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Gunnar Eyewear

If you are anything like me, I spend hours in front of a screen per day.  Sometimes I do it for fun playing video games or surfing the web but other times I have no choice and I need to spend hours in front of the screen doing homework.  After working on a brutal paper or program for multiple hours my eyes start to hurt of course but I can’t escape because of deadlines.  If only there was a way to fix this!

Well Gunnar Eyewear claims to hold the solution to this problem.  And while I could explain what they are all about I think the YouTube video that they posted would do it a little better.


I think it is a fantastic idea, but going through their website it makes some pretty amazing claims and it makes me wonder if it does all of these amazing things.  Provides increased visual endurance, enhances the detail of the screen, and decreases eye fatigue?  That all sounds pretty amazing to me.  But I think it is okay for me to be a skeptic when it comes to claims like this.  That coupled with the price of the glasses makes this far from an impulse buy.  Browsing their store the prices seemed to range from around $79 to $200.  The price plus looking a little odd wearing these glasses might put some users off, and if no fatigue or soreness is present these might not be the best investment of your money.

But I wanted to do a little more research on the product so I took to the internet and started browsing the reviews of this product to get some customer input.  From what I gathered all of the people reviewing it who had eye issues and eye fatigue before have been very impressed with this product.  A lot of people said that they were also skeptical but they were pleasantly surprised.  This makes me think this is one of those products that can speak for itself and that I might be interested.  I have found a pair that I am willing to pick up and I probably will next payday.  Then I will be able to give an actual review.  While this product is out I consider this more of a preview that others might like to know about.

If you happen to have used these glasses before or own a pair I would love to hear what you think of them!

PlayStation SimulView

About a month ago I was sitting on the couch playing Black Ops with my sister and she was totally screen looking.  Of course it drove me crazy and if she ever got a kill I blamed it on the fact that I was playing on half the screen size that I usually do and exclaimed “Why can’t we just play on one screen but not see the other player!”  While I was thinking more along the lines of taping a piece of cardboard to the tv and making here sit below it and me stand up, Sony had a slightly better idea.  I saw this ad and it blew my mind:


This is the answer to all the problems!  What a simple, beautiful idea.  Sadly this will cost you a small fortune for the television and glasses,  but if you are a person who enjoys playing games with others in the same room it might be a great investment.  One thing that is a little hard to tell in the ad is the size of the television.  As it shows, it is about the size of a large computer monitor, so if you are trying to replace your living room television you might want to consider other choices.  Otherwise this would make a great television for a room or dorm room setting!  The other thing I would like to comment on is that I tried out the glasses and they are pretty lightweight and fit comfortably over glasses if you already wear them.  Anyways, hats off to Sony for coming out with such a cool way to play on the same couch.

Edit: The one downside I did realize is that while this would be amazing for 2 players, it takes anyone else who wants to watch out of the game.  That kind of stinks!

Hello World: A New Video Series!

I would really like to start up a video series and a YouTube channel for this blog.  I figured doing something that I already enjoy would mean the most success, so I think I am going to dive into basics of computer science and programming with Java.

 This will also allow me to do some site reviews via video as well as doing a write up to accompany it.  I plan on making it for people who enjoy technology and wouldn’t mind getting their feet wet in the world of programming!  If you are interested, please feel free to stop by my new YouTube page and subscribe.  I won’t be able to get the videos going until I get back to my house after visiting family, but I will spend this time putting together what I think will be essentials so I can get the first couple videos out pretty quickly!

I can’t wait to get this going and maybe get some more interest generated around programming as a hobby, and a possible business venture!

If you have interest in programming but no background, what questions do you have currently?  Do you feel like there are any barriers that I can address to help ease you into it?

Site Review: Khan Academy

The internet is a wonderful place!  There is so much information just waiting to be learned and shared with others.  The only problem is that it can be hard to find reliable, useful information.  This is where Khan Academy comes into play.  Struggling with Calculus?  Wanting to learn a little bit more about Economics?  Look no further!

Intro

The premise of this site is to allow users to listen to the instructors, do exercises when applicable, and learn.  It is pretty much strait forward.  Yet, I can’t stop going back!  I first heard of it in my campuses Computer Club meeting when a professor suggested it for some of the freshmen who were struggling in their intro Computer Science (CS) classes.  So I stopped by to see what they had in terms of CS.  While it was pretty small in that department, I realized that there were massive amounts of videos focused on math at all levels.  I went to the Calculus section and watched at the point where my class was teaching.  To my surprise I was able to solidify my knowledge in sequences and series through the use of this tool.

When you first access the site

The site is nice a clean, and quite easy to navigate.  You can log into the site using an existing Google or Facebook account, or make a site specific account.  While the site does not require you to log in to access the videos, I will show you why you might be interested in joining.   If you are setting up the article for your child, or if you are working on some basic algebra or other math skills the first reason is to keep track of your progress in the practice portion!  Choosing the Practice tab at the top right of the page will bring you to a tree of exercises that you can do.  Starting with easy addition and subtraction and going all the way to Calculus I topics such as derivatives and the chain rule.  Of course you don’t have to start with the basic arithmetic if you are well beyond that, but it is still fun!

Once you click on the Practice tab, lots of topics!

Track Progress

If you are anything like me, I love to see where I have been and where I am going.  It is nice to see progress is in fact being made.  And maybe it is just the fact that I am a statistics nerd, but numbers about progress fascinate me.  I think this is a contributing factor to why I keep coming back.  If you noticed in the last screenshot the number in blue and the other numbers next to my name, those are the stats I was talking about.  The number in the blue are a users “energy points”.  What are they used for?  While there is nothing built into the website for energy point use, I like to use it to give myself breaks, or rewards.  For example, I would watch a video and study until I got 5,000 more points.  It is a great way to measure progress rather than time.   The other numbers refer to the number of times I have received a level of a badge.  There are Meteorite, Moon, Earth, Sun, and Black Hole badges.  The difficult of obtaining these badges go from very easy (Meteorite) to very hard (Black Hole).  I will let you all discover what types of challenges these offer if you decide to give this site a try!  Clicking on your name does give you some general stats though as well, with a nice graph and other stats scattered around the page.

Here are some of my stats!

Conclusion

If you are looking for a way to productively learn about a new topic, or review a topic, Khan Academy might be the place for you!  It has a really nice and neat layout, with a fun meta game to keep you going.  The videos are well produced, and I believe it helped me get a good grade in Calculus II even though I struggled during class.  The strongest point that I cannot stress enough is that this site is clean and easy to navigate!  This site is easily one of the best learning centers on the web.  Hopefully see you there in the future!

Welcome to Tech Thread!

I have always enjoyed writing, but I don’t get to do it as often as I would like.  So I am creating this blog to improve upon my current writing skills and also to show some love to technology!

A little bit about myself! I am a college student studying Computer Science and Math at a small university in Texas.  I am a big fan of video games, programming, and gadgets!  I also love to browse the internet and share the cool gems that some people may never come across.

If you are still reading at this point, you might wonder what you can expect from this blog so I won’t keep you waiting any longer.  I plan on writing mostly opinion articles about the current state of technology, ranging from Facebook games to Computer Science theory.  I also want to get some reviews in there, but being a college student I am limited in what I am able to review.  Although with the holiday season coming up, I might be able to review some semi current games/gadgets.  Most of my reviews will most likely be on websites though, so if you are always looking for a new place to spend your time on the web, check back here periodically to see if there are any new sites.

Thanks for stopping by, hope to talk to you all soon!