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Lobby Bar – October 24: Talking with Strangers, Unhappy Campers, and Forsaken Bodies of Water

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The Lobby Bar – A Slightly Better-Than-Average Summary of FBT News and Views
Guys? It’s me, Bond. Jeremy Del Nero (that’s me!) dons a Moto 360 smartwatch in an attempt to become James Bond. While I can now shoot lasers out of my left wrist, I seem to be missing out on the hordes of women who should be throwing themselves at me.
Swapperoo. Paul Riegler goes on a Safari with Apple’s …

Review: Moto 360 Smartwatch

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“Nice watch,” I have heard about a dozen times a day over the last two weeks. Onlookers, both friends and strangers alike, were commenting on the Moto 360 smartwatch strapped to my wrist. Motorola released the 360 in early September in a relatively unpopulated market. Apple’s watch isn’t scheduled to be released until 2015, and that alone gives the Moto 360 an edge. It should be noted, however, that the …

Ritz-Carlton Mobilizes Guest Experience at its Properties

Ritz-Carlton Mobilizes Guest Experience at its Properties

Ritz-Carlton announced a significant upgrade to its guest services mobile app, the Ritz-Carlton App. The original app was introduced in 2012.
The enhanced app adds new features for guests to use during the course of their stay. This includes support for service requests such as poolside drink orders, room service, requests for towels or a forgotten toothbrush, a shoeshine, and setting up a time for turndown service, all using the guest’s …

Home Automation Part 4: Philips Hue Starter Pack, Friends of Hue Bloom Lamp, and LightStrip

Friends of Hue LightStrip mounted under the cabinet (set to red)

In the fourth part of our Home Automation series, we now look at a very specific application: lighting.  The first new piece of gear that I acquired for this was the Philips Hue Starter Pack.
This system provides wireless control over the color and intensity of household lighting using special Philips LED bulbs, a hub, and an app.  At first, I thought it would be just a toy, but the system …

Hilton to Offer Online Check-in, Room Selection, and Smartphone Room Keys

Hilton to Offer Online Check-in, Room Selection, and Smartphone Room Keys

Hilton Worldwide announced the introduction of digital check-in, room selection, and digital check-out via smartphones, tablets, and laptops. The hotelier plans to add the ability for guests to unlock rooms using a smartphone in the future.
The new system allows guests who are Hilton HHonors members to check in for a hotel stay at 6 a.m. the day before arrival. The system will allow them to choose a room using floor …

Home Automation Part 3: SmartThings Know and Control Your Home Kit

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In our continuing series on home automation, we now turn to specific products that centralize and automate control of lighting, doors, appliances and other devices, making life more convenient, energy efficient, and comfortable.  Today we’ll take a look at SmartThings’ Know and Control Your Home Kit.
While the concept of home automation is nothing new, practical solutions are only recently beginning to gain traction and popularity.  The SmartThings Know and Control …

Gogobot Guide Adds Mobile App

Gogobot Guide Adds Mobile App

Gogobot, a travel-planning and review company, announced the release of a mobile app that allows users to create a personalized guide for trips.
The company’s database has over four million photos, 675,000 recommendations, and 60,000 city guides that are tapped into by the app.  Users can join one or more of Gogobot’s tribes, which include business, budget, and luxury travelers, art and design lovers, students, and outdoor enthusiasts.
The new app, which …