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10 Awesome Kickstarter Projects That Could Change The Way We Live

10 Awesome Kickstarter Projects That Could Change The Way We Live

One of the more useful websites around, Kickstarter.com, lets inventors and entrepreneurs easily gain funding for new projects. By creating a single platform where people can view a multitude of new ideas and projects, KickStarter has become a powerful tool for independent entrepreneurs. Additionally, an increasing number of KickStarter projects and prototypes are simply ingenious, and even inspiring. The following projects are not only impressive, they may very well impact the way we live.

The Dash

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    The basic design behind headphones has changed very little since the first pairs. Enter The Dash: completely wireless, waterproof ear buds with 4GB of music storage built in. Not only are these headphones wireless and play music with or without an mp3 player, they also act as a wireless headset to answer calls. Not only that, these powerful little players track fitness information, including heart rate, distance and speed. The ear buds themselves use gesture tracking, so no screen is needed to control music or receive your fitness information. Easily paired with bluetooth enabled Apple, Android and most Windows devices, these multitasking ear buds are set to go into full production November 2104. Prototype testers of this Kickstarter project report unbeatable sound quality, plus the device has received incredible reviews across technology magazines.

     

    Form 1/The Micro

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      Two projects expressing similar goals are the Form 1 and The Micro. Both small, affordable 3D printers, these devices seek to bring quality 3D printing into the hands of average consumers. Current 3D printers are high priced, and current low end models fail to print high quality designs. By bringing quality 3D printing to the average person, independent artists and designers stand to leap ahead in what ideas they can realize. Additionally, low priced, quality 3D printers will substantially help small businesses, independent retailers and maybe even bring online products to your desk in the blink of an eye. Both printers improve on low priced 3D print quality considerably, especially when printing smaller items. The Form 1 is already in production, while The Micro is set to roll out Winter 2014/Spring 2015.

       

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      SCiO

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        SCiO is a powerful pocket sensor that pairs with most smartphones. This pocket spectrometer reads an items molecular makeup in less than two seconds. SCiO then brings you information on the object. In the case of food, SCiO gives you serving size and nutrition information, and can even tell you how fresh an item is. Other objects are broken down into advanced metrics to inform the user on molecular qualities and atmospheric variables. Very useful for health enthusiasts and food providers, SCiO also promises to make huge waves in educational settings. This Kickstarter project beams results to your smartphone, making it a very portable and easy to use. If you’re not one of the Kickstarter supporters, look for SCiO in early 2015.

        LIFX

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          LIFX is a new kind of lightbulb, controlled directly by your smartphone. LIFX requires no setup or complicated installs and is one step closer to a truly smart home. Without adding anything to your current electrical grid, LIFX offers dimmer control, as well as colored lighting. Already available online and in home improvement stores, LIFX also allows for remote control of every LIFX bulb in your house. This means you can easily turn lights on and off throughout your house, without leaving your current location. Not only that, LIFX lets you set automatic on/off times, or syncs your indoor light with sunrise and sunset. In addition to these incredibly convenient features, LIFX can pair with your smart device to change colors or brightness with the music you listen to. So far, reviews for LIFX have been overwhelmingly positive, and suggest that similar smart home products may soon be common place.

           

          Occulus Rift

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            Excellent news for video game enthusiasts, Oculus Rift brings truly immersive virtual reality to video games. A popular feature in fiction for decades, virtual reality has never quite reached the high quality performance that gamers desire. With Oculus Rift, gamers finally have an option with high resolution and a wide field of vision. Though Oculus Rift is not commercially available yet, several large gaming companies are already releasing Oculus ready games. A winner of several tech awards in 2012 and 2013, this Kickstarter project is also pairing with developers to expand the number of games supported. If early prototype reviews are any indication, Oculus Rift may soon become the best, most immersive way to play your favourite game.

            Glyph

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              Similar to Oculus Rift is Glyph, which brings virtual immersion to all media. Designed primarily as a virtual display, Glyph is a compelling way to watch movies and tv shows, plus functions as a high quality headset. Glyph becomes an audio only device by wearing the screen on top of your head, but flips down across your eyes for easy viewing. The biggest thing that sets Glyph apart is super high quality visuals. Also capable of displaying 3D, Glyph uses low powered LEDs and thousands of mirrors to bring films and TV to life. Glyph is also compatible with current gaming systems, but functions as a display, rather than a movement tracker and camera control system (like Oculus Rift). An incredible step towards moderately priced, high quality immersive displays, Glyph is another positively reviewed product that may revolutionize the way we consume media.

               

              Edyn

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                The Edyn Garden Sensor is an impressive new way to track your garden’s health. For those of us with now green thumb whatsoever, Edyn may well be the solution. This Kickstarter project racks soil health, from moisture and nutrients, to pH balance and light intensity. Pair the sensor with Edyn Water Valve and you have the smartest, most responsive automatic watering system available. The unit itself is water resistant and solar powered for ultimate ease of use. Another Kickstarter project showered in praise, Edyn stands to make life easier for gardening professionals and beginners alike.

                 

                Onewheel

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                  Onewheel is a motorized skateboard with some incredible innovations. The board is completely self balancing, and is said to simulate the feeling of snowboarding or surfing. Onewheel requires not manual control for speed, jus ttilt the board forward to speed up, or backwards to slow down or stop. The board reaches up to 12 miles per hour, with a top distance of 6 miles per charge. Another Kickstarter project with overwhelmingly positive reviews, Onewheel is set to be available to the public late 2014.

                   

                  iStick

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                    iStick brings USB drives to Apple devices, greatly increasing the capability of portable devices. By adding a lightning connector to the conventional USB stick design, iStick instantly catapults an Apple device’s memory. This Kickstarter project lets you store massive amounts of photos, videos or songs on iStick, then directly stream them on your device. A simple, yet effective innovation, iStick hints at a future where our devices have unlimited storage capabilities, regardless of the device you own. Hailed as an indispensable addition to your device, iStick is highly reviewed by websites and print sources alike. While only available for Apple right now, similar products could soon change the way we approach portable devices.

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                    Galileo

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                      Incredibly simple to attach to your smartphone, Galileo uses your phones’ vibrator to control where your camera faces. Galileo pairs with your phone under various shooting conditions, making this a useful Kickstarter project for many different consumers. Galileo automatically tracks action when in a video call, so you don’t need hold your device. This means video conferences or calls are captured without your attention, all without missing any action. In addition, Galileo makes it easy to capture perfect panoramas, as well as smooth 360 interactive visuals. Remote video conference control could also be incredibly useful for virtual learning settings. Lastly, consumers can use Galileo as a controllable baby monitor, changing angles and following your little one without you needing to enter the room. Another innovation making our smart devices even smarter.

                       

                       

                       

                      Featured photo credit: D. Judah Sher via flickr.com

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                      Published on September 20, 2018

                      11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

                      11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

                      In today’s fast-paced and never-ending busy world, we are overwhelmed by tasks that need to be completed by tight deadlines. With so much technology it is difficult to find the right tools to help boost our efficiency. And, many tools get obsolete so its essential to stay up-to-date to know when you will have to make adjustments to these tools. Independently of where you work, there’s a good chance that you have to be working on a PC or a laptop.

                      Do you are feel like you do not have enough time, or cannot accomplish much as of late? It is recommended to take a step back and look at the big picture. Also, you want to explore new and innovative ways to improve productivity.

                      In this article, I outline 11 features and apps within the Chrome browser that can help you do just that.

                      Minimizing Tabs

                      Let’s face it we all have more than a dozen tabs opened on our computers. One neat trick to still keep most of them open is to turn them into pinned tabs. On Google Chrome you can right-click the tab and select “Pin Tab” option. This turns the tab into an icon enabling you to continue multitasking.

                      Pinning a tab anchors the tabs on the left of your toolbar; a great benefit of the “Pin Tab” feature is that you can’t close these tabs accidentally since the “X” disappears after pinning them.

                      Incognito Mode

                      Google Chrome is a very easy-to-use and intuitive. But, Google does collect our browsing data; so to remedy this, you can use Incognito Mode. This feature does not keep your browsing or download history. You can enable or access it in three different ways:

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                      1. Press Ctrl/Command+shift+N
                      2. Select File Menu and choose New Incognito Window
                      3. Download extension New Incognito Window

                      This feature is very handy if you’d rather not have your browsing history stored and utilized for future advertisement or suggested pages.

                      Save Webpages as PDF Files

                      Have you ever browsed interesting or important information and then forgot to bookmark or save it in “favorites”, making it impossible to find again? Chances are you have done this on a number of occasions.

                      Thankfully, there is an easy solution. You can save webpages as PDF files. On your keyboard, press control/command+p and you will be able to save webpages as PDFs.

                      Open Recently-closed Tabs

                      Ever had dozens of tabs opened and all of a sudden your browser shuts down? It has probably happened to all of us. You can easily recover all of your tabs using two approaches. Don’t panic if this happens because there is a workaround and solution for it.

                      One is by pressing Ctrl/CMD+Shift+T.

                      The other approach is to click on the three vertical dots on your browser and hover over “History”.

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                      Solve Mathematical Problems

                      Google’s Chrome browser doesn’t just search for relevant and updated information. It is also capable of performing some mathematical problems. Within the omnibox (Chrome’s address or URL bar), you can perform mathematical exercises.

                      For example, if you are struggling with percentages you can search 20 percent of x amount and it will instantly provide a result. Pretty handy, right?!

                      Play Media Files

                      Are you frequently met with difficulties when playing or watch a video files? Well, once again Chrome comes to the rescue. You can can listen or play videos from all sorts of movie or music files (mp3, mp4, .mov, .mkv, .ogv, .webm, .wav, etc.) by simply dragging the file into the search bar.

                      In addition, you can view images, PDF files and Microsoft Office files, too.

                      Navigate Swiftly Between Tabs

                      With all of those tabs opened comes great navigation responsibilities. Rather than clicking through every tab, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+Tab to navigate all of the different tabs. Also, you are able to navigate to the first tab by pressing Ctrl-1, Ctrl-2, and so on. If you want to switch to the very last tab, press Ctrl-9.

                      Stay Focus(e)d

                      Computers nowadays have awesome capabilities.

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                      Sometimes we like to get work done, but let’s face it, we’re all human. We sometimes procrastinate by visiting a website we really like, or maybe take a break with watching a flick on Netflix, a video on YouTube or browsing Facebook.

                      With Chrome’s StayFocusd extension, you can truly stay focused and get more done in less time.

                      This extension naturally helps you stay more productive by limiting the amount of time you spend on websites. You can set the time and it will automatically block those sites after a certain period.

                      Grammarly for Editing

                      Grammarly is a must have, and it’s really a complete powerhouse. Grammarly helps you check your grammar and spelling for everything you write online.

                      You can use it professionally or as a student, which will make the editing process much easier and more efficient. Furthermore, it can automatically check for typos when you send an email, type a Tweet, or post a Facebook comment. It’s like having your own personal copyeditor!

                      Loom

                      There are times that words in an email or written text in a chat app will just not convey the right meaning.

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                      There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the same is true of videos.

                      With Loom, you can capture, narrate and immediately share video recordings of your screen, which will help coworkers understand issues you are facing, or to easily convey an explanation on screen. Plus, with video you will be able to easily walk people through a process, and you can use it to create simple how-to videos.

                      Chrome Calendar Extension

                      No matter what your level of responsibility is at your job, Google Calendar is another essential resource to have at your fingertips.

                      Specifically, you can have this extension added as an icon in the toolbar of your browser, which I highly recommend. Once you add the extension to your browser, you can check for upcoming events with a single click without leaving your current page.

                      Final Thoughts

                      Google Chrome has definitely evolved from its inception. As you can see you have a very powerful tool that comes as a free installation and is loaded with dozens of capabilities. The above listed Chrome apps can resolve some of the most common obstacles to your time management and productivity.

                      Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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