Mini411.com is a website for mini-computer users, such as the vulcan mini-pc, tiqit and oqo. Forums, etc…
[Editor’s Note: I smell a shameless self-promotion! Brand new site. No content. But I guess that’s why the guy’s postin’ an item here. But hey d00d, how about linking to us on your Links page? We showed ’em yours, now show ’em ours — or…er…something like that.]
Sony announced that a new “controller” will be available for the Playstation 2 — the EyeToy. Essentially just a USB camera that hooks up to the PS2, the EyeToy comes with software and mini-games that capture your image and allow you to interact with on-screen elements — no joystick required. The peripheral will come with a dozen mini-games such as a boxing game in which you must dodge your opponent and land some blows to win, and a soap-bubble game in which you move your hands to scrub virtual bubbles from the inside of your TV screen. Price is just $40, available in Fall 2003. Its possible that other game maker could make use of this hardware for broader applications, especially communcation via the network adapter or even for mapping your mug on characters in the games.
RCA has released details on the new totally redesigned Lyra HD MP3 player. Housed in a sleek metallic case, the new Lyra is significantly smaller than previous models, and looks to be roughly the same size as the new iPods. The unit holds up to 40 gigs of tunes and data (it works as an external hard-drive) and plays MP3, MP3Pro and WMA files. It uses USB2.0 for transfer, and comes with sync software (for PC) to keep your mobile music the same as your PC. MSRP is $330, with release this summer. Given the strengths of the previous Lyra, and the corrections that seem to have been made on this model, this could be a great device.
Sharp is releasing two new versions of their GNU/Linux powered Zaurus to the Asian market; the SL-C750 and C760 use the same clamshell-style design with full keyboard, and like the previous model C700, the 3.7″ 640×480 VGA screen can be twisted around to cover the keyboard for stylus-only input much like new “convertible” tablet-PCs. Both units run on the PXA255 400MHz chip (the same as the fastest PocketPCs) and will have 64 megs of SDRAM plus another 64 or 128 megs of flash memory for storing the OS and applications. Release date and price in the US are uncertain, but look for it around $700 from direct importers.
The Gadgeteer has a review of an open-source handheld gaming device called the Game Park GP32. While it looks alot like a Gameboy Advance, the device uses emulators and ROMs (blackmarket downloaded games from the likes of Atari 2600 and Commodore 64) as well as games specifically designed for it with open-source tools.
Long ago, I used to visit GadgetSquad.com in my regular round of tech websites – it was one of the ways sites that inspired me to get into tech writing. Unfortunately, GadgetSquad withered, and updates were few and far between. Now the Squad is back, with an updated website and a new style; the one-paragraph review. While it doesn’t seem to be up to speed or got that much traffic just yet, I’m glad to see the Squad and Gadgeto (pictured left) are back and hope they bring all their enthusiasm back to the blogosphere.
Palm has announced a new round of price cuts and incentives for its new handhelds;all Tungsten models (T, W and C) plus the new Zire 71 (with built-in camera) all qualify for a $50 rebate with trade-in of old Palm or PPC. Plus with the Tungsten|T price drop ($50 off) Palm Tungsten T can be had for as little as $200, the Tungsten W for $430, and the brand-new Tungsten C for just $380.
The latest offering from Tadpole Computers is SparcLE, a SPARC station packed into a laptop just 1.5” x 10.5” x 12.8”. It runs an UltraSPARC processor up to 650MHz, has a 15″ screen, CDRW/DVD, 2 gigs of DRAM and 80gig HD and runs Solaris 9 OS. It has three USB 2.0 ports, Type II PC card, PS2 ports, serial and VGA-out, plus 10/100 LAN and integrated 802.11b for wireless network administration. Prices start at around $3000.
The EyeTop head-mounted display is one of the few consumer-grade HMD’s for every-day use around — hidden subtlely in a pair of wrap-around shades, the tiny QVGA 320×240 16-bit color LCD takes up only 16 monocular degrees of your vision, allowing you to interact with meat-space while a portion of your wetware does something else, such as viewing video, checking somebody’s whuffie or using using a rearview videocam system without needing to turn your head. The system costs $700, which is on the high end for a system of such low resolution, but you have to give marks to the design, which can be switched from right to left eye or removed entirely, I suppose. The belt-worn control unit takes any RCA video input, such as laptop, properly outfitted PDA, Archos Multimedia Jukebox, portable DVD or game machine. Link from Gizmodo.
Like Hot or Not of the mind, Ideas Happen is a website where people can post their ideas and have others rate them with the “feelin’ it or not feelin’ it” scale. The top twelve ideas get $25,000 from Visa. Proposals range from entreprenuerial endeavors such as creating a “therma coil manifold” like Gomer here from Kentucky, to non-profit wedding planning for poor folk.
While IdeasHappen is probably one of the stupidest ways I can think of to waste $300,000, it can be entertaining to page through some of the ideas, especially the ones with video. After watching a few dozen, you’ll probably realize that whatever stupid idea you have is better than most on the site. Hurry up though — only six days left to enter your big idea!