Ideas, Intelligence, Events and Promotions from WIRED

Reinvent Yourself with Switch

Image via Facebook

Ever regretted the major you chose at age 18? Feel like you’re in a career that you enjoyed at age 22 but have no interest in now? Want to get into the technology field but don’t want to go back to college and get a second degree? Check out Switch – it hopes to become the TripAdvisor of alternate education and career changes. 

Switch gathers reviews of courses, programs, and boot camps straight from the alumni themselves. Their mission? “To help people learn tech skills and switch into the careers of their dreams.” Down the line, they plan to offer scholarships and financing as well as a mentorship program. Take the eight-question quiz on their home page to see which tech career is right for you. I got Interaction Designer. Hmm… 

Smarter Upstarter

#Tech  
#Switch  
|  September 1st, 2014

$30 War of the Worlds Tripod Lamp

Image via Makezine

This lamp is awesome and it costs $30 to make. What are you waiting for?

You won’t need fancy tools but you will need to put on your creativity hat and head to a resale shop or dollar store. The creator of this tutorial cut apart various plastic toys including a water gun, glue gunned them together, and finished with a coat of spray paint to create a War of the Worlds-inspired shape. Add metal legs and a flashlight from the hardware store and you’ve got yourself a desk lamp unlike no other. 

Maker

#Maker  
#Tech  
#DIY  
|  August 31st, 2014

DIY Mind Control

Image via Spectrum

DIY nerds just got some good news. Mind control is only one hack away.

Brain-computer interface gear is now available online for purchase. It’s called OpenBCI and it will blow your mind. Why? It means makers can now incorporate brain wave control to anything they can hack. The versatile analog-to-digital converter can sample activity from the brain, muscles, and heart. The OpenBCI 8-bit board kit that’s Arduino compatible is currently available for pre-order for $399.99 at the OpenBCI store

Maker

#Maker  
#Tech  
#DIY  
#OpenBCI  
#Arduino  
|  August 31st, 2014

Jetpac Joins Google

Image via Jetpac

Google just acquired Jetpac, an awesome city guide app that pulls content from Instagram.

In this travel app, there are no reviews. Places basically get voted up via the number of shared photos on Instagram. You can search the app for things like “Bars Women Love in Moscow,” and it will scour Instagram for the bar with the most images of lipstick-clad women. Search “10 Happiest Places in Chicago” and it will track smiles. Search for hipster haunts in San Francisco and it will count the mustaches. Although the app will be removed from the App Store, here’s hoping that it will be heavily integrated into Google’s algorithms.

Read more about it at Tnooz

Adventure Capitalist

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#Jetpac  
#App  
|  August 30th, 2014

The Keurig 2.0 is Here, and it’s Making Smart Simple

imageImage via Keurig

The next generation Keurig coffee machine is here, and its whole purpose to be as simple as it is functional.

After many months of development and research, including creating an entirely newfangled water distribution system, the Keurig team has released this latest version of the at-home coffee maker. The functionality of the 2.0 combines the variety of the small K-Cups, the temperature control and other customizable features of the Vue system and, most interestingly, a way to caffeinate the whole family at once with the new multi-cup pot. As Kevin Sullivan, Chief Technology Officer for Keurig Green Mountain, puts it, “Everything we wanted, which was the best the K-Cup and the best of Vue, we were able to achieve. And then we added on top of that, the carafe.”

Here are some of the features you can expect to get with the 2.0 system: Customizable visual elements like the light reservoir (to give it, you know, some flair), the ability to make one cup for yourself or a whole pot for a larger group by inserting K-Cups or new K-Carafe packs in the one, central receptacle, and, thankfully, a level of simplicity that speaks to even the most technologically stunted users. “It’s hard to be simple… [but] you don’t need complications in your coffee maker,” explains Sullivan.

We’d agree, and the 2.0 does the leg work for you, intuitively “reading” the pack size and type you insert to allow the right coffee recipe nearly every time without any extra effort. Just put the coffee (or tea, or hot cocoa, for that matter) pack into the machine, and hit brew. There’s very little thinking necessary, which is great, because Sullivan knows that nobody likes more work in the morning.

So long, clunky coffee machine you used to keep around for weekends! The new 2.0 is available in three iterations, and can be purchased on the Keurig website for $149.99 - $199.99. 

Gastronaut

#Tech  
#Keurig  
#Coffee  
|  August 29th, 2014
  • Behind the Cheetos “Say Cheese” Stunt

    By now you’ve probably seen the Say Cheese video that we shot with Chester Cheetah photobombing the photos of unsuspecting tourists across the country. This is how we did it.

    The entire plan of attack hinged on the use of an Image Fulgurator—essentially a modified camera that uses a flashgun to fire through the camera in reverse. This flash travels through a slide with a transparency of Chester and projects it onto the flat surface behind the tourists in the video. They never suspected a thing. 

    The real trickery is in how we set off the Fulgurator. A sensor mounted high on the camera detects a flash from point and shoots, DSLRs or even smartphones and automatically goes off, throwing Chester into the photos of the visitors to TK NY, CHICAGO, & SF LOCATIONS.

    Next week we’ll take a look at the action from behind the camera.

    3 days ago

  • This is a Motorcycle. That Runs on Bacon.

    Image via FWx

    The smell of gasoline is a polarizing issue. Some people love it (and can totally relate to the statement, “I smell my hands after pumping gas,”) while others despise it. But you know what smell everybody loves? Bacon.

    Enter, the Black Label Bacon Bike. As reported by FWx, this hog is a, “Track T800 CDI diesel motorcycle that has been outfitted to run on a biofuel converted from bacon grease.” Even better, the gas-powered fuel is cheaper than the stuff the rest of us are using at just $3.50 per gallon, and of course, it smells like bacon. That’s enough to make us love ‘cycles alone.

    Want to enjoy the Bacon rider without all the risk of, you know, crashing? A film dubbed Driven by Bacon, funded by Hormel, is documenting this one-of-a-kind vehicle, and will premiere at the International Bacon Film Festival. Who knew that existed? 

    Gastronaut

    #Tech  
    #Bacon  
    #Energy  
    |  August 29th, 2014

    Soldiers’ Kits Make Your Gear Look Like Crap

    Image via Cool Material

    Some historian did a photo series about what soldiers in the past used to carry with them into battle. It’s awesome. You got spears, axes, guns, swords, and cool ass uniforms. Also, everyone always had a spoon, because being a total badass in history made you hungry.

    You know what’s in my pocket right now? A wallet (empty), a pen (doesn’t work), and my old ass iPhone that used to belong to my mom. Who am I going to conquer with that? Not that ladies, that’s for sure.

    Culturazzi

    #Tech  
    #Fashion  
    #Gear  
    |  August 28th, 2014

    Surf’s Up, Brah

    Image via Flickr

    Hey, brah. Like, how about we kick back, blast some tunes, and catch some waves? Internet waves, my man, internet waves.

    That’s how I imagine web surfing competitions like the one that happened in Rockaway in New York go down. The object is to surf from one website to another using nothing but your mouse. No back button, no search bar, no right click. It’s the way our grandfather’s surfed Geocities, broskis.

    Think you got what it takes? Try it: surf from Facebook to Myspace with just your mouse. Wipe out, man.

    Culturazzi

    #Tech  
    |  August 28th, 2014

    Tats for Your Tech

    Image via Tech Tattz

    I would never get a tattoo on my body but I would most definitely tat out my tech.

    Tech Tattz are temporary tattoos for your favorite gadgets. The simple black outlined vinyl decals look like someone doodled a design with a Sharpie on your device. Attach the $6 stickers on your phone, in the corner of your laptop, or on the back of your tablet. My favorite products are the colorful USB charger decals that will ensure that no friends or family steal your power. 

    IT Girl

    #IT Girl  
    #Tech  
    #Tattoos  
    |  August 27th, 2014