Posts Tagged ‘Gadgets’

 Sony is a company that never ceases to amaze me. Every time I think that it can’t produce another groundbreaking product, it does just that. When I looked at the Sony Vaio X505 ultra-slim notebook earlier this year, I was amazed at how small and light it was, while remaining a usable mobile tool. But with the Vaio Type U, Sony has created a mobile computer that makes even the X505 look big, writes Riyad Emeran.The Type U is about the size of that ill-fated PDA pioneer, Apple’s Newton MessagePad. Its exact dimensions are 16.7 x 11 x 2.8cm, with a weight of 550g. However, whereas a PDA is a device that’s designed to do some of what a PC can do, the Vaio Type U actually is a PC. Despite the small dimensions, there’s a complete set of PC components hiding inside that brushed silver and black chassis.

Sony Vaio U70 with 'fin' stylus and remote control

For starters, there’s a 1GHz Intel Pentium M CPU backed up by 512MB of RAM, although the integrated graphics use will use a minimum of 8MB of that. There’s a 20GB hard disk, which is small by modern notebook standards, but you’ve got to remember how much Sony has had to squeeze into such a small casing.

Dominating the front of the Type U is the 5in TFT screen. With a resolution of 800 x 600, it’s a little low by notebook standards but very high by PDA standards. The screen is bright and vibrant, and the viewing angle is surprisingly good, considering that the device is going to be directly in front of you when you’re using it. The screen is also touch-sensitive which is pretty handy.

Pointer control comes courtesy of a thumb stick that brings back memories of the Toshiba Libretto, which used a similar device imbedded in its lid. Pressing the thumb stick inwards is equivalent to pressing the left mouse button, while at the top left corner of the fascia is a group of three buttons that represent the left and right mouse buttons, along with a scroll-lock button. The latter is particularly useful when you’re scrolling through web pages. Above the thumb stick is a four-way rocker pad that serves as your cursor keys, while there’s a button in the centre that selects the highlighted option.

The bottom right corner also houses three buttons. One of these controls the brightness of the backlight, another takes you into a hardware set-up menu populated with volume control, brightness, mute etc. The third button fires up a rather strange handwriting recognition/text entry utility that I couldn’t quite get the hang of. Now, before you think that I shouldn’t be reviewing a PC if I can’t figure out the applications, let me point out that the Type U is only available in Japan, so everything on this device, including Windows XP, is Japanese.

The final two buttons are in the bottom left corner, and are labelled Zoom and Rotate. The Zoom button will change the resolution of the screen – you can drop it down to 640 x 480, or push it up to 1024 x 768, 1280 x 1024 or 1600 x 1200. Of course the higher resolutions present you with a virtual desktop that you have to scroll around. The Rotate button spins the display into a portrait format, which can be very handy when you’re reading a long document.

On the left side of the chassis is the power switch, a hold switch to stop any buttons being pressed inadvertently, and a headphone socket. The headphone socket also accepts a Sony type remote control and thankfully one is supplied in the box, complete with backlit display. On the right is a single USB port, a hardware switch for the integrated 802.11b wireless adapter and a control+alt+del button – absolutely imperative for any Windows-based device.

Sony Vaio U70

On the top you’ll find a standby button, a MemoryStick slot and a CompactFlash slot. It’s good to see that Sony is giving you the option of using a different memory card format from it’s own MemoryStick. Here you’ll also find a couple of clips that hold the battery in place – the battery takes up the whole back of the device.


Apple iPod Nano has evolved to the 3rd generation, now with larger and brighter display. The design of its casing somehow doesn’t change much and still consists of an anodized aluminum top and polished stainless steel back. You might already been getting bored of the original casing and want something different?

Platinum Nano Original

Well, the world’s first platinum Apple iPod Nano is soon to be launched by the UK’s Goldstriker. Unlike the conventional casing, the platinum plated iPod Nano uses the most precious metal and it sure look more glamorous and style.

Platinum iPod Nano

Platinum iPod Nano

Goldstriker have already received many requests and orders even before the official release of platinum iPod Nano 8GB in January 2008. Goldstriker will sell the unit at £399.95 each, which is equivalent to about US$825.


Believe it or not, Alienware’s Aurora ALX rig was boasting quad SLI support two whole years ago. After yesterday’s official launch of ATI’s CrossFireX technology, now the ALX has another partner in quad GPU crime. Dubbed the Area-51 ALX CFX, this rig features a 3.0GHz Core 2 Extreme QX9650 processor, up to 4GB of RAM, a bevy of HDD choices, optional Blu-ray burner, a 1,000-watt power supply and of course, twin 1GB Radeon HD 3870 X2 cards (four GPUs in all). Granted, this thing will run you at least $5,649 as a CrossFireX-equipped rig, so think carefully if slicing into your son’s college fund is really worth 4x the graphical mayhem.


Wi-Fi Signal Status for You and the World!

Here at ThinkGeek we’re pretty lazy when it comes to technology. We expect our gadgets to do all the busywork while we focus on the high level important tasks like reading blogs. That’s why we hate to have to crack open our laptops just to see if there is any wi-fi internet access about… and keychain wi-fi detectors, we would have to actually remove them from our pockets to look at them. But now thanks to the ingenious ThinkGeek robot monkeys you can display the current wi-fi signal strength to yourself and everyone around you with this stylish Wi-Fi Detector Shirt. The glowing bars on the front of the shirt dynamically change as the surrounding wi-fi signal strength fluctuates. Finally you can get the attention you deserve as others bow to you as their reverential wi-fi god, while geeky chicks swoon at your presence. You can thank us later.

Product Features

  • Glowing animated shirt dynamically displays the current wi-fi signal strength.
  • Shows signal strength for 802.11b or 802.11g
  • Black 100% Cotton T-Shirt
  • Animated Decal is Removable (with hook and loop fasteners) for Easy Washing
  • Battery Pack is Concealed in a Small Pocket Sewn Inside the Shirt
  • Runs for hours off three AAA Batteries (not included)

Washing Instructions

  1. Carefully peel animated decal from front of T-Shirt
  2. Unplug ribbon connector behind decal and remove decal
  3. Unplug battery pack and remove it
  4. You can leave the ribbon cable inside the shirt
  5. Machine wash gentle cycle on cold
  6. Hang to dry
    Please Note: If you plug the connector into the battery pack backwards the shirt will not animate properly. It will not damage the shirt. Simply reverse the connector.

In this article, we would be indulging in ascertaining some valuable information about robots, their functionality, past, present and future. There are many things in our minds as to what robots are . In this article we aim at providing a complete, clear and precise answer to that curiosity.

Let us start with robots and then move to robotics. Robots have always created a sense of curiosity and mystery in the minds of humans and this is the primary reason why they have managed to evoke a huge interest even after such a long time and is expected to sustain it in the near future.

The name given to the study of robots is robotics.
Robotics is a complete and comprehensive study about the science and technology involved with robots. It involves designing and manufacturing process of robots and applications to come up with the predefined results. Anyone interested in robotics is required to possess an expert insight into mechanics, software and electronics. Now that we have studied something about robots and robotics, let us now move to the capabilities of a modern day robot.

A modern day robot is capable of being an active participant at military landmine detectors, lawn mowing exercises and home cleaning apart from imparting valuable medical and scientific services. All the functions are controlled by a series of complex operations and these robots are able to deliver high-end performance on a consistent basis without any fail.

Now that we have a base understanding of robots and the type of services offered by them, let us have a look at the past and present followed by their expected role in the near future.

Robots in Past

In the past, Robots were considered to be a costly affair but with continuing advancements in the field of science and technology, the costs involved is minimizing.

Robots in daily life

Robots are everywhere, from medical institutions to surgeries and from packaging of cookies to manufacturing of cars. They are also used in manufacture of mobile phones and pagers as well as in space explorations. Nowadays, all the critical and complex work is done with the help of robots, whether partly or in whole.

Future of robotics

As per the Robotic Industries Association, a whopping 90 percent of organisations with robotic manufacturing applications are yet to come out with the first robot installation. It is believed that material handling, space exploration, medical sector and assembly sector are the likely beneficiaries of robotics in the coming future which sure is quite bright.

Robotics can help to guide the blind people, facilitate easy driving, assist the elderly people. They can be used in cloning and in many other useful tasks which can benefit the mankind. They can perhaps be used to travel in the human body to detect and find solutions to the deadly diseases. They can also help in the creation of “intelligent” vehicles and can also be used to reveal truths of the solar system.

With both the government and non-government organizations showing an avid interest in the development of robotics, the future of robotics is bright and one fine day, all the questions behind robots and robotics will get an answer.

Faster iPhone Version with 3GAT&T Inc. CEO Randall Stephenson confirmed most awaited 3G version of iPhone.

Apple Inc. will introduce a version of the iPhone next year that can download from the Internet at a faster rate, and also the battery will be improved to address the battery drain issue with faster networks.

With the recent firmware update version 1.1.2, there are reports thats the iPhone performance has increased and has become faster. So, we can expect better improvement in terms of performance in the new version, and add 3G and few more features to it, definitely the next version will become more popular than the current one. There are no indications yet on how much the new iPhone version would cost.

The prospect of a new handset may make some shoppers put off buying an iPhone this year, Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray & Co. in Minneapolis, said in an e-mail. The number of shoppers who delay a purchase won’t be “enough to make a difference,” he said. Munster has advised buying Apple shares since June 2004.

Hopefully it will cover most of the features it is lacking currently when compared to those offered by most of the smart phones available today.