Monthly Archives: April 2010

Power to The People

Why struggle with failing batteries? The ability to recharge for free, anywhere and anytime has never been easier!

Long, long before the days of social networking and mobile phones that do everything from taxes to preparing dinner, mankind once relied on lanterns atop towers and carrier pigeons in order to communicate over distances. Imagine how long and difficult it was for people in medieval times to let their friends know what they were planning to do on the weekend! Fortunately, those dark times have passed, and we are lucky to live in a world of tweets.

Still, there is one thing holding society back: the need for electricity. For such an advanced civilization, it is surprising how we are still tethered to the walls with umbilical cords for our precious laptops and iPhones.  As we go about our daily routine, often our batteries run flat, and we panic and flail about what to do about it.

Siemens and Wheatstone Dynamo Generator. Mid 1800s

With the latest advancements in technology, cheap and easy ways of keeping our beloved electronics alive has never been more affordable or easy to do. Using streamlined, pocketable devices, consumers can now sprint through their day, no longer worrying about having to plug in for a little extra juice. In fact, this technology has been around for years! Only recently have the applications become readily available.

It’s hard to believe that something as simple as a palm-sized box with a hand-turned crank can keep a mobile phone running indefinitely.  As whimsical as it sounds, Dynamo generators have been in use since the late 1800s for applications like powering electric arc furnaces. While 3G enabled Smart Phones may not yet have built-in hardware for welding metals together, consumers can still make use of these scaled-down these Dynamo generators.

Pocket Sized Dynamo Generator for charging small electronics.

One of the best ways consumers can keep their gadgets running without having to exert any effort is to use a Solar Powered Battery Charger. These shining monuments of ingenuity store power from light sources in an internal battery. This stored energy can later be used to charge portable devices such as mobile phones and MP3 players, even when there are no light sources for the charger.

In the past, solar technology has always taken a back seat in terms of power generation due to limitations. Now that there is an worldwide market for portable electronics, there has never been better opportunity for solar technology to take the driver’s seat. Solar chargers are safe, easy, and can really save the day when a phone call just needs to last that much longer.

Solar Charger with built-in battery for charging small electronics.

Sun bathing and manual labor may not be for everyone. For consumers who still want to benefit from rechargeable-on-the-go technology, there are a few universal battery packs that draw their power from USB ports or from power points. These battery packs can power mobile devices and laptops, and can more than double a laptop’s battery operating time. With the right adapters, consumers may even use these universal batteries to recharge camera batteries to keep the film rolling on extended shoots.

5500mah Recharcheable Universal Laptop Battery

There are so many different products on the market when it comes to emergency chargers that it can be difficult to choose which product is just right. Luckily, there is enough variety out there that consumers have the chance to weed out the ‘hots’ from the ‘nots’ .

Sellers on eBay offer a wide range of Dynamo and Solar Chargers for pennies on the dollar.  It’s time to conserve electricity and never be caught out with a flat batt again. For every bit of energy that comes from renewable energy, our planet smiles just a little bit more, and at the end of the day, what more could a conscious consumer ask for?

Jerrel Dulay


3D Digital Cameras – The Future, Coming Soon?

Is practical and easily viewable three-dimensional photography here at last?

Amidst the sea of ever-advancing digital technology and evolving camera models, one product stands out above the rest: a 3D digital point-and-shoot camera, introducing a whole new way of seeing things.

A working prototype of Fujifilm’s FinePix 3D digital camera presented at the PMA Imaging Technology 2009 Show may well be finding its way into Australian homes in the near future. Alongside an 8.4-inch 3D Photo Frame and 4×6 prints, this futuristic camera has left those lucky enough to see the camera hands-on wondering “how did they do that?”

Using the latest advances in technology, the Finepix 3D synchronises two eye- distance apart lenses with matched zoom, exposure and focus to take two photos simultaneously with pinpoint accuracy but from slightly different angles. In other words, instead of just using one eye, this camera is now looking at things with two eyes, just as we do.

The concept of stereoscopic pictures has existed since Victorian times, but being able to view 3D photos without specialised glasses is what allows this new technology to really stand out. Fujifilm introduces the Finepix 3D into fast-paced market looking for something new and exciting.

Fujifilm’s W1 3D camera takes an ambitions leap, hoping to make a few waves.

The impressive 2.8-inch live-view LCD screen allows users to view the photos in 3D before taking the picture. This real time 3D effect is accomplished by the screen tricking the viewer’s eyes to see the two images as one. Both the accessory 3D digital photo frame and processed prints make use of this technique to produce stunning images. This groundbreaking technology means that viewers no longer need bulky glasses to view 3D images.

This new approach to 3D photography beckons a future tide of revolution for the media industry. The introduction of a revolutionary 3D digital photo frame paves the way for future digital 3D screens for TV and cinemas, leaving generous room for expansion. Eventually 3D billboards and posters may be seen jumping out at consumers, snatching the attention of viewers and delivering messages more quickly and memorably.

Enormous research is being done on electronic paper and other new printing techniques that will one day see magazines competing to attract readers’ attention through the use of 3D photos.

Fujifilm Digital 3D Photo ViewerFujifilm’s digital 3D photo viewer

Consumers themselves may one day be able to develop these photos at a local photo shop just as readily as a modern digital photo.

Should the Fujifilm Finepix 3D find steady footing in a market constantly on the move, other manufacturers will be attracted to join the fray and find whole new platforms beyond the existing patents on which to contend.

It is the incorporation of the digital photo frame that bolsters Fujifilm’s presentation of its latest venture into unknown territory. The concept of being able to quickly and easily share 3D photos without having to develop expensive prints is sure to appeal to those already intrigued by this experimental technology.

On a hands-on experience, it becomes apparent that printed 3D photos seem to lose dimensionality and depth when viewed at any angle other than head-on. Due to 3D viewing techniques, printed media seems to have a pixilated, low-resolution appearance. However, the technology, which has done much to impress and deserve attention, is sure to improve and develop further.

Nimslo 3D cameras offered a glimpse into the future of photographer.

As revolutionary as 3D photography may seem, Fujifilm is not quite stepping into uncharted territory. In the 1980s, the Nimslo 3D Camera broke ground by taking 3D photos on 35mm film. In the end, the inconvenience of price and months of waiting for the film to be processed eventually lead to the demise of this experimental camera, though few dedicated enthusiasts remain. Fujifilm picks up where the Nimslo 3D left off, and brings a novel idea back to the table in proper, digital fashion.

Fujifilm has already displayed operational 3D cameras in the past, and although the impact of previous presentations has been minimal, the Finepix 3D, with its more attractive body design and extended applications, looks to make bigger waves

Although no prices have yet been announced, the camera and prints are expected to be very expensive, certainly throwing a wrench into the 3D gears of excitement. As all technology trends go, while the introductory 3D camera, prints, and digital frame might be a bit out of range for casual consumers, given time, the technology may settle in, becoming more affordable and thus more commonplace.

Further advances in technology will bring 3D Digital Real Image System just a bit closer to consumers. With live-view LCD function, movie recording, digital photo-frame and prints, 3D photography is developing into something more than a fascinating gimmick.

Connectivity between 3D camers and 3D TVs will be on demonstration at the Digital Life Expo in Melbourne, Australia this June. The question now stands, will 3D photography catch on, and if so, just how far will it go?

Jerrel Dulay