Roli Blocks

Marcus recently went to a Roli event to check out their latest product: Blocks. Basically for all the music producers out there it’s a modular music studio that lets anyone create music as it is so simple to use!

It lets you easily make music whether your a beginner or a seasoned pro through intuitive gestures on a small touch sensitive gesture pad you can connect multiple blocks to one another and with the FREE NOISE app by Roli (available on the app store) start to make music quickly and easily.

They suggest to start off with the ‘Lightpad Block’ which is the center of the BLOCKS system. You make music by making natural movements on the pad, drop melodies and beats by striking, gliding and pressing your fingers on the surface while the illuminated grids help you find notes. While the Light Trails guide you through making music via musical gestures quickly!

Check below for a video on BLOCKS

 

 

 

To find out more about Roli Blocks please click here! 

To hear the guys talking about Roli Blocks please click here!

The New Macbook Pro

The new Macbook Pro’s are here and they’re better than ever and they look so cool for one!

They’re obviously much more powerful than previous models, they’re much thinner and lighter and not to mention the screen has had a massive upgrade too! Now more brighter and colourful allowing you to work and view media gloriously!

But what is getting everyone talking is this new touch bar, a multi-touch enabled strip of glass that is fully customisable and changes depending on what app you’re using.  They replace the function keys along the top strip of the keyboard and become something that is much more versatile than regular old function keys. For example you can have intelligent typing complete with auto-complete and emoji’s like you already have on your phone or on Final Cut Pro X you can scroll through your timeline with the Touch Bar quickly and easily.

 

The keyboard has had a slight upgrade too, becoming shallower than previous generations and is now much more responsive with a Force Touch trackpad which is now 2 times larger than before.

The Macbook Pro comes in 3 different formats:

13 inch Macbook Pro (with no touch bar)

13 Inch Macbook Pro

15 Inch Macbook Pro

For more information please click here!

To listen to the guys talking about the Macbook Pro please click here!

iOS AutoComplete Essay!

A New Zealand professor has been asked to present a talk at a US event based on Nuclear physics, yet there is a lot of gibberish throughout!

The academic paper was written by Christoph Bartneck an associate professor at the Human Interface Technology laboratory (University of Canterbury, New Zealand) after an email asked him to submit a paper to the International Conference on Atomic and Nuclear Physics in the United States in November.

Written only in iOS auto complete Christoph said he “resorted to iOS autocomplete function to help” when writing the paper. Writing on his blog he said:

“Since I have practically no knowledge of nuclear physics…I started a sentence with ‘atomic’ or ‘nuclear’ and then randomly hit the autocomplete suggestions”

Here is an extract from Christophs paper:

“The atoms of a better universe will have the right for the same as you are the way we shall have to be a great place for a great time to enjoy the day you are a wonderful person to your great time to take the fun and take a great time and enjoy the great day you will be a wonderful time for your parents and kids,”

Christoph decided to submit the paper under a fake identity, it was accepted three hours later and he was asked to pay a fee of $1099 US dollars to register at the conference. It was at this point that Christoph decided that enough was enough and his fun was over as the University would not have liked to pay for him to go to such an event.

Christoph told Guardian Australia: “My impression is that this is not a particularly good conference…. reasonably certain that this is a money-making conference with little to no commitment to science” due to such a high registration fee and the fact that his paper was accepted in such a quick amount of time…not least forgetting it was full of text that didn’t make any sense!

What’s the funniest autocomplete you have done? Let us know tweet us @howtokillanhour

To hear the guys talking about this please click here! 

RIP VINE :(

What was once the epicenter for the short viral video creators you know and love today (King Bach, DeStorm, Hannah Stocking, Page Kennedy) Vine (before they all went to Facebook) was loved by millions of millennials around the world, creating usually relatable video meme’s or short funny videos that became meme’s in their own right has died.

Granted a lot of the creators had jumped ship to Facebook/Snapchat/Instagram due to more monetary values and the alure of Vine became less and less and less and less creators used Vine and thus did their audience.

Only four years ago before the app had even launched Vine, a mobile and web platform where users could post videos of up to 6 seconds which was put on an endless loop was purchased by Twitter for £24Million. Despite users being locked into Vine/Twitter (There was no way for the clips to be embedded on another social platform) Vine celebrities were created with hundreds of thousands and sometimes millions of followers, with many earning a living with promoted and sponsored Vines.

There is not a date when the app will be closed by in a blog post from the creators on Vine’s blog site said that users will be “notified before we make any changes to the app or website”

However in a twist of events Pornhub VP Corey Price has offered to take Vine off of Twitter in an open letter:

“We figure since Twitter has dropped (Vine) and is having significant layoffs, that you and your stakeholders could benefit from a cash infusion from the sale of Vine. Not to mention we would be saving Vine gems like ‘Damn Daniel,’ ‘Awkward Puppets’ and many more.”

Not only that Pornhub wishes to “restore Vine to its NSFW glory…….six seconds is more than enough for most people to enjoy themselves.”

Let us know some of your favourite Vines via our Twitter : @howtokillanhour

To hear the guys talking about the death of Vine: please click here!

Philips Shaver Series 7000

We here at How To Kill An Hour are a hairy bunch and what comes with hair comes with responsibility (unless your like this guy from Rebellion games with a MAGNIFICENT Beard that puts us all to shame) but if you’re not him and have to shave your beard every now and then well you have come to the right place as we have featured many a shaver on How To Kill an Hour throughout the time we have been live!

We recently used the Philips Series 7000 electric shaver with vacuum and let us tell you, this shaver is AMAZING! As it cleans up most of the mess that us guys leave in the sink (and get consequently moaned at by the other half) via the integrated vacuum cleaner! Yes that’s right an intergrated vacuum cleaner! For your face!

The shave has an innovative lift-and-trim system which raises those pesky hard to get to hairs then guides them towards the blades of the shaver, which in turn creates a quick and easy trim, especailly good for those “I’m going to be late” moments”

For more information on the Philips 7000 Beardtrimmer with Vacuum please click here! 

To buy a Philips Series 7000 shaver please click here! 

To listen to the guys talking about the Philips Series 7000 please click here!

Hickies!

We are always on the look out to make life easier for ourselves and like the Couch Coaster the Hickies shoe lacing system is no different!

Remember as a kid you never usually wanted to tie your shoes and we were lazy and just slipped your feet into your shoes, well this new invention will help make that dream become a reality!

The Hickies lacing system is a responsive lacing system is a memory fit elastomer that moves with your feet while walking to provide the comfort stability to keep your shoes safe and secure! Making your trainers look better and helping to provide security from your shoes falling off as you run, so a perfect fit of combination of fit, function, and fashion.

What is memory-fit performance elastomer?

A material that expands and contracts in sync with your feet as you walk. Each strap works independently to deliver the best possible fit, whatever you’re doing. Hickies is suitable for all sizes and there is three different ways to ‘lace’ your shoes with the Hickies lacing system.:

 

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Price: £5-16

To buy Hickies please click here!

To listen to the episode where the guys discuss the Hickies please click here:

 

The Bragi Dash!

This past week we have tried a headphone that is truly revolutionary, we were excited to try our hands at these and these boys did not disappoint!

Heralded as the “world’s first hearable” the Bragi Dash helps you as you train, it’s like a ‘Personal Assistant in your ear’ it’s basically a super powerful computer built into a headphone, packed with tons of features such as 4gb flash storage, bluetooth technology and touch controls make it one of the most technologically advanced piece of tech we have ever tried on How To Kill An Hour!

That’s not all, with integrated gesture controls all you have to do to answer a call is nod your head or turn your head from side to side to reject a call! With a ton of activity trackers for the sporty people out there such as heart rate trackers, step counts, a calorie counter, a stopwatch and much more these little headphones have big pulling power!

Check below to buy your own pair!

 

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To buy your own pair of Bragi Dash’s please click here!

To listen to the guys discuss the Bragi Dash please click here! 

Beats Studio Wireless!

Nick Bright recently bought an iPhone 7, which by now we all know doesn’t come with the 3.5mm headphone jack. So to combat that he also got himself a pair of Beats Studio’s — But in wireless!

It’s the same headphone as the regular Beats Studios that we all know and love, but just doesn’t come with all those pesky wires. (Although there is an option to use a wire if you so wish. Just plug in the 3.5mm aux cable into the cans then the other end into a piece of hardware that has a 3.5mm jack in it)

Has all the features of a regular Beats Studio so thats Adaptive Noise Cancellation, ReChargeable battery and top quality sound. The Bluetooth tech inside the cans can control calls, skip songs and change the volume all within 30ft so you can walk around and do whatever without worrying about getting the wire caught on the door handle and your expensive headphones going for a flying lesson.

To Buy your own Beats Studio Wireless headphones please click here! 

To listen to Nick talk about his experience with the Beats Studio Wireless Headphones please click here! 

Playstation VR

The future is here! First out the gate with the VR hardware is Sony with their VR add-on for Playstation 4. While expensive at £350 the price is worth it once you give it a go. It is simply breathtaking. The process is simple, just attach the headset to the console via the included kit (PlayStation VR headset, Processor unit, Stereo earbuds, HDMI cable, USB cable, AC adaptor and power cord, PS VR headset connection adaptor) plug in the Playstation Camera (Sold Separately and is required) calibrate your head and away you go!

Within no time you’ll be experiencing games in a brand new never before seen way that is incredibly immersive and entertaining. Just be careful if you have motion sickness as this will trigger it and cause some headaches – as you will feel like you are actually inside the game!

Included in the box is a copy of Playstation VR Worlds where you get to get a taster of what’s to come in the future with this incredible technology. Dive in the deep sea, defy death in a street lunge or take on heists in the mini games available on this complimentary demo disc. But they’re not demo’s in the real sense of the word. They could actually pass for full games they are THAT good!

To buy Playstation VR please click here!

To purchase Playstation VR worlds separately please click here!

To listen to the guys talking about Playstation VR please click here!

BfB Labs!

Credit: Shiftdesign.org.uk

Credit: Shiftdesign.org.uk

 

This week we had the guys from BfB labs down for a chat through their products which help with “emotionally responsive gaming for better mental health”  Now, BfB Labs is a new social venture created by a company called Shift Design that is setting out to bring Emotionally Responsive Gaming to the world. Which is a games which respond to a gamers emotional response to those games and reward those who are exceptionally good at them.

The games are challenging in three different ways, physically, mentally and emotionally training gamers in emotional control, building resilience and promoting wellbeing in the user.

Now you may be wondering how our emotional/physical response to said games be recorded? Well the BfB labs record this via an ear clip monitor which monitors a users emotional state by tracking their Heart Rate Variability (HRV)

Their first title in their library is Champions of the Shengha, a fantasy card battling game. Challenging you to defeat opponents with a combination of strategy and self control to becoming an ultimate Shengha Warrior. With regular play the user will learn how to control stress, anxiety and frustration rewarding them as they go throughout the game.

To support the guys over at BfB labs please click here! 

To listen to the guys chat with the guys from Bfb Labs please click here!