Researchers at the University of Edinburgh have developed a smart helmet for firefighters. The helmet is mounted with test phase radar and cameras that…
Gadgets come and go. The really good ones are the ones you keep for a long time, fiddling with again and again. In today’s world it’s easy to buy a gadget as a present, but the really good ones are hard to find. Here is a list of the gadgets we know will be fantastic gifts, that will keep you busy for hours and make you the talk of the camping site…
Audiomotion Mighty Dwarf DW-5W Resonating Speakers
For a selling price of around US$36 this little portable boombox is great. I have used one and was mightily (pun intended) surprised. Go anywhere and turn any solid surface into a bass boosting speaker. No more searching around to find a stereo set to plug in your smartphone or whatever you use, just plug this into your music device, find a table and create a party anywhere. You can then have tequila body shots on the table while feeling the bass! Definitely on my Christmas list.
Parrot AR.Drone Quadricopter
Get out your iPhone, iPod or iPad and fly. The Quadricopter can be remote controlled by these devices by downloading the app, which also contains a variety of games to play with the copter. Battle friends via a Wi-fi network and create your own air-force if you want. If you are good enough, it might be included in the next Olympics as a sport and you can go compete. No not really, but hey you can play George Bush invading some country again or scare the daylights out of the neighbour next door! It’s the holidays. Be adventurous. The Quadricopter sells for around US$419.
Hexbug Micro Robot Creature
If you love gadgets, you love robots. With almost a mind of its own, the Hexbug’s internal wizardry will cause it to dodge obstacles and run away from danger. Clap your hands and the internal microphones picks up the noise and the Hexbug will do a turn about and find somewhere safe to go. For the ones who will work during the holidays they will make great desktop friends (oh how low have we sunk). When it meets obstacles it will turn around and find a new (blind) route to take. Leave it and it will just happily walk about on your desk till the battery runs out. The Hexbug sells for US$39, and I can see that kids will love this.
Samsung Navibot SR8845 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
Holidays are for being lazy, so who wants to clean? Samsung says no way, let the Navibot clean for you. If the Terminator had a lap-dog, this would be it. With 37 sensors and an on-board camera, the Navibot creates a virtual map of your home and memorizes the most efficient path to clean. With lots of settings this little slave will clean every corner of your home while you do what you want, or sit back and order it around. You should, as one day they might order you around. The Navibot sells for US$564.
Car Camera Blackbox DVR
Nobody wants to spoil free time with accidents and lawsuits etc, so drive safe. But if it does happen, the Blackbox is there to save you from fraudulent insurance companies and bad drivers. At US$225 this video camera does not just record video, but has built-in GPS and a G-sensor (gravity sensor), recording what happened while you were driving. You can then have whoever arrested by an officer after showing him the video of the drunk who smashed into you, and help further in keeping the road safe. Very popular and widely used in Russia for insurance purposes (where else), your insurance firm will now have to watch out as well.
Kindle Keyboard WiFi/3G
Yes, there will be those that will use the holiday to read and relax, and there the Kindle Keyboard will satisfy. From US$316 you will get a superb device that can store up to 3 500 books and keep bookworms busy the whole holiday. Even if they don’t like what they are reading, the Wi-fi and 3G connectivity will allow them to download whatever book they want. Battery life on the Kindle is exemplary as well, so if you fall asleep while reading you will still have enough to read when you wake again. Why do images of sleeping fishermen come to mind…
Radica Games 20Q Challenge
We all know that some or other time during the holidays there will be a day when nothing happens. The rain will come down and going outside will not be an option. There the Radica will come in handy, playing the old game of “20 questions”. This time, Radica is the one who asks the questions and guesses the answer. Its one of those toys that will satisfy anyone from age eight to 80, and I am sure some drinking games will be invented with it as well, so enjoyment for all hey. Radica sells for US$105.
Ion Discover DJ Pro
For just US$332 you can create your own holiday parties and be the DJ for the evenings when you need to party it up. Connect your PC, Mac or iPhone to the DJ Pro and mix tracks from your source device. You can even record your mixes. It comes with a classic two-turntables-and-a-mixer setup used by DJs everywhere and includes the Virtual DJ LE software to scratch, mix, loop, and much more. It even charges your iPhone while in use. But apart from that, Ion also has the Discover Keyboard and Computer DJ System to add to the DJ Pro. Practice enough and you can start a new career after the holidays. Who said holidays can’t change your life? With the right gadgets… Oh, and if you really want to be the talk of the camping site, combine the DJ Pro with the Mighty Dwarf and start your own fully modern mobile DJ business that is small enough to fit in a suitcase.
Last but not least, there is the gadget that probably every undercover spy wannabee would kill for: the cringe inducingly named i’m Watch. But forget about the silly name. Selling for US$400, this cool watch connects to your smartphone through Bluetooth and delivers calls, text messages, emails, notifications, music, weather forecasts, pictures and apps from the Google store. Working on Android OS, it will give you access to the internet by piggybacking on your smartphone’s internet connection. Even if your smartphone does not have the capability to wirelessly connect to the watch, there is an app available for download that will enable the two devices to pair. So, lets look forward to the new phenomenon of people staring at their watches instead of their smartphones.