Christmas Unboxing Geek Style

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Merry Christmas to all and to all a good haul! This happens to be my favorite holiday, even when I happen to be celebrating it alone. I’m very glad to know you’re here with me (even virtually, in homes of your own).

I bought myself a very cool Boba Fett hoodie this year. I’ve been wanting one forever, so I decided to go ahead and splurge!

I received several really cool gifts from various friends, including some great new LEGO and Star Wars stuff! Thank you to all of you.

I also bought myself a Panasonic DMP-B500 Portable DVD Player. Gosh, how did I ever figure out what it was I really wanted?

YouTube sent a gift to some of the producers, as well. We were asked to go to B&H Photo and Video and choose a few things we knew we could need/use. I chose wisely, knowing I will be broadcasting live soon from CES 2011. I’ll be in the Grand Lobby, and uploading all of the resulting videos to my YouTube account. Thanks so much to the folks at YouTube for these goodies.

ThinkGeek also sent me a nice care package. It was sitting downstairs for at least a week, and I’ve been dying to open it. They sent me the new Bluetooth Keyboard and iPad Case that I’ve had my eyes on for a while now. I also recieved the USB Classic Atari Joystick, the Star Wars Dark Side Coffee, an Otamatone, a Not Here to Make Friends shirt (which I WILL wear in public frequently!), the FML shirt (which again – I WILL wear often!!) and a few other assorted goodies.

What’d you get for Christmas this year?

Gnomedex Conference Sponsors and Specials

It’s hard to believe that not only is the 10th Gnomedex finally here, though the event is almost over. Later today, we will wrap up this conference with a few surprises for everyone in attendance… including those of you joining us on the live stream. As I collect my thoughts prior to kicking things off this morning, I thought it was a great time to thank the sponsors who are here with us. We also have a few giveaways for the attendees, as well as some discounts for ALL of you out there.

First off, the sponsors on-site:

  • Parallels – John Uppendahl and his team went way above and beyond what any of us could have dreamed up. He showed up at the conference armed with various Parallels products for every attendee. The retail cost of these boxes of software would boggle the mind.
  • FaceVsion – FaceVsion has been giving away some seriously cool cameras, with more being given out to attendees today!
  • InterConnection – InterConnection is a computer recycling service who happens to be giving away an Xbox 360 Kinect bundle to one lucky attendee!
  • Weatherbug – Weatherbug is a long-time Gnomedex and Lockergnome supporter. In addition to their table here full of cool mousepads, they will be giving away an iPad to an attendee.
  • SmartCup – SmartCup CEO Larry Wu is here with us as a presenter. His team of awesome (and very happy) girls is here pouring delicious all-you-can-drink French Press coffee.
  • Microsoft has been very good to us again this year. Not only do we have a Surface table in the hallway for everyone to play with… we also have tables staffed to show people the new Windows Phone 7 AND the newest advancements in Windows 7 on a multi-touch computer.
  • Yelp – We appreciate Yelp being here on-site to talk with everyone and for having plenty of information available.
  • American Public Media – APM is doing some excellent things in the social media space, and they were kind enough to send a few representatives to talk with our attendees during the conference.
  • Real Networks – Not only has Lacey and her team from Real joined us on-site again this year… they were also kind enough to bring EVERY attendee a vuvuzela of their very own! My head and ears will never be the same.

There is also a very special deal going on: Our friends at ThinkGeek are offering all of you a discount. Until 11:59pm tonight, you can use coupon code GNOMEDEX to save $5.00 off of any order of $25 or more – or $10.00 off of an order of more than $40.00.

I have to thank everyone once again for their participation this year, from the volunteers to the sponsors to the attendees. We are having a fantastic time and the day has only begun!

ThinkGeek Must Cease and Desist

Likely the most hilarious story I’ve come across lately is the cease and desist letter received by ThinkGeek yesterday. The letter was sent by the National Pork Association and backed by several notable legal minds. The twelve-page document claims that ThinkGeek has been infringing on the NPAs phrase “The Other White Meat” in their advertising. What makes this so funny is that the product being referred to was an April Fool’s Day joke where our favorite monkeys decided to advertise Unicorn Meat.

There have been a lot of bloggers today screaming about how “dumb” the brass at the NPA must be to believe that this was a real product. I don’t think they believed it was real at all. I think they knew exactly what they were doing. Look at how much attention they garnered today. The C&D states right in black-and-white that they are planning to phase out the use of that phrase. So what, then, is their beef?

Thankfully, ThinkGeeks’ use of the phrase in their advertising is protected as a parody. They don’t have to cease or desist anything at all.

There will be no C&D involved when you grab the latest software and apps from our download center.

A 16-Port USB Hub Hubbub

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I love USB. I love the ports, the devices and the hubs. The problem with hubs, though, is that most of them top out at only seven little spots to plug things into. I have SO many USB devices. How the heck am I ever going to plug them all in at once? It’s a good thing my friends at ThinkGeek sent along their 16 port USB Hub for me to review!

This baby has a built-in 22.5W power supply so an extra AC adapter is not needed. Connect all of your favorite USB devices at once, such as your USB Humping Dog, your USB microphone, your USB drink cooler, your phone and virtually ALL of your other USB devices in at once!

The hub weighs less than a pound and is smaller than you might expect at approximately 4.5in x 2.5in x 2in. This makes it easy to actually throw it in your suitcase and take it with you when you travel. You know it will come in handy… even on the road.

The built-in power supply ensures you don’t need another AC adapter and there’s even a switch that allows you to switch the hub between two computers. You can’t use it on two computers at once, but you can just push a button to switch back and forth between them. Some hubs are underpowered, but not this beautiful little box! It will handle pretty much anything you throw at – or plug into – it.

This is now my USB hub of choice. I double-dog dare you to list all of your USB devices. I’m going to send my existing USB hub to the person who lists the most – and can prove it. Take a picture of all of them at once, all together. Whoever has the most (provable) USB devices will win!

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ThinkGeek Marshmallow Gun

Our friends at ThinkGeek have done it again! The Marshmallow Mforcer Semi-Automatic Pistol is just one of those items you have got to have. The plastic device packs up to 15 mini marshmallows at a time to help you defend yourself against alien invasions – or to shoot into your cereal bowl.

The Mforcer has a port on the side to load the marshmallows in. Pump the front at least twenty times to load the tank with air. The more you pump, the more force there is behind each and every gooey “bullet.” Fire mallow after mallow in rapid succession until the chamber is empty.

The next time one of your co-workers grabs the last jelly-filled doughnut without seeing if you wanted it, just grab your Mforcer and let them have it.

Marshmallows are not included!