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Monday, October 29, 2007

Worst iPhone Accessory

Hate fingerprints on your iPhone or iPod Touch? Enough to spend $9.90 on some finger condoms? A enterprising company in Austria is selling something called Phone Fingers that prevent smudges and fingerprints on the screens of the iPod Touch and iPhone.

Here's a video of the "Phone Fingers" in action. It has a strange ending.

One more thing, the Phone Fingers only come in black and make the user look like they have a severe case of frostbite.

Silly product idea, weird choice in color and a demo video that ends in a theft... Yep, the Phone Fingers are a gag gift... like the Pet Rock.

Apple's touchscreen technology works by sensing the electrical fields in your skin. A latex finger condom is an insulator and would prevent the iPhone and iPod Touch from detecting any input from your fingers. The Phone Fingers website even says "This is probably the funniest accessory for the iPhone available!" But if you go over to, there's a pretty heated debate going on in the comments. A lot of people initially thought this was serious product, not a gag gift. If you have a few minutes, it makes for a pretty entertaining read.

BeSocial: methodshop


AT&T Offers Free Wildfire WiFi

Due to the California Wildfires, AT&T has stated it will be offering free T-Mobile Hot Spot Wi-Fi services to San Diego, San Bernardino, Riverside, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Orange and Ventura counties.

About 600 locations total will participate. The offer began on October 27th and will last a several weeks.

It's a very nice gesture, especially for people who lost their homes and need to reconnect online and get their life back in order. But I'm not exactly sure why AT&T is offering T-Mobile's service for free. Weird right?

Photo Credit: Malkoff

Did another major telecom merger happen and I missed it? Or is AT&T just offering other people's products for free? Maybe I'll take a walk down 5th Avenue at lunch time and tell people that AT&T says they can get a free copy of OS X Leopard at the Apple Store.

Think it will work?

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Locked Door Derails NBC Studio Tour on Live TV

NBC News anchor Brian Williams tried to give a tour of his new TV studio live on the air but oops.... the studio DOOR WAS LOCKED!!!

I wonder how many people got fired for that? You can see the clip here on

BeSocial: methodshop


Napster Mobile Coming to U.S.

AT&T is making Napster's entire music catalog (5 million songs) available for direct-to-mobile purchase in mid-November via a new service called Napster Mobile. While not compatible with the iPhone, the catalog will be accessible via AT&T's network for the price of $1.99/song or 5 tracks for $7.49.

Matchbox Twenty's new album "Exile on Mainstream" will kick off the service.

Two things strike me as odd about this deal:
  1. It's kind of weird that AT&T didn't try to integrate any music system on their phones with iTunes. They already have a pretty solid relationship with Apple. In the US, AT&T is the only approved mobile carrier for the iPhone.

  2. When it comes to music, are people really ready to leave their iPods behind and just use their phones? Maybe if you have an iPhone, otherwise, probably not. The media player built into my brand new BlackBerry Curve sucks so bad that I just bought an iPod Touch.
BeSocial: methodshop


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Hatebook - An Evil Facebook Parody

Tired of Facebook? Got some bad blood you need to vent online? Then embrace your hate and say hello to Hatebook.

Hatebook is a Facebook parody site that looks and functions exactly like Facebook... except with an evil twist.

Here's a brief list of the "evil twist" to give you a better idea of how Hatebook compares to Facebook:
  • if you want to mail message someone on Hatebook, it's called "junkmail"
  • instead of a blue color scheme, Hatebook is an evil red
  • profiles (called "hate profiles") include a section called “Why I’m Better Than You!”
  • "Hate Albums" consist of photos and descriptions of things you hate
  • Are you married? Single? Hatebook doesn't care. Your status options consist of Hater, Player, Sucker, Loser, etc.
After we created a profile, we were greeted with the following message:
"Hello Sucker methodshop! Welcome to Hatebook! Your registration to the Evil Empire was successful. Feel free to pimp your hate profile."
Also, you are suppose to enter in the wrong mailing address to hide from your enemies. I just used our P.O. Box. I don't really mind if someone hates that. I don't really like it myself.

But why just parody Facebook when you can improve it? The German creators of Hatebook have not only recreated Facebook's functionality, they have also improved it. For example, they've integrated Google Maps into Hatebook (Evil Maps) so you can locate people you hate on a map.

Does everybody love to hate? Even advertisers? Time will tell. In the meantime feel free to hate here:

BeSocial: methodshop


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Insect Robot Spies Spotted at Political Rallies

The next time you are talking trash about American President George Bush or planning a political protest in the US, you might want to check the room for bugs... seriously.

According to an article in the Washington Post, insect like robotic drones have been spotted at political events in Washington and New York.

Bernard Crane, a Washington lawyer, saw one of the drones in person. "I'd never seen anything like it in my life... they were large for dragonflies. I thought, 'Is that mechanical, or is that alive?' "

Who made these robotic insects? Are they being used as high-tech surveillance tools? So far, no American agency in the US government admits to having made or deployed insect spies. A defiant Gary Anderson, from the Defense Department's Rapid Reaction Technology Office had this to say, "If you find something, let me know."

But even if the US government didn't make the bugs, you can bet they are at least trying. There are even rumors that the Department of Homeland Security is growing live insects with computer chips in them. In theory, the robotic insects could follow terrorists, listen in on conversations, guide missiles to targets or navigate wreckage to find earthquake survivors.

Is it even possible to have a robot fly like an insect? I've never seen any military or commercial aircraft flutter around like an insect. But Pete Valentine, a miniature airplane hobbyist, combined 2 robotic bird kits and made a dragonfly-like hybrid [watch video]. And just last month, researchers at Cornell University published a physics paper clarifying how dragonflies adjust the relative motions of their front and rear wings to save energy while hovering.

So should we all get really paranoid and starting killing every insect in sight? Even if the the government does have insect spies, you probably have a bigger chance of getting recorded on someones cellphone camera.

BeSocial: methodshop


Monday, October 08, 2007

Alcoholic Dog Gets Statue in San Diego

San Diego, California may be full of bums these days, but there is one bum long overdue for high honors – Bum, the 19th-century town dog.

Owned by no one, Bum used to hang out at downtown San Diego restaurants and bars, where he became an alcoholic, addicted to beer and whiskey. A Chinese resident, Ah Wo Sue, nursed him back to health, and, eventually, his likeness appeared on dog tags and licenses.

The county Board of Supervisors sent Bum to County Hospital when he was crippled with rheumatism, and at his death in 1898, he received a public funeral paid for by pennies of the children of San Diego. He was beloved by children, who liked to ride on his back.

Now, over 100-years later, The Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation and San Diego-Edinburgh Sister City Society are building a bronze statue of the St. Bernard-spaniel mix that will be displayed in the Gaslamp Quarter section of downtown San Diego.

KNSD, the NBC station in San Diego, did a news report on Bum and his new statue. You can watch a video of the report here [Source: KNSD Widget]

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Friday, October 05, 2007

Secret Apartment in Mall Parking Garage Discovered

Tired of paying rent? Then you'll love this story. An artist named Michael Townsend, 36, noticed an architectural void in a shopping mall garage in Providence, RI. The 750 square foot space was used during the mall's construction in 1999 to store building materials. However it remained empty and unused after the mall opened.

Then in 2003 Michael heard a Christmas ad for the Providence Place Mall on the radio. The ad implied that the mall had everything you could ever need - to the point where someone could actually live there. So what did Michael and his friends do? They decided to test that theory. They built a cinderblock wall, complete with a door, and sealed off the architectural void in the garage. Then they moved in.

Home, sweet mall.

From 2003 to October 2007, Michael and his friends fixed up their secret hideaway. The apartment eventually had a sectional sofa and love seat, coffee and breakfast tables, a rug, paintings and a Sony Playstation 2. There was no running water -- but the mall bathrooms were nearby.

Unfortunately a nosy mall security guard ruined everything. According to Michael's blog, his "plans to finish the kitchen, install wood flooring, add a second bedroom and replace the outdated cutlery were put on permanent hold" after he was caught leaving the apartment on October 3rd.

Police Major Stephen Campbell says while he's surprised by what Michael and his friends accomplished, their stunt was still illegal.

Michael has pleaded no contest to a trespassing charge.

BeSocial: methodshop | digg story


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Unexplainable [PIC]

Can this picture be explained? user itomixdotcom thinks he has it all figured out.
"Seems pretty straightforward. The UPS Driver accidentally backed down the hill, losing a bunch of his cargo. While he was busy talking with the Police about how to get his truck up the hill, a wedding party was getting their pictures taken nearby. One of the groomsmen forgot to buy the happy couple a present. Just his luck - he grabbed a random box and badda-boom... instant present. Good thing the Bride and Groom happen to be tailors. Otherwise this wouldn't have made sense."
He's got me convinced. What? Think you can do better? Post it here.

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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Radiohead Says Name Your Own Price for In Rainbows

Radiohead is making its newest album, In Rainbows, available online at whatever price point consumers feel they should pay for it. The 10-track album will be released as a digital download starting October 10th. The announcement was made online by Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood.

When users try to order In Rainbows on, they will see a question mark next to a blank price box. If you click on the question mark, the message "It’s up to you" comes up. A subsequent screen reassures fans: "No really, it’s up to you."

Unfortunately, because In Rainbows will only be available on Radiohead's website, the album will not be eligible for chart ranking. It's too bad. I'm sure they'd be #1.

The band, led by Thom Yorke, are also planning a traditional CD release of In Rainbows for early 2008 that they will publish themselves. Radiohead decided not to use a record label after fulfilling their contract with EMI following their 2003 album 'Hail to the Thief.'

Did Radiohead just hammer the last nail into the record industry's coffin or make a huge mistake? Time will tell. In the meantime, at least we can't get busted for downloading a torrent of In Rainbows.

BeSocial: flickr | methodshop


Monday, October 01, 2007

Hotel Chevalier - Free on iTunes

With the impending release of The Darjeeling Limited, Wes Anderson (Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) fans everywhere can get a taste of what's to come with his short film Hotel Chevalier.

The 13-minute short film is a prequel for Darjeeling stars Natalie Portman and Jason Schwartzman who play estranged lovers that meet one last time. Hotel Chevalier is a free download on iTunes (US).

BeSocial: flickr | methodshop

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