| Cult of Mac

Fertility wearable lets you know when it’s go time

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This ear piece by YONO Labs helps women record Basal Body Temperature for fertility tracking.
This ear piece by YONO Labs helps women record Basal Body Temperature for fertility tracking.
Photo: YONO Labs

There are fertility deities, dances, stones, herbs and masks. Every culture has rites and rituals that try to improve the chances of a woman getting pregnant.

Tech culture, too, tries to influence the forces of fertility with gadgets and smartphone apps to create ovulation calculators, period calendars and temperature trackers. But you still need the discipline of consistent record keeping for them to work.

The startup company, YONO Labs, has developed an ear piece that records BBT, Basal Body Temperature, and other body and hormonal symptoms while a woman sleeps. When she wakes, the device gets docked and the data gets stored in an iOS or Android app for your smartphone.

MIT’s new wearable trackpad is all thumbs

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MIT researchers have found away to turn the thumbnail into a trackpad. Photo: MIT Media Lab
MIT researchers have found a way to turn the thumbnail into a trackpad. Photo: MIT Media Lab

Stop chewing your fingernails now. You may be biting off a new frontier in wearable technology.

Researchers at MIT have devised a way to turn the thumbnail into a wireless trackpad that will allow users to control their devices when their hands are full.

Imagine using the neighboring index finger, moving it across the thumbnail to help answer the phone while cooking, send a text message or toggle between symbol sets while texting.

Gold Apple Watch looks great on my wrist. If only I could turn it on.

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The $10,000 gold Apple Watch Edition, the first and only time I will probably every wear an expensive timepiece.
The $10,000 gold Apple Watch Edition, the first and only time I will probably ever wear an expensive time piece. Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac
Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac

CHICAGO — I grabbed the black suit jacket I was married in because I wasn’t sure how to dress for a private appointment to try on a $10,000 gold watch.

My look is challenging to class up. The clean-shaven head, long goatee and ample belly blend in better at a biker bar. But I felt halfway respectable-looking when I walked into the Apple Store in Chicago’s upscale Lincoln Park neighborhood for a Saturday morning hands-on showing of the Apple Watch Edition.

Not many Apple Stores are scheduling appointments for the 18-karat gold Edition, but the ones that do provide extra-special attention. I had a friendly guide, two floor supervisors who came by to shake my hand and thank me for my patience, and a couple of hawk-eyed security guards.

XOO Belt holds up your pants and a charge for your phone

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The XOO Belt contains a flexible lithium ceramic polymer batter that charges your smart phone. Photo: XOO
The XOO Belt contains a flexible lithium ceramic polymer batter that charges your smart phone. Photo: XOO

A good belt should hold your pants up and be fashionable doing so.

Piers Ridyard has raised the expectations of this simple but important mens fashion accessory: the belt as smart phone charger.

Ridyard’s XOO belt looked like any other belt when it made its debut at London Fashion Week in January as part of a new collection from men’s fashion house Casely-Hayford. The charging power is in layers of thin, flexible lithium ceramic polymer battery sewn into the leather.

A microUSB-to-USB charging cable stored on the inside of the band can be plugged into the belt to charge a pocketed iPhone or Android device. The belt can be recharged on a computer.

The smart detective who inspired today’s smartwatch

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A child calls a buddy on his Dick Tracy Two-Way Wrist Radio in this 1960s commercial.
A child calls a buddy on his Dick Tracy Two-Way Wrist Radio in this 1960s commercial.

I have no plans to buy a smartwatch at the moment, but when I do, I already know the first command to give it.

I’m going to make my jaw as square as possible, activate the phone for my first call (probably to my wife), and say: “Calling all cars! Calling all cars!”

With Android Wear already here and Apple Watch on the way, we must salute detective Dick Tracy and his his two-way wrist radio.

Comic strip creator Chester Gould first strapped a wrist radio on Dick Tracy in 1946. He upgraded it to a wrist television in the 1960s. Tracy never complained about dropped calls or bandwidth problems.