Archive for the ‘Cool shit’ Category

Vibram FiveFingers (VFF) KSO Test Run & Review (w/ Nike+)

December 23, 2009

After a number of friends telling me I needed to try the Vibram FiveFingers (also called VFF for short), I decided to pick up a pair today.

WOW is about all I can say to start!!!  They are absolutely awesome.  A very different way to run than what I’m accustomed, but very very satisfying.

Vibram FiveFingers KSO

Vibram FiveFingers KSO top view after test run

The first thing you’ll notice when you try them on is how difficult it is for you to put your toes into the little finger slots.  After a couple times though, it’s like putting on gloves (literally).  The KSO‘s fit awesome.  It’s like they’re not even on.  When putting them on for the first time, one thing to keep in mind is that you want them snug, but not uncomfortable.  The toes will un-curl as you wear them more.  Tightness in fit will quickly go away, but anything that feels like it’s pinched, jammed or otherwise not-normally uncomfortable should be an immediate alarm bell. For me, my right foot fit snugly but very well.  My left foot big toe had some extra pressure, but not rubbing or uncomfortable. Just what seemed to be stiffness in the shoe from never being worn.

Vibram FiveFingers KSO

Vibram FiveFingers KSO

Vibram FiveFingers KSO top and bottom

Vibram FiveFingers KSO top and bottom

In addition, I picked up a pair of injinji Performance Mini Crew Toesocks.  I was in between size 43 and 44 and this made sure that the 44’s weren’t too loose.  In addition, since I’m primarily planning on running in them (at distance eventually), I wanted to have some extra padding and moisture absorption in shoe.  The socks are awesome.  Very very comfortable (I’m actually still wearing them as I write this post).

injinji Performance Mini Crew Toesocks

injinji Performance Mini Crew Toesocks

Since I’m a NikePlus addict, I was able to strap my sensor to the to velcro strap and it read my stride as well as it normally does.  I’m pretty sure any pouch will work with the VFFs.  All you need to do is make sure that it’s looped into the velcro binding strap.

NikePlus on the Vibram FiveFingers

NikePlus on the Vibram FiveFingers

Although people have said to only go a half mile on your first run with them, I thought it’d be better for a little bit longer.  I ended up going just over 2 miles when my right calf had enough and I decided it the most wise to cease running at that point.  The shoes truly change the way you (or at least the way I) run.  I found my self running in better form immediately and actually moving a tad faster than my normal pace and stride.  You will immediately notice the fact that you can FEEL much much more of the running experience.  You can sense the texture of the pavement, the twigs and stones and anything that meets your feet on the run.  The only thing to really get used to is there’s FAR less cushioning than you’re used to on the balls of your feet.  You will get far more impact from the first step.

Here’s how my run looked:

Twiike Screenshot

My test run (from Twiike)

Amazon has stock presently of the KSOs as well as the injinji toesocks.  I had to go to 2 different retailers and call 2 more before finding them in the Bay Area.

Here’re the links to the items mentioned in this review:

Updates to Twiike (v.0.2) – Twitter your Nike+ runs!

October 7, 2008

Just pushed an update to Twiike (figured why not make an update the same time Twitter was doing theirs).

Enhancements in this release:

  • Made signup 1-step using your Nike+ login.  This removes the need to use the “Share with friend” link from within Nike+.
  • Added pulldown menu to set default distance metric (km/mi) on your Twitter settings. This is now used for any runs published.  It’s initially set based on your Nike+ user preferences.
  • Added the user tweets to the Twiike timeline to drive additional traffic for Twiike users
  • Added retrieve your password (which is set to your Nike+ password when you sign up).
  • Added ajax progress bars to all functions that require the server to respond so users don’t think the site is not doing anything

Please keep it coming with the suggestions.  I received a ton today and would love to know how to keep making it better for users.

Post your Nike+ Runs on Twitter (Nike Plus)

October 4, 2008

Over the last couple weeks I’ve been getting more and more into running again.  While I don’t have the gumption to go run on streets since breaking my foot, I have been hoofing it on the treadmill at least 3-4 times a week.  The challenge has been that I love to update my Twitter and Facebook pages with my status and wanted a simple way to NOT have to update my runs by hand.  So today I’m releasing a VERY alpha version of what I’m calling Twiike (Twitter+Nike).  What it does is watch for me to sync my iPod after runs and posts those runs to Twitter (which I also have wired to update my Facebook status via the Twitter Facebook app).

It’s SUPER easy to use.  Basically login to your Nike+ account, click ‘Share with Friends’ in the upper right corner of the run, click ‘Send to a friend,’ enter ‘nikeplus@twiike.com’ in the email address field and click the ‘Send it’ button.  You’ll get a welcome mail that will link you to login and enter your Twitter account (or set one up if you don’t have one yet) and VOILA!  Twiike will auto post to Twitter every time you sync after a run.

I’d love feedback on what people like and what people think sucks and where it can be improved enhanced.

Click here to try it out.

Here’s what it looks like on Twitter

Elephant on a trampoline!!!

August 22, 2008

Came across this on FFFFound.  Great ani-GIF of an elephant bouncing on a trampoline.  Not sure why it’s so damn cool…but it is.  LOVE the trunk floppin around!

Right-click menus for redesigned Facebook using Firefox!

August 13, 2008

With the recent redesign of Facebook, I’ve been getting questions regarding whether the add-on for Firefox is compatible with the newly redesigned version of Facebook.  After confiming over the last couple weeks with some of the ~500 daily users and the 2,000+ downloaders who have shared emails, the current version of UltimateFacebook is not only fully-compatible with Firefox 3 (and naturally Firefox 2), but also with the newly redesigned version of Facebook.  Install it by clicking here.

The add-on enables you to right-click any Facebook user and:

  • write on their wall
  • send them a message
  • poke them
  • add them to your friends
  • view their friends
  • see a thumbnail of them by rolling over their name in a news feed, photo gallery, etc
  • see how you connect to them
  • tag them
  • bookmark them – a.k.a ‘save them as a crush’ (invisibly — kept private)

UltimateFacebook added to Softpedia and certified 100% Clean of Spyware, Adware and Viruses!

August 5, 2008

Woot!  Got an email from the folks at Softpedia!  They’ve just added and reviewed UltimateFacebook, the Mozilla Firefox add-on that makes using Facebook easier and more fun.  It’s beed certified to be 100% Clean of spyware, adware and viruses.  Very cool.  With several 1,000 people now using the add-on, it’s cool to see the social graph grow from the my graph of 200 or so friends in May to almost over 900,000 Facebook users in the graph today.

Here are the links

http://mac.softpedia.com/get/Internet-Utilities/UltimateFacebook.shtml

http://mac.softpedia.com/progClean/UltimateFacebook-Clean-38864.html

http://apps.new.facebook.com/ultimatefacebook/

Facebook Right-Click Menu for Firefox. Make Facebook WAY easier to use!

May 15, 2008

So over the last several months I, like tens of millions of people, have been using Facebook to find and stay in touch with friends and my biz network. As I used it more and more, I became more annoyed with how long it would take me to send messages, write on walls, etc. So I’ve written a Firefox add-on to make that easier. Called ‘UltimateFacebook,’ all you do is right-click a hyperlinked name in a news feed or a person’s profile image/thumbnail and a menu will appear. You can now send messages, write on walls, poke users and add or view friends with 1-click instead of the 2-3 it normally takes to get to the page to normally do the action. I’ve been playing with it for the last several months and have had about 300 people helping me test it. It’s rather stable at this point, but is an alpha product. Holler with ideas and/or feedback, but definitely try it out.

Click here to read more and try the add-on!

Right-Click Facebook menu for Firefox

Realizing why driving race cars is so effing awesome!

March 5, 2008

So driving this morning, I finally realized why I LOVE driving race cars so much. It’s the challenge and exhilaration of being on the edge but not over it. When I was a kid, I was the little turn who would poke someone just 1 time less than what it’d take to completely send them over the edge and, all the while, keeping me (somewhat) endearing. Yesterday, on the way home, I got my little car to solidly rotate into a turn (whoops happened to be on a public street) and it kinda just hit me. I had a smaller revelation the first time I got a racing car to rotate at Mid-Ohio, but this time it was different. The time it happened at Mid-O (and every time after), came from a tense ‘oh shit please keep me hooked up so I don’t die’ approach to a corner. This time, it was much more under control…and surprisingly…much smoother and quicker feeling. Guess it’s a tactile thing.

As I’ve read books like the Speed Secrets series and Skip Barber’s Going Faster, instructors and coaches always talk about being on the edge. But it wasn’t until this morning’s childhood regression that I finally connected the dots.

As we all (racing drivers that is) are trying to find ‘that thing’ that makes us faster. This is one barrier, I’m REALLY excited to have identified and broken through the was it feels like it should be.

FINALLY! The IRL & Champ Car (CART) get their heads out of their asses!

February 22, 2008

52 minutes ago it was finally ‘leaked’ on Yahoo! News that the IRL’s Tony George and Champ Car’s Kevin Kalkhoven and Jerry Forsythe have all gotten their respective shit together and unified American Open Wheel racing. BAD ASS! Now, ditch both of your respective marketing departments, go hire Weiden & Kennedy (aka Nike’s agency) and put together a marketing package that’ll get people into the seats. Bigger crowds, unified driver line ups, and hopefully a bad ass season of racing is what, may, be ahead of us. This year may be a step in the right direction and next season has a chance to really shine!

Champ Cart IRL unite!

Read it at Yahoo! News!

The Best Sweater for Riding, Running, Training + Chilling from Pearl Izumi

November 27, 2007

Over Thanksgiving, we went up to Tahoe to cook and chill with friends. Every time we go to South Lake, we stop in at the Pearl Izumi outlet to see what sort of wicked deals they have. For those of you living under a rock for the last 20 years, Pearl Izumi is probably (IMHO) the BEST gear for riding, running, training, living, etc that one can own. Their apparel is an excellent fit (assuming you take care of yourself) and will just about last forever if you take care of it.

During this trip, Lauren (the spunky manager of the store) pointed me toward a sweater in particular that had me drooling. Dubbed the Woolie Mammoth Long Sleeve Jersey. It’s simply something that you want to live in non-stop. Sporting two-toned ribbed (gotta love ribbed) Merino Wool, I’ve basically been wearing it non-stop since coming back Friday night. SO DAMN NICE!

pearl_izumi_woolie_mammoth.jpg

Lauren has a bunch in stock and will ship anywhere you need for a $4 (yes I did say $4) flat-rate. Check out their site for more info and how to contact her. They regularly post deals as they get new shipments.

If you get a chance to roll in there, do so. She’s super nice and will set you up with killer gear…AND since it’s an outlet, you get away with sub-Amazon prices.