One type of technology that definitely brings people a lot of entertainment, enjoyment, and even social bonding is video gaming platforms. Ever since Atari and other primitive video game platforms first came out about thirty years ago, the video gaming industry has tried to make better and better devices to keep people interested in all the have to offer.There have been a number of breakthroughs in video gaming technology over the years, and as a result we now have video game platforms that have built in hard drives, optical disc drives, enormous amounts of RAM, and even multiple computer processors working in parallel. In the past, the major competitors in the video gaming industry have been Atari and Intellivision, and later Nintendo and Sega, but now it’s pretty much come down to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony’s Play Station 3. Both of these two products have a lot in common, including the fact that they both have multiple processors, built in hard drives, optical disc drive, the ability to connect to the Internet, and stunning graphics that can reach HDTV resolutions.One of the features that they both have in common is the ability to play high definition DVD’s onto HDTV sets, making them high definition DVD players (as well as normal DVD plays and CD players). Even these High Definition DVD formats are in competition because the Play Station 3 plays Sony’s Blu-ray high def DVD format and the Xbox 360 plays Toshiba’s HD-DVD format. The way in which these two devices accomplishes this are a little bit different though. That’s because the Xbox 360’s ability to play high def DVD’s comes from an optional HD-DVD drive that can be attached to the unit via cable, and the Play Station 3 comes with a Blu-ray drive installed.The fact that these two devices play different High Def DVD’s has brought them right into the middle of a format war between Blu-ray and HD-DVD. Both formats essentially accomplish the same thing (although there are technical reasons why Blu-ray may be superior), but can’t be played on each other’s players and disc drives. For that reason, it’s generally agreed that only one of the formats can survive the format war.Both Sony and Toshiba (with Microsoft’s help) have been trying to gain an edge in the market for their respective formats, and both of these video game systems have become pawns in the format war. It was hoped that the Play Station 3 would promote the benefits of the Blu-ray format to people who would buy a Play Station anyway and then watch Blu-ray discs on it as an afterthought. The problem with this strategy has been that the extra cost of including a Blu-ray drive is reflected in the Play Station 3’s price and many gamers don’t want to pay the extra money. The Xbox 360, on the other hand, has avoided that pitfall by making its HD-DVD drive an optional separate purchase.All format wars aside though, these to gaming platforms are very impressive pieces of technology.
One trend of television technology these days is to make televisions as small as possible. Many companies; including Sony, Dish Network, Toshiba, Samsung, Apple, and several lesser known companies; have produced portable video devices over the past few years. Generally these devices are designed to download video content from the Internet or a Digital Video Recorder to be stored on their hard drives and viewed when the user gets around to it. These devices are great for when their owners can choose in advance what they want to watch. They’re particularly useful for people on the go who don’t have a lot of time to sit around and watch TV at home, but may have the time watch on a subway, airplane, or while standing in line waiting for something.Now, it’s possible to get television content in real time thanks to new technology that allows people to watch television on their mobile phones. Like many other television trends this is especially popular in Japan where mobile phones are extremely popular and people use them for a lot of different things. For example, there are a little more than 90 million mobile phone users in Japan who, on average, replace their phones as often as every year and a half. Many Japanese mobile phone users are in the habit of using the devices to surf the Internet, check and send email, and for online shopping. All of these trends make Japan the perfect testing ground for this technology.Unfortunately there are some serious barriers to this technology taking off. Not enough people use the service overall to really create a market for advertising along with the program content. Right now the program content for mobile phones is free, just like over the air TV broadcasts, but of course since the content has to travel over wireless network, it costs more money to provide. A lot of people in television broadcasting and the wireless phone markets are hoping for a way to somehow combine mobile phone TV service with e-commerce. That way the the service would serve as a gateway to revenues from the tendency of the Japanese to shop on their mobile phones. If this actually works out it could serve as a unique market as more and more people have mobile phones capable of watching TV on. In any case this is a unique example of technology that’s emerged and gone public without having any concrete business model of how it’s going to be paid for.Of course, this also begs the question, why not pass on the cost of providing the content on to the mobile phone users who watch? The industry seems to be shying away from that option probably because of a combination of fear that that will alienate users of the service and the widespread agreement that once a business model is agreed upon and implemented, that step will be largely unnecessary.One other development of this technology that we can expect is to see it included in other devices like GPS’s and portable video game units. By extension, we may soon see dedicated mobile television devices or mobile television integrated into some of the portable video devices we see on the market now. In that sense, portable video devices really would be like home entertainment centers in miniature. You could either watch live television or a recording. It would be your choice.
An increasing number of businesses, municipalities, and individuals are seeing the benefits of wireless Internet access. It’s really no wonder that this type of technology is growing increasingly popular because of its flexibility and the fact that it offers an economical way to put a lot of different devices and their users onto the Internet or a Local Area Network. Wireless hot spots are great for flexible use and varying numbers of users. After all, how could there be a better way to supply Internet access to all of the computers in an office, as well as the laptops and Blackberry type devices that employees bring in and use on a variable basis? The same flexibility makes wireless hot spots an attractive thing to install in coffee shops, airports, libraries, and even homes.There are currently several widely available varieties of wireless Internet access. The most common by far is Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi is a short range type of wireless networking that’s commonly associated with the wireless hot spots you’d find in a coffee shop or bookstore. It’s extremely cost effective and easy to set up just by hooking a wireless router into a broadband Internet connection.G3 is another popular way to get onto the Internet wirelessly. A G3 network uses technology that’s similar to the cellular technology that allows for the used of mobile phones. G3 technology allows smart phones and laptops to connect to the Internet over cell phone towers and while moving at extremely fast speeds like on a train or in a car(the Doppler effect can ruin some types of wireless connections even at relatively slow speeds) and over a very wide area. It’s been the technology of choice for professionals who need to stay connected while on the go.Now there’s a type of wireless technology that could serve as severe competition to G3. This type of technology is called WiMax and it combines many of the best points of both Wi-Fi and G3 technologies. Like G3, WiMax can operate over extremely large distances- up to 30 miles. Like Wi-Fi, WiMax is extremely effective indoors- which is something that G3 technology doesn’t do so well. WiMax is also much faster than Wi-Fi. The combination of speed and large coverage area makes WiMax extremely effective for providing large numbers of people with high speed Internet access.One thing that WiMax doesn’t do as well as G3 is provide mobile Internet access. That’s because at the frequencies that WiMax carriers are currently licensed to operate at the Doppler effect is an issue, while the frequencies that G3 is licensed to use aren’t as effected by the movement of the user.However, this shortcoming of WiMax compared to G3 is simply a regulatory issue. WiMax would be just as good for mobile devices as G3 is if it was licensed to use the same frequencies. And there lies the major explanation for why it hasn’t been widely adopted yet- lobbying on the part of companies that have a lot invested in G3 networks and don’t want the competition of a technology that could serve more people in a wider variety of ways.Of course there is the hope that the two technologies will be able to coexist- even possibly in the same devices- so that they can be used in the situations that suit them best.
You want to check your emails from work and to do that, you need to find something entertaining to keep the kids at bay but within your supervision. You rummaged in our head ways to keep the kids’ attention away from you so you can focus on your work. You might have no babysitter scheduled or an emergency task from work came unexpectedly. Whatever has brought you the situation of having to look out for your kids, you need to find fast solutions in keeping their attention and keeping them still and behaved so you can manage them more easily.DVD cartoon marathon is always a good idea with kids. When kids of ages around five to nine can still be entertained with all the 3D or anime animations and movies available in clear DVDs. Keep a healthy stack locked in your desk so that when situations like this arrives, you have around one or two CDs to put on the player to keep the kids at one place in your entertainment section of the house. The children will probably be thankful for the cartoons they will be watching and be amused by the love-able characters and moving stories of the animation movies. After a few hours, you get your separate work done and can hear all the excited stories from your kids about the movie they watched.Engage your kids in arts and crafts for some time. Look for the some crafts that are safe to do for kids even if they are all alone in doing it. Avoid crafts that involve sharp tools like scissors, cutters, or similar tools to prevent accidents. Clay craft can be done by the kids and keep them preoccupied for a while. Sand artworks can be fun and safe to do. Finger painting with safe and non-toxic paint set is also a classic idea. Provide also an instructional and simple to follow craft book to go along with the tools. Look out for possible mess you have to deal with but you can also involve your kids in the cleaning up process afterwards. Give them an incentive for the best craft or art work that they can come up with. You not only develop their creativity but their friendly competitive spirit as well.Old fashioned card and board games can keep them attentive for hours. Kids nowadays forgot all about the joy of playing with actual board and card games without the use of a game console or computer. Actual game paraphernalia can keep the kids preoccupied and focused in the game they play as they can actually hold the game elements in their hands. They will also have some time offline from their technological gadgets. You can join the kids later to have some real bonding when you are done with your thing.So many kids today have attention problems due to the instant culture that technological gadgets seem to encourage among the youth. For the parents who do not know how kids can be kept attentive these ideas had hopefully enlighten you and gave you an idea on how to keep your children entertained, creative, and bonded for life.