Archive for August, 2013

Speculative Fiction Saturday: The Final Cut

Final CutLately, I have been reviewing films that are more fantasy than science fiction. This is good, since I like to talk about speculative fiction films that discuss how technology can change society, and it usually isn’t in a good way.

The Final Cut would probably be one of those, but I don’t think I feel comfortable classifying it as science fiction. I mean, it takes place in the future, and it deals with advanced technology (tech we don’t yet have). The Final Cut doesn’t show a future of flying cars or towering buildings, but it does have an interesting film noir look. Most of the technology is made of wood and glass, and I guess the best comparison would be Gattaca, which maybe I’ll discuss at some other time.

The Final Cut is about Robin Williams, and he plays a guy that has some inner joy that is not understood by the society around him and is therefore shunned. No, but that is his movie formula. In this film, he plays a really sad, sad guy. Seriously, I don’t think he smiles once, and I just know he was repressing one of his horrific stream-of-consciousness routines.

Anyway, Williams plays a cutter, a guy who essentially takes taped videos from memory implants and edits them together for a final viewing funeral or “Rememory”. This is a pretty far-out premise, and the film begins with three laws, like an Isaac Asimov robot story. In all honesty, it sort of confused me. Oh, before these laws, there is a scene where a child Robin Williams took part in killing another kid.

One day, when Williams is editing some guy’s footage and discovers that the kid he supposedly help kill has grown up to be an adult. Yes, it is pretty weird that he recognizes him as an adult, but apparently, this kid’s death had always haunted him and he spends the rest of the film trying to find out who this mystery man is.

Mixed up in this plot are people who protest against this new memory implant technology. These people wear tattoos that block their memory implants, so their memories will never be put on tape. I actually see that as a realistic response to this conjectured technology, and this is one of many plot twists in this film.

I found this film was somewhat hard to follow, but I can’t say that I hated it. I’m not exactly in a rush to watch it again to catch things that I missed last time. I think it is a brilliant concept for a film, but it doesn’t look like it well-remembered.

Posted by on August 31st, 2013 No Comments

Incipio Part 4: The Stashback for the iPhone 5

Incipio StashbackI have been seeing a lot of smartphone cases, and they usually have one thing in common: they can store cash and credit cards. I am talking about cases like the QCard case by CM4.

I can see why. People want less pocket bulk, and if you only need your wallet for credit cards and your driver’s license, why bother with a wallet. Of course, Incipio has a bunch of products ready for this new age of digital wallets with the Stashback.

I had a chance to try out the Stashback for the iPhone 5. I will have to say that I have seen smartphone cases with credit card pockets before. The Stashback has a place to store credit cards on the inside rather than outside.

It also has a Rigid Plextonium frame like the Lexington for the iPad Mini, another fine Incipio product. You can purchase it on the Incipio site for about $39.99, in five assorted colors.

Posted by on August 30th, 2013 No Comments

Hands on with the Optrix PhotoProX

photo-pro-x-6-325x325I have been reviewing a lot protective cases for the iPhone 5 like the Incipio ATLAS (see last review), and I have also been reviewing some interesting lenses for the iPhone 5 like the Olloclip. The Optrix PhotoProX is sort of a combination of both.

As you can see from the picture, the PhotoProX come with four lenses. What you don’t know is the four types: Low Profile, Macro, Fish-eye, and Telephoto lens. All you need to do is screw them on, and you can take some pictures with some interesting and clearer points-of-view. For example, the Macro is good for some cool close-ups that you can’t get before.

All that is required is to insert the iPhone 5 into the transparent housing and close it up. It is waterproof up to 33 feet, and IPX8 rated for water immersion. So a whole world of underwater photos will soon be available to you.

Now I tested it out, and I made certain that what came out was perfectly dry. I made certain to test it by putting one of these included small rubberbands on the lens so it makes a completely water-tight seal. I highly recommend doing the same when you try it out.

Not only does the protective case keep your iPhone 5 protected from 30 foot drops, but it is designed to be mount ready. Yeah, you’ll have to buy the mounts separately. I’m not certain why it doesn’t have the standard female screw-in thing, but hey.

You can find the PhotoProX on the Optrix site for $149.95.

Posted by on August 30th, 2013 No Comments

Incipio, Part 3: The ATLAS for the iPhone 5

Incipio Atlas 2It seems like I have been seeing a lot of these rugged cases made for smartphones. Hopefully, you know of brands like Otterbox and Lifeproof, but have you heard of the ATLAS by Incipio?

If you haven’t, then you really should. It is another fine Incipio product designed to protect against water, dirt, and drops. It is definitely ready for the person who likes a little adventure in your life.

The ATLAS has a Plextonium hard shell frame. Lately I have been using that “Plextonium” word a lot in my reviews of Incipio products. I don’t really see it on the Table of Elements, but it is pretty tough.

The case itself is tough to open, and that is why it works so well. The good news is that you have access to your buttons and controls, and there are water-resistant gaskets for the charging port and headphone jack.

If this is something that you want, head on over to the Incipio site and pay $89.99 for it. It is available in Black/UV Blue, Light Gray/Dark Gray, Dark Gray, and White/Pink.

Posted by on August 30th, 2013 No Comments

Incipio Part 2: The Printed Lexington Hard Shell Folio Case for the iPad Mini

Incipio LexingtonThis has been a week of interesting reviews of iPad and iPad mini products this week, and it helps to have Incipio send me some of their latest.

The Lexington has a rigid Plextonium frame and an interior microsuede lining. Now there is an interesting flap with rubberband that allows you to prop up the iPad Mini at an angle for use.

Another interesting feature is more of an aesthetic, really. It has sort of a techno-camoflague thing going on. You can find it on the Incipio site for about $39.99 in many designs.

Posted by on August 29th, 2013 No Comments

Miveu X Kit for the iPhone 4/4S/5

MiveuIt isn’t every day that I review a product that can work for both the iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5, so I got to hand it to Miveu for doing something unique with the Miveu X Kit.

If you are not familiar with Miveu, it is an excellent method of mounting a phone on your person so you can record stuff from your view (hence the name Miveu some weird word mash of “my view”). It is able to mount on one’s chest, sort of like a parachute.

Yeah, I will have to say that it makes you look odd, but in the footage, you won’t see yourself. I find that the iPhone 5 fits snugly in the case with a custom wide-angle lens. The iPhone transitions really well on the chest.

I recommend this product if you have a lifestyle that involves skiing, biking, or something else that is really extreme. I am not certain what protection you will have if you fall, though.

If you want to get in on this, feel free to head to the Miveu site and lay down about $109.95 (or the deal of the day for $99.99).

Posted by on August 29th, 2013 No Comments

Incipio, Part 1: The F38 Headphones

Incipio F38It looks like we are doing another series on another product, but this one isn’t going to be a trilogy like the three I wrote for Domeo or one of my four-part trilogies like that one I did for Eagle. No, I intend to review Incipio products until the day I die. Yes, they are so good, so good, you see.

I’ll start this series with the f38 headphones. These have a 38 mm driver with Hi-Fi Stereo Sound. Yeah, they are pretty loud, and pretty good. It has crisp highs and deep bass, and yes, I am quoting.

As for the design, it is pretty lightweight. They might not do that thing where they fold up like the Jabra REVO that I reviewed the other day.

They are pretty good, and you can get it on the Incipio site for about $49.99 in Vintage White, Matte Black, Neon Pink, Bright Turquoise, and Espresso.

Posted by on August 29th, 2013 No Comments

Domeo Arigato, Part 3: The Recliner Mini Folio for the iPad Mini

Domeo Recliner MiniToday is the third part of the Domeo trilogy. This won’t be like the Eagle trilogy, where I had four parts. As far as I can tell, I have exhausted the entire Domeo catalog!

The problem is that I have nothing new to say about the Recliner for the iPad Mini. I have seen a lot of the features of the Recliner Mini on the Recliner for the iPad. Instead of the Bubbles that the tablet in place, it has these lines.

Please don’t interpret this as a bad review. Let me conclude by saying that Domeo really knows what they are doing, with these iPad accessories. I would highly recommend them, and you can get the Recliner Mini here for $44.99. While you are there, check out everything Domeo related.

Posted by on August 28th, 2013 No Comments

The Topcor Tech Wallet

Tech Wallet 1I have said this before, and I am starting to become a prophet, but the wallet’s days are numbered. As soon as we have mastered all electronic payments, no one will ever have to put that lump in their pocket ever again.

Until that day, you can use Topcor’s Tech Wallet. I would consider this a merging of the smartphone and a wallet, as you must put a velcro strip on the back of your phone to attach it on. You will be able to store 12 cards and 12 bills on this wallet, which makes it able to store more than the QCard and other products.

Tech Wallet 2In addition to the ability to be a wallet, the Tech Wallet is also a stand for your smartphone as well. See how it folds up triangular like? It can also do this in portrait mode as well. Heck, you can use it as an airplane seat try mount.

If you want to get in on this, you can get it on the Topcor site for about $19.99.

Posted by on August 28th, 2013 1 Comment

Hands on with CM4’s QCard Case for the Galaxy 4

Q CardI have already reported on the QCard Case for the Galaxy S 4 a while ago, and you can imagine my shock when I saw it in the mail.

My initial out-of-the-box impression is that it feels quite squishy to the grip. There is some sort of weird fabric that allows the user to put three or so cards (ID, credit) plus a little bit of cash.

The QCard loves to boast about its features, and it is quite impressive. For example, it has a Direct Channel Audio design that can somehow push the music forward. Then it has the Lay-flat Screen Guard which “provides ultimate screen protection”. Then there is the Natural Throw buttons that can “maintain an organic connection with your S4”.

If this is something that you want for your Galaxy S4, head on over to the CM4 site and lay down about $39.99 for it in Black Onyx, Mahogany Brown, Pacific Green, and Red Rouge.

Posted by on August 28th, 2013 No Comments