Details on Google Glass – They are going to revolutionize consumer electronics, privacy, and who knows what. So far only sold for $1500 each to “Explorers” who signed up last year, but when eventually released to the general public Google hints the Google Glass price may be lower. They look like a pair of hi-tech lens-less glasses, have a 5- megapixel camera (with a third-party app a wink can instantly take a photo or video of anyone), bone conduction transducer for audio, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, 12 gigs of usable flash memory, and a battery charge lasts about a day. Basic services include Gmail, Internet search, ability for online video chats or uploading of photos to Google+, and with Google’s MyGlass app and an Android smartphone plus Bluetooth it can do text messaging and GPS navigation. Another app delivers New York Times headlines, and one lets the Glass wearers upload their images to Evernote and Skitch, or post brief updates to The Path social network.
Auto Volume-Adjustment App for iPhones – At a European electronics show, Essency showed its $8 Awareness: the Headphone App. Most headphones drown out the outside world, and what if the wearer accidentally steps in front of a train? This clever app allows the user to set up volume levels from the mic in the iPhone so that when loud, impending doom beckons, the phone volume is cut off so you can hear the outside world. It also allows you to introduce some background noise if you wish and functions as a sound pressure meter.
Nearly 50% of Americans Sitting on Hidden Money – A recent survey by Gadgix found that nearly 50% of respondents don’t know they are sitting on possible extra cash from their unwanted consumer electronics. The top items to sell are unwanted smartphones, iPads, BlackBerrys, and computers of all sorts. Gadgix specializes in cell phones, but there are many other online places to sell your unneeded electronic gear.
Classical News – Andris Nelsons is the next music director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, starting with the 2014-15 season and succeeding James Levine. Nelsons is among the hot new maestros on the wish lists of arts administrators, and he also is music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. The new executive director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, starting July 1, will be Suzanne Davidson, who is an entertainment lawyer by training. David Finckel and Wu Han remain the Society’s Artistic Directors. A Nazi-themed full production of Wagner’s Tannhäuser has been cancelled at Deutsche Oper am Rhein; the opera will be performed in concert form for the remaining dates. The company said it hadn’t anticipated the impact the Nazi imagery would have on its patrons. Odd, given that in the production Tannhäuser, in an SS uniform, shaves the heads and executes an entire family by shooting them individually in the neck.
GoldenEar Expands In-Ceiling Speaker Series – Their Invisa custom-install series of speakers are said to be virtually invisible due to their magnetically-attached flat mico-perf grilles that hide the speaker flange. They all use the company’s High-Velocity Folded Ribbon Tweeter to deliver the dynamic range and extended response of long flat ribbon tweeters. The two new models ($499 each) are described as combining the advantages of direct-radiating speakers with the spaciousness and dispersion of bipolar speakers. They can be used as front main speakers or as surround speakers. Wide dispersion is delivered by two 5-inch bass/midrange drivers, one canted to the left and the other to the right.