Gift Giving for the Techies in Your Life

It seems there are a bunch of different lists of gift-giving this year. If you are giving tech this year, here are a few lists the Victor crew found on the web:

CNN Tech – this has a short video that shows different tech available along with some tips for different types of tech.

The Inquirer – features a list for the gamer and gadget fan in your life.

CNet – video of the top 5 gadget gifts under $100.

Popular Mechanics – has a gallery of top picks for this season’s gift giving.

USB Outlets

You can get USB ports integrated right into your outlets. Jody Victor‘s crew found an article that shows a lot of information about the correct way to wire one if you choose to do it yourself.

They suggest you get stick with UL-rated outlets not only for your safety but for the safety of your devices. They range in price from $20-$40. You can find them at The Home Depot or Lowe’s or probably most any hardware/electrical supply store.

Here is the article: http://www.howtogeek.com/244537/how-to-upgrade-your-outlets-for-usb-charging/

Tech Gadget Gifts for the Cook or Baker

As a tech lover, I wondered what kind of tech was out there for the kitchen now that people are baking for the holidays. So I wandered over to Williams-Sonoma.com and looked to see what they had for tech lovers. Wouldn’t you know it, they had a list of “Gifts by Recipient” and sure enough there was a “Techie” page listed.

Here are a few of the products listed on the “Techie” page:

Williams-Sonoma smart thermometer listed at $149.95. So why so expensive for a thermometer? Well it has Wi-Fi connectivity and through their app for iOS, you can stay posted on the cooking details. It can estimate how much time is left, you can create alerts. Nice!

There are various stands and covers for your iPad so you use an online (or local) recipe on your counter. There are other gadgets to help make your cooking experiences easier. Be sure to check out the page!

Jody Victor

Ways to stop your teens from texting and driving

There are a couple new gadgets that can be put in the car to prevent people from texting and driving. The Victor crew set out to find out more about it.

Groove. This one was developed by Scott Tibbitts, a former rocket scientist who lost a colleague killed by a distracted 16-year-old driver. Along with Katie Couric, you can watch this video that has Katie installing the device and finding out about it. It installs in the car’s diagnostic port. It connects to the cloud. It detects when there is a single driver to block texts and other notifications while allowing navigation and music streams. When it detects more than one person in the car, it will shut down assuming the family will take care of itself and not allow distractions. It should cost about $30 for the device and $8/month.
Watch the video to find out more.

CellControl. DriverID is a device that blocks all driver cell phone functions. It is a device similar to Groove plus an app that costs $129. You can configure driver only policies. It senses when there is motion to begin protecting. You can configure to allow specific applications to work. It is always on and it claims to be tamper resistant.
Find out more here.

What’s a good tech gift for Father’s Day?

With Father’s Day just around the corner, we found some top picks for your dad.

Under $100 From Cnet:

  • Roku 3 – Has more than 750 channels including Netflix, Amazon Instant, Hulu Plus, Pandora, MLB.TV, Vudu.
  • Apple TV – If your dad is an Apple person, this would be the better choice – it has most of the same things as Roku 3 but will also stream from iTunes.
  • Seagate Backup Plus – a USB drive that lets dad drag and drop up to 1 TB of data.
  • Logitech Harmony 650 universal remote – Program on the web to control up to 5 devices at once. A good gift for a couch potato.
  • Dayton Audio B652 bookshelf speakers – They sound great for the low price.
  • Amazon Kindle 2012 – At just $69 this has a long-lasting battery and paperlike screen.
  • Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch (2011) – This offers a touch screen, expansion slot for more memory, long battery life, wi-fi access at Barnes & Noble stores.
  • Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K760 – This will work with Apple Mac, iPad and iPhone and switch among the devices.
  • JBL Flip Bluetooth speaker – compact in design, can be used vertically or horizonatally, has speakerphone capabilities.

For more gift ideas check out:

~ Jody Victor

Here are some interesting websites

  • Wired.com – what is interesting is they have sections called GeekDad and GeekMom. Within those sections you will find bulletin boards, latest games, projects you can do with your kids, and much more. Check it out.
  • ThinkGeek – This site sells “stuff for the smart masses.”
  • Awsome Geek Stuff – This site is an “online geek catalogue.”
  • How-to Geek – This site is a source of how-to articles easy enough for beginners but useful also for geeks.
  • Mashable – “a leading source for news, information & resources for the Connected Generation.”

~ Jody Victor

Jody Victor® Found Gift Ideas for Your Valentine Techie

With Valentine’s Day just 3 days away, Jody was wondering what kind of gifts were out there for techies and geeks. There are some lists but this one was the nicest. Here is a sampling:

Jody Victor® finds out what to do with old devices.

Jody wondered what to do with old devices or gadgets that are no longer in use when you get the latest next best thing?
Jody found there are a few sites that offer trade-ins and or recycling of old devices

Gazelle.com will buy Apple® products (Mac, iPhone, iPad, iPod). How it works: Find your device or gadget, answer some simple questions. You will be sent a box with a shipping label if your item is worth at least $30. You choose how you want to be paid: Check, PayPal or Amazon.com gift card. After they receive it, they will check it out and pay you or revise the payment if it’s not in the condition you said it was.

Nextworth.com will buy iPhones, iPads, iPods, cell phones, cameras (point & shoot or DSLR), tablets, e-readers, GPS, laptops, calculators, tv series in Blu-Ray or DVD, video games, game consoles. How it works: Find your item. Print the pre-paid shipping label, pack the item, apply the label and give it to UPS. Once they receive the item, they make sure it is in the condition described and ask to allow up to 10 business days for inspection and payment initiation. Payment options are money transfer to your PayPal account, check or Target gift card.

BestBuy.com Trade-in center. Best Buy will take video consoles, mobile phones, computers, monitors, laptops, tablets, e-readers, mp3 players, cameras, camcorders, receivers, GPS, multimedia projectors, DVD or Blu-Ray players, movies, music, video games, and musical instruments. You can trade you item in online or take it to your local Best Buy store. You will receive a Best Buy gift card as payment. If your has no value, they will recycle it for free.

Jody hopes you found this helpful and will dispose of old electronic equipment properly.

Jody Victor® Wonders: Should I buy a Roomba iRobot?

Jody Victor wondered about the newest Roomba iRobots for rug cleaning.
Here is what Jody found out:

Roomba iRobot was first introduced in 2002. It is a small motorized robot that cleans floors and carpets changing direction when it hits an obstacle due to strategically placed sensors. It can also detect stairs to keep itself from falling down them. It also can detect dirtier areas.

Earlier models had to be “told” the room dimensions but later models can detect room size. Later models can also be put on a schedule. The newer models also have a HEPA filter. Prices range from $349.99 to $699.99 on the Roomba website.

Well, Jody, maybe you should consider a Roomba iRobot!