This week, the White House hosted its first Maker Faire and announced that Americans need “to be makers of things, not just consumers of things.” While we have always had engineers, hobbyists and tinkers, the maker movement is taking off. Reasons for the recent maker community growth is likely due to economies of scale reducing hardware costs, software becoming more versatile, and recent innovations like 3D printers.
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GymTrack is an Internet of Things company that is targeting a B2B market rather than the typical B2C market that Internet of Things (IoT) companies are known for. It’s an interesting take on IoT and fitness that you don’t see too much of, and if the company can handle all of the headaches around scaling, it could be a hugely successful idea.
The question I’ve had a lot is “when do you have a laptop but not a micro-USB?”. It’s a totally valid question and the simplest answer is “You will. Trust me.” The Nomad ChargeKey and ChargeCard are the smallest, simplest ways to carry about a micro USB. In fact, I’m traveling as I write this and my charger broke, leaving me with the ChargeCard and a laptop as my only lifeline to charge my phone. Considering these USB cables just sit in your wallet or on your keychain, it’s worth the cost of the device as a backup.
If you’re in Ottawa, Canada or the surrounding region, you should definitely check out the Ottawa BlackBerry Developer Group. The meetup will talk about some of the changes at BlackBerry, mostly that the company is largely enterprise focused. This change is very visible at the developer group level. BlackBerry has been using a Developer Group Hub, powered by Influitive, in order to connect Group Managers as well as send the company message to those groups. So far, the message is clear: develop enterprise apps.
Leonard MacEachern is a professor at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. His company, GestureLogic, is showing off a new wearable that is soon to arrive on Indiegogo.
The wearable, called LEO, is a band of silver-woven fabric that wraps around the user’s thigh and measures hamstring movement, hydration and heart rate. The device is not named after Leonard MacEachern, but rather Leonardo da Vinci, as the man embodies the science behind the product.
The architecture of LEO is very similar to other wearables on the market. The device collects data from the user’s exercise, then syncs that data with a smartphone and the cloud. Where LEO differentiates itself is that the cloud is used to gather data and send recommendations back to the user to help them train more effectively.
When I first saw Thalmic Labs’ Myo armband, I thought “that’s a cool device, but why?”. It’s a problem that a lot of wearables and IoT products are experiencing. Sure, it’s cool to track your heartbeat, brain patterns, or watch your dog while you’re away, but is that a solution to a real consumer problem?