Back to the future iiSince we are beginning 2015, it is a year that I have looked forward to for a long time. Why? Because in 1989, I was given a vision of it thanks to the Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis film Back to the Future II. At the time, 2015 was 26 years away, so here is what I am looking forward to seeing at CES 2015.

First, that flying car. It seems like 2015 was full of them by October 21st. I suppose that it will be expensive to hover covert them, but I noticed that there are “highways” in the sky in BTTF II. We really need to get those highways made.

Also, BTTF II says that the post office isn’t as good as the prediction of weather. It is odd that he knows when the rain will end, but it would have been cool if he used a smartwatch, tech we actually do have today.

Now, as far as hoverboards, we have them! They aren’t as good as those in BTTF II, but hey, we’ve got ten months before they become the latest fad by October.

I happened to notice a floating camera taking a picture for USA today. There was also a floating dog walker. I suppose that drones have become very popular by October, so I would imagine that we could have stuff by that time.

Just to let you know, I believe that BTTF II nailed a few things. The kids watch six different channels at once, I don’t think we are up to six just yet. The kids also wear some devices that look like Google Glasses, while their dad has a Skype Chat.

But double neckties, suspended animation kennels, bionics, and odd age-reducing surgeries are nowhere to be seen. Still, back in 1989, I thought it was one of the more realistic visions of the future that I had seen. Maybe because of all the futures that I had seen in speculative fiction movies, it was the least dark and depressing.