Daily Giz Wiz 880: The Leica Disto

Episode 880 of the podcast

The Leica Disto
Subject: Review of The Leica Disto
Released:Friday 24 July 2009
Length:about 19 minutes
Download file:dgw0880.mp3 (8.6 MB)

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Short info

From the Gadget Warehouse: The Leica Disto

Detailed information

Link: Leica DISTO History

The first Leica DISTO was introduced in 1993, and Dick's model dates back to about 12 years ago.  After 16 years, and despite its price tag, it is still going strong, with many models to choose from.  Here's how it works:

A red laser pointer makes it easy for you to pinpoint the far point for the distance measurement.The device emits laser light pulses of a particular frequency and wavelenth.Some light pulses are reflected, internally, back to a "reference receiver".The rest are allowed through and sent out to the target, which are then reflected back, via a different path (the external measurement path), to another receiver, the "measurement receiver", in the instrumentThe phase difference between the two signals is proportional to the distance between the target and the instrument - which calculates the distance. 

The Leica Disto D8

The latest model is the Leica Disto D8.  A 360 degrees tilt sensor enables you to use angles and distances to take a particular measurement (up to 650 feet).  A 4x zoom high resolution 2.4" display lets you see the target point easily.  Bluetooth connectivity allows you to send data wirelessly to other devices, such as your PC, for use in programs such as Excel and AutoCAD.

Creative Advertising

Joshua O'Connell, who has a marketing background, enjoys listening to Dick and Leo discuss some of the creative wording in advertisements.  He works for a newspaper (probably the Connecticut Post), and has noticed in the paper an ad headlining a new easy-to-use laptop computer for $188.  In smaller type, it advises the reader that the computer is for the buyer to keep for another payment of $188.  To create a sense of urgency, the ad predicts that at 7.30 in the morning, hordes of people will jam the telephone hotline.  It goes on: It can be used right out of the box because it's pre-loaded with Windows XP!  Well, it's just a Comptec.

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