Tag Archives: Discovery Canada

Daily Planet’s Ziya Tong and Dan Riskin pick their top toys of 2016

Like Christmas arriving every year, so too does Daily Planet‘s “High-Tech Toys” week. Airing next Monday to Friday at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on Discovery Canada, the five days spotlight the outrageous, mind-blowing and exciting gadgets and gear of the year.

Yes, the Transformer Car, Teal High-Speed Drone, Climball and PancakeBot all look cool—and will be featured next week—but how do they rank with Daily Planet co-hosts Ziya Tong and Dan Riskin? And what are their other favourite toys of 2016? Note: there are only 24 days left to shop for them, so get moving!

ziyaZiya Tong
Boombox Painting: There’s nothing better than being able to combine art, music and technology, and all three come together perfectly in the Boombox Painting. So what is it? Well, at first glance it looks like a painting of an old school boombox—framed and everything—but the surprise is that the speakers are real! The company, Case of Bass, designed a shadowbox that contains all the gear so that the painting becomes a functioning speaker system that plays music via Bluetooth. Probably the best way to describe the aesthetic is that it’s super retro-futuristic.

Climball: I love the Climball because I often have to get tricked into doing exercise, and this is one very clever way to do it. Basically, it turns you and your game partner into a human version of the game Pong. The climbing wall tracks your movements and projects a virtual ball right on to the wall so that you compete against another player. It blends gaming and sport and certainly takes climbing indoors to a whole other level.

RC Surfer: I’m sure you’ve seen plenty of RC cars and RC planes, but one thing you may not have seen is an RC surfer. At just over 30 centimetres tall, the board and rider are perfect for the tiny waves that lap along the beach shore. Riding along the beach breaks however, the tiny surfer looks like it’s cruising through massive barrels. With a hollow design, the board automatically rights itself, allowing you to rock it like you’re in Point Break, without any of the wipeouts.

Flybrix Lego Drone: Like most kids, I grew up with Lego, and year after year I’m amazed by what these little blocks are able to create. And in keeping with the times, Lego has come up with a “make your own drone kit.” Connected via the Flybrix Bluetooth Flight Control App, now you can customize your own mini-drone and watch your ideas literally come to life, and take flight.

LeTrons Antimon: Leaping right out of the pages of comic books, the LeTrons Antimon is a real-life Transformer car. On the outside, it looks like a BMW 3-series, but the car can stand upright like an Optimus Prime! In its standing position, the “car” is able to move its robotic arms, fingers and even turn its neck and head. The future is really here friends, and on “High Tech Toys” week, we promise you’ll get more than meets the eye.

danDan Riskin
The Teal High-Speed Drone: It’s a quadcopter drone like you’ve seen all over the place by now, but this one is, (A) fast—like 120 kph fast—and, (B) open to developers who want to put their own spin on it. The folks at Teal envision an app store where developers share different ideas about how to make this drone hardware interact with games, utilities, and more. This high-tech toy isn’t out yet, but we’re watching this team make it happen.

Chariot Skates: These are like rollerblades, but bigger. Each skate has a giant wheel in front (as high as your knee) that rolls on the outside of your foot while you move. That allows your skates to handle rough terrain in a way no other skate possibly could. It also means more dynamic stability from rotational momentum, and thus a very different feel. I’m looking forward to trying these on this year. Bets are in on whether the fracture will be tibial or femoral.

PancakeBot: Pancakes are perfect, but now they can be “perfecter.” This Norwegian invention takes pancake batter as ink, extrudes it through an arm, and onto a hot grill. The result is pancakes shaped like the Eiffel Tower or really anything you want. In fact, you can even use your kids’ drawings as templates! You could even make a picture of a mandrake with a headache performing a jailbreak to get to a clambake on your pancake!

SeaXplorer: It’s an icebreaking luxury yacht from Damen in the Netherlands. The idea is to make even more of the world accessible than what those other billionaires get to see. This thing can take you from the North pole to the tropics to the South pole, and give you every opportunity to explore along the way. It’s fully equipped with SCUBA gear, small excursion watercraft, and more. This thing even has two helicopter landing pads, so if you and your significant other can’t agree which glacier to heli-ski from, you won’t have to bicker. (Helicopters not included.)

e-Go aeroplanes: This takes it up a notch—a personal one-seater mini-airplane. It’s like the “Mini Cooper” of airplanes. A propeller on the back pushes your carbon-fibre craft through the air with grace, but with enough punch to let you do a flip or two as well. Then when you land, the wings and canard come off so you can fit this thing in your garage. It’s perfect for supervillains, superheroes, and Daily Planet co-hosts. (Are you listening, Santa?)

Which of the toys Dan and Ziya have chosen would you like to see under your tree on Christmas Day? Comment below!

Daily Planet‘s “High Tech Toys” Week airs Monday, Dec. 5, through Friday, Dec. 9, at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on Discovery Canada.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

 

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Daily Planet spreads sci-tech cheer for all to hear during “High-Tech Toys Week”, beginning December 5 on Discovery

From a media release:

It’s beginning to look a lot like…“High-Tech Toys Week”! Santa’s helpers, better known as the team behind Discovery’s daily sci-tech series DAILY PLANET, are hard at work preparing for every tech toy-lover’s favourite week of the year, “High-Tech Toys Week”. Airing exclusively on Discovery beginning Monday, Dec. 5 through Friday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT, DAILY PLANET explores a week full of boundless innovation and imagination.

From a life-size Transformer car to vertical air hockey, viewers are invited to join co-hosts Ziya Tong and Dan Riskin as they fill Santa’s sleigh with the season’s most exciting, outlandish, and coveted high-tech toys from around the world.

“High-Tech Toys Week” was the second most-watched theme week on DAILY PLANET during the 2015/16 broadcast year, trailing only “Future-Tech Week”. DAILY PLANET, the world’s only nightly science broadcast reaches more than 1.3 million viewers each week and continues to win the 7 p.m. ET timeslot among Canadian entertainment specialty channels during the 2016/17 broadcast year among all key adult demographics.

Highlights from DAILY PLANET’s “High-Tech Toys Week” include:

“Transformer Car”
The BMW can now shapeshift from a car into huge robot, thanks to a prototype designed by Turkish company, Letrons. The Antiomon is a real-life, nearly five-metre tall Transformer with driving capabilities. A total of five working models were developed by a team of 12 engineers, with each featuring a 35,000 hydraulic cylinder system that allows for quick and effective transformations. DAILY PLANET meets with the development team to discuss the Antiomon’s price tag in advance of its consumer debut.

“Teal Highspeed Drone”
George Matus was 11 years old when he flew his first drone and was immediately blown away. By 16, Matus was competing as a professional drone racer and acting as a test pilot for new aircraft. Today, Matus is the CEO of his own drone and software company, Teal. After years of flying, crashing, rebuilding, and modifying dozens of versions of drones, Matus has completed his dream drone, the Teal. The highly impressive unmanned aircraft flies at more than 120 kilometres per hour, can operate in wind speeds of 64 kilometres per hour, and has a built-in camera, GPS, and autonomous capabilities. From gaming and augmented reality to security applications and agriculture, Matus wants to make this drone do anything the imagination can conjure. Testing diffferent flight propellers and evaluating for speed, noise, and handling, Matus and the Teal team join DAILY PLANET as they race to get to market “the world’s fastest production drone in its class.”

“Climball”
What is the result when pinball, air hockey, wall climbing, and a splash of augmented reality mix together? Climball – a high-tech, fast-paced game combining augmented reality technology with rock climbing. The physically engaging game tracks the players’ movements while they compete to volley a virtual ball. DAILY PLANET climbs on board to get a closer look at the tech behind the newest way to get into shape.

“The PancakeBot”
Marking the very first food printer of its kind, the $300 PancakeBot is the brainchild of Miguel Valenzuela, a civil engineer, inventor, and father living in Norway. A container of batter is attached to PancakeBot’s mechanical printing arm where underneath sits a flat, heated griddle that acts as its canvas. Users can turn almost anything into a yummy breakfast treat – a child’s drawing, a product image, a team’s logo, or even a favorite piece of artwork. DAILY PLANET meets with Valenzuela, who spills the batter on PancakeBot’s food printing technology.

“Amphibious Helicopter”
Novelty car builder Jeff Bloch, also known as SpeedyCop, is the master of developing crazy, homemade cars. He’s built a fighter jet car, an upside down Camaro, and even a car that stretches out like an accordion – all capable of racing at 24 Hours of LeMons, a series of endurance races held on paved courses across the U.S. This year, Bloch recycled a damaged helicopter from the Vietnam War and transformed it into a mighty machine that can race on land and in water, making the gadget an entirely amphibious helicopter. Although it can’t take flight just yet, it has some truly astounding capabilities! DAILY PLANET meets Bloch to discuss how he intends to take these off-the-wall vehicles from the junkyard to the racetrack.

“Carr-E”
Many city drivers have experienced the congestion of downtown roadways during rush hour – the impatience, the frustration, and the worry. Well, Ford Motor Company is hoping to prevent commuter frustration with the “Last Mile Mobility Challenge”. One of this year’s finalists is Kilian Vas, a Ford engineer who has designed and built the Carr-E. An easily transported, segway-like vehicle, the Carr-E can propel motorist through all types of traffic. Carr-E’s ultrasonic sensors and built-in GPS allow it to navigate through busy streets, avoiding any obstacle thrown in its path. DAILY PLANET meets with Vas to test out the four-wheel, electric pedestrian assistant that could potentially be the next big breakthrough in urban commuting.

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Frontier the most-watched Canadian original scripted series on specialty TV this year

From a media release:

Final data from Numeris confirms the world premiere of Discovery’s FRONTIER is the most-watched Canadian scripted series debut on entertainment specialty this year with an audience of 571,000 viewers, it was confirmed today. In all, 1.35 million Canadians watched some part of the series premiere on November 6, and 2.5 million viewers have now watched some part of all the broadcasts of the debut.

For its debut, FRONTIER made Discovery the most-watched Canadian entertainment specialty channel among total viewers and all key adult demos during Sunday’s hyper-competitive 9 p.m. ET timeslot.

The chaotic and violent struggle to control wealth and power in the North American fur trade continues with the world premiere of Episode 3 this Sunday, Nov. 20 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on Discovery. Viewers can catch-up on Episodes 1 and 2 on the Discovery GO app.

Discovery’s digital experience FRONTIER: DARK PROVIDENCE is now available at Discovery.ca/Frontier. Offering deeper viewing with in-depth character features, the web and mobile experience centres on six distinct, video-based character stories with interactive, real-time overlays controlled by the user for a truly immersive interaction. Each layer adds depth and texture to characters than can be experienced within the already rich story in the television program. The product is not only visually stunning, but also technologically impressive, featuring content that reflects the graphic nature of this bold, historical series.

FRONTIER is co-created by Rob and Peter Blackie, and produced by Take The Shot Productions and ASAP Entertainment, in association with Discovery, the exclusive Canadian broadcaster. Netflix is the international broadcast partner.

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Link: Allan Hawco on his new fur trade TV series ‘Frontier’

From Alexandra Pope of Canadian Geographic:

Link: Allan Hawco on his new fur trade TV series ‘Frontier’
“The time period is so rich in terms of potential for high-stakes conflict, with all these different companies jockeying for position in the fur trade. It’s really North America’s coming-of-age. The show takes a lot of dramatic licence, but the writers worked very hard to make sure all of it was plausible.” Continue reading.

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