Wednesday, December 15, 2004

ELECTRONICA 2004: The Top Tech we've heard about this year ...

Here it is, the year end list. The coolest, most cutting edge electronica we can find. Stuff way ahead of it's time - almost like it came from the future to make our tech life uber cool (and they make great Christmas gifts as well - hint hint).

VIRTUAL LASER KEYBOARD - This bad boy got 2004 hitting the ground running. Originally designed by an Israeli tech company, many people thought it was an urban tech legend. Until they started selling them. And now you can get one, for a paltry sum of $199!

The Virtual Keyboard uses light to project a full-sized computer keyboard onto almost any surface. Used with Smart Phones and PDA's, the VKB provides a practical way to do email, word processing and spreadsheet tasks, allowing the user to leave the laptop computer at home. VKB observes the user's finger movements to interpret and record keystrokes. Since the virtual keyboard is an image projected in light, it completely disappears when not in use.

BLUE DOCK - Turning your Pocket PC into your desktop.

Couple it with the Virtual Keyboard and a wall- mounted LCD screen, and you've completely cleared your desk of tech-clutter!

ELUMENS VISION STATION - a 160 degree field of view, parabolic monitor. DOOM 3 will never be the same.

SERIOUS MAGIC VISUAL COMMUNICATOR, ULTRA, and DV RACK - with this trio of uber cool applications from SERIOUS MAGIC, budding Spielbergs can not only create video movies and tv shows in stunningly high quality, they can have a complete studio on their PC! Applications include VIRTUAL SETS and GREENSCREENING, TELEPROMPTERS, and DIRECT RECORDING TO YOUR HARD DRIVE - freeing your camcorder's miniDV tape to be a slaved backup. These guys really GET IT.

So much so, that Serious Magic gets E-R's SOFTWARE OF THE YEAR FOR THE SECOND YEAR RUNNING! Well done, guys!

APPLE's iMAC G5 - Stylish, functional and fast. Everything you expect from the Mac. Did you really expect it to not be on the list?

TAPWAVE ZODIAC - So cool, E-R had to have one. Not only is it a rock solid PDA using the latest PALM OS, but it plays games - with force feedback mind you - has an mp3 player with stereo speakers AND earbuds, and can play MOVIES off one of it's twin SD Card slots. And now, you can surf the internet via a SD Card WiFi card. The only thing missing is a hard drive. Are you Tapwave guys listening? GIVE US A HARD DRIVE!

DESKSPACE ANYPLACE - Perfect for the business traveller who has to do work ANYWHERE. Adjusts To Standup Height. Can be used in a car. Great Portable Projector Stand. Strong, Stable, Slim and Lightweight. Instantly attaches to your rolling luggage, wheeled laptop case or cart. And at $79, this is a must for any laptop user stuck in an airport.

CAR LOCATOR - If you're a parent, having the ability to track the car you just loaned to your teenage son or daughter is a godsend. CARLOCATE.COM

BIONIC DOLPHIN - Travels like a submarine, swims like a dolphin. The ultimate underwater ride. You can't buy one yet, but it will certainly be a hot commodity once it hits the market for real!

And speaking of Dolphins, honorable mention goes to the guys who invented this - an artificial dolphin fin for Fuji the dolphin.

POWERSKI JETBOARD. Who needs a "tasty wave" when you have this bad boy? So what if the waves are all beach break or blown out? Now you can jump into any body of water and hang ten. TOTALLY!

And the ultimate tech gadget of anykind for the year 2004 ...

Burt Rutan won the $10 Million Dollar XPrize and it has flung the door WIDE OPEN for private space exploration, space tourism, and other commercial space ventures in the final frontier. Even William Shatner wants to fly it!


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