The Future of Talk Shows?

Oh. My. Gopod. This might be the coolest, funniest thing ever! Okay, at least this week. It’s a talk show, an extremely well done, professional-looking talk show, called This Spartan Life, filmed live in the world of Halo. It’s freakin’ hysterical. If I were a forward-looking TV studio, I would sign these guys, stat! This is so much better than any of the faux game world/virtual character shows that TechTV, MTV, or anyone else has attempted. Auspiciously enough, the first guest on the first episode is Bob Stein, founder of Voyager, the ground-breaking CD-ROM content company. Voyager was a huge influence on Peter Sugarman and myself while we were developing Beyond Cyberpunk. The guest may be auspicious, his entrance? Not so much. Really funny stuff.

[Via Boing Boing]

P.T. Barnum sez: Step Right Up, Get Your PS3

How goofy is this. Amazon has a page up already for the PlayStation 3, even though it won’t be for sale until spring of ’06, if then. And there are even reader-reviews of it, thirteen at the moment. So, Amazon is selling a product that’s maybe a year away from the marketplace and “purchasers” of the vaporous product are already reviewing it. Hey, can I sell my used virtual PS3 on eBay?

The interesting thing about this is the price: US$299. This may or may not be an honest number, and if it isn’t, it’s a clever move on Sony’s part to tweak buyer’s expectations for an affordable PS3, maybe leading them to hold off on buying an XBox 2…er…360 this holiday season. Your move, Microsoft.

[Via Gizmodo]

NASA’s Flying Car Challenge

After seeing the train wreck (or more accurately, robot wreck) that was the first DARPA Grand Challenge, with out-of-control robot rovers ditching themselves in the desert, is the idea of a similarly-styled flying car challenge a good one? NASA thinks so. According to a piece on Luxist, the space agency has announced a Personal Air Vehicle Challenge. While the grand prize for the DARPA Challenge is now set at US$2 million, NASA’s only ponying up 250 Gs. Maybe that’s ’cause they’ll need the rest of the cash for hardened bunker construction. “INCOMING!”

The Miracle of Life(Straw)

With some 1 billion people on the planet without access to safe drinking water (NOT a typo), the invention of a device called the LifeStraw could have a profound impact on world health. The LifeStraw is a plastic tube with no moving parts. The user simply drinks from any water source and filters in the tube actively filter out and kill bacteria such as typhoid, cholera, e. coli, salmonella and other common killers. The straws will cost around US$2 and can process 700 liters (around one year’s worth) of drinking water.

Darwin Award Winner of the Week!

According to Reuters UK, a 28-year old Korean man died after a 50-hour-straight computer gaming session at a Seoul Internet cafe. Cause of death was apparently heart failure due to exhaustion. The bit-happy dimwit had reportedly just quit his job so that he could devote more of his time to gaming. Hey, now he gets an eternity to do it!

LG’s Answer to Roomba

Korean electronics giant LG has announced their own Roomba-like robot domestic, called the RoboKing in Korea, the LG V-R4000 elsewhere (apparently ’cause we wacky Westerners LOVE the alphanumeric salad).

No word yet on when the robo-vac will be available in the US, or how much it will cost, but given its 21 sensors, a 32-bit processor, a gyro, a HEPA filter, a Lithium-Polymer battery, and other tweaky parts, we can almost guarantee it’ll be a lot more than the Roomba.

(Adorable Korean remote-control operator sold separately.)

[Via I4U]

Baby Needs a Click-Wheel

Okay, you know we love the slightly absurd iPod fashion statements here on Street Tech, but this one takes the cake: a “onesie” for baby (available in white, “mini pink” and “mini blue”) that has an iPod click-wheel graphic on the front. Okay, we admit, it’s kinda cute, and we’re all for the forced nerdification of children. It’s just too bad that we can’t actually use the silk-screened controls to fast-forward through baby’s colicy wail. All in good time, we suppose.

[Via iPod Lounge]

CVS Disposable Camcorder Hacks Update

MAKE has an update on the latest usability hacks for the el cheapo CVS “disposable” digital camcorder. Hackers have figured out how to get video data from the camera to a PC over a custom USB cable. Still something for the pocket-protector crowd only, but it’s only a matter of time before hacks reach a level of friendly that mere mortals can deal with. Of course, by then, the camera manufacturer will likely break everything, and the cat and mouse game will continue. Ain’t technology fun?