All posts by John Skrhak

John Skrhak | Gadgets, Sports and Toys Fanatic | Read about them all here.

AirBeats / AirHarp creator demos his forthcoming Leap Motion music apps


When it comes to developing music apps, Leap Motion’s naturalistic interface seems like a no-brainer. Sure it doesn’t offer the sort of tactile feedback you get from an actual instrument, but it certainly beats the heck out of, say, a keyboard and mouse. Adam Somers is among the early developers looking to bring a little bit of music magic to the tiny peripheral, and he gave us a sneak peak of what he’s working on at a Smule event in San Francisco earlier this week.

The simpler of the two apps is AirHarp. Still in early developer preview mode, the program is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a virtual harp. Hold your hand out and strings light up — tap down and you can pluck them. Reach in a bit and you can strum with one or several fingers. More impressive is AirBeats, a virtual machine with two pads and a slew of sounds that lets you record tracks. Somers is hoping to have at least one of the apps out in time for Leap Motion’s upcoming launch. You can check out demos after the break.

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Soft-porn TV star refuses to wear electronic tag, says career-threatening

Dalzell’s self-presentation on Twitter.

Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET)

I have never presented a pornographic show on television, but I imagine it’s quite stressful.

The normal scrutiny afforded TV personalities is surely doubled when your show has carnality at its core.

It is, then, understandable why a 19-year-old adult TV presenter, Sophie Dalzell, was mortified on being told by a judge that she must wear an electronic tag on her ankle.

“You can’t do that to me!” she cried. “No one can do that to me!”

Actually, I did make that whole quote up. What transpired in reality was that she refused to wear the tag and had to go back to court.

As the Daily Mail reports, she had previously been found guilty of criminal damage upon the driver of a BMW (and his
car) and had been remiss in carrying out her community service order.

So a security firm came to her house to fit her with the tag, which she was to wear for 8 weeks.

Dalzell, from Manchester, England, insisted that she couldn’t possibly allow this, as it would ruin her looks. She would, so surely, be fired from a job that requires perfection at all times.

You will wish to apply for a porn TV presenter’s job yourself when I tell that when she went back to court, she actually won her appeal. She was merely fined 200 British pounds (around $300) and told to pay another 75 British pounds in costs.

After the case, Dalzell was quite adamant that her glamorous life had been threatened by electronic imperfection. She told the Mail: “A tag on my ankle wouldn’t look very good. It’s an eyesore. Your appearance is everything. I’m still mad about the whole situation.”

You might be mad about the whole situation too when I tell you that her lawyer told the court that she has given up the adult TV life in order to do other types of glamorous work, such as modeling and hosting.

Somehow, one feels that the court might have been a touch lenient here.

Still, as many stars do, she took to her Twitter account to express her inner thoughts and feelings.

One example: “I just want perfect skin and hair and teeth and body proportions and endless supplies of money and intelligence is that too much to ask for.”

Here’s another: “People pissing me Off judging me on whats wrote in the paper! Yous know f*** all and I was a victim whos been f***ing punished!!!!!”

Victimhood, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

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Vince Carter shows why Mark Cuban wants to keep him

DALLAS — All due respect to Dirk Nowitzki, but he’s not the Mavericks veteran owner Mark Cuban is most sympathetic toward after the team failed to qualify for the playoffs.

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Vince CarterMatthew Emmons/USA TODAY SportsVince Carter had a commanding performance Friday against the Nuggets. It’s that type of effort that has Mavs owner Mark Cuban convinced he’ll remain with the team after his contract expires.

Cuban feels worse for Vince Carter, who signed a three-year deal worth a little more than $9 million with the then-defending champions because he desperately wanted a chance to compete for a championship near the end of his potential Hall of Fame career. The 36-year-old Carter has been a tremendous bargain for the Mavs, although he’ll enter the last season of his contract with a grand total of zero playoff wins in Dallas.

“Vince is a warrior,” Cuban said before Friday’s game. “All these things I’ve heard in the past about him being soft and not playing hard, f— that. That dude comes out to deliver every f—ing night.”

Case in point: Carter’s spectacular outing in Dallas’ 108-105 overtime win over the Denver Nuggets. In the Mavs’ first game after being eliminated from playoff contention, Carter put up 22 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists, two blocked shots and a steal in 34 max-effort minutes.

It was a performance that epitomized the pride and professionalism that Carter, an eight-time All-Star who had a bad rap for being a bit of a prima donna before signing with the Mavs, has consistently displayed during his time in Dallas.

It’s the kind of performance that has Cuban convinced that Carter, whose .500 beard has several gray strands, is a keeper even after his contract expires next summer.

“He’s just a first-class guy who busts his ass every f—ing game,” Cuban said. “You never look at Vince and say he’s taking a play off. He’s taking charges. … You guys talk about doing it for Dirk; doing it for Vince is just as important.

“He just wants to compete and win, period, end of story. All the s— I heard from the past, I don’t know where that came from. I’m proud that he’s on the Mavericks. The guy lays it out every time. I can’t put it any other way. He’s one of those guys I want to retire here.”

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Carter, who is averaging 13.3 points per game and playing outstanding defense in his first season as a sixth man, broke into a big smile after being informed of Cuban’s comments, particularly the part about signing him to another contract.

“That’s why he’s my guy,” Carter said, laughing. “That’s why he’s my guy. I worked my butt off this summer for a lot of reasons, just to prove that I’m still capable at this tender age, and I think he appreciates that. He’s a fiery guy, very passionate about the game, as we all know. That’s what he looks for.

“Just coming in and seeing what he’s all about, he’s a great owner to work for, just for the simple fact that he just wants to win. That’s kind of how I approach the game. I just want to win. For the people who don’t know me or didn’t know me before, I think now they’re starting to understand.

“Yeah, I can put the ball in the basket or whatever, but I just want to win and see my team succeed. It’s just great that it’s appreciated by the top dog.”

When he came to Dallas, fresh off playing for three teams in three seasons, Carter had a lot to prove. He wanted to show he still had a lot of game at his advanced age, and he wanted to eliminate any doubt that winning was his top priority.

Carter promised to do whatever the Mavs needed him to do to help them win, regardless of position or role. He’s done that, accepting the sixth-man job and playing the majority of his minutes at small forward.

PODCAST Rick Carlisle joins Galloway Company to discuss the Mavericks playing after being eliminated from playoff contention, who he wants to keep for next season and much more.

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He promised to play as hard as possible every minute he was on the floor. He’s done that, as evidenced by his leading the team in charges drawn by a wide margin.

“I’ve prided myself on being one of the older guys that wanted to play every game possible and go harder than everybody out there,” Carter said. “They do go hard, but for me, I just want to compete at the same level as the younger guys and set the example. We want that to be the way of life around here.”

Carter has more than held up his end of the bargain for the past two seasons, disappointing as they’ve been from a team standpoint.

As far as Cuban is concerned, Carter has a bright future around here.

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Microsoft makes Bing image search more social with one-click sharing to Pinterest

Microsoft makes Bing image search more social with oneclick sharing to Pinterest

Companies know how important it is to make their products as friendly as can be with third-party social websites, and Microsoft, for one, has done a pretty fantastic job at making sure the team behind Bing’s doing exactly that. To wit, the Surface maker is, as of today, also starting to cater to the Pinterest crowd, announcing that it’s now allowing users of the recently redesigned site to share Bing image search findings via a simple click — assuming you’re logged in, naturally. The new sharing feature might seem like a rather minor one on paper, but for avid Pinners, it’ll certainly come in handy as they can keep their precious boards stocked up with a little less effort. And, well, you know what that means: more cats.

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Crave Ep. 116: Bubba Watson’s BW1 hovercraft golf cart

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Oakley and golf champ Bubba Watson have teamed to build the world’s first hovercraft golf cart. A physicist invents a way to write e-mail using a guitar, and a “Star Trek” phaser rifle from the original series sells for a staggering sum.

Crave stories:

– Float down fairways on this hovercraft golf cart

– Shred your e-mails with a typing guitar

– Petman robot rocks gas mask, chemical suit

– ‘Star Trek’ phaser rifle sells for $231k

– Trigger a beer bubbles explosion at the push of a button

– 9 percent would have sex with a robot

– Yeah Yeah Yeahs: Turn off the screens at our concerts

– Porn piracy tracked to computers in Vatican City

– Sea lion may be first nonhuman mammal to keep a beat

– Crave giveaway: Pure Sensia 200D Connect portable music system

Social networking:

Stephen on Twitter

Stephen on Google+

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Number crunching: Dirk Nowitzki nearing 25K


NBA, Dallas Mavericks, Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry, Denver Nuggets, JaVale McGee

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