Who’s Going to Pay $30 for Opera on the Nintendo DS?

Well, I might. Nintendo announced that the Opera web browser will be made available (on its own cartridge, I’m assuming) for $29. They also announced a TV-tuner card.

This got me thinking, with the PSP offering a web browser for free, what makes Nintendo think that they can charge $29 for one? A couple of things, I guess. First, Opera has a history of charging for their web browser (how that business model works when every other browser in the world is free, I have no idea).

Second, the Nintendo DS is pretty much wiping the floor with the PSP (and every other game console, portable or not, for that matter) in sales right now. So they can afford to do whatever they want.

Lastly, the DS doesn’t have an easy way (USB cable) to connect to a PC to update itself with new features like the PSP does. Sure, they could try it over wifi, but do you want to be the guy in charge of tech support for 12 year old kids around the world trying to flash the firmware on their DS over wifi? Yeah, me neither. πŸ™‚

So, I guess it makes sense for them to release Opera on a cart. And they couldn’t very well give it away for free. The real question is, will I cave and buy it when it comes out? I already carry several devices on my person at any given time that can browse the web, so Opera on the DS would have to be pretty special. But we all know I have very low resistance to this sort of thing. πŸ™‚

Let the betting pool on when I will cave begin! πŸ™‚


Naked Conversations

Naked Conversations, originally uploaded by JoshB.

Here’s my copy of Robert Scoble and Shel Israel’s book on corporate blogging, Naked Conversations, which, despite Amazon’s best efforts to screw up my order, arrived a couple of weeks ago.

I’m sad to say that I haven’t cracked it open yet. I wish there was a non-PDF ebook version of it. Carrying around the dead tree version of anything is such a pain, and as a result, it takes me a lot longer to get through the dead tree version than an ebook version I can take with my everywhere on my Pocket PC phone, and read whenever I have a few minutes.

Still, looking forward to reading it, then sharing it with coworkers. I’ll see if I can get Robert and Shel to autograph it next time I run into them. πŸ™‚


Make Magazine #05

Make Magazine #05, originally uploaded by JoshB.

Always lots of fun when a new issue of Make arrives! I sit down and read it from cover to cover, then proudly display it on the table in my cube. It’s a great conversation starter.


Aerogel at OMSI

Aerogel at OMSI, originally uploaded by JoshB.

We took our Webelos to OMSI (the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) a few weeks ago. There was some cool things in the Physics lab.

This is a sample of Aerogel – the least dense solid known to man. They call it “frozen smoke”. It’s 99% air, but very strong, and makes a great insulator. It’s used in a lot of space projects. You can actually buy a small chunk of Aerogel from United Nuclear, though it’s pretty expensive.


Ferromagnetic Fluid at OMSI

Ferromagnetic Fluid at OMSI, originally uploaded by JoshB.

We took our Webelos to OMSI (the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) a few weeks ago. There were some cool things in the Physics lab.

This is some ferromagnetic fluid – think iron filings suspended in liquid. They move and react to magnetic fields, like this one, with me moving a small magnet underneath the plexiglass container. You have to see it in motion to really appreciate how weird and cool it is.


LED + Coin Cell Battery + Magnet = Throwies

EDIT: There’s an awesome video of Throwies being applied en masse to a building in NY over at

OK, now this is a cool idea – temporary “graffiti” in the form of colorful magnetic LEDs, powered by tiny lithium cells for up to two weeks. Cost? About $1.00 per throwie, less with volume discounts on parts.

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I love the Make Magazine blog and – they have so many cool, easy-to-do projects! πŸ™‚


Engadget Mobile – What’s the Point?

I saw this morning that Weblogs Inc. has launched a spinoff of the super-popular Engadget, called Engadget Mobile.

Apparently, the new site will focus solely on mobile phones, PDAs, etc. Begging the question, why?

Isn’t this type of gadget what Engadget was covering before? That’s why I read it. Sure, they covered other weird stuff, and the sheer volume of posts (since the bloggers had a quota of x number of posts per day Peter Rojas posted a comment explaining that they don’t use a quote for posts at Engadget) made it seem like most of the posts were really a stretch.

At any rate, I’m subscribed, and it will be interesting to see the evolution of this site and the original Engadget. At first blush, it seems like a money grab – sort of like spinning a character off of a popular sitcom into their own show. We’ll see if it flops or takes off…