Review – Trainers from space (a.k.a. Airia Ones)

AiriaOneSideView

Disclosure: I was sent this pair of trainers free of charge in exchange for a review of them

I’ve wanted to pick up running again after a bit of a lull since Summer 2014. I’ve got a bit fed up with long distance running and thought it would be a good idea to focus on improving my running times for 10k and below. This meant I was very pleased when I received a new pair of Airia Ones to review.

airia boxThe big deal about these Swedish shoes is that they have been designed with the goal of making you able to run faster. In fact, they give you a 30 day guarantee so you can test it out for yourself risk-free. I was immediately sceptical; it sounds like a big promise to say a shoe can make you run faster. However, as soon as you open up the box (which felt a bit like unboxing an iPhone for the first time) you can see that these trainers are different to your usual Nike or Adidas running shoes. They are so light when you pick them up it reminded me of the polystyrene blocks you get in packaging. The patented outersole (manufactured by Vibram) gives it the unique shape and is firm but flexible. The rest of the upper is made out of an airy mesh and when you put it on it hardly feels like you are wearing anything. 

Continue reading Review – Trainers from space (a.k.a. Airia Ones)

2011 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Syndey Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 50,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 19 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Not quite a “post a week” but a vast improvement over last year’s (21 posts and 4500 views). Part of this is directly linked to migrating from the now defunct Windows Live Spaces platform and onto WordPress.

Thanks to all my visitors, I really appreciate your comments and hope you have found something useful, intersting or funny on my blog.

Hopefully 2012 will bring even more interesting posts thanks to my new job (starting next week!). One of my tech resolutions will definitely be to increase the amount of posts I do and taking the drafts that float around in limbo to completed usefull articles.

Here to seeing what 2012 brings 🙂

First look at the Nintendo 3DS at the London Launch Party as a V.I.P.

My wife and I were lucky enough to spend the night schmoozing and boozing a load of “celebrities” at the launch of the new Nintendo 3DS. Unfortunately there was not a stack of free consoles that they were giving away. In fact, there was a mini HMV store inside that had people queuing from 11pm ready to buy at midnight. However, there were plenty of wired in 3DSs to have a go on.

The missusThe 3D effect

At first I thought the 3D was terrible. Pictures were blurry and I had to hold it at an awkward arm-stretched position. I then realised that the 3D slider switch needed to be adjusted slightly for each different game.Once i treated it more like a camera focus (or maybe a radio tuner) I managed to get the perfect 3D image. It was pretty good but worked a lot better at conveying depth rather than things coming out in your face. One unit was showing a 3D video from a Sky TV app and you could see when something tried to come out of the screen it just hit the screen edge and then disappeared. I don’t think I would worry about my kids using it. As long as the focus is correct it would be no different to playing any handheld console, in my opinion.

The games were a bit hit and miss. I really enjoyed playing Street Fighter in 3D, using the wireless connection to battle my wife (I won 2:1). The new circle pad really helped me to “whoop some ass”  and the larger (much) better quality touchscreen helped me pull off some mean combos. The Football and Battleship game was quite dull. The Wii Sports hang-gliding game was a bit too childish for me but I think kids would like it.

Continue reading First look at the Nintendo 3DS at the London Launch Party as a V.I.P.

Review: Windows Phone 7

Live tilesThis is a continuation from my previous hardware review of my Samsung Omnia 7

Windows Phone 7 (WP7) is Microsoft’s latest and greatest operating system (OS) for smartphones. They have left behind a long legacy of Windows Mobile code (stopping at v6.5) and built a new OS from the foundation of their Zune mp3 player. Transitioning an mp3 player into a phone sound like a familiar idea? Well it’s no secret that this is Microsoft’s final chance to regain some of the market that Apple swept away from them. Their slow response to change, or innovate, also led to Google’s Android OS get a strong foothold in the market as well as a loyal following. So, has Microsoft done enough to sway the tide? Check out my review below to see if I think it has.

Continue reading Review: Windows Phone 7

Review: Samsung Omnia 7

I was a very lucky winner of a competition on the ubelly blog, receiving the amazing prize of a Samsung Omnia 7 smartphone featuring the new Windows Phone 7 (WP7) operating system.

Omnia7

I received it mid-December so I have had just over a month to get used to it. This review is mainly focussing on the Omnia 7 hardware, I have reviewed the Windows Phone 7 OS in a separate review. This is my first ever smartphone after using a Nokia 6233 for 3 years so bear in mind I won’t be comparing it to any androids or iPhones.

Continue reading Review: Samsung Omnia 7

Capture and Upload Screenshots in an instant with Gyazo

I just got hold of a really useful (multi-platform) tool called Gyazo. It is a single-minded app that will upload an image of whatever you select up to their website to allow easy sharing to twitter, facebook or whatever.

I’ve used Jing before and also heard of ZScreen and SPGrab but Gyazo wins becasuse it is so light and easy to use.

Continue reading Capture and Upload Screenshots in an instant with Gyazo

Zune – The iTunes alternative

Update: Zune is dead 😦

Well it’s actually regenerated into Xbox Music. A lot of the content on here is still valid but the links may not work. Go to music.xbox.com for full details

Don’t you just hate the fact that sometimes you need to install bloated, slow iTunes to download and organise your music collection? Well stress no more, coinciding with the release of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft have opened up Zune to international waters.

Zune goes where you go. Whether on your PC, Xbox 360, or Windows Phone 7 you can enjoy, discover, and share your entertainment anytime you want. zune.net

What’s a Zune?

The Zune software is a media player, originally designed to manage Microsoft’s own mp3 player (iPod competitor) the Zune. You would use the Zune app to sync your music to your device or download new music from the online marketplace. It is very similar in functionality to how iTunes works with iPods. However, it differs dramatically in it’s design. You can’t help but be impressed with how the software works. I installed it a couple of years ago, even though I didn’t have a Zune (as I’m in the UK) purely because it looks so good. I could also use it to download podcasts so I could sync them with my generic mp3 player.

Continue reading Zune – The iTunes alternative