Top Tech of the week – 11.24.2006


    Funky robot – Have you ever wanted to be a robot? A team from Munich University can make your wish come true. Sort of. You just have to wear a head mounted display which is wired to the robot’s eyes, and your little metal clone will mimic what you do as you walk around. It has a three fingered hand which can even move things and pick them up. The idea is that you can do something in a safe room and the robot can do the same things somewhere not so safe. Great for military applications and other dangerous situations, but there are lots of other ways you could have fun with this, too.

    Toshiba plastic paper printer – Tired of ruining stuff you just printed off by spilling coffee all over it? Toshiba has a solution. Their new printer, the B-SX8R, takes the same plastic that is used in Coke bottles and prints on it. The plastic is covered in a special pigment which can change color when the temperature changes. That means that it can print images in 300 dpi, then it can be erased and something else can be printed again. The same piece of plastic ‘paper’ can be used up to 500 times. That sound you hear is Mother Nature breathing a sigh of relief.

    EMI r911 Card – It’s not often that something the size of a business card can save your life. This card can store all the data that could make the difference between your premature demise and the miracles of medicine saving you. It can let people know everything like allergies, blood type, prescriptions, medications and everything else that may be needed if you find yourself unable to tell them on your own. Preventable errors are a serious problem in the medical world, and this little card with it display and memory could help you avoid being a victim of one of those errors.

    No-Contact Jacket – Some people just don’t like to be touched. For those people, this jacket is a dream. When you put on the jacket you have a little button in your hand. By pressing the button you deliver an 80,000 volt shock to anyone who touches you. Obviously you won’t feel it yourself (wouldn’t be much of a product if you did, would it?). The whole thing needs just one 9V battery to power it. See if that creepy guy who keeps rubbing your shoulders does that anymore!

    Bluetooth VoIP – Your gigantic cell phone bill getting you down? VoIP could help. The Clipcomm BS-T100V will turn any Bluetooth-enabled phone into a VoIP work of wonder. It’s is about the size of a small router, and it looks like one, too. It turns any internet signal into Bluetooth, so any phone (or laptop, PDA or anything else) that has Bluetooth and is nearby can access the web and you can make VoIP calls to your heart’s content.