vol 6, issue 8

Gadgets

15 August 2011
By Simon Munk
Share |
Livescribe Echo Smartpen

A pen dictaphone mash up

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1

Samsung takes another stab at knocking the iPad 2 off the top spot - and they may have just done it

Pentax Q

The world's lightest and smallest digital interchangeable lens camera

Kogan Agora

The Aussies have pipped their Asian neighbours to bring the first laptop powered by Chromium OS to market

Sony PlayStation 3D TV

Unique 3D active shutter glasses allow two players to see two different images

Related stories

Books

Gadgets

Software

A bunch of world firsts this issue – the slimmest tablet, the first Chromebook, the smallest swappable-lens digital camera, and a 3D TV with a difference.

Livescribe 

Echo Smartpen

£120

Nothing beats the feeling of writing with ink on paper. It feels more natural and we still mostly learn about words and cursive writing this way in school before we start our jobs behind a desk and in front of a PC.

The Livescribe Echo smartpen, unlike tablet devices – be it PCs or connected devices – does not just mimic the feeling of writing on paper with ink, you actually are. It works in two ways. The pen features solid state memory storage which records key strokes and memory stamps these strokes with audio recordings. It does this with the aid of special notebooks or paper (dot paper), which have microscopic markings which is virtually invisible to the naked eye. You can buy special notebooks or print this using an ordinary ink jet or laser jet printer.

 

Samsung 

Galaxy Tab 10.1

Apple's iPad 2 has a serious rival. The Tab 10.1 beats its rival on one key spec – it's the "world's thinnest mobile tablet". Other than that, it's a high-end mix of Android Honeycomb OS, 1GHz dual-core processors and a USB port to make Apple fans angry. User-interface still lags iOS, though.

The Tab 10.1 features a 1GHz dual-core chip, Android Honeycomb 3.1 OS (with added Samsung "TouchWiz" features) and, vitally, is the "world's thinnest mobile tablet", coming in at a mere 8.6mm. On top of that it's got, unsurprisingly given the name, a 10.1" 1280 x 800 screen, 3MP 720p HD video-shooting camera and 2MP front-facing video-conferencing camera, and to top it all, weighs a mere 565g. Of course, there's also all the usual stuff – Bluetooth, Wi-Fi n (and optional 3G), and a USB port just to make iPad fans turn green with envy. Still won't touch Apple for user-friendliness, though.

www.samsung.com

 

Pentax 

Pentax Q

The "world's smallest and lightest digital interchangeable lens system camera". Beating off other rival lens-swapping compacts (see also Sony's NEX range and the Micro Four-Thirds standard) it's a mere 98 x 57.5 x 31 mm, 180g body only. And crammed into that space is 12.4 MP, loads of functions and Full HD video recording.

Although they claim it’s the world's smallest and lightest digital interchangeable lens system camera - you have to add the caveat: "as of June 15 based on Pentax's research". But really, what you need to know is that the aptly-named Q is the tiniest of the new tiny breed of lens-swappable compact cameras (see also Sony's NEX range and the Micro Four-Thirds standard). It's a mere 98 x 57.5 x 31 mm, 180g body only. And crammed into that space is 12.4 MP, loads of functions (incl. HDR and Bokeh settings) and Full HD video recording.

www.pentax.co.uk

 

Kogan 

Agora

£269

When it launched it was the "world's first laptop powered by Google’s Chromium OS". It's still the cheapest way to get your hands on a Google Chrome OS laptop in the UK. Everything, really everything, needs to be run from "the cloud" on a "Chromebook". That means fast boot-ups, but it's only ideal for simple demands in always-connected locations.

The key difference to Google's approach to an OS is that everything, really everything, is stored in "the cloud". Without an Internet connection, that renders a "Chromebook" as much use as a melted chocolate doorstop. But with it, you get fully-featured browsing, Google Docs, Calendar etc. There is a rudimentary file explorer – and as the updates hit, no doubt there'll be better uses for the built-in solid-state hard drive than just running the OS off. For now, the Chromebook is for super-simple, always-connected users only. But at this price, you can comparable netbooks with all the functions you need in off-line mode as well.

www.kogan.co.uk

 

Sony 

PlayStation 3D TV

$499

This Sony PlayStation-branded (and as yet not properly named) 3D TV has a unique trick if run with a Sony PS3. Using standard "active shutter" glasses, it lets one player see one thing and a second player see something entirely different. That means two-player games on one TV, without splitting the screen.

Shown first at E3, the world's largest videogame trade show, the 3D TV has a unique feature if you run it with a Sony PS3. Standard 3D TVs use "active shutter" glasses to let you see one of two sets of images in one eye, and another in your other eye. This uses the same trick to display one set of moving image to one viewer and an entirely different set to a different viewer. The result being that you can now play two-player games on one TV at home, but without splitting the screen (and both players being able to sneak glances at what the other person was doing). But in single player mode, the 3D games effect looks great.

http://uk.playstation.com

Share |
Related forum discussions
forum comment To start a discussion topic about this article, please log in or register.    

Latest Issue

E&T cover image 1605

"We visit Barcelona, one of the smartest cities in the world, to find out what makes it so special. What does it look like and what is the future?"

E&T jobs

  • Senior Development Engineer, Electronics

    Premium job

    Helmet Integrated Systems / Gentex Corporation
    • Letchworth Garden City, Hertfordshire
    • Competitive

    We are an innovative, robust and fast growing business, whose main focus is to deliver continues improvement to existing products and offer new sol..

    • Recruiter: Helmet Integrated Systems / Gentex Corporation

    Apply for this job

  • Smart Grid Research Engineer

    Premium job

    University of Strathclyde
    • Cumbernauld, Glasgow
    • Grade: 6/7* £26,537 - £37,768*

    Work as part of a growing dynamic team on a wide range of technical projects with particular emphasis on experimental validation and testing

    • Recruiter: University of Strathclyde

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Asset Specialist

    Affinity Water
    • Hatfield, Hertfordshire

    Responsible for updating and writing electrical engineering standards, approved codes of practice and safe systems of work

    • Recruiter: Affinity Water

    Apply for this job

  • Senior Electronics Engineer

    York Instruments
    • York, North Yorkshire

    Senior electronics engineer to work as part of a team developing an MEG imaging system; working with the engineering team and external contractors.

    • Recruiter: York Instruments

    Apply for this job

  • Manufacturing Engineer - Circuit Card Assembly

    MBDA
    • Lostock Junction
    • Competitive Salary & Benefits

    What’s the opportunity?   Manufacturing UK is an integral part of the Operations Directorate whose principal mission is to ensure that MBDA’s deliverable commitments are met...

    • Recruiter: MBDA

    Apply for this job

  • High Voltage Engineer

    Premium job

    Essex X-Ray & Medical Equipment
    • Great Dunmow, Essex

    This High Voltage Engineer will provide design leadership for high voltage cable assemblies up to one megavolt.

    • Recruiter: Essex X-Ray & Medical Equipment

    Apply for this job

  • Team Leader - Flank Arrays

    BAE Systems
    • Barrow-In-Furness, Cumbria, England
    • Negotiable

    Team Leader - Flank Arrays Would you like to work in a unique role within the construction of the Astute Class submarines? We currently have a vacancy for a Team Leader - Flank Arrays at our site in Barrow-in-Furness. As a Team Leader - Flank Arrays, you

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

  • Electronics and Software Engineer

    Copley Scientific Ltd
    • Nottingham
    • circa £35,000 per annum + bonus

    Develop new test equipment for the pharmaceutical industry. Good opportunities to grow and develop. Successful family-owned and managed business.

    • Recruiter: Copley Scientific Ltd

    Apply for this job

  • Intelligent Transport Systems Engineer - Highways Technology

    Premium job

    Mott MacDonald
    • Birmingham, West Midlands

    Our transport technology team in Birmingham is currently growing a highly skilled and customer-focused team to...

    • Recruiter: Mott MacDonald

    Apply for this job

  • Analogue Electronics Engineer

    Premium job

    Swedish Institute of Space Physics (IRF)
    • Uppsala (Stad) (SE)

    The Swedish Institute of Space Institute (IRF) in Uppsala search for an analogue electronics engineer.

    • Recruiter: Swedish Institute of Space Physics (IRF)

    Apply for this job

More jobs ▶

Subscribe

Choose the way you would like to access the latest news and developments in your field.

Subscribe to E&T