back to article SHINY NEW GADGETS! No, we're not joking, here's a load of them

Image is everything - or so it has been said, and if the gadgets at the recent IFA techfest in Berlin are anything to go by, then manufacturers certainly seem to think we’re image-obsessed. With selfies being a global compulsion, perhaps they know us better than we know ourselves. Narcissism aside, the rise of wearable cameras …

  1. frank ly

    Just wondering

    Sony Action Cam: Can you get a decent stereo recording with microphones so close together?

    Self-stirring pot: Can it stir porridge well and does it tell you if you need to add a bit more water?

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: Just wondering

      I'd think the less than stellar performance of Sony action cams in anything less than a full sunny day would be more of a worry. Most "action cam" audio is engine or wind noise anyway.

      GoPro turns out a decent product with no rolling shutter problems and really good video without having to spend all day dicking with the camera. That's why they're the big name and everyone is playing catch up. A lot of the action cam stuff doesn't handle the action well, or just doesn't put out as good video. They're cheaper but it shows.

    2. Chris Holford

      Re: Just wondering

      For classic 'Blunlein' stereophony the two microphones are as near to coincident as practical; gives a very natural impression of the sound field.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Just wondering

        Alan Blumlein.

        Killed in WW2 because the Government didn't see the need to protect their tame electronics genius from unnecessary risk.

    3. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Just wondering

      Assuming the same tech you can find in any chemistry lab the answer is:

      1. Yes it can stir porridge.

      2. In theory, you can measure the current required to rotate (or switch magnetic field orientation) on the anchor under the plate. It can be used as a proxy for viscosity so you can indeed sound an alarm that the porridge needs more water (if the stirrer has stopped moving or needs a lot of energy to move).

  2. brooxta

    > Panasonic certainly created quite a stir.

    I think it will just be a flash in the pan.

  3. Pet Peeve

    Most if not all induction stoves do the only-heat-the-pot-on-the-burner thing. I've had one for a couple years (it's flush-mounted to my countertop so it just looks like a piece of black glass when it's off) and it does this trick too. When you lift up the pot, the induction system shuts off on that "burner" after a brief delay (in case you're just moving it around).

    1. Stacy

      More than that

      Induction stoves don't heat up at all (except for the small amount of heat that radiates from the pan to the glass). The pans themselves heat up - that is the reason they are so energy efficient compared to other forms of cooking.

      I see what Panasonic have done though - it's a very nice extension of the Flexi Zone idea that our Siemens induction cooker has. Each cooking zone has multiple induction coils. So, rather than supply power to the whole cooking area of a burner, only the zone that senses a pan actually has power supplied to it. The Panasonic one just looks like it has much smaller individual zones than the Siemens one has.

      I wonder how hard it is to control though - as it looks like it is one giant burner as opposed to 5 individual ones.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sony, sort it out

    Good to see a new action cam, I have two already, cheaper than GoPro and picture-wise seem as good as to me.

    However why don't the muppets think in three planes? Capture HEIGHT as well as location please - handy if you're flying. Seriously, what are they thinking when writing the GPS log and replace altitude (which presumably has been resolved) with 0? I've looked through the logs incredulously.

    1. Steven Raith

      Re: Sony, sort it out

      Is GPS height measurement not a bit inaccurate? Might be why it's not there - an electronic barometer might be a better one for gauging height via barometric pressure?

      Steven R

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Sony, sort it out

        And I capture that information into the camera, how? :)

        Barometric measurement always preferable but needs constant recalibration as pressure changes (and as location changes.)

        GPS is good enough for reviewing a video. I'm not attempting to land using it...

  5. Elmer Phud
    Paris Hilton

    Why am I not surprised . . .

    . . . that the article starts off with strap-ons?

  6. -tim


    The self stirring pot has been in chemistry labs for decades. A biochemist friend with a knack for electronics had on in his kitchen with an IR detector above that would control the pot so make sure its contents stayed at the proper temperature and stirred. He also hooked up a gas detector in his new born twins room and somehow managed to avoid changing dippers until his wife asked about the odd device.

    I was looking at putting in an induction stove in a place that I intend to rent and I'm trying to make it mostly handicap friendly but I can't find an induction stove that can be easily used by someone who is blind.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: New?

      Possibly this one, if you want a 'built-in'

      Rather than touch controls it has knobs.

      Similarly, if you go to the Argos website, you can select freestanding cookers with induction hobs, of which it claims there are currently 19 examples: more if you are happy with 'range-style' cookers - many, if not all use knobs.

      If you go for a step up in price, the professional induction hobs for use in commercial kitchens all come with knobs, not touch controls. But they are expensive.

  7. durandal


    £500 pound gets you a box that scans and then prints a 3D object?

    The future has clearly arrived! It might be clunky and the printed item might turn out to be the C21 equivalent of asbestos, but still...

  8. T J

    More reasons to shoot cyclists

    Since the clown-clothed, space and privacy invading, jumped-up t*rds will no doubt use it, hopefully the gear will remain a bright, vivid orange. Makes the little bastards a lot easier to sight up...

  9. Voland's right hand Silver badge

    40y old lab mixing comes to the kitchen

    Magnetic stirrers have been a cornerstone of any chemical or biological lab for the last 40 years (if not more). They are as old as I remember and the sole thing preventing their use in most kitchens is that the pans are made of steel.

    Any aluminium or glass pan can be happily stirred this way so excuse me while I yawn and remember my university days...

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