Casio Chairman Kazuo Kashio dies at 89

Casio Chairman Kazuo Kashio dies at 89
Casio Chairman and CEO Kazuo Kashio passed on June 19, 2018 at the age of 89. The cause of death was pneumonia.
Kashio was the third eldest of the four brothers who founded Casio Computer in 1957. Their first product, the all-electric 14-A calculator, led to the release of the Casio Mini calculator in 1972, a product that brought electronic calculators into the mainstream.
Casio’s biggest claim to fame was Kashio’s own idea. The CEO looked at quartz watches in the 1980s and saw that they were delicate and easy to break. With a little extra outer cladding and some internal shock resistance systems, however, he was able to create a watch that could truly stand up to heavy wear. The first G-Shock, released in 1983, paved the way for truly rugged watches and the company recently celebrated the 100 millionth G-Shock sold last August.
The company, Kashio Manufacturing, began in 1947 with a unique product: a cigarette clip that let users smoke the last bit of each butt. In the 1970s, the Kashio family saw the move to electronic counting machines and brought some of the first portable and pocket calculators to market alongside the ultra popular F-91W LCD watch and the Cassiopeia PDA. The company also created the first LCD digital camera, the QV-10 and the popular Casiotone keyboards.
He is survived by his son, Kazuhiro Kashio, who is the current Casio president.

Source: Gadgets – techcrunch

The ONE Smart Keyboard Pro lets you tickle the ivories with ease

The ONE Smart Keyboard Pro lets you tickle the ivories with ease
While the ONE Smart Keyboard Pro doesn’t have a sweet demo tune nor can it play barking dog Jingle Bells without some help, it can teach you or your kids how to play piano. The elegant keyboard has 88 weighted keys that simulate a true mechanical piano and connects to your phone so you can learn to play at your own pace.
The Keyboard Pro costs $799 and is essentially a compact teaching keyboard. It can connect to your iOS or Android devices via an oddly shaped USB B cable and once it’s paired with the app you can run through simple songs – think Greensleeves – and more complex sheet music. This keyboard is weighted but not progressively which means that each key offers the same resistance, a consideration that might be important to some more experienced players. Further, you can connect a USB cable and connect the keyboard to your computer to use it as a MIDI controller.
Again, this is a very austere keyboard. It doesn’t do much aside from teach you how to play which, in the end, is what most of us need. Because it doesn’t have the expansive bells and whistles of a Casio and because most of the smarts are in the app itself, it’s a bit of a hard sell for most people. However, if you’re looking to learn, the ONE works.
This larger and more complete version of the One Smart Keyboard offers quality workmanship and design. The entire system is surprisingly sparse with nothing but a power button and volume on the front of the keyboard. There is an input for a sustain pedal as well as a few output jacks for headphones and that’s about it. Don’t expect to pick out instruments or pitch shift with this keyboard. Once you fire up the app you have access to teaching exercises and games that let you follow along on the LED-lit keyboard as you run through songs and scales. Finally, you can buy sheet music for $3.99 or so that you can learn to play on the ONE. There is also free sheet music available for those who want to play a little classical.

I found the entire system to be quite usable and my kids, once they figured out how to slow down the music, jumped right in learning little songs. Nothing can quite teach you how to play piano like a human teacher – there aren’t enough smarts in this app to make adjustments based on your skill – but it’s the electronic equivalent of buying a Teach Yourself Piano book and sitting down in front of grandma’s old upright. I’m especially pleased with the quality of the keyboard. I’ve already had a few MIDI keyboards over the years including models from Casio and Yamaha and this one is on par with those. The teaching feature is the main draw here, as I noted before, because there is little else you can do with this keyboard right out of the box. However, if that’s what you’re looking for in a keyboard and you don’t want to sample bodily noises so you can play Farting Clair De Lune at the school talent show, this might be the model for you.

Learning to play on the One piano. pic.twitter.com/Ec2CVkmDEw
— John Biggs (@johnbiggs) April 26, 2018

Source: Gadgets – techcrunch