Chef Sleeve has been selling its iPad-protecting plastic sleeves since 2011 to keep kitchen gunk off the iPad you’re using while you cook. They also make a dishwasher-safe, non-porous chopping board with a built in iPad stand (below right), and a smaller stand in the same recycled paper composite finish. But Chef Sleeve’s grand plan is to create a range of connected devices for the kitchen that link up with an iPad app to let people track their nutrition in a highly granular, yet low hassle, way.
To that end it’s just kicked off a Kickstarter campaign for its next product: a smart Bluetooth scale, which it’s calling Smart Food Scales, that will enable people to weigh ingredients and snacks and then determine the exact amount of fat, salt, sugar, vitamins and so on in the ingredients they’re using in recipes or the snacks they’re eating at home.
“This is our first smart product. We now want to activate these pieces of hardware and take the iPad even further and enhance the experience in the kitchen,” says Chef Sleeve’s Michael Tankenoff. “The Bluetooth scale will sync up with our iOS app on iPad or iPhone. Say you’re weighing strawberries. We house the USDA database of food information, so you select strawberries. Not only will it tell you the weight, but it tells you all the nutritional information.
“For example, you’re preparing a salad — you put your bowl on the scale, add your lettuce, select lettuce, reset to zero, add your tomatoes, select tomatoes, reset to zero, keep going, build this recipe and when you’re done, now you know exactly the nutritional value of that salad that you have every day.”
As well as the health conscious and people watching their weight, Chef Sleeve envisages the scales being useful for individuals with conditions such as diabetes to help them track their sugar intake, or people with specific nutritional deficiencies who need to make sure they’re getting enough of certain vitamins in their diet.
The company is looking to raise $30,000 via its Kickstarter campaign, which runs until the end of the month. It’s showing the following prototype screenshots (below) of the planned iPad software. It also intends to open up its API at some point in the future, so that third-party developers can build apps for the smart scales — although it’s going to be careful about how it does this, as it wants to keep any other apps wholesome (scales can, after all, be used to weigh non-foodstuffs too).
After the scales, Chef Sleeve says it will look to launch other connected devices that tie back in to its iOS app to keep adding to a range of smart kitchen devices. A thermometer could be next, says CEO Santiago Merea. A chopping board with an integrated scale could also be on the cards “at some point” — but he says the company is being mindful about its mainstream consumer buyer. “We need to be careful about our demographic. We’re not going to throw rockets at them,” he told TechCrunch. “We want the design to be very homey, very crafty.”
If the uptake of the scales is strong, it could end up generating some fascinating data for Chef Sleeve — such as what, when and how people eat — which it said it will look to feed back into its product development.
“Our pledge is going to be to not store any personal information at all — because we don’t need to but we also don’t want the risk of being hacked,” said Merea. ”Food is personal… So we’re not storing any personal information but we don’t need to. With that data we can also even help our customers. It’s going to be really cool what we can do with this.”
Chef Sleeve already has stores interested in carrying the smart scales, according to Merea. It’s hoping to get into speciality kitchenware stores with the smart scales, a shift of its retail strategy which, to date, has been mostly focused on selling via Amazon (and its own website).
See original here: Connected Kitchen Scale From Chef Sleeve Tracks Your Nutrition Bite-By-Bite
While you are riding into work on your daily bike commute, why not charge your phone? There’s a bit more to it than that, but ultimately that is exactly what the Siva Cycle Atom does. A brilliant idea.
The Atom is a generator, complete with a detachable battery, that is fixed to the rear of your bicycle. As you pedal away, the generator is charging the attached battery. However it can also directly charge your phone too, using a smart switching system that goes back and forth between the device and the battery.
For example, if your phone is hooked up to the device it will directly charge your phone while you are pedaling, however when you come to a stop, your phone will automatically draw from the battery to keep you topped off.
Once you reach your destination, you simply detach the 1300mAh battery and take it with you for extra juice for your smartphone.
View original post here: Charge Your Phone While You Ride Your Bike With The Siva Cycle Atom
We are becoming increasingly surrounded by devices that are smart, connected to the Internet, and controllable remotely and with a growing number of web and mobile apps to connect them. Whether they be smart appliances like refrigerators or air conditioners, or even just smart light fixtures, our living rooms are filling up with these things. The big problem is that they all leverage different standards and technology — so making them all work together is really hard.
That’s where Zonoff comes in. The startup, which just raised something like $3.8 million in Series A funding (more on that laters!), wants to act like the connective tissue between various smart devices and appliances and stuff like that. The idea is to make them “SMARTER TOGETHER” with its Zonoff Connected Home Platform, according to Zonoff CEO Mike Harris.
To that end, Zonoff doesn’t make its own hardware or devices or anything like that. Instead, its whole plan is to partner with companies like consumer electronics manufacturers and home hardware manufacturers to embed technology into their devices to like, make them work together. As the brains behind the scenes, Zonoff could enable consumers to do lots of cool stuff with their Internet connected blinds and lampshades, without having to have a separate app for each.
The platform offers up Home, Cloud, and App software, which enables stuff like home automation, energy management, and safety monitoring. That means not only can they connect appliances to one another, but it can provide manufacturers with the ability to monitor devices remotely and be sent alerts if they crap out. They can then send technicians to fix the problem, if the consumer wants, or make suggestions if whatever can be fixed on-site. All good stuff.
Anyway, to enable all this Internet-Of-Things goodness takes money. Zonoff makes that money by licensing its technology and hosting the cloud services that their partners run their apps and there’s also a revenue share opportunity with partners to share in revenue from services for those connected devices. Like a fixing service for broken Internet-Of-Things stuff.
And while it’s making money already, it could always use more money, which it could use to make even more money. So Zonoff raised $3.8 million in funding from Valhalla Partners and Grotech Ventures. With that cash, the Malvern, Penn.-based company hopes to help grow its technical team. That’ll also help it to support more customers and partners, and hopefully to expand internationally. Because people worldwide need their things connected to the Internet as well.
The much-rumored Apple iWatch isn’t as exciting as you might have thought.
We’ve heard rumors of flexible displays and Siri integration, but it appears that Apple’s iWatch is actually just a band meant to connect with the Apple device of your choice.
According to this leaked video, which uses stand-ins for rehearsal instead of real Apple execs and designers, the band lets you slap your iPhone or iPad onto the strap and conduct your business directly from your wrist. The band will sell for $249, to compete with other smart watch offerings on the market, and use will require the purchase of an iPhone or iPad.
We’ve reached out to Apple regarding availability, but haven’t heard anything yet. Analysts predict the iWatch will land in July, alongside the next-generation iPhone.
While the firm wouldn’t comment on availability, they did mention that users have the option to use latest generation MBAs and MBPs with the smart watch as well, for a more fully featured computing experience.
“We don’t want the iWatch to be all about consumption, as many have labeled iPhone and iPad,” said an Apple representative who wishes to remain anonymous. “So we’ll be letting users attach their laptops to the band.”
Apple expects a high uptake from designers and other creative types.
It’s worth mentioning how users will deal with the one-handedness of the product. The larger the iThing that you attach, the harder it will be to walk and move and perform tasks on the device. However, rumors are swirling that Apple may be releasing a handful of exercise-related devices to measure weight loss while using the heavier “smart watch.”
This comes fresh on the heels of Samsung’s foray into quantified self, wherein it will offer a HRM and a scale that pairs with the Galaxy S IV.
Still, it’s quite a shock to see that Apple’s famous iWatch will be more of an accessory than a computing device. On the other hand, it should save quite a bit on production and R&D.
Perhaps Apple is managing expectations on purpose, as they did with Maps. Unfortunately, only time will tell.
Editors Notes: Pre-orders for the Apple iWatch begin today, April 1, and will end tonight at midnight, because this is clearly a joke.
Read the original here: Apple’s iWatch Is Actually Just A Wrist Band That Attaches To Your iPhone, iPad