Google gets romantic with photos, fireplaces

CNET Update shares the love:

In this episode of Update:

- Learn about the federal bill pushing for a smartphone kill switch, and why the wireless industry is against it.

- Get mushy on Google+ with animated hearts on lovey-dovey photos.

- Mourn the loss of Lovematically, which auto-liked all your friends photos on Instagram.

- Set the mood with Chromecast's new fireplace visualizer when streaming Google Play Music.

- Put an end to snoring by plugging in this high-tech nudging pillow.

CNET Update delivers the tech news you need in under three minutes. Watch Bridget Carey every afternoon … Read more

Snore-activated pillow gives loud snoozers a nudge

Anyone who has ever tried to sleep through the night next to a snorer knows how challenging it can be. It goes like this: Snooze. Snore! Nudge. "Hey, turn over." Snooze. And repeat. If that sounds familiar, maybe you're ready for a $150 pillow that handles the nudging duties for you.

The snore-activated nudging pillow comes (naturally) from weird-gadget purveyor Hammacher Schlemmer. It contains a microphone and air bladder. When the pillow detects sonic vibrations from snoring, it inflates an extra three inches, enough to encourage the noisemaker to shift positions.… Read more

The 404 1,092: Where we wake up screaming (podcast)

The Sleep Doctor Michael Breus is back in the studio to solve all our snooze-related questions, and he also brings us a new toy! He's showing off the Renew SleepClock by Gear4, a sleep management tool that knows when you're sleeping and takes careful measurements to record your sleep patterns.

It also works as a tailored alarm clock that wakes you up at the lightest moment in your sleep cycle, so you'll arise super refreshed. Dr. Breus also gave us one to give away on a future show, so be sure to tune in to find out how to win.

As usual, the Doctor also answers questions from our listeners. Today he'll respond to inquiries about the correlation between memory and sleep, and whether or not we can learn things like languages and facts just by sleeping.… Read more

Crave 67: Elective bear mauling (podcast)

Tablets are done. The future is tables. Unfortunately, it's the same future where giant teddy bears punch you in your sleep and adorable pugs are transformed into bloodthirsty monsters. This week, Bonnie Cha joins Donald and Eric to talk all about this topsy-turvy dystopia and provides the invaluable function of translating Eric's obscure '80s film references for the rest of us. In Geek News, Eric channels the dark heart of Bane.

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Rest your snoring head on a robot bear pillow

Sure, you could try chin straps, nasal strips, or surgery. But I think we can all agree those snoring solutions are far less adorable than a robot bear that tickles your face when your breathing approaches wake-the-bedmate territory.

Meet Jukusui-kun, a fluffy white pillowbot that gauges snoring levels and touches offenders (supposedly gently) to get them to roll their head from side to side. This shift in movement, hopefully, helps open the airways so sleepers can stop snoring and enjoy a sounder slumber.

The polar bear-shaped robot out of (you guessed it) Japan, monitors snoring with built-in mics, while a similarly cuddly device worn around the wrist measures blood oxygen levels, which drop when snoring starts. When these benchmarks converge to indicate rising decibels, Jukusui-kun reaches out its paw with a loving little smack. … Read more

Tired of snoring? All you need is heat

If we're honest, most of us are either snorers or sleeping next to one.

On a recent camping trip, I woke up in the middle of the night thinking we had a bear grunting just outside our tent; heart racing, I turned on my head lamp to investigate. Turns out my husband, who rarely snores, sounds like a bear when he does. I tossed and turned for an hour until finally shaking him awake to shut him up.

For couples dealing with this kind of sleep disruption on a regular basis, it's probably not a stretch to say … Read more

SnorePro: Get better sleep laying next to a snorer

If you happen to have to sleep next to a snorer, there's now hope. And it runs with batteries.

HBI, a maker of biomedical devices, on Tuesday introduced a new device, called SnorePro, that can keep you from being awakened by snores. It's a small wrist-worn device that a snorer wears when going to bed. The device uses HBI's proprietary Dynamic Snore Detection technology to detect snores and gently issue a programmable digital pulse to prevent snoring.

HBI--which not long ago came out with an acupressure wristband to induce sleep--claims the digital pulse functions much like … Read more

The 404 186: Where the sleep doctor is in

Dr. Michael Breus aka "The Sleep Doctor" drops by the studio today to catch up on some Zzzs and give us a few tips to improve the quality of our sleep. The good doctor answers our pressing questions about sleep walking, energy drinks, and spooning, and dispels a few sleep-related myths.

We're all excited for Dr. Brues' appearance on our show. This is actually his second appearance on The 404, but we're happy to get him back in the studio to answer our pressing questions about sleep cycles, naps, sleep talking, snoring, and lucid dreaming. Personally, I have a big problem with sleep talking (or so I'm told--I've never actually heard myself). One time, I apparently jumped out of bed and yelled "THE VORTEX!" for absolutely no reason at all, then proceeded to fall back into a deep sleep. Another time, I answered a phone call, made plans to go out, and had a full on conversation with a friend all in my sleep. Am I clinically insane? Listen to the show to hear Dr. Brues' professional opinion!

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The most boring $35,000 speakers ever

Considering all the interesting forms that loudspeakers can and do take, the latest pair from Snell is almost inexcusably boring. Then again, this is the same company that has deliberately tried to conceal other products, so maybe it's just not interested in appearances.

Electronic House gushes over the Reference Tower A7 Loudspeaker's "dual 5.25-inch magnesium midranges mounted over and under a silk dome tweeter, combined with twin 10-inch long-throw woofers for exceptional smoothness and dynamic range." Still, at a price of $35,000, one might expect a little more effort applied to the aesthetic factor. … Read more

Smart pillow analyzes your sleep

Snoring can be serious business, whether it involves sleep apnea or spousal wrath. But to date, testing for sleep disorders has often involved a tangle of wires, sensors and face masks applied during an uncomfortable night's stay at a clinic.

Psychologists at the Hiroshima International University want to change all that with an analytical "electronic pillow" that's been given the decidedly Japanese-English name of "Don't You Think?" (We don't get it either, so don't waste any time thinking about it.)

The pillow is equipped with a device that "studies your … Read more