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text message

Finnish author Hannu Luntiala has created an entire novel with and about text messaging. Entitled “The Last Message,” the plot consists of an IT exec who resigns, travels throughout Europe and India, and communicates only through text messaging. The 332 page “phone book” consists of approximately 1,000 messages which of course are written in SMS.

“I believe that, at the end of the day, a text message may reveal much more about a person than you would initially think,” says Luntiala, who also heads a company that keeps databases on Finns.

Publishing firm Tammi is considering make the novel available in other languages. We’re not exactly sure of the point here, but this may start a whole wave of Orwellian Newspeak.

Read More | USA Today

Gallery: Finnish Novel Written Entirely in SMS

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Read More | The Bleeding Edge

Gallery: CES 2007 Video: A Look At Ontela

Wave Bubble

We know that jamming is illegal, still we have to give kudos to hacker/researcher “Lady Ada” at MIT’s Media Lab for allowing us to defend our personal spaces with what appears to be a pack of cigarettes. The Wave Bubble features a rechargeable internal lithium-battery for up to 2 hours of jamming two bands in a cell phone or 4 hours in a single band such as a GPS, cordless phone, or WiFi. Three AAA batteries can also be utilized. The Bubble’s range is about a 20 ft. radius, if you have a decent antenna, and its output is .1W to .3W.

Lady Ada claims that neither the RF jammer nor its specs will ever be available due to FCC regs, and doesn’t recommend that build your own if you are an amateur technology geek. Thanks for the info, Lady Ada. We can take it from here.


Read More | Lady Ada

Gallery: Wave Bubble Protects Against RF Jamming

Spinvox logoLondon based Spinvox is about to take the giant leap to the States. The service converts voicemail to text and sends them via e-mail and/or SMS to read on your cell phone. The Quick-Link takes you to a specific message so that you don’t have to hassle with your voicemail menu and will display the caller’s number. If you are out and about and have an urge to share, Spinvox also features Speak-a-Blog. The company will assign you a personal number, convert it, and post it on your blog.

Although they are still in the negotiation phase with U.S. carriers, you can test its service by calling the site’s phone number, leaving a message, and it will post it on their blog in a couple of moments. Spinvox charges by number of calls, ranging from £3.00 (~$4.00) for 10 conversions to £27.99 (~$36.00) for 200 and is currently offering a 1 week (50 message) free trial.

Read More | Spinvox

Gallery: Spinvox Comes to America

Bravia W44S

Sony Ericsson has come up with a new concept in phones, the Bravia W44S, which opens both vertically and horizontally. It can handle digital audio on its dual 16mm stereo speakers, video reception on a 240 x 432mm screen, CDMA EVDO, a 3.2 MP camera with auto-focus, a 128 voice polyphonic ringtone, and a MS pro duo slot built-in for 115 Mb flash.

We admit that the W44S looks pretty nifty with its moon phases calendar/clock, but since it’s only available in Japan for now, we’ll just consider it another teaser from Sony Ericsson and hang on to our merely vertical cell phones.

Read More | Mobile Mentalism

Gallery: Bravia Cell Phone Flip Flops

Ford Focus

The Ford Focus will be one of the cars being issued this fall that will feature Sync, and they are keeping it on the downlow. We couldn’t get a price, (“It will blow away the competition,”) any pictures of it in a vehicle, or even mention the name of the dude who was telling us what we weren’t supposed to know. Maybe Microsoft is saving the info for the CES. All we were told/shown was that Ford has the exclusive rights until 2008, that it will play and/or recharge your iPod via USB, interrupt your tunes if you have an incoming call, and has text message/voice recognition capability.


Read More | Ford

Gallery: NAIAS 2007: Sync Goes Silent


Showstoppers brought us something we’ve been dreaming of for a very long time: A pad you can drop all your devices that need a charge onto, without dealing with various wall-warts or cords or cables.

The WildCharger is a pad that works on induction—it’s a very thin pad, and though it requires a bit of modification to your device, (or a device-specific thin-cradle you slide your phone/pda into) the concept is definitely promising. Spills don’t phase it, and you can touch any portion of the pad without having to worry about getting shocked. They even had a modified PSP, which allows you to charge it simply by putting the PSP on the pad—no cradle needed.

The pad will come in a regular and mini sizes and will sell for $100 and $40, respectively, with the added benefit that you don’t use any power when no devices are on the pad. (Modern wall-warts still drain power, even without your cell phone plugged in.)

If they’re able to keep compatible cradles up and cheap at a regular clip, this could be a great solution for the gadget geek with six cell phones. Available first half of this year.

Gallery: CES 2007: WildCharge Device Charging Platform


We have been waiting for this one for quite a while, and Apple delivered on the iPhone rumors that have been making the rounds for the better part of a year. The iPhone is more than just a phone though - this is the next generation iPod, a portable version of OS X, and a portable Internet navigator. Let’s first look at the hardware features.

The new iPhone features a 3.5-inch widescreen tough-sensitive display. The screen is a 320x480 at 160 ppi - that is an absolutely amazing feat, as 160 ppi is going to be gorgeous. The phone itself is 11.6 mm thin, and features a 2.0 megapixel camera, quad-band GSM/EDGE, EiFi, and Bluetooth 2.0. Battery life will be 16 hours for audio, 5 hours for talk time, video, and web browsing. Even cooler still is the built-in proximity sensor, which recognizes when the phone is on your ear so that it turns off the screen to save power. The accelerometer senses when the phone is tilted into a portrait or landscape display, and changes what is seen on the screen as appropriate. Lastly, there are ambient light sensors as well.

On the software side of things, the iPhone runs a specialized version of OS X, with the promise of support for full desktop-class applications. The phone also has SMS session support, which looks to have an iChat-like interface. This allows you to follow an SMS conversation back and forth on one screen. The three way calling support on the phone looks to work easily and seamlessly - if you have two calls going at once, simply hit the conference button, and both calls are brought together. Safari is built in, touted as the first fully usable HTML browser on a phone, and it features on-the-fly zooming that reminded us of the Wii Opera Browser. Photo management is top notch, and the phone even support Dashboard widgets as well, allowing for a whole host of software application possibilities that haven’t even been thought of yet.

Apple also announced support for Yahoo! IMAP email, which will be PUSH email similar to what you find on the BlackBerry. Google Maps is also integrated into the phone in a snazzy way, and that includes satellite map support.

The iPhone is going to be offered exclusively through Cingular in the US starting in June, and hits Europe in the fourth quarter of 2007, followed by Asia in 2008. The 4 GB model will be available for $499 with a two-year contract, while the 8 GB model will sell for $599 with two-year contract. Once it passes FCC approval, the phone will be available for purchase from both Cingular and Apple.

Apple has created a great interactive site that lets you see exactly how a bunch of the iPhone features work, which you can check out below.

Read More | Apple iPhone Product Page

Gallery: Apple Announces The iPhone, Widescreen iPod, Internet Navigator