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Dick DeBartolo, MAD's Maddest Writer, and co-host of The Giz Wiz at GizWiz.TV, The Giz Wiz on ABC's World News Now, and on Tech Guy Labs with Leo Laporte on But wait, there's More »

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    A piece of equipment you won’t run out and buy, but very interesting!

    TTTT Tuesday March 23nd, 2010, Netcast 1052  A super high tech Turn The Table Tuesday gizmo.

    This is the basic unit that goes into the 22 pound backpack.Leo has been doing some amazing live broadcasting lately. It started at CES when he was able to roam through various tech exhibits and transmit live video. Recently he set a new world’s record (Leo has a badge to prove it) for the “longest live-streamed crowd surf.” He surfed the Diggnation crowd at SXSW. The equipment he used is from LiveU. LiveU opens a new era in live content by using six different wireless cards from 3 different carriers, picking the best reception from any of the six wireless cards from second to second for seamless streaming. As I said you’re not going to run out and buy this equipment because it costs tens of thousands of dollars. But you might be up for renting it if you’re a podcast producer. Here’s some info from their website: LiveU designs, develops and provides a real-time Video Uplink Solution at broadcast quality which provides instant setup time, connects to any video camera and allows going live in seconds. LiveU frees video broadcasting from uplink limitations and allows the color and excitement of live broadcasts to be shared by TV Broadcasters, Web Portals and Video Prosumers, anywhere, anytime. Now back to me! I assume the “anywhere, anytime” means “anywhere, anytime there is a wireless signal available”. But what they allow broadcasters to do sure is amazing! Leo is so excited about this equipment; he’s planning on “live TWiT broadcasting” from many other live events this year. 

    See the now world famous “live Leo crowd surf”:

    Hear this Netcast:


    A great travel clock, especially if you give talks or lectures!

    Monday, March 22nd, 2010, Netcast 1051

    Roadshow Alarm, shown open (right) closed (left)The complete long name for this clever producer is the Roadshow Companion Travel Alarm & Presentation Timer. But I’ll just call it the Roadshow Travel Alarm. Yes, it a regular travel clock, but it also allows folks who give talks, addresses and boardroom presentations to keep track of their time through its unique LED lecture timer functionality. While picturing your audience in their underwear is said to help alleviate the stress of being in the spotlight, the Roadshow excels at alleviating the other half of the fear of public speaking: wondering if you’re staying with the presentation’s allotted time. Here’s how the Roadshow Presentation Timer works: there are six color LED lamps across the top of the clock that illuminate sequentially (in Auto mode) or change at intervals of your choosing (in Manual mode). In the auto mode, enter the time your lecture or talk is supposed to take, say for example 30 minutes. The clock divides this into six equal segments. For 30 minutes they’ll be 5 minutes each. For each 5 minutes of talk, a green LED sequentially lights. At the half way mark, a yellow LED comes on, then 5 minutes later, the next yellow LED light. At five minutes before the end of your talk, a red LED lights. This simple and unobtrusive visual pacing device helps keep your presentation on track. Flexible settings allow the Roadshow to work whatever your time needs. (I think the max is four hours, but your audience will have left long before then!!) Note that the LED’s are sequential. In order words, when the next LED down the line lights, the one before it goes out. You don’t end up with 6 LED’s on at once.) Of course Leo already ordered one. He has no fear of speaking in public, but he does like to know the timing for certain events where he has to be on and off the stage at a preset time. Another thing I like about this clock is that it shows both the time of day and alarm time, plus a big ON or OFF for the alarm. And there’s a snooze feature. Normal price for the Roadshow is $29.95, but right now it’s on special at their website for $19.95. I contacted the company, American Innovative, and asked them if could please hold the sale price for a couple of weeks until folks get to hear this Netcast. In case it meets their needs, the price break is great. They kindly said they would. 

    Hear this Netcast:


    Never be wrong again! 

    Friday, March 19th, 2010, Netcast 1050 

    Back on Friday, August 22nd 2008 on the Daily Giz Wiz we went back to Dick’s Gadget Warehouse to meet the “YES MAN”. He’s a small talking head that always agrees with everything you say!  Hear that Netcast here: 

    Whipping Boy (sometimes called the Whiner Doll) is a friend of the Yes, Man! Both were available starting in 1990 as fun gadgets produced by Rau Creations. How refreshing it was to know just about anything you do, no matter how bad, is not your fault! Yep, you can blame everything on the Whipping Boy.  Pass the blame onto him and he will immediately start apologizing. He’s voice activated. Say something to him like: “Why are these files so messed up?” Wait a beat and listen to what Whipping Boy has to say for himself! It’s always his fault! His responses include: 

    "It was all my fault." / "How could I have been so stupid."

    "I've screwed up again, why do you keep me around here?"

    "Forgive me, forgive me, please."

    "What a dumb thing to do. Fire me where I stand."

    "I destroy everything I touch with my incompetence."

    "I'm a disease, I make myself sick."

    Even though you can still find Whipping Boy & Whiner Doll listed on many websites, I couldn’t find one that still had them for sale. Even though you can’t currently buy a Whipping Boy (Luckily Leo had Dane!) you can still hear him apologize here: 

    Hear this Netcast:


    Another kind of timer. This one’s for your pet!

    Thursday, March 18th, 2010, Netcast 1049  

    This easy-to-use, three-button system is the perfect pet assistant for dog owners; Dog-e-Minder is your dog's new best friend! It keeps track of the last time your dog was walked, fed and received medication. It’s perfect to use as a training aide or as a reminder for busy pet owners, multi-pet homes and pet-sitters/walkers, Dog-e-Minder takes the guesswork out of "pet parenting" and let's you rest assured that your pets are given the attention they deserve! A business and family man, Dog-e-Minder co-founder Yair Shalev, designed this product with the busy dog owner in mind, and knows first-hand just how challenging it can be to keep things orderly at a time when people are doing more with a lot less. The simple, three-button design is easy for any family member to use. Each button has a symbol related to an activity. The "fire hydrant" symbolizes walk time, the "dog bone" represents feeding time and the "RX" symbol records the last time medication was administered. When you perform any one of these activities, simply hold the corresponding button down for three seconds and the current date and time is saved. To view stored information, just press the appropriate button once, and the display shows the last time the task was completed. When idle, the Dog-e-Minder also acts as a dog identification tag, displaying important pet name and owner contact information. The durable and waterproof casing will handle everything from fetching to swimming, in rain or sunshine. With a battery and backlight included, the Dog-e-Minder is easy to program and has an easy-to-read digital display. Available in black, blue, pink or red. $19.95 + S&H.   (Receive an optional PUPPY PINATA for FREE just pay S&H.)

    Hear this Netcast:


    A clock that teaches kids to sleep in so you can too!

    Wednesday, March 17th, 2010, Netcast 1048 – Happy St. Patrick’s Day! 

    Some time back on The Daily Giz Wiz we talked about the Good Nite Lite a device to help toddlers judge how long to wait before waking their parents. That device is here: And the Netcast on the Good Nite Lite is here:

    But now there’s a new, even more convenient device, the OK to Wake! Alarm Clock & Nightlight. So your child will not disturb you too early in the morning, the OK to Wake! glows green when it’s time for young kids to go see mom and dad in the morning! (Turns "green" notice the clever St. Patrick's Day tie-in!) OK to Wake! features a dual-color nightlight. The nightlight is programmable. The parent defines what time the "Green means GO!" light turns on in the morning. In the evening, OK To Wake! is a comforting nightlight (soft yellow glow) that can be turned on at the tap of a "toe" for a programmable duration (up to two hours). For older children that want to get up "on their own", OK To Wake! is a fully-functional alarm clock with snooze - just like mom and dad's! A pleasant gradual-wake (ascending volume) tone gently rouses your child. When sounding, the left toe button snoozes for ten minutes and the right toe button silences the bell. Fun animations make OK To Wake! come to life with smiles and winks whenever the alarm is sounding. And something else that’s very convenient is the Built-In Nap Timer. Just press a button to nap for up to 24 hours (fully customizable) without the other clock settings. And, best of all, the nap timer can conclude with the OK To Wake! light, the gradual-wake tone or both! But wait, there’s more! The clock ships with two interchangeable colored bezels (green bug and pink flower). Volume and brightness settings are fully adjustable to meet the preference of you and/or your child. Runs entirely on battery power (2x AA required) Under $30

    Hear this Netcast: