12 Aug 2018

Unboxing the Bose SoundLink Micro Bluetooth speaker

Just bought the SoundLink Micro Bluetooth® speaker. We were looking for something light and portable and also waterproof and tough. My son loves to experiment with speakers and for that matter with other gadgets as well. His favourite is to put them inside a bucket of water and that's how my old JBL speakers died.

The new Bose speakers ticks all the boxes and the sound is amazing. This was not really surprising - it is a Bose.

My only complaint is the cable. When I first tried it out, it would not go in fully into the speakers and I was worried about force it in. I played around with the springs and the speaker end of the cable and after a bit of force, it finally went it. No problems after that.

The speakers lasts up to 6 hours on a full charge. It also comes with a really handy flexible rubber band that allows you to attach the speaker to your belt, bag, etc.

Anyway, here is the unboxing video:

8 Apr 2018

Review of Lotushirt: The stain resistant wrinkle free shirt

Recently received an offer to review a shirt which sounded almost too good to be true. I was sceptical but I agreed to test it out anyway.

It is a shirt which the inventors claim to be stain resistant, fast drying, wrinkle free, stretchable, breathable and comfortable as well. I know! That's why I said it sounded too good to be true. In fact, it is the shirt I have been waiting for all this time.

Anyway, the shirt arrived quite fast. Based on my dimensions, I received the size L shirt. It was comfortable and quite light and yes, wearing it straight from the box, there were no wrinkles.

Anyway, this button down shirt looks like any casual shirt but that is where the similarity ends - I have worn it twice to work and the shirt is still wrinkle free because of the fabric's ‘memory yarn’ - which apparently took the founders Andy Lai and Jeff Yang, more than a year of research to perfect and weave into a shirt that doesn’t wrinkle, is water and stain resistant and is also breathable. The idea was inspired by the Lotus leaf, the nanoteach fabric mimics the hydrophobic structure of the lotus leaf, where the outside surface repeals water but the inner layer wicks away the sweat. The fabric is a blend of 80% polyester and 20% ‘memory yarn’ featuring nanotechnology.

The shirt also features what they call a 'Flying Fish' breathable underarm netting, which is really ideal for the hot and humid Malaysian weather.

It had been raining on and off for the past few days and it was perfect to try out their water resistant claims and yes, it is water resistant. The rain drops just bounced off. Here is a video I took at home with  my son as my model:

However, I have to warn you - it is water resistant and not water-proof. I tried going under the shower and though most of the water bounced off, water did go in. It was also effective against hot tea spills (a big Thumbs Up!) but I did not try other drinks like coke or black coffee. I also wonder whether the water resistance will hold up after it has been washed. The water resistance of my Levis commuter jeans went off once I washed it. I will tell you the results later.

Anyway, the shirt is now on Kickstarter and they have already reached their target with 55 days to go. Go and get this amazing shirt on their Kickstarter page for a special price of USD59 (HK$463).

Here is the link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/454615361/lotushirt-the-stainless-wrinkle-free-shirt?ref=8obb3z

4 Oct 2017

Review of MP Magic socks

When we talk about technology, the first thing that comes to mind are the gadgets and ICT related stuff. However, technology is improving our lives in so many different way and that includes innovation in the clothes we wear.

I recently received 2 pairs of socks - called MP Magic socks to try out. One was the short ankle type (ankle grey) and the other one was a regular length sock (crew black).

So what is so special about these shocks?

Well, the people who make them, claim that these socks are odourless. These  are made from unique fabric material which are infused with three different types of metals, namely,  Silver, Copper and Zinc. The metal are supposed to kill the bacteria which cause odour.

To be honest, I was a bit sceptical. The material was soft and the socks they sent me were the exact fit for me.

To test them out, I wore them to work - for almost  9 hours. Malaysia is a hot country and I was walking a lot the first time I wore the socks.

Got home and my feet were really hot and sweaty. I do not have any sophisticated odour measuring equipment so I had to rely on my own nose and I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, it did not smell as fresh as it did in the morning before I put them on but - there was definitely no odour. I have worn them on a couple of occasions since then and seem quite durable.

If you are interested to find out more about the MP magic socks, visit their Indiegogo funding page. They have already exceeded their target with 11 days left.

23 Sep 2017

Getting the Most from an IT Security Auditpay

By Julie Brown

If you’re running a small business, or you’re responsible for the IT department of a larger enterprise, then the best thing you can do before this year is out is to perform an IT security audit.
A security audit is an easy thing to overlook when everything is so busy, but hackers and criminals never slack, so you should always be on the lookout for exploits and vulnerabilities.
Here’s how to get the best out of your next audit:

Define what you want out of it
Your audit must be as thorough as you can make it. It may, if you’re a small business, be a good idea to make use of the UK’s free Cyber Essentials service to look at your security. At the very least, you need to list the things that need to be examined – all computer equipment and terminals, machinery and anything else that’s networked.

Define the threats
You need to know your enemy – you’re looking for hackers, malware and viruses, as well as slapdash employees who don’t think before opening that unexpected-but-amusing attachment or who still use Password1. There’s also the threat of physical damage – are you in a flood zone? Has there been a spike in break-ins recently?

Learn from previous mistakes
Look at what past audits have highlighted, as well as previous breaches or recurring issues to see if you can eliminate them for good. Past challenges can point to the future – looking at what happened and how you resolved the problems is very instructive. If you got hit badly by a virus last year, make sure that you’re stronger this year, for example.
You shouldn’t forget about old-fashioned threats like fire, either – start a programme of scanning important paper documents and storing them in a cloud.

All of your assets are valuable, but some are invaluable – prioritise the assets you need and value the most and take your biggest and first steps against the likeliest and biggest threats. Your customer database is vital and a likely target, so aim there first. Leave tornado, volcano and asteroid protection until later.

Make a control list
It's an unpleasant fact, but you need to face it head-on; one of your biggest threats comes from within – your own employees. You shouldn’t give out sensitive information willy-nilly to staff unless they need to know, so limit access to mission-critical information.
By making a control list, you can see if someone’s tried to get into restricted files. If it happens just the once, then it’s most likely an accident, but if there’s been repeated attempts within a small timeframe, then someone’s up to no good and you need to take swift action.

Bring in intrusion protection
Once you have your control list, you can monitor your network and set up alerts which go to the appropriate staff if there’s any intrusions. You can install 24-7 protection, as well as up-to-date firewalls and the latest antivirus and antimalware systems.

Look after your emails
Emails are the easiest way into your network – countless spam emails are fired out daily, trying to get people to download dodgy attachments. Your outgoing emails should also be encrypted so they’re not “open” to hackers and employees should practice good email hygiene.

Get physical
You shouldn’t forget about physical threats like break-ins. Someone could steal a laptop or a tablet and download your information that way. Make sure your physical office is well-protected and that all work devices are encrypted and password-protected, right down to the oldest smartphone in the building.

30 Jun 2017

GOGO Lantern review

This is a long overdue review. I received another fabulous product to review - the GOGO Lantern.

Well if you are the outdoorsy type and love camping, among the essentials you have to carry include a lamp, a torch and buckets - well, now you can have all of that in one cool package with the GOGO lantern. It is not yet available in the market and I received a review sample.

The bucket is collapsible and made from plastic thus making it highly portable. Attached to the bucket is the lamp with the LED lights.

Fully charge it up and it will last between 6-8 hours. You can charge the lantern via the built in solar panel or via USB cable. The indicator turns green when it is charged above 80% and turns red when the charge is below. The red indicator starts blinking when the power is low.

The review piece I received did not come with any instructions so I had to figure out some of the features myself. The lights detaches from the bucket by turning it slightly counterclockwise at the bottom. It is completely waterproof (IP67 certified).

The amazing thing about the lantern is that it comes with capacitative sensors and automatically turns on when you put in in water or attach it via the built-in magnet, to a metallic surface. You can also turn it on manually by pressing the button in the centre. It has three modes. First press: normal mode; Second press: bright mode and Third press: blinking lights. You then press it again to shut it off.

The lantern also came with a lanyard which you can use to attach the lamp and hang it around your neck converting it to a great hands free lantern.

It come in three colours, namely orange, light blue and light green. You can further customise the lantern by painting the bucket with a design of your choice.

Though ideal for a camping trip, the lantern would be perfect for a hiking trip, BBQ party or a trip to the beach.

Their Indiegogo page should be up soon and I am sure that they would be able to reach their funding target really fast.


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