Yeah, yeah, I know what you're thinking: "Great, just another company joining the GPS fray." But hold up; you might be interested in hearing about the Navigon 7100 and Navigon 5100. First unveiled at CeBit in March, these two portable navigation systems will both come to the United States and offer subscription-free real-time traffic data, Zagat Survey ratings, and reviews for points of interest, the company announced today. Other features include Reality View and Lane Assistant. The former gives you a 3D, virtual-reality view of complicated highway interchanges, while Lane Assistant will tell you which is the … Read more
Maybe golf cart makers are wising up to the fact that not many people will trade in their perfectly good electric golf cart for wind or solar specialty carts.Cruise Car, a maker of solar golf carts, has announced a new kit it says will allow most popular electric golf carts to use solar power as an energy source.
The Sunray Solar Roof Kit, which can send power directly to an existing 36- or 48-volt battery, can generate up to 180 watts or 60 volts. Cruise Car says this will allow electric golf carts to go 30 percent farther between … Read more
I'm sitting on the exquisitely uncomfortable benches in the San Francisco Metreon, listening to companies at the New Tech Meetup give their pitches. Two of them we've covered recently: AdPerk and Truemors. The news about Truemors: a Facebook port is forthcoming. The other three companies are also worth some bits:
Blabberize is a freaky little product that makes Monty Python-like animated graphics of faces from photos you upload. Then you upload a recording of your (or someone else's) voice. It syncs the audio or recorded speech to the moving mouth. Good for a laugh. Likewise the pitch. … Read more
The "Twin Force" engine that Ford's been hinting about these past months will deliver the power-performance of a V8 with the fuel economy of a V6, Ford confirmed to CNET News.com.
The engine will have direct injection plus a turbocharger, according to a Ford representative.
The company would not confirm when or in which production models consumers can expect to see the new technology.
Many of the recent announcements concerning fuel injection and turbocharging technology have been related to diesel engines. Ford's claim is an interesting one that, if true, could put its "Twin … Read more
There aren't enough down-to-earth, Web-based tools to help you visualize a greener home. The Green Building Studio is for architects, while Lucid Design Group's energy dashboard is found only in a slim number of buildings. Yahoo's Green House is pretty, yet it can't be personalized.
But I just wasted a fine chunk of the afternoon playing with a kids' Web site that makes a great model for what I'd like to see for adults. My Abodo is an excellent, Flash-based interface that walks you through building a virtual green home. Created in part by the … Read more
When you consider how far the human race has come in just the past 50 years, it's hard not to get a little carried away when fantasizing about what we could be seeing in the near future. There's certainly no shortage of Hollywood blockbusters that harness this imaginative creativity--in fact, I've used several of them for inspiration here. Some of the concepts on this list may seem far-fetched, while others could be just around the corner. Either way, the future of technology is an intriguing subject to mull over. In the spirit of imagination, I've laid … Read more
MakeMeSustainable is a new green social networking site. Although entering a crowded field, the service wisely translates how greening your everyday habits saves money. It tallies dollar signs, trees, and carbon emissions to track changes in your usage of electricity, heating, transportation, and travel over many months. I like that it takes you directly to sites where you can achieve a goal instantly, such as by buying CFL bulbs or carbon credits, or downloading a power-saving app for your PC. And you can form and join groups based around your interests.
MakeMeSustainable builds a personal profile based upon your quick … Read more
While hybrid- and flex-fuel cars may be all the rage in today's proto-post-petroleum age, the same approach was being used over 100 years ago by the makers of La Marquise, claimant to the title of the world's oldest running car. Admittedly, the coal, wood, and paper that the steam-powered Marquise uses may not be as eco-friendly as the ethanol or clean diesel of today, but it was enough to get the car's first owner--the Count De Dion--around at a blistering 38 mph when it left the factory in 1884.
TomTom has filed an eyebrow-raising patent with the European Patent Office for a device that combines GPS navigation information with a live video feed. According to the patent document, "...navigation devices display maps that are, like most maps, a highly stylised or schematic representation of the real world," which, TomTom contends, many people find difficult to translate or understand. To remedy the problem, it proposes a device that works "by superimposing or combining navigation directions over a camera image".
The patent application covers devices that receive an external camera feed, and any devices with built-in cameras, … Read more
Apple may be rumored to be working with Mercedes on an in-car interface, but it is Benz's arch-rival BMW that has been one of the first automakers to declare its cars' compatibility with the all-conquering iPhone. According to this page on Bimmer's Web site dedicated to welcoming the gadget, these 2007 model-year BMWs will come with the option of an interface to allow them to use the iPod function of the iPhone:3 and 5 series models with a production date of March '07 or later X5 models with a production date of April '07 or later 6 … Read more