Boeing tests Wi-Fi with 20,000 pounds of potatoes

People don't like to be disconnected from the Internet, even when they're cruising along at 30,000 feet in the air. Boeing knows this, so the airplane manufacturer ended up knee-deep in spuds to test its new developments in providing Wi-Fi access to flyers.

Tech developed in a Boeing lab looked like it could bolster Wi-Fi signals in the cabin of a plane. To test it out, Boeing engineers took over a decommissioned airplane and, naturally, filled the seats up with sacks of potatoes. Wait, what? Turns out there was a good reason for the grocery shopping spree.… Read more

Top holiday cooking apps on iOS

Are you hosting Thanksgiving or bringing a dish to a potluck? If so, plans are probably already in place for the turkey, side dishes, and desserts, but there might be a chance to take your recipes to the next level -- if you have the right apps.

There are several cooking apps for both iPhone and Android that are great year-round, but they also often have special featured recipe collections around the holidays. If you want to kick your green-bean casserole (or any other holiday dish) up a notch, I suggest you take a look at what these apps have to offer.… Read more

Brookstone iPad pinball accessory goes MIA

Gizmodo and few other blogs have posted images of a rather cool-looking iPad pinball table accessory from Brookstone. Alas, for some reason Brookstone's site says the $80 accessory is no longer offered and no free Pinball Magic iPad app for the iPad is currently available in the Apple App Store.

We're not sure why the accessory has disappeared, but we did see it in the most recent Brookstone paper catalog. On the other hand, if you want New Potato's iPhone/iPod Touch pinball accessory (see video below), that's in stock for $30. While the free Pinball … Read more

The Silly Putty age of social media

For something that seems very rudimentary in a world of iPhone apps and fancy smartphone operating systems, text-messaging services were getting a whole lot of love at October's edition of the monthly New York Tech Meetup.

Along with about a dozen other start-ups eager to pitch the audience of potential partners, investors, and advisers, two back-to-back presentations from new companies called GroupMe and Fast Society showed off different takes on the same basic concept of group text messaging.

They have extremely similar premises. Both GroupMe and Fast Society require a single user with an iPhone (or also, in GroupMe'… Read more

Yet another Facebook unveiling this week

Facebook sent out e-mail invitations to Bay Area reporters and bloggers on Monday evening to announce an event at 10:00 a.m. Pacific time Wednesday at its Palo Alto, Calif., headquarters. The wording is vague: "Join Us for an Event."

It probably isn't a celebration of the fact that "The Social Network," the ambiguously fictionalized film retelling of Facebook's contested origins, was tops at the U.S. box office this weekend.

The massive social-networking company has been launching an unusually heavy number of product initiatives in the past few months, from a gaming notifications overhaulRead more

Hot Potato officially lands in Facebook's lap

Hot Potato, an online "check-in" service that lets users report their whereabouts and activities to friends, announced on Friday that it had been acquired by social-networking behemoth Facebook.

The deal, which has been talked about for several weeks, is the most recent development in Facebook's efforts to juice up the location-based aspect of its hugely popular service, which lets people connect with friends and family via the Web and share thoughts, links, photos, and more.

On Wednesday, Facebook unveiled Places, a feature that enables Facebook account holders to advertise their current location to friends, and lets users … Read more

'Check-in' craze moves beyond location

Despite the press, geolocation service Foursquare is still pretty small. But it's proven influential in another way: the phenomenon of "checking in" has spread beyond telling people where you are, and a handful of services now focus on letting you "check in" to what you're doing--whether it's attending a concert or reading one of those ubiquitous Stieg Larsson novels.

One of them, GetGlue, announced Wednesday a partnership with HBO to promote its current series "True Blood," "Hung," and "Entourage," in which users who use the GetGlue iPhone … Read more

Flipr: New universal remote for iPhone and iPod Touch debuts

We've been waiting for more companies to come out with IR dongle/iPhone app combos that allow you to turn your iPhone or iPod Touch into a highly functional universal remote for your AV gear. And now the folks at New Potato Technologies have jumped on the iPhone remote bandwagon with Flipr, which retails for $79.99.

Available now at NewPotatoTech.com, the small dongle will also be sold at Best Buy starting March 28. Once you've bought the dongle, you can then download the free Flipr App from the App store and start using your Apple touch-screen … Read more

Rice your way to great mashed potatoes

It's almost November, and for many people that means planning a big Thanksgiving meal. In my house, that means an incredible amount of light and fluffy mashed potatoes. There's a secret to making really fluffy potatoes: use a potato ricer, such as the Deluxe Angled Potato Ricer. By pushing potatoes through a ricer, you not only break them down into the consistency necessary for good mashed potatoes, but you're also incorporating air into your potatoes--making them fluffy. A potato ricer also makes it easier to avoid lumpy mashed potatoes--and nobody wants those of the Thanksgiving table.

The … Read more

'Bake' potatoes on a range

You can "bake" a potato in the microwave in a matter of minutes, as long you don't mind one side getting a little hard and the whole thing having a strange texture when you go to eat it. Your other option is to take up your oven for up to an hour, often right when you're trying to get dinner on the table. There seems to be a third option, though: the stove top. The Stovetop Potato Baker has a base that sits over your range's electric cooking element or gas burner, as well as … Read more