GRACE NOTES

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Feb 27, 2012 0 comments

When I first saw the AfterShokz headphones at the 2012 International CES, I knew the company was onto something. Instead of going in or over the ear, these use bone conduction technology, borrowed from the Navy SEALs. AfterShokz rest in front of the ear, and use the jawbone to convey sound into the middle ear. I had a suspicion my father —a retired electrical engineer with a background in aeronautics, an audiophile from way back, and one of the original gadget gurus —would love them.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Feb 15, 2012 0 comments

Tristan and Isolde, Romeo and Juliet, Rachel and Ross, Brad and Angelina, Mac and Cheese. All great couples. Each individual may be fine on their own, but together - well, they're magic. Okay, so a few end up dead, but if it's written in the stars, then so be it.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Feb 13, 2012 0 comments

The 2012 Grammy Awards — "music’s biggest night" — was certainly a unique evening of entertainment. As Reba (when did she lose her last name?) pointed out, it brought together so many different aspects of the music industry. Where else would you find hip-hop newbies rubbing elbows with old-school crooners?

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Feb 02, 2012 0 comments

Super Bowl Sunday, in many people's minds, is a national holiday. And, as with any holiday in this country, that means sales. Big sales.  Now, while you might think instantly that we're gonna talk about TV sales, let's hold off on that for a minute.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 03, 2012 0 comments

Last month we explored ways to break up with your cable provider.  But what if you’re in a long-term, loving relationship with your cable box? Or your satellite dish? So in love, in fact, that you can’t stand to be apart from it? The Vulkano Flow ($99) lets you view the output of your cable set-top box or satellite receiver over the internet, on your laptop PC, Mac, or smartphone, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. Never be away from the one you love!

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Dec 13, 2011 0 comments

Consider this fact. Over 80% of people watching TV or movies at home do so while also surfing the Internet or using their smartphones. No one just sits and watches movies anymore. If I was a film-maker, I would be pissed.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Dec 01, 2011 0 comments

Seems like a new way to listen to music over the Internet pops up everyday.  Pandora might have a lock on the market, Slacker has the coolest name (and real-live DJs behind the scenes), everyone's talking about Spotify and MOG, but there's another website that does something most others don't. Stereomood designs playlists based on your mood or activity. Yup - music to suit your every mood.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Nov 16, 2011 0 comments

Big screen not quite big enough? Don't like company while you watch TV? You can finally place your order for Sony's widely anticipated 3D headset, the HMZ-T1 ($799.) But before we get to the specs, consider the cool factor: The headset looks like something straight out of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Nov 01, 2011 0 comments

It's really hard to feel sorry for any of the major cable providers. Shout out if you absolutely love your cable company. Anyone? So, when Time Warner Cable announced a significant drop in subscribers and a corresponding decline in their earnings last quarter, you didn't see a lot of crocodile tears. In fact, anyone who's spent an hour or five dealing with cable customer service will likely feel at least a bit of glee to hear about TWC's corporate woes. But what does this say about how we're all watching TV?

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Oct 17, 2011 0 comments

Streaming from a DVR is a great way to watch whatever you want, wherever you want. Some even say that streaming might be the future of video.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Oct 10, 2011 0 comments

A few weeks ago, the blogosphere was abuzz with commentary on Netflix's impetuous decision to split into two companies: Netflix for streaming TV shows and movies, and Qwikster for home delivery of DVD and Blu-ray movies. Seems that Netflix thought better of it too.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Oct 06, 2011 0 comments

The death of Steve Jobs was covered by the media in a manner usually reserved for heads of state. But, the truth is that he probably affected your life more deeply than most presidents or prime ministers. If you use Apple products, you hold the contours, colors, buttons, and menus that Mr. Jobs personally obsessed over and approved.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Sep 29, 2011 0 comments

You know the story: an unscrupulous robe maker tells the king how wonderful his new, expensive, invisible robe is, king believes it, and king shows his butt to the world. A timeless tale that gets repeated over and over. And maybe a new version has just surfaced.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Sep 23, 2011 0 comments

Netflix customers are hopping mad, and the company predicts it will lose a million customers. Its stock price has tanked. Has its CEO, Reed Hastings, lost his mind, or is this merely a speed bump along the path of a much grander strategy?

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Sep 16, 2011 0 comments

It's become ubiquitous. Anytime you see a person jogging, there's always a cord flapping in the breeze and on closer look, you'll see their earphones. They're having an endorphin rush, zoning out to their favorite tunes. But - you have to wonder - can earphones designed for the rigors of exercise really sound okay? And more important, how safe are they to wear?

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