Tag Archives: flash-drive

Mimobot USB Flash Drive for the Geek in You

Geeks love gadgets. We love gadgets that are functional. More importantly, we love functional gadgets that are cool looking. The Mimobot Designer USB Flash Drive fits all three of these bills perfectly. These awesome little drives come in sizes from 2GB up to 16GB and offer an optional key chain attachment at a small additional cost. How suave are you going to look when you whip out your Star Wars or Halo key chain, pop off the top and stick it into your laptop or computer?

Boston-based Mimoco has fused the art of contemporary characters with personal data storage devices since 2005. They offer up flash drives housed inside of popular geek culture icons, fan-voted submissions and even an exclusive artist series. They’ve long been a favorite toy amongst elite geeks, and I’ll be giving you a chance to win one of your own later in this post.

Each drive comes packed with preloaded content for you to enjoy. The quarterly MimoZine is a video-based magazine featuring interviews with musicians, profiles of artists, coverage of fun pop-culture events and many other things you’ll expect to find at the crossroads of technology and art. You’ll also find wallpapers, icons, avatars and screensavers to enhance your desktop experience.

Your Mimobot will work on either Windows or Mac OS X, and some Linux users have reported success when plugging in their device. The flash drives are Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and are backwards compatible with USB 1.1. The little dudes and dudettes are a mere 2.5″ tall by 1″ wide, easily fitting into a pocket or purse. They don’t take up much space in your travel bag, and it’s okay if you feed them after midnight!

So now you’re wondering how you can win one of my Batman series Mimobots, aren’t you? It’s simple! Make sure you’ve checked me out on Twitter and YouTube. Choose your favorite video from my uploads, and Tweet a link to it – be sure to include @lockergnome in the Tweet so I don’t miss it! Winners will be chosen completely at random, so keep an eye out on your messages to see if we send a congratulatory Tweet your way! The contest ends next Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011 at 11:59pm PST. Winners will be announced via Facebook and Twitter on Thursday, March 24th, 2011.

What is the Most Creative USB Flash Drive Casing You’ve Seen?

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I recently wanted to demonstrate a device I got from ThinkGeek. When I went to plug it in, I realized one of my dogs must have gotten ahold of the cable and chewed on it. Would you think by looking at it that it’s still worth $30.00? Of course not. It’s designed to look like a frayed cable on purpose. You can use it as a practical gag gift… or even to deter someone from wanting to steal it. A potential thief may see that nasty looking cable, and just figure it’s something broken or worthless. That’s the beauty of the Hacked Flash Drive.

We’ve got the tiniest flash-drives, and we’ve got flash-drives that are hardened against attack. Now, we’ve got flash-drives that look like they’ve been hacked! Imagine yourself, sitting in a coffee-shop. You pull out your venerable laptop, and fire it up. You may not realize it, but there are jealous eyes on your hardware. They see your computer and size you up. Is the computer you carry worth trying to steal? Are you enough of a threat to them? The mental-calculations proceed apace. That is until you reach for your flash drive.

You pull from your bag a seemingly torn and frayed piece of USB cabling. Immediately, your potential miscreant raises an eyebrow. Exactly what does he think he’s going to do with that cable? Grinning like a madman, you plug your phantom USB device into your computer, and happily continue on with your work, apparently oblivious to your devices obvious lack of connectivity.

It appears to all around you that you are, indeed, mad. In fact, what you’ve really done is plug in a 2 gigabyte flash drive that’s masterfully disguised as a frayed and broken USB cable. You’ve managed to make it appear that you’re insane, and as all thieves know – never EVER screw with an insane person.

So you see, it truly is still worth the $30.00! It’s 2GB, so it will hold quite a lot of important files and data. It’s definitely unique, and a very cool idea.

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What’s the Most Secure USB Drive?

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No two flash drives are built the same. This new 2GB flash drive I have has software and hardware security built right into it. When you plug it in the first time, you set up a password which will automatically encrypt everything you put on it. If gets ahold of this USB drive and tries to enter an incorrect password ten times – the data will all be erased. They won’t ever access it, unless you set an easy-to-guess password. If this sounds like something you need to protect your data, check out the IronKey.

All user data is encrypted with AES hardware encryption that has been validated to meet government FIPS requirements. Unlike software-based encryption, this “always-on” protection cannot be disabled. And since the Cryptochip generates and stores the strong, random encryption keys, the encryption routines run faster and more securely than any software-based encryption system.

No one can access files stored on your IronKey unless they authenticate with the correct password. All encryption and password verification are performed in hardware, and cannot be disabled by malware or a careless user. This eliminates the risk of compromised confidential portable data.

The IronKey does not require any software or drivers to be installed and even works on Windows XP and Vista without administrator privileges. The IronKey offers drag-and-drop encryption, “plug and play” simplicity, and intuitive encrypted backup, which helps minimize the total cost of ownership. Onboard security software cannot be tampered with or removed. Each IronKey has a unique, easy-to-read serial number, making it simple to track and inventory.

If you are in the market for something that will protect you, this is what you need. For anywhere from $80 – $300, isn’t it worth the money to save your peace of mind?

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What’s the Best USB Flash Drive to Buy?

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I don’t think that I’ve heard heard anyone say “dang… I have too much capacity on my Flash drive”. You can never have too much space in my opinion. About a year ago I bought a 2GB Flash drive. What’s the highest capacity USB drive you have owned? Most of our chatters indicated that they own about a 2GB. I happen to have a 32GB Corsair Flash drive in my hot little hands. After the rebate, it was only $100.00. Of course, I found a coupon to help.

As time passes, flash drives get cheaper and cheaper, and even as we speak, prices are ridiculous, but they keep going down. When I say “ridiculous,” I think about those days, not so long ago, when a 128Mb USB drive was worth a little fortune. Now, for that price, you can get a 8GB drive, and also get drunk. Anyway, instead of getting drunk, maybe you could also consider buying a…32GB drive?

The Corsair Flash Voyager family of USB drives are rugged, stylish, compact, and reliable, making them ideal for transporting MP3s, digital images, presentations and more. Flash Voyager drives are fully Plug and Play with most operating systems and are backward compatible with USB 1.1.

The Corsair Flash Voyager family is comprised of two outstanding products. The Flash Voyager GT is designed from the ground up for speed, optimizing transfer rates of both reads and writes, while Flash Voyager provides a durable USB drive in large capacities.

The Flash Voyager and Flash Voyager GT are enclosed in the Corsair proprietary all-rubber housing. Boasting water-resistant properties, these drives allow users to carry more valuable data and applications without compromise. Several reviews of the Flash Voyager products have demonstrated the ruggedness, durability, and reliability of the Flash Voyager family. The Flash Voyager has been shown laundered, baked, frozen, boiled, dropped, and even run over by a SUV in many third party reviews. After all the punishment it receives, the drive continues to work.

If you don’t like the U3 software, you can download the uninstaller from their website. I have about 9GB of apps on my Mac. I think I may keep these on this drive, so I can use them on other machines without having to download or install. I’ve always been happy enough with Corsair to spend the money and try it out. It was well worth what I spent, for sure.


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Do You Want to Remove USB Flash Drive Software?

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You probably have Flash drives lying around. My Dad recently bought a new Flash drive and plugged it into his computer, to find that a window popped up. The U3 software was installed on it. He wasn’t very happy about that, let me tell you. He didn’t want that on his drive, and he wanted me to fix it. No problem, thankfully. I just happened to be there at his house at the time, so I took care of it for him.

This is one of the biggest tips I have for you if you’re going to be buying a Flash drive these days, whether you’re a Geek or not. When you buy one, you want to check and find out whether or not U3 is installed on it. There is an advantage to having it on there, such as when you need to run portable apps like Skype on it. If you buy a Flash drive that comes with U3 installed and decide you no longer want it, you can run the uninstaller from U3. Yes, it really does work.

Back when U3 was first released, a lot of us were complaining that there was no uninstaller. We wanted a high capacity drive, and it was annoying to have the software pop up every time we plugged it in. There are drives that may not have U3 software on it, but they could have other software preinstalled. Often, the drives that are given away at trade shows will have data already on them that is near impossible to delete.

Have no fear! I found a program that will take care of these pesky programs and data files for you. It’s only for Mac OS X, but I’m looking for a Windows and Linux equivalent. Hidden Cleaner will wipe your Flash drive clean. It can also delete the hidden files OS X creates like .DS_Store.

How many Flash drives do you have? What’s the biggest one you have? Do you hold on to smaller ones even after you purchase a ginormous gargantuan-sized drive?

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What's Cheaper than a Gallon of Gas?

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I was sitting here chatting with the people in my chat room when Ponzi called me with a pretty cool discovery that I thought you all would find interesting. She was calling me from BestBuy, as she was walking past the aisle that has all of the flash drives.

She noticed that a 128 MB flash drive was priced at $3.99. She couldn’t believe it since a gallon of gas in Seattle is currently $4.07 for the lowest octane. She was shocked that a flash drive cost less than a gallon of gasoline.

It got me thinking what else costs less than a gallon of gas here in the US right now. Even here in Iowa where I’m visiting my parents right now, the cost per gallon is high as well. I’m interested though, in hearing about things that you would never expect to be less than a gallon of gas… especially tech-related things. This is my challenge to you: Find me things that cost less than one single gallon of gasoline… or even less than one tank filling. Let’s try to come up with things that you wouldn’t expect to be cheaper, and would surprise us all.


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The Fastest Flash Drive

Don’t ask me why this isn’t documented anywhere, but I have it on good authority that the best USB memory stick to use for Vista’s ReadyBoost is an Apacer Handy Steno – the 2GB version. Apacer also has a 4GB version, although it’s been reported that the 4GB model has reliability issues (though I don’t know how “reliablity” is defined or charted). No matter, Microsoft is apparently using Apacer USB sticks for the ultimate speed boost (ReadyBoost) in Vista. From Mwave, a list of features:

  • All in one design: to avoid losing the cover
  • USB 2.0 Interface: Truly plug and play
  • Slender body makes USB ports accessible
  • High capacity support
  • Docking included for user-friendly usage
  • High performance (Max.) *: Read speed-25MB/sec. & Write speed-14MB/sec.
  • LED indicates data transfer in transferred
  • Security/Booting/Formatting/Compressing functions
  • Write Speed around 14000 KB / sec.
  • Read Speed around 25000 KB / sec.

I would rather get the 4GB model than the 2GB one (for obvious reasons), but not if there are stability / consistency issues. Anybody else have experiences with Apacer? That’s a brand I just haven’t heard of before.