gives the blues to would-be data invaders

Most computer users want an effective way to protect their data, especially while online. Cloud-based applications and services, however, tend to be open to the public and leave data stored there at least somewhat vulnerable to invaders. is an easy-to-use home server designed for Internet users who work in the cloud a lot and want to protect their data in a simple way that doesn’t require advanced knowledge or frequent updating. The stores data safely while users are at home and can be used in conjunction with various applications, including file sharing and note-taking. REDS-compatible applications stay in the public cloud, but data is processed and stored on the user’s side instead of in the cloud. Users decide who can access their data.


Prepd Box is the lunchbox adults have waited for

It’s easy to understand the lure of eating out for lunch: it’s easy to do so and there is unparalleled variety to enjoy in dense, metropolitan areas. On the flip side, it can be unhealthy when all the ingredients aren’t exactly known, expensive to eat out every day, and generally pretty wasteful. Batch cooking is a great way to combat this but most containers simply aren’t up to snuff, made from suspect materials that leak and smell over the long term.

Prepd is reimagining the lunchbox to address this problem. Its Prepd Pack is an aesthetically pleasing, minimalist lunch box that uses modular containers for a better batch cooking experience. (more…)

ALEX gives you the straight talk about your posture

Forward Head Posture, Text Neck — most people don’t know about these very real conditions. The advent of the smartphone revolution brought these harbingers of chronic neck and back pain along for the ride, which is why maintaining proper posture even with all these devices floating around is more important than ever.

NAMU’s ALEX is a Bluetooth-connected personal posture coach designed to hang from the ears and sit behind the neck for optimal analysis.
A three-axis accelerometer and pivot sensor ensure accurate measurements are sent back to the companion smartphone app with which users can manage the frequency and intensity of alerts and track progress. Avatar Mode also allows for real-time posture management with an on-screen representation to make sure everything works smoothly.


Chord Collar cuts cords and leashes to keep furry ones healthy and safe

Pets may be cute and cuddly, but make no mistake: they require tons of attention and work to keep happy and healthy. At the end of the day, doing so cultivates a relationship unlike any other — even if owners start the day with a kitchen floor full of garabage or an unexpected, ahem, suprise in a spare corner of the home.

The team behind the Chord Collar wants to keep pets happy, healthy, and engaged while reducing the aspects of pet ownership that are annoying or inconvenient by leveraging a bit of connected technology.
The Wi-Fi and Bluetooth-connected collar allows owners to consistently provide rewards-based training in combination with its companion iOS and Android app, alerting owners to what needs to be worked and exactly how to do so based on the pet’s movements during the day. Health is also a big focus. The Chord Collar tracks heart rate levels and movement, letting owners know when the pet might be under the weather.


The FitPal keeps tabs on your ticker, hearts you a lot

In no other time in history has the heart been so well documented. This is due to the glut of wearables on the market, most of which do a decent job of monitoring heart rate. The biggest problem is usually their size and effectiveness: most are ungainly with questionable methods of data generation, leading consumers to search for smaller, more dependable alternatives.

The FitPal is a thin, flexible Bluetooth LE-enabled patch worn 24/7 on the torso or chest that keeps constant tabs on the heart. It looks at everything from heart rate variability to heart rate zones and resting heart rate, interpreting all this information to monitor a person’s calories burned, steps taken, and skin temperature along with larger attributes like exercise readiness stress levels, and sleep quality, making it a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to wearables.


EBlocker lets you block online ads, tracker software

Online ads and digital trackers continue to be an annoying -– and potentially costly or even dangerous –- part of using the Internet, especially when it’s kids who are the ones surfing the Web.

patent-claimedEBlocker is a small, white plug-and-play smart device. It automatically blocks online services that are secretly collecting information about computer users while they’re using any devices in the home to access the Internet. EBlocker can also cloak the device that is being used to access the Internet –- whether it’s a computer, mobile device or game system –- and make it appear that a different device is being used to access the Internet to fool dynamic pricing engines. Once connected, all online traffic is routed through eBlocker for analysis.

The patent-pending eBlocker ships in June at about $217, although early bird Kickstarter backers can get one at pledges starting at about $108. Its makers are looking to raise $81,700 by Feb. 17.

eBlocker must address whether its protection of all home Internet devices justifies buying it instead of just relying on filtering programs and services that perform some of the same blocking functions. One advantage it has is that there is no software to install, a feature that will likely be appealing to many consumers. But buyers will have to cough up more money –- at least $59 — to continue using eBlocker after the first year or they will not get automatic  updates anymore. Future pricing of eBlocker Pro automatic updates start at $59.


No cooks needed in the kitchen with OneCook auto multi-cooker

Depending on who it is, cooking can either be a fulfilling experience or an absolute chore. Usually, what makes it the latter is a chronic lack of time due to the busy, demanding lifestyles that are prevalent today.

OneCook is a godsend for students, full-time workers — basically, anyone without time. By outsourcing the entire cooking process to the fully automated multi-cooker, people can step away from the kitchen at the touch of a button, avoiding minor injuries and never whipping up a tasteless chicken parm again. (more…)