Awesome Stuff: Simple And Small Stuff

from the keeping-it-simple dept

For this week's awesome stuff we're back to discussing some crowdfunding projects, and this week, we're keeping it simple. Here are a few simple, small projects, some potentially more interesting and useful than others.
  • Nope!
    It's no longer paranoid and crazy to want to cover up the camera on your laptop any more. Most people just use some black tape. Hell, the EFF even sells special camera cover stickers that are totally worth buying. But if you'd prefer not to use sticky tape, there's now another solution, that looks a bit more elegant: Nope: a pair of magnets designed to cover the camera, but also easy enough to slide out of the way when you do need the camera (and without leaving any sticky residue. The magnets are supposedly weak enough not to cause problems for the computer but you might want to confirm that before diving in.
  • Openmix
    Simple, straightforward and small: it's the Openmix, the world's smallest audio mixer. It's pretty no frills. The tiny device has a dial, two audio input plugs that you can accept any smartphone or mp3 player, and you spin the dial back and forth to crossfade from one audio source to the other. There's also an outbound jack so you can plug in a speaker, and a third input if you want to insert effects or something via a DJ app. It's not fancy. It won't do amazing things, but as a simple device, it looks pretty neat. Of course, it also looks like it's nowhere near hitting its goal with just a little time left.
  • Gyzmo
    A simple wireless remote for your mobile phone, called the Gyzmo. Three buttons that you can program to do a specific thing on your phone, letting you have your phone do something specific without having to grab the full phone. Originally designed as a sort of "panic button," the designers are making it programmable so you can do other things remotely as well.
  • NoPhone
    Okay, this last one is just for fun, but it is simple. As the NoPhone folks explain, it's a "technology-free alternative to constant hand-to-phone contact that allows you to stay connected with the real world." In short, it's a 3D printed slab of nothing, in the shape of a phone, for those of you who now feel like you always have to be holding something smartphone-sized. There's also a "selfie-upgrade" which is a mirror sticker. They note that while it doesn't have bluetooth, if you drop it in the toilet, it won't die. It's also not carrier locked.
That's it for this week.
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Filed Under: awesome stuff


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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Sep 2014 @ 10:07am

    On the subject of laptop PC cameras, I've been searching for years for a camera-free laptop, and the only ones I've ever found are expensive specialty business computers. (I'm willing to pay a higher price, but not triple or quadruple the price, for the privilege of being camera-free) I don't use a camera, will never use a camera, and don't like having this security threat forced on me.

    I've never understood why it seems all brands, all models come only one way. I'm still stuck using a dozen-year-old model because it has the features I need (other than speed) --without the "features" I hate -- and none of the newer models come anywhere close to this standard.

    I know I'm far from the only person who strongly objects to certain "features" such as a built-in camera, but for some strange reason it seems the manufacturers remain completely deaf to user preferences.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Rekrul, 28 Sep 2014 @ 11:47am

      Re:

      On the subject of laptop PC cameras, I've been searching for years for a camera-free laptop, and the only ones I've ever found are expensive specialty business computers.

      Most cameras can be unplugged, although you'll probably need to open the case to do it. I just found a broken laptop in the trash (it still works) and when I downloaded the service manual for it, it showed where the camera can be unplugged. Of course it requires removing the keyboard and part of the case...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 28 Sep 2014 @ 6:48pm

      Re:

      For the same price as a laptop with a camera you can get one with a disabled camera by simply putting some electric tape on it. Sure, it'll add sticky residue to your camera but when the alternative you are considering is to buy a laptop with no camera and pay more then who cares.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jamie, 27 Sep 2014 @ 3:46pm

    You are paranoid

    Worrying about your camera is a little paranoid. I'm not saying it can't happen but people have the impression it's only a matter of someone who knows how. Like hot wiring a car. There specifically has to be a vulnerability that allows someone in. That's usually not the case.

    Secondly, 99% of camera have a light that comes on when power is applied to the camera (cameras require power to record anything). If someone was watching you, that light would come on. Regardless of whether they hacked you or just turned it on while you weren't looking.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    kitsune361, 28 Sep 2014 @ 10:30am

    Damn...

    I made a little ghetto mini mixer like that Openmix for my MP3 player & computer YEARS ago. To think, if I was motivated I could have been an inventor/entrepreneur. =-.-=;

    Though this one is much slicker.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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