CAT | Gadgets



Google Chromecast audio


Why not add another streaming device? (7th device active right now) Chromecast Audio
I have really been looking forward to this one though. Right now I depend on youtube playlists to play music in our main room. Since moving to FireTV devices I cannot use google music, which is my main music streaming.

If you want to be able to send audio via wifi to almost any speaker / system this is it. You cast to the Google Chromecast Audio that is connected to VIA 3.5mm audio / RCA / optical all through the same jack. It is powered by a micro USB. You cast to it to any device that has those connections.

It works just like a Chromecast, but is for audio only, so no youtube playlists. It works with most streaming audio apps out there. The sound and signal strength is better than any streaming device I have currently. Bluetooth works for most, but this is such a step above. If you have multiple ones in your house they can sync to share. Imagine every sound system working in unison.

tl;dr: plug puck into any speaker, and you can stream music from phone / computer / tablet = awesome. Bluetooth speakers, your grandmas receiver, your TV, headphones, etc…. $35



FreeKey System


A bit hard to see in the pic, but the FreeKey System keyring has a spring like layer that you can squeeze and slide rings on or off easily. It comes with 3 smaller rings and I bought 5 extra. The main ring is a bit wide for most keys and the smaller rings are not easy to get on the key. I do like the stainless steel though.



Steam controller


The Steam Controller
I got in on the first pre-order
It is pretty darn cool.
There are two trackpads that give a haptic rumble when you use them like your phone when you type. They are also buttons.
The wings underneath on the battery cover are also buttons. COmes in handy so you do not have to take your thumb off the trackpads to jump / reload. (pic below) They are made to make it fel like a PC gaming experience like using a mouse and WASD.
Folks say it takes a bit to get used to over normal gamepads, but for me I never really used regular gamepads and it just feels right. Aiming on a gamepad frustrated me.
I plugged it in and right away I was using the trackpad like a mouse and surfing the web with it. Super cool
You still have the analog stick, but this is super customization with keybindings and the left trackpad can function like the analog stick easily.

Portal 2 is awesome with it



Dog ate my phone



Amazon FireTV Stick


Amazon Fire TV Stick is just a more portable brother to the Amazon Fire TV. It is not as powerful hardware wise, but still rocks. We picked it up for vacation and it will reside in the Borkade after.

Only one gig of memory for the system to use, but the same storage. No ethernet or optical audio out. It is wireless only. No voice search on the remote, but we so rarely use that it is no biggie. It will fit in our house very well.

We love the FireTV so much and it is our main device(s). The ROKUs are nice, but are older and so slow. The only advantage the ROKU has is google music, which I use excursively for streaming. Gaming on the FireTV is darn good, but my favorite racing game, Asphalt 8 is not available on the stick. It is a quad core VS dual core thing. The stick is mostly a streaming device, not a gaming device.



3M rube Goldberg machine



TV Mirrortron V 2.0




$10 goodwill mirror on the TV mount connected by a piece of wood epoxied to it. Works darn good



Expensive ceiling fans are amazing



Holy cow. Our main room ceiling fan was weak compared to the ones we have recently installed in other rooms so we went to get a good one. Hit home depot and found a one we did not think we were worthy of. Hit Menards to check out their selection and then went back and grabbed the Breezemore from HD because we figured it was worth spending a bit more for a sweet looking fan.

We did not realize all the features of a top of the line fan till we got it. It has 9 fan speeds, the blades are actual wood (I think balsa), and the remote is crazy. The blades are scooped and the air force from them is insane. Theresa could not handle it on full. It is like a hurricane in the room. Just crazy air movement. It takes regular socket bulbs somehow. I thought there was a law or something. We will fill it with dimmable LEDs soon since it can dim via the remote.

It looks beautiful, but performs so much more than we imagined.

It has a breeze setting where it will go through 3 settings over time. So low – mid – high, but in 3 different settings 1-3, 4-6, 7-9 so the “breeze” changes. WTF is that? It cycles through the settings every couple minutes. So strange

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