So Now There's a Smart Pillow That Wakes You Up Gently

Imagine waking up one morning, feeling refreshed, like you just got the best rest of your life. Hard to imagine that, right? Most of us stumble out of bed and to the nearest thing with caffeine, hoping it'll make us feel halfway human.

If only our pillows could help us wake up more naturally, instead of a blaring alarm on our phones that we constantly put on "snooze".

Wait, there might be a solution for that! I was on Twitter one day when I came across the Sunrise Smart Pillow, currently being developed by Mode Modern. (Check out their Kickstarter.) Touted to be the first ever "smart pillow", it's supposed to bring a better way of falling asleep and waking up.

Here's the how:
It comes with an impressive 18 features including:
  • Sleep Tracker
  • Smart Alarm
  • Sunrise Alarm
  • Wireless Music
  • Fan Sounds
  • Blue Light Technology
  • Deep Sleep Mode
  • Custom Wake Messages
  • Sound Conditioner
  • Audio books
  • Directional Speakers
  • Binaural Beats
  • Reading Lights
  • Breathable Fabric
  • Premium Memory Foam
  • Ergonomic Support
  • Cooling Technology

Using Bluetooth and technology,  the lights this smart pillow sports wake you up when it’s time. All you have to do is set it up on their mobile app.

The pillow also incorporates a gyroscope and accelerometer to monitor how often you toss and turn. Need guided meditation? Yep, it has that, too. 

To say that this packs more gadgets than Iron Man's suit is an understatement.

You can pre-order the Sunrise Smart Pillow on Indiegogo starting at $129.

We'll wait to see the reviews on the Sunrise Smart Pillow before we decide if it's worth giving up our favorite $10 pillows from Walmart.
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Zombie-Opoly - When Monopoly and zombies collide.

I received Zombie-Opoly from Late For The Sky games to facilitate this review. All thoughts/opinions are my own. Your experience may differ.

I'm a gamer - board games and video games, you name it. Granted, I'm not a hardcore gamer like some of my friends, but I love gaming. It makes my little geeky heart squeal with happiness. Plus, I'm a little competitive, depending on who I'm playing with (or against). But I learned a very valuable lesson when it comes to competitiveness when you play against a very good friend (a hardcore gamer called L.C.) and your twin sister.

The three of us, thanks to Late For The Sky Games, were able to try out Zombie-Opoly. What exactly is Zombie-Opoly? Think of Monopoly but with zombies. We like zombies so we were intrigued.

 Here's a quick run-down of game:

Player pieces (6) - a shovel, Severed Ear, Femur Bone, Lethal Weapon, Zombie Boy and a Human Remnant
These are not all the player pieces. Just the ones we chose for our game.

Properties - Properties have a zombie-theme like The Horde (also known as Boardwalk in Monopoly) or Goodbye Kitty (also known as Mediterranean Avenue). These are interesting! They include interesting facts and cute little jokes on the back.

Houses/Hotels - Houses are Boxes of Flesh and Hotels are Screaming Humans.

Play Cards - What would be Community Chest and Chance are now Stagger and Crawl. They're a lot like Monopoly play cards, except there is one card that kind of takes the game a little further.
L.C. had no problem doing a "zombie walk". (We were at a public board gaming place and the last thing you want is to be crawling around on the floor. We may upload the video at a later time!)

Time - You can play the normal version or an hour version.

It plays just like Monopoly. The only difference is that it is zombies and maybe a little more fun. (See "Crawl" card above.)

Most Monopoly games can go on forever, unless one person has a very good strategy. We all started out as we normally would, but within 30 minutes, my sister and I realized that it was going to get extremely competitive. About 45 minutes to an hour in, I was the first person out, with L.C. being the person who took me down. It didn't take long for the realization to sink in that L.C. knew what he was doing. About 30 minutes later, he had an empire near the "Shamble to Buried" (also known as Go To Jail), which eventually took out my sister, declaring L.C. the winner.

The only problem we saw was that because of the design of the game board, it made it sometimes difficult to see the silver player pieces.

Other than that, it was fun and if you love zombies, Zombie-Opoly might be the game for you.
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4 Things You Must Do While in Waco, Texas

Waco in Texas has become a hot spot, thanks to the HGTV show "Fixer Upper". I was born and raised in Waco, and when I saw the first episode of "Fixer Upper", I never imagined my hometown would become so popular.

Thanks to the show's success, Chip and Joanna Gaines created Magnolia Market, a shop for those who want a little taste of "Fixer Upper" located downtown and within walking distance of Indian Springs Park and the Suspension Bridge. It is now considered THE spot for visitors of Waco.

But don't let that fool you - Waco has some other great places to visit and check out!
Waco boasts its own Cameron Park Zoo, right in the heart of Cameron Park. Animals include White-Handed Gibbons, cougars, giraffes, meerkats, and even a Komodo Dragon! I've been several times, but my favorite animal exhibit will always be the orangutans! They just look so cuddly!

I don't know how many of you are history buffs, but I totally am! The Waco Mammoth National Monument is kind of a cool look into the paleolithic era with the nation’s only recorded discovery of a nursery herd of Columbian mammoths. You can actually view the fossils, just as they were found! For $5 for adults with kids ages 3 or under getting in for free, not a bad way to spend a few hours!

Who wants candy? OK, this one might be a little biased, but I have yet to come across a small-ish city that has an actual candy shot filled to the gills with every sweet you can think of, including candy that our parents grew up with. Hey Sugar Candy Shop even has ice cream and floats! It's one of my favorite hang out spots.

No trip to Waco would be complete without visiting the Dr Pepper Museum. You can find an extensive collection of memorabilia and history in Dr Pepper's first bottling plant. The most popular exhibit is a continuous loop of old Dr Pepper commercials. You can end your visit with a Dr Pepper from an old soda fountain.

There's also the Texas Rangers Museum, Mayborn Museum (which kids will LOVE), and the ever-impressive Baylor University campus, but take it from a Wacoan - the hidden gems are so worth it!
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Bring gaming nostalgia back into your life!

Video games have crossed into futuristic instead of the primitive games from yesteryear. Gameplay has moved from side-scrolling, like Sonic or Mario Bros, to VR, where you are the character.

For gamers, we often feel nostalgic for the games that got us into gaming in the first place. However, many of us don't own an original NES or Sega Genesis console to which we can fulfill our needs to play those games .

Well, we did a little research and found a few places where you can play the games you grew up with.

Contra on in Google Chrome

For Super Mario Brothers fans, there is The simple-looking website boasts over 100 NES games in alphabetic order. You have the option of playing in the browser or full-screen. All 8bbit games run on Adobe Flash.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 on SSEGA in Mozilla Firefox
Another website is SSEGA. Does the name look familiar? It should! It is a website to play infamous Sega Genesis games. Besides the ever-popular Sonic series, they have over 1000+ games that came out on the Genesis console. Some games don't work, but a majority of the games do work. You have the option of playing in the browser window or full-screen. All games run on Adobe Flash.

Asteroids (Atari 7800) on RetroUprising in Mozilla Firefox
If you are looking for a way to play games like Atari, Space Invaders, or any other forgotten games, RetroUprising has almost any game you are looking for, including user created "hack" games from other popular games like Sonic. You can also find games for N64, Game Boy, and many other older consoles.

You also have the option to save your game onto your computer but to do that, you need to download their latest version of ArcadeOx. At last check, it was safe to download and use. Unfortunately, RetroUprising only runs on Windows.

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How Quinn & the Quips are getting girls excited about technology.

With technology becoming more and more popular, trying to find a way to reach a much younger generation excited about technology can be difficult.

The people at Blue Socks Media have come up with a great idea - create an animated TV series and game called Quinn & the Quips, which centers around the 11-year-old game developer and technology-savvy Quinn, who has to keep her emoji-like character called Quips, who have escaped from her latest game and are causing chaos in her life and relationships, quiet from an overly-competitive classmate.

The Quips

Quinn & the Quips shows that science and technology can be cool - encouraging girls to be excited about a field where they may be afraid to show interest or experiment with.

To learn more about this awesome project, meet the characters, and help them create the pilot, head on over to the Kickstarter page. Every bit helps, especially when it comes to a project that could impact so many girls and a field a lot of women aren't represented.

We had the chance to sit down and ask writer and producer Alex Anderson a few questions about Quinn & the Quip:

Edge Of Insanity: Quinn is obviously tech-savvy. Where did the inspiration to create Quinn come from?
Alex Anderson: I’ve always loved games. I grew up playing NES (still have it, still mostly works) and turned to computer games as soon as my family acquired a desktop computer (& massive tower) with Windows 95. Games are interactive & the media we watch is becoming more & more interactive so I wanted to create a character that could translate to both and could cater to many possibilities of combining games, “traditional” story, and virtual reality (which is what I’d love to do eventually).

EOI: What's the story behind the Quips?
AA: I’ve always been a fan of physical comedy, bright colors, simple design, and magic…combining all of that, the Quips just naturally happened. In the show, the Quips are characters in Quinn’s latest game that continuously escape from her tablet and cause some havoc in her life, especially since she must keep them a secret from her frenemy, Ben. How do they escape, you ask? I can’t tell you yet. Couldn’t she just delete them? She could…but they also turn out to be very helpful in certain ways and they each have a personality & feelings.

EOI: In the QQ Game, what can we expect to see?
AA: We are in the pre-development stage of the game. It could change if we end up working with a gaming company and they have a better, crazy-super-cool idea. As of right now though, we are planning a multi-level app game where players will create avatars or choose to play as a character from the show. The avatar will be responsible for finding, catching, and keeping the Quips out of Ben’s (the antagonist) hands [and possibly while also maintaining her grades & her social life].

EOI: What are you hoping children, and parents, will take away from Quinn & The Quips?
AA: I’m hoping they will laugh together, relate to the characters, take away positive social values, and a new perspective or interest in technology and how we relate to it.

EOI: Any advice for young girls who are showing interesting in technology, science, or creating games?
AA: Don’t be afraid to experiment! Maybe do that with parental guidance or a teacher…especially if there are chemicals (or the internet) involved, but explore your imagination. You have one for a reason. And don’t be afraid to stand out or be different than your peers. Having different opinions and interests is part of what makes you unique. That might be frustrating or seem uncool if you feel you don’t “fit in” when you’re younger, but keep playing! Your interests could turn into cool, fun, & fulfilling careers or hobbies someday!

As a girl who showed an early interest in technology and gaming, Quinn & the Quips is groundbreaking as it shows that even girls can have a love of technology and games without being afraid to show it.

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