That looks kind of cool but sadly for me it'd have to fall into the £20-ish price bracket alongside those remote-control mini-helicopters
‘Tis the season for dropping unsubtle hints about gifts that YOU’D like to receive, or – if you prefer – for making a list of things that you would buy for nephews and nieces but, because you’re an evil misanthropic Uncle or Auntie, you’ll buy for yourself instead. At least that way there’ll be no tantrums round the tree and …
Sphero 2, from the gosphero.com shop, including shipping (to UK) and taxes, ends up as $189, or £115.
I got a sphero1 for christmas last year, and it's good fun, for a few weeks. The new one is supposed to be much quicker, which should make climbing obstacles (ramps etc.) easier, and you get two ramps in the box as well.
My main issue with the sphero1 (which i guess would apply to the 2 as well) is that to get the most out of it, you need a reasonable amount of space, as is true with all RC toys, which I, unfortunately, don't have.
"I got a sphero for the wife so she can use it with the cats,"
That (and dogs) was what I first thought of when I saw it.
"i'm pretty intrigued by some of the games though"
The zombie one mentioned in the article isn't the one I'd have highlighted. It's the game where you take on the role of a Rover, trying to prevent Number 6 from running away.
Except that one doesn't appear to exist. Missed a trick, there. (Or didn't miss it, but balked at the licensing fees needed, which would probably be understandable.)
""I got a sphero for the wife so she can use it with the cats,"
That (and dogs) was what I first thought of when I saw it."
No no no.Having seen a Terrier happily tearing apart a '1' and subsequent arguments over who was responsible(IMHO the twit who said 'watch this - it will drive him mad') I can say (most) cats probably, most dogs no.
Linus Torvalds has / had a chromebook pixel which he bought for the hires screen and promptly rooted.
The HP chromebook looks very pretty but it has a desperate 16GB drive soldered to the board and an ARM processor. It's probably fine for its intended purpose but I think it would be very cramped for running full blown Linux.
"You've got more chance of having a pint with the pope than getting a PS4 this side of Christmas..."
"No way. He prefers wine."
"And who said that His Holiness doesn't drink *wine* by the pint...?"
The Metric system says so. He stops just before he has a pint, or waaay after he has one.
"Who says only whole litres are sold on the continent?"
Very true. You can generally get:
1000ml (1 litre) [note the correct spelling of litre, for our American friends] ;-)
but you'll have a hell of a job getting a 568.2463ml measure m'boy! (1 pint [UK])
"You've got more chance of having a pint with the pope than getting a PS4 this side of Christmas..."
"No way. He prefers wine."
And who said that His Holiness doesn't drink *wine* by the pint...?
Here's the answer, courtesy of Billy Connolly
I was recently recommended a website, bangggood.com, that sells lots of cheap n cheerful Chinese products, everything from mini helicopters, to CREE flashlights, spare parts and consumables for 3D printers to Arduino boards. I haven't used it yet myself, so can't yet recommend it personally, but I intend to cane £20 or so on just it's '99 cent gadgets' section soon.
Reviews of the site on 3rd party websites seem mostly positive, though some people claim that the buyer reviews might be manipulated a bit. Any one have any experience of this site?
I've got one of these, and although it functions fine as a router and access point don't buy it for the USB extras as they are worse than useless. USB storage is shockingly slow and flaky (<10mbps) over the network and doesn't work at all when trying to stream some media file types. I wasted a lot of time trying to get a coherent answer to this from their completely useless support dept., I didn't even expect them to fix the problem, just admit it was the shit firmware and give me an indication of when they expected to fix it. But no, answers ranged from your media player isn't compatible to return the unit to the vendor. (DD-WRT doesn't improve things according to the WRT forum).The USB print server facility is also extremely irritating requiring some TPlink software installed on each endpoint, (which worked when it felt like it).
My recommendation is the Asus RT-N66U, Gb ports, DB Wi-Fi, 2 USB ports (again, slow on transfer), doesn't have ac, just n but we'll not hold that against it. Built in torrent/nzb client to download to HD when you go to bed and it looks awesome.
Now to get BT to hurry up with my Fibre (only been waiting 5 months since they said it was available....) so I can switch from my crappy TG582n as a modem to something a bit faster.
I picked this mostly as a platform for OpenWRT, though of course there are plenty of similarly priced options, depending on the exact functions you require. Raspberry Pi gets all the love at the moment, but for some sorts of projects that need a small Linux system, I feel that you are very probably better off with something like this - even if not this exact model.
"also this TP-Link doesn't do 802.11ac it's dual band but N only"
Well, mine only cost AU$70 so I didn't expect it too. An Asus AC router costs $200 here.
Mine runs Gargoyle flawlessly - shares a printer to all on the network via one usb port and provides 3g access from a modem on the second usb port.
As I don't have any AC enabled hardware, I don't miss it's absence - prefer ethernet anyway.
"It’s the perfect way to find something to do around 3pm on Christmas Day when there’s sweet FA on the telly."
Er... I think you'll find that's when Betty is on most channels... So perhaps from 3:20 we can play with tech gizzets. How about a round-up of christmas-dinner tech? Is there a wifi thermometer that tells you when your turkey is done?
>you'll be lucky to get anything in time for Christmas!
No worries, I'll be spending Christmas day assembling a ReRap 3D printer from RS... a £500 quid toy to make a 50p hanger for a curtain rail. Apparently it doesn't like dust and hair, so some sort of cat deterrent is in order (the dog doesn't do his duty in this respect). That and a trip to the pub and a family meal.
This is why I like the internet: http://www.3ders.org/articles/20131104-turn-your-3d-printer-into-an-instant-laser-cutter.html
For many people they can open a drawer full of container park (local tip) fodder and have a fully functional computer for £26 inc delivery. That's half the price a Playstation 4 game that only has slightly improved graphics over the last version, but the machine is still on this list.
Or how much would you give me for an old Dell USB keyboard? Wired USB logitech mouse. Powered chinese crystal cased USB hub. Toshiba 4GB SD card taken from a Nintendo 3DSXL. Ten bucks? No, I didn't think so. This shit sells for pennies on ebay.
I got a 16Gb high speed sdhc I card, case and pi for less than that money ... using old usb keyboard and mouse that were lying in the closet. I tried with an old SD card compared to my fast one and I did notice a substantial difference when the thing boots up, also launching apps is quicker ...
The thing could do with a recent dual core or quad core ARM cpu, though. <dream>I would not care paying 100+ for the raspberry pi quad core 1.7Ghz version with 2 or 4 Gbs of RAM</dream>
... I definitely have the wording ready for the missus.
Interweb: "The Roku 3 remote ... operates via Wi-Fi Direct rather than infrared."
So the RC headphone socket will still work with the RC tucked into a pocket? As opposed to carefully aimed at the Roku 3 base unit?
If so, nice. It'd also be a useful Internet Radio player to use with headphones around the house.
I can thoroughly recommend the Tado. It was a easy to install and works very well. They're currently offering a free visit for installation but you probably won't need it.
The beta version I got had issues with Sky broadband (and of course Sky won't let you change their awful router or DNS servers). Once we'd identified the problem a Tado engineer and new firmware written and remotely deployed within a day. Great service.
More like a list you'd see in 'stuff' that....
here's my techie xmas list:
- 3d printer (e.g. FlashForge Replicator 2)
- electric self balancing unicycle (e.g. airwheel X3)
- android tv stick (e.g. mk808)
- FPV micro quadcopter (e.g. Hubsan H107D)
- fully programmable HUD display (e.g. MOD Jet)
(disclaimer - I may have actually already bought all these already since Santa told me to FO and be happy with my orange and hoop & stick)
I strongly suspect that all those home users who haven't been bothered to upgrade their Windows OSes, will be even less likely to install Linux than upgrade Windows. My best guess is that what happens is nothing, until possibly the first unpatched attack, when things may start to happen..
That was a little tongue in cheek, but still, I think:
A lot of home computers will eventually end up infested with malware as new and exciting exploits come to light.
Some people will decide to buy a cheap new computer, very likely replacing an old desktop with a much more compact laptop.
Some will conclude that since they only ever used it for email and Skype, they can make do with something like a Tesco tablet.
A vanishingly small number of the people who've so far resisted upgrading from XP may decide to put Linux on their aging hardware. But you'll probably be able to count their numbers on the fingers of a pretty badly mutilated hand.
A vanishingly small number of the people who've so far resisted upgrading from XP may decide to put Linux on their aging hardware.
And they'll try Ubuntu, and discover that the latest version won't run on their machine as it needs super-de-luxe 3D graphics. Even my four-year-old nettop won't run stock Ubuntu 13.10 - it looks fine until you press the "flag" button, and then it all goes a lovely shade of blue. Quite nostalgic, really.
While Ubuntu is the most well-known desktop Linux, it will NEVER be "the year of desktop Linux".
So, £90 for a big ugly digital watch that needs recharging after 8 days. Versus a handful of quid for a digital watch from a market stall that will run for over a year off a tiny battery.....
Seriously, this thing looks like something Sinclair would have put out in 1983, and I'm struggling to think of any applications I'd like or need to use on a screen this size.........
I'm not going to give in to the temptation to repeat the famous Douglas Adams quote on such watches, but considering how easy it is to determine the time in our digital tech saturated world these days, and how most people carry smartphones with them which are better in every respect, this looks like a real xmas turkey.
That's what I thought about the looks too... But I got one anyway because, well, I'm this site's target audience.
It looks better in person, feels quite solid and I do actually find it useful. I always miss messages and phone calls because I can't feel my phone buzz in a coat pocket so that's one problem gone. I use my phone for music and leave it in an inside pocket, can use the watch to skip the tracks that I thought were a good idea to stick on the playlist at the time. I rarely use it to tell the time :D
Plus, it makes a decent bike speedo and the SDK is gradually getting more useful, so geeky funs!
Not in 2014, 2015 maybe after the desktop is redefined by marketing types world wide.
A Chrome OS based laptop type thingy, based on Linux OS, is kind of a desktop replacement, more than enough for what most consumer PC's of the last few years have to achieve, email with webmail, facebook for cats, twitter for ..., stream some stuff & maybe have to write a CV, yup sounds like a desktop replacement for many, did I mention it was Linux based :-)
Yes Ive had no issues using the site but bear in mind China now has a ban on batterys going by air these days so anything with such included comes snail mail.Despite the wait its cheaper than buying exactly the same stuff on auction sites.As to stocking fillers Id be looking in the lower £20 range with my budget
Nothing else even comes close, though sadly the consumer version wont be available this christmas.
Even more sadly, one can't buy shares in Oculus VR, if I could I'd slaughter my piggybank: I've not seen such an obvious game-changing future success since nVidia announced that it would release the first graphics card with 3D hardware acceleration (the Geforce).
> Nvidia NV1 through NV6, the astounding (for the time) 3Dfx
True, I expressed myself poorly. The earliest 3D cards didn't get a very strong start: few games supported 3dfx initially (though I played the heck out of Tomb Raider) and RIVA 128 had virtually no features and was buggy to the point of being broken. More to the point, they were dumb framebuffers. The Geforce 256 was the first which offloaded calculations from the CPU and did hardware transform, lighting and shading, allowing orders of magnitude more polygons on screen.
I saw the design a couple of months before release, and I instantly knew that I was looking at the future of gaming. It almost physically pained me that I could not buy shares in nVidia.
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