I’m sitting in row 35 seat H on a very cramped airplane on its way to JFK airport in New York. Ordinarily I would be a bit grumpy right now, but before I got on the plane I saw a kiosk for American Airlines new in-flight internet service gogo. Once the flight was at cruising altitude I pulled out my laptop and accessed the in-plane wifi hotspot. A simple sign-up and $12.95 later and I have about 600k up and 150k down. Not bad. While in-flight internet has been around for a few years (ex. Connexion, Aircell) this is my first opportunity to try the service and overall I’m impressed. It certainly isn’t my Comcast Blast Service (16/2) but the convenience and access at this time are more important than the bandwidth.To test the service I’ve used my Cisco VPN, visited ESPN and watched videos on YouTubeGo to digitalcribs.com to see the latest episodes featuring Shane Battier, Meghan Asha and Lincoln Schatz.
Maybe I’m too old school, but I’m not sure I’ll ever call a home a crib. When I think if cribs, I, of course, think of the crib that my 18-month old sleeps in (and thankyouvermuch, he is doing quite well in the evenings of late). Somehow between college and now, the word crib evolved into the cool vernacular for home. Casa. Abode. Etc. ACTUAL cribs (like my son Jack’s) haven’t really progressed that much over the years, so I’m not sure why crib was chosen as the hip word for home, but logic rarely enters into what is cool…and what is not.Enough about that. Coming soon, my colleagues over at the DigItAll Consumer Blog are starting a focus on their blog to highlight Digital Cribs of celebrities and their favorite gadgets. The Digital Home, if you will, for my generation and those before me. They start the series with a bit of video history of Digital Cribs by highlighting the one of the first video recorders, the Apple Newton, Bruce Springsteen albums, Atari technology and more. You can view the video here. Suffice it to say that our “cribs” are changing and connecting more and more and the dream of remotely letting in a worker into your house, or adjusting the thermostat from your laptop, or watching your home’s security camera on your mobile phone is not too far away.
Hi from Europe!In our recent trip to Berlin we had a whistlestop tour of the consumer electronics show IFA -- full of innovation and cutting edge consumer tech -- we had the pleasure of meeting Dr Karlheinz Brandenburg, the inventor of MP3. He told us about the new inventions on the Fraunhofer Institute booth which included a really cool virtual mirror -- a great way to visual network your clothes shopping -- and a real application which was used by Adidas where people could see virtual customised trainers which they were designing online on virtual feet and get a 360 degree view. We managed to capture a few comments from Mr MP3 -- have a look at this video here.
This past weekend I was in Houston for a wedding. Unfortunately, Hurricane Gustav was threatening to make a guest appearance. When we first arrived in Houston, Gustav was but a distant CNN story. But as the weekend progressed, the wedding got closer and so did Gustav. The question wasn’t whether the nuptials would happend before Gustav landed (they did), but whether we would beat the weather out of George Bush Intercontinental airport. Visual networking over my cell phone provided a safe haven. Being able to track Gustav’s course and the National Weather Service’s projection of when strong winds would hit the Houston area made me almost more popular than the groom. Video loops of the storm’s movement, and access to CNN video gave out-of-towners comfort that they wouldn’t be stranded by Gustav. For on-the-ground info we could look at social networking web sites with first person reports. And when it was looking iffy, we all changed our reservations to the earlier flight, just to be safe.In a previous era we might have partied on in blissful ignorance (and been safe anyway), but I’ll take being better informed and in control of my storm tossed destiny through visual networking — safe, sound, and DRY!
If you ever seen an urber sophisticated, ultra techie crib that contains every gadget and gizmo to create the ultimate connected home; it is obvious that the digital cribs we see today could not have been possible if it were not for the evolution of technology. This journey has been eloquently demonstrated in an artistic montage across the decades in the video below. Please sit back, relax and enjoy. :cheese: