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Eone Time - Bradley Watch - 5 / 5

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The pitch:

The Bradley is a tactile timepiece that allows you to not only see what time it is, but to feel what time it is. Telling time shouldn’t require vision.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could check the time in a dark movie theater without having to illuminate your smartphone? What about not having to look down at your watch to check the time during a drawn-out client lunch?

www.eone-time.com

Review:

This timepiece is simply minimally fantastic. I really like watches, I have owned many and this is my favourite.

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Positives:

  • price is very reasonable
  • compliments galore (don’t buy this if you wan’t want to answer questions about it all the time)
  • amazing design incite
  • nice to look at

While this watch is designed for the visually impaired it works very well for sighted people. One can quickly learn to tell the time by feel, however I find I hardly ever do this (although it is very useful to discreetly check the the time during meetings).

The lack of glass means I worry less about wear and tear and the titanium face has a nice understated look to it. This watch almost looks like a sun dial at some angles. 

The only downside I have found so far is that locating the hour hand is not as visually obvious as the minute hand. Not a deal breaker by any means.

I did have one issue with the hour ball coming out of synch. The company paid for shipping back to DC and I had the watch back in my hands in less than a week, good as new. Great service!

This really is a standout watch in a sea of overly large ornate cheap watches and very very expensive timepieces. Don’t want a timex but can’t afford a Patek then consider this watch, it’s a great daily watch that looks good at the office as well as out for the night.

Take away:

You’ll look at it more than you touch it to tell the time.

Great design, great watch.

Buy it!

Score:

★★★★  - 5 /5                   

This watch is a great example of how designing for one group of specific people can result in a great design for everyone (i.e. check out this clip from the design doc: Objectified)

Pressy - The almighty Android button - 2/5

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The pitch:

Pressy brings back simplicity to your phone. Perform your favorite and most common actions with a simple, intuitive physical button.

http://get.pressybutton.com/

Review:

This little button is a great idea. The execution of the hardware is well done, the packaging was nice, the software that pairs with the button is straight forward and easy to use / configure. The company running the kickstarter was well organized and communicated well.

Sadly, I find the little button gets pressed when I don’t want it to and I never find myself needing to press the button when using the phone.

I thought this button would be great for a hard camera button but unfortunately using anything like a single or double click to activate the camera results in the camera being launched in my pocket and draining the battery. Using a more complicated button press pattern to launch the camera makes the process slower than simply turning on the phone and pressing the soft camera button. Ditto for using the button as a mute button. Muting your phone unexpectedly in your pocket isn’t the greatest.

Take away:
Great idea, not so great for actual day to day use.

Score:

☆  - 2 /5

Tom Bihn Aeronaut Review +

I thought it was time to post a review of a recent purchase, the Tom Bihn Aeronaut Bag, finally I think I have enough experience to post something of use, here goes…

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Description:

The Aeronaut is hard to categorize: Is it soft luggage? A duffel bag? Or a backpack?

The Aeronaut is all of the above. It takes the best of all of those bags and combines them into what may be the most versatile travel bag yet. A maximum carry-on size bag, the Aeronaut converts to be carried as a backpack with zip-away backpack straps

  • Exterior made of U.S. 1050 denier Ballistic nylon: twice the abrasion resistance of 1680 denier fabric
  •  Lined with Ultra-lightweight yet tough Dyneema/nylon ripstop fabric, made for us in Japan.
  •  Meets most non-commuter domestic airlines’ carry-on size standards as well as many international carry-on standards, including Heathrow
  • Overall dimensions: 22” x 14” x 9” / 555 x 355 x 230mm
  • Volume: 45 liters (2700 cu. in.)
  • Weight: 2.71 lbs / 1230 grams

http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/500/TB0906

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Let me start off with the obvious, this bag is not cheap. At $240 dollars without the shoulder strap and $30 dollars shipping this is not a cheap piece of luggage. 

What you are getting for this price is what I believe is one of the best carry on bags available today. I have so far taken this bag to Vancouver, Scotland, Italy, and the Netherlands (all carry on) using Air Canada, BMI, Ryan Air, and Easy Jet airlines with no problem and testing each airlines baggage restrictions racks at the airport with this bag.

This bag fits pretty much every airlines carry on limit on the planet due to the fact of its particular size and the fact that it is not a rigid bag. However, I did see one airline in Rome with a weight limit of  7 kg which I had never heard of before and I really doubt this bag would fit within their baggage limit, that said I doubt I will ever fly with this no name airline.

I started looking for a new piece of luggage while thinking about switching my traveling style to carry on baggage only. It is just so much simpler to fly with carry on bags only, in so many ways.

After searching the web and talking to a few people I realized one bag/no wheels luggage was the way to go. A bit of google searching and I found this bag based on a number of glowing reviews. I now have to agree with all the praise this bag gets. It is pretty much perfect.

To begin with… the size is perfect, as big as possible but not so big that you can’t carry on airlines like Ryan Air or EasyJet (the cheap euro airlines).

The convertible hideaway backpack is awesome. No, it is not the best backpack in the world but it is fine for a day walking around the streets of Rome with a full weeks of clothing in it without too much discomfort.

The $30 dollar addon shoulder strap is probably the best strap I have ever used and likely the best anywhere due to the stretchy soft material used that you kinda have to try to understand. 

The material of the bag is top notch, basically bomb proof. It seems more durable than my Chrome Messenger bag as comparison.

Handles on the bag are where you need them when you need them and the bag is pretty good looking to boot.

I probably won’t go for anything smaller than this bag though as I found I wanted as much space as possible to make week long trips possible, which is very possible with this bag.

The duffle bag design is great. One big main pocket and the two side pockets divide everything logically and well. Making this even better are the optional packing cubes Tom Bihn sells to match the bag.

I decided to go for the two end cubes and one large cube and two small for the main compartment and am very very pleased with them. They make packing and unpacking amazingly easy… it’s actually pretty unbelievable how awesome they are considering how simple they are.

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So I have described the basic parts of this bag but really the take away point is that this is probably the best carry on bag on the planet for trips up to a week long. One bag / no wheel travel is the way to go and there is a lot more information about this on the web one can easily find using google.

This kind of luxury does not come cheap at over $300 US fully loaded but I expect this bag to outlast me and I really like to support hand made craftsman type products made by people who really care about what they do. The attention to detail and thought put into this bag really shine through.

To go along with bag I also purchased the Arc Teryx Cierzo 25.

At $80 dollars it is probably not worth the cost but at 415 g it is super super light and folds down to almost nothing (made of 100-denier nylon) making it an ideal companion to the aeronaut.

I use it as my day trip bag that so that I can leave the Tom Bihn where I am staying when I travel. This bag is a bit overkill for the purposes of a day bag but it performs well and is fairly comfortable.

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Overall scores according to me:

Tom Bihn Aeronaut :      5 / 5 

Arc’teryx Cierzo 25:      4 / 5

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Let me know if you have any questions about either bag and I will do my best to answer them.

First Impressions Review: Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 6000

Picked up the Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 6000 today. I was trying to decide between a bunch of different mouses. Most were too expensive. I was also looking at the VX nano logitech, the v550 logitech, and the microsoft arc mouse.

The arc didn’t have one of the new nice super small usb connectors that can be left in all the time. This mouse features something microsoft calls  Bluetrack, which the arc also didn’t have, which is supposed to allow this mouse to track on any surface. I will mostly using this new mouse on my couchs arm rest with the new laptop so that is perfect for me. The logitech offers were all more expensive and I thought this new ms tech, supposedly the next step up from laser mouses, sounded smart.

The mouse feels good in my hand. I havn’t been able to make it looks tracking on any surface yet. The holder in the mouse for the usb adapter is really nice but I doubt I will be using it. Luckily this mouse has an on off button so I don’t have to put the adapter in the mouse to turn it off. No clue on battery life yet but microsoft says 10 + months.

The bad is the extra front left side button is too far forward which is a bit annoying as I have to readjust my hand on the mouse to use it. I don’t find the same problem with the extra front right button.

The size of the mouse fills good in my hand, the build quality seems top notch, and the finish and style of the mouse perfectly match my computer which is a big plus for me.

This mouse ended up being cheaper than any of the other mouses I was looking at after I price matched it at Future Shop with NCIX for $50.

For the features this mouse offers and that I was looking for (small usb adapter, good any surface tracking, and price) I think I found a winner.

First Impression Score: 8 / 10