Airport ExpressI hooked up a third airport express to my network and tried out the multiple stream AirTunes. I’m happy to report that it does indeed work. We let iTunes play for a few hours sending the audio out to the computer’s speakers as well as two Airport Express units over the wireless network. The music is synchronized very well and while standing in between two different rooms with streams playing (one over the network and the other local on the computer) it sounded good with no signs of time phasing. I plan to hook two more Airport Express units into the network and attempt to send music to 5 separate sets of speakers at once. Stay tuned!

The number of convergence devices on the market continues to grow. For the time being, I’m defining convergence devices as anything that aims to bridge the gap between digital content stored on the computer and the entertainment system in the living room. Tivo’s Home Media Option is one such thing, though that’s actually an update to the regular series 2 Tivos rather than a new device. Here’s a device that does video and more formats of audio than the Tivo. That one joins this one from El Gato, the people who also make a Tivo-like product for the Mac that combines software with a firewire or usb device, as well as this one and this software for the ps2.

UPDATE: I found another one called Homepod.

UPDATE2: Yet another: Rokulabs.

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Sonos has announced a new set of devices that work together over ethernet to provide digital music to any room in your house (well, every room with the player device) all controllable from a nifty looking LCD remote control. In addition to the controller, you buy the player device that has a built in 50W amp and discrete RCA outputs. You put a player in every room you want music and the controller can control them all at once. They all access the digital music stored on your Macs and PCs on your network. Nifty. Kinda expensive, though.

Finally, a gadget to reduce the size of my wallet! Chameleon
Network
has produced a device that can mimic any magnetic card such as credit cards and those supermarket
savings cards. It sounds pretty nifty, but I think they might have trouble selling it to the average Joe or
Jane. They are pushing it as being more secure than a traditional credit card because it has a biometric
fingerprint scanner and other security features.
xhref=”http://www.wired.com/news/business/0,1367,62545,00.html” mce_href=”http://www.wired.com/news/business/0,1367,62545,00.html”>Wired has some more info on it. I may not
be first in line to buy this thing, but I’m all for reducing the number of cards in my wallet.

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Wired article about a machine that can supposedly help you dream exactly the dream you want to dream using a combination of lights, music, smells, and recorded phrases in your own voice. It’s still in development now, but should be available in the U.S. in 2005. It looks like it’ll cost something like $140. Whether it works or not, it seems like a fun thing to play with!

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Financial Times Article
Sony has released more information on their upcoming PSX entertainment console, combining a Satellite TV Receiver, TiVo-like functionality, a DVD recorder (nice!), and a Playstation 2 into one box. The pictures I’ve seen of it show it as more of a ‘living-room friendly’ box than the existing black plastic Playstation 2. It will only be available in Japan to start (of course) and the announced price is around $719. That’s a couple hundred bucks too much in my eyes.

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