Best use of NFC so far

July 24, 2012

NFC is the big buzz word everywhere now and most people don’t even know what it is, what it does or that they already have it in their phone.

Will the new iPhone have it? Nobody knows until it is revealed, but that shouldn’t stop us from exploring it.

And that is exactly what Razorfish in Germany did with this 2 day project, coming up with the best idea on NFC usage I have seen so far.


The idea is simple, just like you used to get your candy from a machine you can now get all kinds of digital goodies: Apps, movies, songs, ebooks, as well as other exclusive and location-based content that can be pushed to a phone. Simply enter a coin and turn the lever – then follow the animation and tap your smartphone next to the release chute.

In terms of hardware, we used a Samsung Galaxy Tab, an NFC shield, a simple reed switch and two Arduino microcontrollers – all nicely fitted into an original Gum Machine metal base.


Super awesome indeed. Nicely done Razorfish. You can read more about it here.


Best Game Controller ever – Update

August 31, 2009

i told you about this game controller here already, but it looks like there will be a Retail package ready for Xmas this year (at least in the US) and it will be compatible with PC, Xbox360 and PS3.

here is another video:

they will be taken pre-orders here, but I couldn’t find a price yet.

Best Buy Crowdsourcing staff expertise to answer Tweets

July 30, 2009

It’s a simple concept from Best Buy. Customers ask questions on Twitter about products… Question sent to chosen staff member who has opted in for the subject matter… Staff member answers on Twitter.

Of course the beauty of Twitter is you get to see what people are asking as well. At time of writing the last question submitted was “Why does my dog keep leaving a poopy in front of my room.” Be interesting to see how they reply to that one.


Sample of questions sent to Best Buy Twelpforce
(Note: I just copied and pasted whatever was on screen at the time (last 15 Qs) as a live sample, they have not been selected)

KaggyFriggle: @twelpforce Why does my dog keep leaving a poopy in front of my room? 8 minutes ago

csturner89: @TWELPFORCE I have a laptop with a T2060 processor and 2 gig ram.. i want something better in the 500 range what would you have? 31 minutes ago

jamiah93: @TWELPFORCE So does touch-screen depend completely on the monitor or does the computer itself has anything to do with it? 37 minutes ago

pwebbiz: @twelpforce Looking for netbook recommendations. Something for business on the go use. 41 minutes ago

NakedBoyNews: Doing a story on cell phones. Advice: Whats better LG Dare or LG enV Touch? and is the enV Touch just the LG Voyager? @twelpforce 42 minutes ago

NakedBoyNews: Doing a stpry on cell phones. Advice: Whats better LG Dare or LG enV Touch? and is the enV Touch just the LG Voyager? @twelpforce 42 minutes ago

pwebbiz: @twelpforce @agent3012 Thanks for helping me solve a week long problem! #twelpforce is great! 50 minutes ago

queen90018: @TWELPFORCE Maybe a free incentive with purchase, but not a $10.00 with a $500.00 that’s extreme in this economy. 54 minutes ago

CherryKitten68: @twelpforce I’m looking for a car radio for under $200 w/ ipood and bluetoof 4 my ’95 honda chivic 54 minutes ago

ohsqrrlgrrl: @twelpforce need a cheap cell phone plan contract with sim card capabilities for internat’l and nat’l use. ideas? about 1 hour ago

ayylaurenn: @TWELPFORCE which laptop has the fastest processor? about 1 hour ago

xDeathReaperx: @TwelpForce Do you have a MacBook? about 1 hour ago

nunonunonuno: @twelpforce How many HD SLRs are out there. Can you help. about 1 hour ago

CappyT1982: @TWELPFORCE To join twelpforce do we need to cut off your head with a sword thus quicking oursleves, or is it when one of you bites us? about 2 hours ago

bernierjohn: @twelpforce TIP If you’re reading this and wondering when you should jump in, read WIKI first, and get going! Don’t be afraid to fail… about 2 hours ago

Posted by @eunmac

Classic Levi’s TV Ads Collection. 1985-1997

December 29, 2008

Remember these classic Levi’s Ads? Oh yes, you will! This is the collection of the most memorable ones, many of which are imprinted on the brains of a generation, running between the mid 80’s to late 90’s. Brilliant choice of music that inspired countless imitations over the years. Here they are… the originals 🙂

Note: Clip ‘Prison’ has a very famous main character…

Above: The Launderette (Nick Kaman) 1985
Music – Heard it through the Grapevine – Marvin Gaye

Above: The Bathtub. 1986
Music : Wonderful World – Sam Cooke

Above: The Refrigerator 1988
Music: Mannish Boy – Waters, Muddy

The Pickup. 1989
Music : Be My Baby-The Ronettes

The Bike (1990) –
Music – The Joker/Steve Miller Band

Pool (1991)
Music The Clash – Should I stay or should I go.

Prison (feat a very famous movies star) 1991
Music: Twentieth Century Boy – T-Rex

The Swimmer (1992)
Music: Mad About The Boy – Washington, Dinah

The Fall / Oilrig (1994)
Music: Music by Peter Lawler – Fictional Self

The Procession (1993)
Music: Scream Jay Hawkins – Heart Attack and Vine

The Creek 1994
Music: Peter Lawler | Stiltskin – Inside

Spaceman 1995
Music: Babylon Zoo

The Mermaids (1997)
Music: Smoke City- Underwater Love

Is it just me or was Mermaids the last of the great Levi’s ads???

There are several notable missing ads from this collection/era which can be identified by the soundtracks:
Erma Franklin – Piece of my heart
Ben E King – Stand by Me

(If you find the above please post in comments thx!)

Edit: Thanks to @oonai5000 for posting some of these Levis commercials.

Top 10 Coolest Gadgets on Ebay for under $10

December 20, 2008

Earlier this year I set myself a mini project – find ten cool gadgets for under $10* on Ebay. I tried to keep postage included in the cost but allowed a couple of items to sneak over, simply because I had saved money on a few others.

The good news is that I found ten kind of cool gadgets. Instead of posting to this blog I’ve waited a few months to see if any of these were any good- ie whether I actually used them or if any of them broke.

Here is the top 10, starting with the worst. Number one is a cracker – in fact it was so good that someone stole it :(((

* ($10 Aussie = $6.80 USD | £4.50 UK | €4.90 Euros )


10: USB Vacuum cleaner (find them here on ebay)

Average price: AU$8.00 including postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 6/10
Quality: 1/10
Real world usefulness: 3/10

This would have been a zero except for the fact that it has an LED light on it which came in handy a couple of times when I was trying to peer into dark places inside the computer. This thing has no suction. Whilst I really liked the idea because computers and keyboards attract dust like a flies to a poop, this USB vacuum is absolutely crap.

9. Weather Station (find on ebay

Average price: AU$7.00 +$5 postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 2/10
Quality: 6/10
Real world usefulness: 4/10

It does what it says, temperature, time, date, humidity blah blah blah. But it’s pretty boring really. It was also slightly over $10 with postage.

8. Voice disguise for mobile phone (find here)

Average price: AU$10.00 +$2 postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 6/10
Quality: 5/10
Real world usefulness: 2/10

Total gimmick, that’s about it. I have very little need to disguise my voice or sound like a female. Given that my mobile phone sends the number to callers anyway, it’s not like I can get away with anything anyway!____________________________________________________

7. Laptop (or child) Theft Detector
(find here)

Average price: AU$10.00 +$5 postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 8/10
Quality: 3/10
Real world usefulness: 2/10

I was actually excited about ordering this. I have a couple of small kids who always run off so the idea of a proximity alarm going off if the two things get separated by more than 30ft is kind of cool.

Here’s the problem. It goes off randomly on occasion. The transmitter batteries don’t last very long. You have to constantly turn both ends on and off. I like the idea – but again this gadget fails to deliver as I’d like.

6. Tiny Wireless Mouse  (find here)

Average price: AU$6.00 +$5 postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 4/10
Quality: 2/10
Real world usefulness: 9/10

This thing “was” great. The usb adapter slots away really well. I was using this a lot. But then it broke after 3 months. Maybe I was just unlucky? Shame.

5. Worlds Smallest Universal Remote Control (find here)

Average price: AU$7.00 including postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 6/10
Quality: 7/10
Real world usefulness: 6/10

I think this would be useful for some people. It’s small enough to go on your keychain. The only real downside is configuring it. It’s a pain in the neck. Always fun for hanging out the local TV shop and turning their TVs on and off!


4. Roll-up Flexible Waterproof Keyboard (find here)


Best price: AU$6.00 including postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 6/10
Quality: 6/10
Real world usefulness: 6/10

Six bucks (including postage) is a bargain. That’s a big reason it made number four. I actually found it useful a few times when the kids were playing on the computer. No fear of them spelling some sticky gloop on it. Ok they keys are not fantastic, but you can feel a press easily enough, plus it’s very lightweight. It’s also a handy
spare if something goes wrong with your main keyboard.

3. Alcohol Breath Tester (find here)

Best price: AU$7.00 including postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 8/10
Quality: 6/10
Real world usefulness: 6/10

I believe the best policy is not to drink anything at all (if you’re planning to drive) but of course you do find yourself in situations where you might want to test the person who’s about to drive you to see if they are safe! We found this device kind of fun when we were staying at home after a couple of beers – just testing each other to see who was over. How accurate is it? Well the detector is primitive (green yellow or red) so it seems pretty basic, but three beers in an hour and it went straight to RED every time. My advice, it’s a novelty not a tool – but still worth $7 bucks. Yes, it even has a an LED light on it.

2. LED Laser Torch (here on ebay) or (here)

Ave price: AU$9.99 +$5 postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 7/10
Quality: 9/10
Real world usefulness: 9/10

OK – I used this so much that I lost it. The one above isn’t quite the same but I did manage to get something very similar for under $10 including delivery off Ebay. The batteries last for ages, there are multiple settings and the laser is, well a good toy for making cats and dogs chase around the little red dot. A bargain gadget.

1. Electric Shock Laser Key Ring (here) or (here ebay)

Ave price: AU$6.00 including postage
Gadget Wow Factor: 8/10
Quality: 9/10
Real world usefulness: 9/10

The winner! We had so much fun with this that is, until someone stole it. Basically if you press the wrong button, instead of getting the laser you get a pretty huge electric shock. So provided you’re not playing this prank on someone with a pacemaker, this thing is a hoot for $6 incl postage. They don’t always show up on Ebay so I included another link above.


Got any ideas or great finds for Gadgets under $10 – let me know: or leave a comment below. 🙂

Apple announces Top 10 iPhone App downloads of 2008

December 3, 2008


There shouldn’t really be any surprises for anyone who own an iphone or iTouch.

and i won’t bore you with all of the lists, but here are my favourites:

1. BeejiveIM made it to #2 on the top 10 paid social networking list
I am not surprised that it’s there because it’s pretty good, but it’s 16 bucks – people must have too much money

2. “Units” made it into the top 10 for paid and free apps – I know its 2 different programs but why would you pay for something that does the same thing as a free app?

3. “TouchScan”, a 99 cent application that “scans the mind of two people at once and compares the brain waves recorded” by way of a fake on screen fingerprint scanner makes it all the way to #6 – it makes me cry

you can see them all in iTunes if you want.