Tag Archives: Coffee

Sleeping, Frothing, Typing and Sealing

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 The Wall Street Journal’s holiday gift guide is out. My contributions, some of which would be familiar to regular readers:

Sleeptracker Pro $179. A successor to the Sleeptracker which I wrote about a couple of years ago (Sandman’s Little Helpers, Jan 13, 2006), the Pro is a watch which monitors your sleep patterns — more specifically, your movements while asleep — to wake you up when you’re at the lightest stage of sleep. The Pro improves on its predecessor with a better watch design and the ability to move your sleep data to a PC with a USB cable. Great for sleepyheads.

Aerolatte milk frother (about $30) I must have been through a dozen cappuccino machines, and they usually die slowly and noisily. I even once had a neighbor complain. The aerolatte won’t make you an espresso, but it does away with all the milk frothing side of things: a small, beautifully designed whisk powered by two AA batteries, just insert it in warm milk and the froth is delivered in an instant, sans noise pollution. And you can take it with you on trips or to dinner parties where their froth isn’t good enough for you.

iGo Stowaway Ultra-Slim Bluetooth Keyboard (about $150) Connects via Bluetooth with most gadgets — including a laptop — the Stowaway has the keyboard action, the compact size and the sleek look to merit a spot in your baggage or suit pocket. Makes typing an SMS or email on your smartphone a pleasure. Don’t settle for the cheap imitations; the guys behind these spent a lot of time ensuring the feel of the keyboard is up to snuff.

Clip n Seal (above, from $5) Another gadget I won’t travel without: the Clip n Seal is a tube of plastic clasped by another — a sort of clamp. It’s simple and will keep food fresh, bug free and unspilled, even in the tropics where I live.

WSJ.com

Warm Your Coffee With USB

Not a lot of interesting stuff to report today so I thought I would offer you this (not particularly new, but still cutting-edge) gadget for USB port: a coffee warmer. AkibaLive reports the Sunbeam USB-bus powered coffee warmer will “keep your coffee warm at a temperature of around 40 degrees Celsius for 120 minutes. The device can fit any size coffee cup, comes with a power on/off switch and is made of high quality insulation material so you won’t get burned. Oh, and it doesn’t need a driver.

If you’re really serious about the issue of warming your coffee, here’s the company webpage showing a chart comparing the temperature of your coffee with or without a USB-bus powered coffee warmer. The warmer comes in blue, white or yellow, along with a warning — Don’t touch the metal heat area — and a whacky catchphrase: “Warm your coffee or tea in a cool way!”

Sunbeam are actually way ahead of the pack on cool post-tech uses of the computer. I already have their USB-powered fan — “This nifty UB Fan is dvisable either to cool you on the way, in a stuffy meeting, or to protect your Notebook as an external cooler” — but am saving up to buy their desktop PC CD-drive replacement cigarette lighter which comes with the obligatory warning (“Please don’t touch the Cigarette Lighter after heated!”) and will, like all good cigarette lighters, also recharge handphones. To be honest, I’m still trying to work out when I would use this product, but that won’t stop me getting it.

News: London Still Cool For Commercial Hotspots

 Is London ready for WiFi? ZDNet UK sets out, Michelin fashion, to investigate the capital’s commercial hot spots and find out if Londoners are going mad for the technology or need to wake up and smell the coffee. Their conclusion: poorly advertised services, bad login procedures, no onsite help, and very little sign anyone is using the services available.