Crafts And Seek 

 
Your creative side just became a bit more organized. Esty, the popular, online craft shop, just announced a major improvement to its mobile app. As of this very moment, the “shop local” feature, has been added to let users know where to find craft  products in pop-up neighborhood locations.

  
    
   
The “shop local” feature was always available on Esty’s website, but that wasn’t very convenient for crafts people who are always on-the-go, hunting for new items. The mobile app will be continuously updated so users can even find local retailers who are having special craft specials. 

Even though no one would describe me as me as a person who does crafts, I do love checking out local goods and finding unique items. I always feel like I am the last to know about a nearby arts and crafts show. We always seem to stumble upon them.

Now, all I have to do is open my Esty app and get a glimpse of every crafts event in the area. I can also use the app’s built-in map to see what’s happening in other areas of the country. Pretty cool.

I have been shopping Esty online craft products for years. I’m glad they’re progressive enough to promote live events. It just makes sense to have both options. 

Thank you 

Remarkable Photos/Videos 

Miami is the lightning capital. We had a spectacular show tonight. Intense. Photo by Eliot Hess.       

 

I found this on Facebook. It belongs to a friend of a friend. You must see the reaction of this five year old boy when he finds out his mother is pregnant. I am trying to imagine what he will be like as an adult. Amazing!


The leading lady of CES, Karen Chupka, posted this picture of a Budda made out of sardine cans. This is on display at the Hong Kong International Airport.

  

Women Who Matter

  If I ever had to picture what a DigiDame looks like, the women above capture it. High fashion after 60

 My sister-in law, Susan Schneider, modeling her new creation, a jacket scarf

Susan’s novel, “Fire in My Ears” is now available on audio and is actually spoken by her daughter-in-law Rachel F. Hirsch. Click here for further info. To hear the audio version, Click here 

Rachel with Whitney Hess

Further good news, Rachel just appeared in a TV commercial 

My Miami girl friend, Mindi Lampert, a long time educator and therapist, just published her first book about the letters she collected from young students over the years. The book is priceless and precious.

  


Google’s Solar Power Play

 
Image: Google 

If someone told me years ago that there would be a company that could possibly take a picture of every street in America, I would have said, “No way.” Now we all know that Google is that company. What we didn’t know, is just how much this powerful company is going to capitalize on their current assets. 

Google has just announced Project Sunroof, an an online tool that lets homeowners know whether they should get solar panels for their homes. Project Sunroof is capable of analyzing where you live, the measurements of your roof, how much you can expect to save each month, and the price of the solar panels you will need.

Google plans to rollout the program in Boston, San Francisco, and Fresno. Google claims that 400,000 homes were using solar panels in 2013. They hope the number will jump to millions in the next five years.

Click here to read the most frequently asked questions about residential solar panels.

Huffington Post wrote an in-depth article on this subject. 

Drones On A Stick

Here I go again. I have another selfie story to share with you. Everyone is selfie crazy. 

The Fotokite Phi is the first drone-like device that is tethered to you via a leash while it flies. It’s almost like flying a kite.

You have total control over aerial picture taking. The device doesn’t work on GPS, but rather by recognizing the tether tension as a positioning guide. 

Watch the video. The entire mechanism folds and unfolds for easy transportation. You have never seen anything like it. 

The quadcopter does not include a camera. You have to buy one on your own. The Fotokite Phi’s tether is 26 feet long, which is enough to allow you to take stunning aerial photos. 

The unit is available for preorder on the company’s IndieGogo campaign. It’s priced at approximately $500. Delivery of the Fotokite is expected to occur in March 2016. 

360 Degree Photos, The Next Big Selfie

  
I’m not so sure this is going to catch on, but 2016 is supposed to be the year of aerial view selfies. Yes, you throw a 360- degree, ball-shaped camera in the air and it automatically snaps a picture at its highest point. Be sure to catch it.

It’s a spherical photo. You get to see yourself submerged in all of your surrounding from the top, down. Called the Panono, it has the highest resolution camera available. 

The Panono just finished a successful Indiegogo fund raising campaign. The camera costs $1,499, but don’t dispair. The initial production run is only ramped up for 1000 units. After that, the price should come down.

The camera is no larger than a grapefruit. It features tiny, indented lenses and a rubberized green trim so you can get a grip on it. You can also use a removable handle if you don’t feel like tossing the camera in the air. You simply click the a button at the end of the grip. 

The Panono has a companion app on your smartphone to view the photos you shoot. Watch the video to see what you’re missing on your present day camera. Good luck.

Mashable did a detailed story on Panono.
 

Amazon’s Competition

Image from Bloomberg’s Businessweek , Marc Lore

At dinner tonight my girl friend Bonnie asked me if I ever heard of Jet.com. She said it was a new competitor to Amazon and in many cases less expensive. 
I had never heard of Jet.com so I told her that she probably got her facts wrong. She told me to check it out. I forgot all about it until I turned to my nightly ritual of checking in with a few tech sites.

The second I opened Engadget, I spotted a detailed post on the concept of Jet.com. What a coincidence. The biggest takeaway that I got from the Engadget post is that “the more you buy, the more rewards you receive.” This amounts to very big savings. 

Read Wikipedia’s explanation of Jet.com. The founder, Marc Lore, was also the creator of diapers.com and soap.com, which he later sold to Amazon for $545 million. 

I’m anxious for a few of you to try Jet.com and then report back if you think it’s a true Amazon competitor. 

Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places

  
Image from: 2001 – 2015 Avid Dating Life Inc

By now you have all heard about the Ashley Madison snafu. It’s all over the press. The website, devoted to married people who want to cheat, was hacked. That means someone broke into their database and is slowly releasing the names of 33 million users. 

It may seem unreal, but 33 million people actually signed up with their real names, emails, credit cards, addresses, street addresses, phone numbers, and oh boy….. sexual preferences. The hackers revealed that the Ashley Madison patrons include execs from Bank of America, JP Morgan, Amazon, Department of Education, Boeing, and every big company you can think of.

There are tons of people who have a lot of explaining to do. I, myself, can take a big sigh of relief. A few years ago, a former client, was thinking of financially backing a new company that was going to compete against Ashley Madison. His friend, a former Ashley Madison executive, was going to head it up. 

They both met with me to discuss my PR agency handling the account. They must have thought I was the biggest idiot alive. I had no idea who Ashley Madison was and what function it performed. I was hoping it had something to do with ice cream. 

When they finally explained the concept to me, I went into utter disbelief. I was paralyzed with fear. I didn’t know if they were kidding or trying to trick me. I wasn’t taking any chances. I made up some stomach ache excuse and left the building. I never heard about their venture again and I’m not bringing it up. Amen! 

  

Shoes Turn Into Roller Skates

This is for me. I can’t wait to buy a pair of shoes that turn into roller skates. All I will have to do is flip a switch when I get tired. I predict this project on Indiegogo will be the start of more roller skate shoe companies to come. It’s a natural.

This one is called Walk Wing. The shoes will be available in 2016. The Walk Wings strap over your shoes. A lever lowers the wheels to turn your shoes into roller skates and then the wheels retract when you want to walk again. 

The WalK Wings will retail for about $100. If you contribute to the fund, you will get a discount. Click here to see the offer. Let me know if you buy a pair.

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