Moving ‘for rent’ sign uses camera, motorized mount to track pedestrians (video)

Moving 'for rent' sign uses camera, motorized mount to track pedestrians video

Even in prime locations, vacant stores can go tenantless for months or years, costing landlords quite a bit in uncollected rent. One real estate owner in Sherbrooke, Quebec is hoping to move a property a bit more quickly, though, using a creative hack to attract attention to an otherwise ordinary "for rent" (à louer, in this case) sign. A standard red placard is mounted to a motorized horizontal track, with a camera keeping tabs on passersby. As pedestrians walk down the sidewalk, the sign slides to match their position. It's a clever trick for sure, but with "many abandoned shop fronts" in the area, according to Niklas Roy, the project's lead, it may be entertaining tourists for some time to come.

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Via: PSFK

Source: Niklas Roy

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FCC loosens outdoor power restrictions on 60GHz spectrum

DNP FCC loosens restrictions on 60 GHz spectrum, could enable cheap rural broadband

In response to industry petitioners, the FCC is easing outdoor power restrictions on the unlicensed 60GHz spectrum, which could bring faster broadband to rural areas and cost-effective backhaul solutions in urban settings. This ruling change would permit outdoor devices to deliver high-speed data over greater distances -- around a mile at 7 Gbps, all told -- and "enhance" the unlicensed utility of the 57-64GHz spectrum. While this is the same frequency WiGig uses, indoor power restrictions haven't changed any. Because this spectrum is unlicensed, it means that basically anyone can use it as long as they follow the FCC's rules; no funny business, please.

[Image credit: Rennett Stowe / Flickr]

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Via: Ars Technica

Source: FCC

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BrewBit: the remote temperature monitor for homemade barley pop

DNP Brewbit the remote thermostat for your homebrew

Temperature is everything when it comes to fermenting beer. Thanks to a surprise heatwave, our last batch of homebrew went from lager to ale to horrible once we could finally taste it. If the BrewBit Model-T reaches its $80,000 Kickstarter goal, Inebriated Innovations could have the solution to hobby brewers' wort woes come next March. Each black box has dual power outlets as well as two temperature probes, allowing for independent control of heating and cooling. If you're so inclined, the open-source software and hardware means that you'll have an easier time hacking it to suit your needs. As of now, the company is just over halfway to its funding target, with 15 days to go. The early backer donations have already been claimed, but you still have a couple of weeks to snag either the single probe ($160) or dual probe ($175) model. We recommend you save the waiting for your suds' aging period.

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Source: Kickstarter, BrewBit

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Goal Zero’s Lighthouse250 Lantern, solar panel tent charge your gadgets alfresco

Goal Zero's Lighthouse250 Lantern, solarpowered tent charge your gadgets alfresco

Keeping your USB-powered gear powered up while camping in the woods or hiking the Appalachian Trail can prove quite a challenge. Solar chargers and backup batteries can help, sure, but when you're already hauling dozens of pounds of gear, an integrated solution is where it's at. Goal Zero has a pair of new products to help streamline things a bit. First up, the Lighthouse250 Lantern can provide 48 hours of 250-lumen LED output with a full charge, and it can charge up a gadget via a built-in USB port. If you don't have a solar panel handy, you can use the hand crank to juice up the lantern in the field. The company's also teaming up with Eddie Bauer on a solar panel-equipped tent, the 36-square-foot Katabatic 2 -- you'll need to add your own battery pack to store the energy collected from the 18-watt roof-mounted panel. Eddie Bauer has yet to announce pricing for the tent, which should ship next spring, but you can expect the lantern to retail for about 80 bucks in Q4.

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Panasonic KX-PRX120 offers Ice Cream Sandwich on a cordless phone

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It's easy to lose perspective on such things living in a city like New York, but people do indeed still have landlines at home. And really, in a world so dominated by the smartphone, why not get one that sort of splits the difference between the two? Granted, the Panasonic KX-PRX120 has the kind of specs that would make us shake our collective heads were it positioned as a standard handset, but as far as cordless phones go, it's, well, certainly more exciting than what most people having sitting on their kitchen counters. The phone has a 3.5-inch TFT touchscreen display, a microSD slot, a WIFI / Bluetooth interface and an optional answering machine. The device runs Android 4.0 and gives you access to the Google Play store, so you can use it to Skype with help from its front-facing camera. The KX-PRX120 should run around £169 ($259).

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Kevo lock up for pre-order tomorrow, starts shipping in September

Amongst the seemingly endless stream of companies looking to replace your house keys, Kwikset and UniKey's Kevo system certainly seems one of the more promising options. When we had a chance to fiddle around with the device back in May, the companies didn't have much to say in terms of release schedule. Turns out you're going to have to wait until September to toss those keys in the trash -- though you can get on the list for a unit of your own tomorrow, when Kevo goes up for pre-order at $219 a pop. More info after the break.

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Source: Kwikset

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Starbucks and Powermat bring wireless charging to select Silicon Valley shops

Starbucks and Powermat bring wireless charging to select Silicon Valley coffee shops

Following a successful trial rollout at 17 stores in Boston, Starbucks has decided to join up with Powermat to bring the company's wireless charging tech to Silicon Valley. The first installation will be completed this Sunday, at a store in San Jose, with up to 10 area locations set to be online before the end of August. Powermat President Daniel Schreiber explained that Silicon Valley was selected in order to boost the technology's exposure among key industry players -- AT&T has already confirmed that several of its smartphones will be compatible with the PMA standard in 2014, but the alliance needs event more support in order to grow momentum. The next logical step for this partnership would be for Powermat to sell coffee-resistant charging cases in Starbucks stores, of course, though neither company has made any announcements to that effect.

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Source: Duracell Powermat (PR Newswire)

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Insert Coin: Canary, a one-stop shop for securing your home

In Insert Coin, we look at an exciting new tech project that requires funding before it can hit production. If you'd like to pitch a project, please send us a tip with "Insert Coin" as the subject line.

Insert Coin Canary, a onestop shop for securing your home video

If recent trends are any indication, there's a strong possibility that a cylindrical computing device will be in your future. Canary is the latest curved component to make its debut this year -- this one's focused on security. The vertical computer includes a high-def camera and mic, along with infrared motion, temperature, humidity and air quality sensors. It's an all-in-one solution for securing your home (or perhaps just a room in your home), providing video feeds and sensor readouts to your Android or iOS device in real time. You can automatically arm or disarm it when your device comes within range of a pre-selected location, and there's even a siren that can be triggered remotely, should you need to wake up a roommate or terrorize a pet.

Canary is currently up for grabs on Indiegogo. The $149 and $169 early bird specials have already reached their 200-unit caps, so pre-ordering the device will now set you back a cool $199. That offer includes a white finish and shipping within the US -- expect it to reach your doorstep by May. If you're willing to jump up to $249, you can snag a Canary in matte black or silver, or, if you're really feeling generous, you can pledge $1,000 and walk away with a beta unit, which should arrive in February. Hit up the source link for a video demo.

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Via: GigaOM

Source: Canary

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Belkin ships WeMo Light Switch for $50, launches matching Android app

Belkin ships WeMo connected light switch for $50

Belkin promised a simple approach to connected lighting when it unveiled the WeMo Light Switch back at CES, and the company is making good on its word by releasing the switch today. The WiFi-based controller is now available both online and at retail shops for $50. It isn't arriving alone, either -- Belkin is simultaneously launching the finished version of its free WeMo app for Android to complement the existing iOS release. If you'd rather have smart switches than smart light bulbs, the new WeMo hardware awaits at the source link; the companion Android app should be available shortly.

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Source: Belkin

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