Googly eyes: Smart contact lens would test glucose in diabetics' tears

Amber BoumanAssociate Editor, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Amber covers lifestyle and mobile tech, including fit tech, mHealth, travel, home automation and more. In her non-tech time she takes too many pictures of her cats, watches zombie movies, crochets, and plans out her next tattoos.
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Google started giving back Thursday with an announcement on its official blog that it has begun testing on a smart contact lens. Yeah, you read that right: a smart contact lens.

And while that might initially seem like a mad scientist’s side project, it’s actually incredibly cool: The smart contact lens is designed to assist diabetes patients by measuring glucose levels in their tears, using a mini glucose sensor, and transmitting that data to a phone via a tiny wireless chip.

Both the chip and the sensor are embedded between two layers of soft lens material, and the prototypes can generate a reading once per second.

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Goji Play review: Hate cardio a little less

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Sarah is a freelance writer and editor based in Silicon Valley. She has a love/hate relationship with social media and a bad habit of describing technology as "sexy."
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I hate cardio.

I hate running, I hate stair-stepping, I hate skiing back and forth on elliptical machines. It’s not just that I’m a power lifter at heart (although I am), it’s that I find cardio so boring.

I’ve tried everything—from listening to music, to watching Netflix, to fiddling with my Nintendo 3DS and rereading The Hunger Games on my iPad—to make cardio less boring. But because none of these distracting activities require that I actually perform cardiovascular exercise while doing them, my valiant efforts usually end with me slouched on the bike, reading instead of working out.

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Magellan Echo review: Works just fine, but does too little

Susie OchsSenior Editor, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Susie is a proud Mac geek, as well as a writer, editor, snowboarder, and mom.
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The quantified-self movement has a dark side: Once you start counting your steps or tracking your workouts, you might be surprised at the outrage you’ll feel if something goes wrong and your device doesn’t count a walk or run.

I walked two miles once with my iPhone’s GPS function turned off, which meant that RunKeeper recorded those 30-or-so minutes of activity but showed that I went zero miles. I was livid. All that exercise for nothing?

The Magellan Echo watch will keep that from happening. It doesn’t do a lot: It’s not a real GPS running watch that can track your runs on its own. It doesn’t save any data to sync back to your phone.

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Five nutrition apps for a healthy New Year

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Sarah is a freelance writer and editor based in Silicon Valley. She has a love/hate relationship with social media and a bad habit of describing technology as "sexy."
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It’s 2014, and you know what that means—time to get off the couch that you’ve been glued to for the past week and start eating food with an expiration date.

Every year, millions of Americans make New Year’s resolutions to lose weight, get in shape, and be healthier. And every year, millions of Americans break these resolutions within six months. According to a Bodybuilding.com survey, two-thirds of adults in the U.S. have made a resolution to get fit, and a whopping 73 percent of those people gave up before they reached their goal.

The odds may be against you, but you can succeed—with the help of your smartphone. Apps are the perfect tool for dieters: They help you track progress, even when it seems like nothing is happening; and they motivate you to keep going with incentives such as achievements and friendly social competition. Whether you want to eat healthier, lose weight, or just learn about nutrition, these five apps will help you stay on track.

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Pafers releases the XSPIN just in time for rainy season

Amber BoumanAssociate Editor, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Amber covers lifestyle and mobile tech, including fit tech, mHealth, travel, home automation and more. In her non-tech time she takes too many pictures of her cats, watches zombie movies, crochets, and plans out her next tattoos.
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It seems timely that today is the day that Pafers released the XSPIN, their new indoor cycling sensor, because today is the kind of rainy, dreary, chilly day when you’d like to stay inside under a blanket. Go outside, right now, for a bike ride? I am not that hardcore.

The XSPIN attached to a pedal

However, I am motivated enough to spend a few minutes attaching an XSPIN to an elliptical at the gym in order to better track my workout—and to sync to either of Pafers’ new apps, also announced today.

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Jawbone UP24 review: Best fitness tracker for horophiles

Jon PhillipsEditor-in-Chief, TechHive Follow me on Google+

Jon is the Editor-in-Chief of PCWorld and TechHive, and has been covering all manner of consumer hardware since 1995.
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Jawbone’s new UP24 proves that activity-tracking wrist bands and traditional wrist watches can peacefully co-exist on a single human limb.

Dig it: Most wrist-worn activity trackers are thick and bulky. Some even include clock displays. Slip one of these specimens next to your Swatch or Victorinox, and it appears you’re wearing two watches. Yeah, it’s not a good look. That’s why I’ve always been a fan of Jawbone’s simple, nondescript wristbands. I can wrap one right above my watch, and it looks like I’m wearing some type of fashion-neutral man jewelry. Dignity: preserved. No one gets hurt.

image: mike homnick
Fitness trackers are best deployed on your non-dominant wrist—which is sometimes already playing host to a favorite timepiece.
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