theSync: Serious Savings for Your Sartorialness

I normally don’t cover the sartorial spin of products, but when I have a chance to satisfy my clothes horse and tech tendencies simultaneously I have to jump on it.

This week on theSync, bargain basement bespoke tailoring for the successful man

Before kids and starting my most recent venture, I was quite the fan of bespoke tailoring. There’s nothing like having a suit that fits your body. Clothes that snug your backside exactly helps you feel more confident taking on the world with renewed vigor I’ve had suits and shirts made by the foreign produced, journeymen tailors, Raja Fashions, and was none concerned. Raja’s tailors travel to a number of cities year round, measuring all of your body’s nooks and crannies to get the best fit.

Sending in measurements to a tailor in the cloud is another matter altogether. iTailor.com is an online service promising to make tailor made clothing at the very best prices. I’ve been beating around their bushes since last fall after losing a lot of weight. I’ve been wanting some really nice shirts and first happened on their site. I took the plunge 4 weeks ago, and I have to admit. I’m very impressed. I took the low risk option and ordered a shirt made with their cheapest white cotton material.

iTailor uses an Adobe Flash powered online application that gives you a decently rendered shirt model to view your options. iTailor gives you all of the usual customization options: collar, cuffs, tail styles and number of buttons, but they go further. Shoulder epauletts, sunglass pockets, and accent fabrics are also available. Plus more. I decided to go all out on my first go ‘round. I chose a red button hole stitching for contrast, added the sunglass pocket, and secondary fabric on the outside and inside plackets. I also chose and unabashedly flamboyant collar style.

The Shirt Rendering Makes Design Fun

The Shirt Rendering Makes Design Fun

The result. A perfectly tailored shirt that feels great. (Perfectly tailored according to the measurements we sent it. Admittedly, I did pad the numbers upwards in case we were measuring properly) My wife measured me, guided by their handy online videos demonstrating how to measure your chest, stomach, and arms. I can’t complain, the fit is great.

bespokearm

There were some nit picky things. The cheap fabric is…cheap. I had no idea what a sunglass pocket was before ordering this shirt, and I like how it looks on the outside, but the extra fabric on the inside of the shirt is noticeable. But that’s on me. Other than that, for $29 before shipping, I can’t complain.

From inspection, my shirt was made in Thailand and was claimed to be hand made. Since I own some bespoke shirts currently, I think it is handmade comparing the internals of the seams.

Will I order another shirt from iTailor. Yup. I’ll definitely try one of their designer fabrics next time. Bold stripes, patterns, and colors are my thing and I’ll be rocking those next time. It doesn’t look like they have as broad a fabric and pattern choice as a Raja, but you also aren’t paying Raja money.

iTailor is currently holding a huge sale on their shirts and you can check them out at iTailor.com.

If there are other online tailoring sites you love please let us know in the comments.

You can download this podcast and others on iTunes. You can also download the really snazzy Android app, theSync for your Android tablet or smartphone from Google Play.

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I’m Will Mapp, thanks for listening, and reading.

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theSync: The Top 5 Technology Products of 2013

I hope you had a very Merry Christmas!

It’s the end of the year and so it’s list time. Before you head out tomorrow and get tipsy let’s take a moment to reflect on the top 5 tech products of 2013 this week on theSync.

How did I come up with this list?

Lots of products are announced in any given year. Most products are revisions and evolutions of previous releases. Very few products are revolutionary, but there are some evolutionary products that refine ideas so well glimpses of the future are easily apparent. These 5 products, one announced in 2012; but solidified in 2013, are either data public or commercially available and show us what man is capable of and what our future holds in store. Some products are dirt cheap implementations that just a few years ago would be out of reach of the average Joe. One product is a data public construct, another just plainly inexpensive future tech which was science fiction just 10 years ago.

These are my product selections. One dreamer’s set of future aspiration.

Uncovering Earth’s Mysteries

Lucas-Higgs-CE0047H-nice2

Leading off this year is the Higgs Boson. Discovered last year, we’re only starting to skim the surface of the mysteries that the Higgs Boson can uncover. Our ability to detect and then build upon these discoveries will expand our understanding of our world. The Nobel Prize for Physics was awarded to Englert and Higgs for their work this year.

A Real Electric Car

The best looking electric vehicle out.

The best looking electric vehicle out.

The Tesla Model S. Elon Musk is crazy, but most visionaries are. All cars should be made like the Tesla Model S. A flatbed on batteries with very few moving parts. Musk’s vision is that cars will be as cheap and upgradable as computers and the Tesla Model S proves this is possible.

You can see me burning up the Beltway in this ride.  Until my charge runs out.

You can see me burning up the Beltway in this ride. Until my charge runs out.

Robotic Flight

xl_Parrot_AR_Drone2_hands_on1

The AR Drone 2 is a seriously fun glimpse at the future. AR Drones may look like toys but they are really sophisticated machines that can be turned into robots. Praised and panned at the same time, Jeff Bezos, demonstrated an automated delivery system Amazon is proving with drones. Drones typically get a bad rep because of military strikes, but demonstrating that robots can take over human tasks is a giant leap forward.

The Invisible Hand

BLED112_CMYK-April-2012

Bluegiga’s BLED112 is the invisible enabler that will subtly automated your world. These Bluetooth Low Energy devices are cheap, powerful, and small. Easily communicable using phones and PCs and able to link any device, Bluegiga’s cheap modules get us closer to realizing our dream of the Internet of things.

Star Trek Tech, Today

MI Replicator 2 at the Microsoft Store in Tyson's Corner.  This train had weight and felt solid.  It was printed by this awesome machine.

MI Replicator 2 at the Microsoft Store in Tyson’s Corner. This train had weight and felt solid. It was printed by this awesome machine.

The Makerbot Replicator 2. 3D printing has been hyped up, but this year Makerbot Industry’s Replicator 2 proves that 3D printing is not a pipe dream. About the cost of a laserjet in 1995, the Replicator 2 is quick, accurate, and inexpensive to operate.

I think these products are the best of the best tech we’ve seen this year. Let me know what products you think you should be on this list on my site at innovationisin.me.

I’m Will Mapp, thanks for listening, and reading.

Happyyyyy Neewwww Year!

theSync: The Samsung Galaxy Gear Distilled

We all love the Pebble, we’re looking forward to the Kreyos and this week Samsung released the Galaxy Gear, the newest smart watch hotness to hit the scene. Smartwatch afficianados have been patiently waiting for a watch from the big electronics companies and this watch may be the bees knees. Is this the smartwatch you’re finally going to get? Let’s see.

The Galaxy Gear’s Specs are Impressive

The Gear runs Android 4.3 powered by a 800 mHz processor with a 320 pixel square screen. Plus, it has a 1.9 megapixel shooter and can capture 10 second video helping you channel your inner Dick Tracy. In addition to it’s hardware support, Sammy announced the Gear with an app ecosystem already place with Evernote, myFitnessPal and other apps ready to go. That’s a big plus. Then when you throw in Samsung’s screen tech, the Gear doesn’t disappoint with its feature set and specifications.

It Looks Really Good

The Gear Samsung showcased wasn’t the wrap around watch we were titalized with in concept photos. The Gear has a traditionally flat face reminiscent of old-school electronics watches with a two piece build. Sporting a rainbow assortment of rubber straps, the Gear will pair nicely with your New Balances or lulu Lemon workout gear.

So what don’t we love. Well…

The Charge Sucks

According to Samsung, the Gear has a maximum daily charge. You read that right. 24 hours. This makes the Gear a bad choice to replace your activity tracker and function as a serious time piece. I’m all cool with the Gear being early adopter hardware, but I barely plug in any of my accessories and having to remind myself to plug my watch in everyday isn’t going to work. I can get down with the Gear if they gave me a weekly charge, or even 5 days, but remembering to plug this sucker in everyday sucks. And for many, the allure of having a Watch+ and using it as an activity tracker and sleep monitor, which is what I do with my FitBit flex, is what makes smart watches attractive.

10 App Limit

I understand the desire and greatness of running a real OS like Android on your watch, but the size of the OS and it’s strains on the hardware limit the app count to 10. In a world in which we’re used to installing 40 or 60 apps this won’t cut it in the Dick Tracy, James Bond department. If anything it would have been nice to see Samsung ship a smartwatch with it’s own brand of QNX or other power sipping operating system. It get the allure of running Android, I really do, but I’d bet real money that is light RTOS like QNX would provide more flexibility with fewer demands on the juice.

Price

I’m really not that upset over the price, I think $300 is priced right for a device like this, but when I spoke with friends and peers, at 300 large, the price is a bit steep for a watch that has a maximum charge of 1 day. Many will let the app count and crazy rubber band colors slide, but those I spoke with can’t stomach having to plug a watch in every day. And for me this doesn’t make the Gear a winner.

qualcomm-toq-3sony_nexusae0_1_Smartwatch_2_Black_Angled

With Qualcomm’s Toq, Sony’s SW2, and standard bearers like the Pebble competing against Sammy, we can be sure to expect more innovation in smart watch and wearable technology. What remains to be seen is what watch wearers like myself are willing to pay for and live with. For now we need battery life and watch makers need to take note. And…maybe Apple will announce a watch or wearable tomorrow.

I’d love to know what you think about Sammy’s Galaxy Gear, please let me know in the comments.

Thanks for listening and reading. You’ve been synced.