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October 2006

 

A Watch That Says It's Time To Do It...
The Los Angeles Daily News carries an amusing review of the OV-Watch Fertility Predictor:

"Honey, my watch says it's time to ... make a baby." You could be speaking — or hearing — those words, if only you had the OV-Watch fertility predictor, which looks like a normal runner's-type digital watch but instead tells women the six days per month during which they're primed for pregnancy.

Forget those nasty urine sticks — which, in case you didn't know, get covered with urine — or the ultra-traditional temperature-taking method. Those methods can miss the critical four-day period before ovulation, also known as prime time for making babies, according to device-maker HealthWatchSystems.

...The catch? It may look like a Timex, but the OV-Watch costs $189, which includes a three-month supply of ion sensors. But considering the price of fertility treatment at a doctor's office, that's small change. And you can be sure the guy in your life will be intrigued by a digital watch that says, "It's time to do it."

October 24th, 2006

 

 

Saab Begins In-Car Breathalyzer Trials
Automobile.com provides an interesting report on plans by Saab to test its AlcoKey in-car breathalyzer system:

The AlcoKey is linked to the cars on-board security system and immobilizer. Before starting the vehicle, the driver must blow into the AlcoKey's breathalyzer for three seconds for the system to take a reading. Immediately the key will illuminate either a green light, which disarms the engine immobilizer via a wireless signal, or will flash a red-light, which shows that the car is still armed. From the time the all-clear signal is given, the driver has one minute to start the engine.

...The AlcoKey will begin its trial test shortly on 100 different government and taxi fleets. Saab's own executives will also be participating. Saab estimates that on a production car the AlcoKey would retail for roughly 3,000 Swedish Kronors ($410) and could be fitted to any of its vehicles.

October 19th, 2006

 

Tanita's BC-502 Body Fat Monitor
Several websites are featuring the Tanita BC-502 body fat monitor, including Akihabara News and Gizmodo, which reports:

What makes this unit special is that it can be connected to a PC using a USB cable so you can chart your progress in losing or gaining weight. Not only that, they have a bluetooth module that can sync up with your phone, so you won't have to bend down to read the scale (and for keeping track of your progress).

Once on the phone, the data can be sent to a website so your doctor can monitor your health.

And CalorieLab writes about the similarly-sounding Tanita BC-500-SV.

 

So far, the devices seem to be on sale in Japan only.
October 17th, 2006

 

 

Tremendous Little Device
Great review in Business Week of the Garmin Forerunner 305 GPS
Personal Training Device
. The conclusion:

The Forerunner comes with some other features that will appeal to the geek in every runner. One is the Training Center software that organizes data on your runs.

Even better, the 305 is compatible with Garmin's online service MotionBased.com. Think of it as Training Center on performance enhancers, opening a world of interactive maps and graphs that catalog everything about your run, from pace, distance, and heart rate to the weather in the areas you covered. A database of past runs makes your entire exercise history available at the click of a mouse. It makes great use of Google maps to display your routes. Never have I been so thrilled looking at a set of maps.

All in all, the Forerunner 305 is a tremendous little device, even for the price. The GPS technology isn't bulletproof, but the combination of precision tracking and voluminous postworkout reporting is a real winner. It's enough to encourage longtime runners to keep going—or beginners and others to kick it up a notch. It very well may be the best thing to happen to runners since Pheidippides strapped on his sandals.

October 10th, 2006
 

Breathalyzer for Japanese Commercial Drivers
This is an interesting development from Japan - a video phone incorporating a breathalyzer. Transportation companies are buying them for their commercial vehicles, and requiring drivers to make a phone call to head office and then to blow into the device. Because the unit incorporates video, it is impossible for someone else to take the breath test. A company computer performs an analysis of the driver's breath.

October 3rd, 2006

 

 

ADEO Fitness Trainer
Thank you to local Melbourne company Satellite Fitness for notifying me about the ADEO Fitness Trainer, a new GPS product from Motion Lingo. I don't know enough about it to make a comparison with the popular Garmin devices, but I hope to write more in due course.

Here's a brief description:

You can track and store your workout through GPS technology. Verbal cues update you through your earphones as you go. Your total distance traveled is computed, as is average speeds, elevation, current and elapsed time, calories burned, and more. Three workout routines can be customized and stored for your jogging, biking, walking or other fitness routines. And at the end of the day, you can synch with your computer to chart progress over time.
October 2nd, 2006

 

 

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