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Published on February 20th, 2012 | by Greg

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Digital Innovations: Dry, Protect, Clean and More

Gen­er­al­ly, we try our very best to ac­tu­al­ly get a sol­id opin­ion on a prod­uct, try­ing it out, usu­al­ly mul­ti­ple times, be­fore ren­der­ing a ver­dict. Rarely, we’ll post on some­thing that we’ve on­ly got­ten less thor­ough look at- some­times a prod­uct that isn’t avail­able yet, and cer­tain­ly for movies or books where we of­ten are forced to set­tle for a more sin­gu­lar opin­ion af­ter a sin­gle read-through or view­ing.

With that dis­claimer, we have to point out that we didn’t re­al­ly get a chance to test out a cou­ple of to­day’s items, for rea­sons that will be­come clear short­ly. Dig­i­tal In­no­va­tions makes quite a few ac­ces­sories, from key­boards to disc clean­ing and re­pair gear. They sent us a pack­age of some ran­dom items, and though we weren’t re­al­ly im­pressed by any of them, it seemed like a de­cent Pres­i­dent’s Day sug­ges­tion, en­cour­ag­ing you to pro­tect some of your elec­tron­ics.

First, we’ve been us­ing the All­Ter­rain Wire­less 3 But­ton Trav­el Mouse, and it’s ex­act­ly what you’d ex­pect. If you need a wire­less mouse for your lap­top, you could do worse- at the price point, it works pret­ty well. It does work on most sur­faces we tried- even glass and re­flec­tive sur­faces- thanks to the blue LED track­ing. And the USB don­gle is the nano-sized va­ri­ety, which is handy. It’s small, and works with most plat­forms. But it isn’t ex­act­ly er­gonom­ic- the sur­faces are slick, rather than tex­tured, and the light weight makes it feel a bit cheap. It’s small, and the scroll wheel is unim­pres­sive, and it’s lack­ing the now-com­mon ‘back’ thumb but­ton. But, still- for $25, it’s de­cent.

We couldn’t con­vince any­one to try out the Cle­an­DR key­board pro­tec­tor. It seems like a de­cent idea- a cling-on shield that at­tach­es to your key­board and pro­tects it. But con­sid­er­ing that you should prob­a­bly have a clean key­board to at­tach it to, have to do some cus­tom siz­ing, and you lose some of the snap­pi­ness of your keys, it’s def­i­nite­ly a spe­cial­ty prod­uct. Wor­ried about spilling on your lap­top? Def­i­nite­ly take a look; at $10, it’s much cheap­er than try­ing to fix an ac­ci­dent.

Speak­ing of ac­ci­dents… we could not find a good way to test the De­viceDry­er. As some of our staff know, it’s all too easy to lose your phone to a sink or oth­er basin of wa­ter- even a quick dunk is enough to kill that smart­phone. But there are meth­ods to re­vive the phone- re­mov­ing mois­ture from the cir­cuits- and many peo­ple have re­port­ed suc­cess by tak­ing im­me­di­ate ac­tion and dry­ing out the phone be­fore try­ing to turn it back on. That’s the idea be­hind De­viceDry­er, which takes about 24 to 48 hours to work. Re­move the bat­ter­ies, SIM card, and/or mem­o­ry card from the de­vice, drop it in the bag and close the seal, and wait. At $20, it’s worth a try, but there are no guar­an­tees. We should point out, though, that the price seems a lit­tle high, since we typ­i­cal­ly just use rice and have had de­cent re­sults.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.



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