Mix together a combination of canvas, sawdust, clowns and speciality acts under the control of a ringmaster means the subject must be a circus.
The concept of a circus has changed radically since my early youth. Animal acts are considered both inappropriate and cruel while other forms of entertainment have proved more irresistible by modern day audiences. If it is not digital or personal then you start off with a disadvantage especially when the viewing environment lacks the desired level of comfort demanded by today's paying customers.
Another pair of items that have been used together with the Space Station and USB light reviewed a few days ago. First the Microsoft Wireless Notebook Laser Mouse and second a very neat and compact DVD-RW USB2 drive that will work with any PC or notebook.
Microsoft Wireless Notebook Laser Mouse 7000 For anyone who dislikes trackpads then an external mouse with a notebook is the answer. Having a wireless mouse means that the limited space often associated with notebooks can be utilised better if the mouse does not have to operate in a specific place and not having a certain length of cable helps. This offering has a USB receiver that looks almost identical to a USB pen/stick drive.
Adding to the range of iPod accessories, not developed by Apple, is a new speaker and recharging unit from Logitech.
click to enlarge The influence of the iPod phenomena continues to spread. The latest example of this trend to come my way is the Pure-Fi Anywhere product. Developed by Logitech, this product is a one-piece, portable speaker set with a centrally positioned docking station for the ubiquitous iPod.
This is a multi function unit (as it has fax) but for me anyway the major selling point is itís ability to print A4 photo quality borderless images in 68seconds, yes I do mean one minute and eight seconds.
click to enlarge Speed of photo printing has never been that important to me only quality, but when a MFU can print lovely images with great sharpness and depth in this time I wonder why some other units take ten times this long to produce an image. It is quite large at 47x42x21cm and will never pass the lounge police as it is silver grey and matt black. The front edge has 45 buttons several LED's and a 5x4cm TFT display.
Here I am looking at two useful accessories from different manufactures that work well together. First an item to clear up the clutter of wires for everything that connects to a notebook. The second provides that light just where you need it courtesy of a USB port.
Space Station This is a laptop dock, USB hub, cable management system and a desk organiser. It is black, 65cm long, 11cm wide and 4cm tall at the rear and 3cm tall at the front. The top is covered with rubber while the sides and back are plastic. Turn it upside down to reveal a four port USB hub (power supply is supplied should it be required) and there are sixteen clips in two shapes and sizes to secure cords.
A last minute decision took me to a central London hotel for news of a new product that has already taken America by storm.
Flip is the name and flip is the action that reveals a concealed USB connector. But just what is this product whose name is derived from a user-instigated action? The Flip is a digital camcorder aimed at the mass consumer market and has been designed around the three core concepts of fun, simplicity and quality. Available in a choice of white, black, orange or pink, the Flip provides out-of-the-box point and shoot capability.
This looks like a small DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera while is not it does have a range of features such as a decent continuous shooting mode only normally found on DLSR units.
click to enlarge It is 10x7x7cm when switched off, the lens can jut out by another 3.5cm. It is of course black and it weights around 360grams with - shock horror - the supplied 4x 'AA' batteries inserted. It is supplied with a neck strap partly as most wrists would soon get tired with that weight and probably partly as DSLR units always come with neck straps.
While Adobe Photoshop is the popular choice for professional users, it can prove rather expensive for the home or enthusiastic amateur. Fortunately there is an alternative from Adobe.
For those who fall into the rather limited budget category and wish to stick with the kudos of an Adobe branded product then Adobe Photoshop Elements is the obvious route to take. Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 is the first version of the product to be released since the launch of Windows Vista and comes with some additional features.
Forget about Sir Richard Branson and Sir Alan Sugar, you could be the next rising star in the UK business firmament. Offering to help you hone your skills in this respect is Industry Giant II.
This business simulation title, developed by JoWood, now forms part of the Reload series and is available from Avanquest Software Publishing as Industry Giant II Gold Edition which add the Official Expansion Pack to the standard version of the game. Whereas previously Industry Giant II was set in the period stretching from 1900 to 1980, the expansion pack now takes the player into the future and the year 2020.
This is a top quality DAB radio, it also allows you to play CDís using a lot loading drive. Various colours are available, mine was shiny black but most things can be done using the 32 key remote control.
The Tangent Cinque DAB radio is 23x21x12.5cm, as stated mine was shiny black that will normally show all the fingermarks but once in place you really only need to touch it to insert or remove CD's and as that is a slot loader not really even then. It looks magnificent with the black mirror finish. The rear has the various connections and an eight piece (67cm) rod aerial.
Are you looking for a new toaster or kettle? With so many brands out there it can be very confusing so here is a simple guide to help you choose.
"Bread and water can so easily be toast and tea." Anonymous When I suggested to my colleagues at Gadgetspeak that we should look at toasters and kettles, I didn't realise quite how much toast I would have to eat, nor how much tea would be involved!! But we do like to be thorough for you, dear reader. A piece of toast is not just a piece of toast to the British.
Having entertained children for 85 years, Nutwoodís oldest resident has gone digital with his latest version.
For many the mere mention of the name Rupert Bear will bring back memories of early childhood. This cartoon strip and annual book character was a stable diet for the young with stories and adventures based in Nutwood. Now, as often happens, this popular paper-based character has re-emerged in digital format on CD-ROM with Rupert Bear Nutwood Games available from Avanquest Software Publishing Ltd.
Apple were arguably late to the MP3 market - but when they got there, they certainly made an
impact. Five generations on and the original distinctive iPod family were joined by the 'Touch',
sporting many of the same features but in a significantly different package.
click to enlarge The iPod Touch arrives in a fairly small package, sporting John Lennon on the front. Inside the box you'll find the device itself, Apples hallmark white headphones, white USB cable, a docking adaptor to allow the Touch form factor to work with the existing range of iPod accessories, a cleaning cloth and a tiny perspex stand.
This is a rather different phone with a camera in fact although it will do everything a modern mobile phone does I think a more accurate description with be camera phone as it is a 5MP camera with both auto and manual focus as well as flash.
click to enlarge This phone has a huge TFT and as soon as you use it you think why don't other phones work this way. The controls are minimal and that means the screen icons often have more than one level of action. However most actions are intuitive so you should - even without a manual - manage to find you way about. The dimensions are 10x5.5x1.5cm and it weights just under 100grams. As stated there are few buttons. The face has three answer, cancel and end.
Here I will tell you about two of the board games I was promised at the Toy Fair in January that have recently arrived. First About Time a game stated to be for 14+, second one for 8+ Cat Attack.
About Time First the 14+ claim this is I think simply because the questions are not that easy - well I did not think so anyway - and to have a chance to enjoy the game you need to be able to get a percentage correct. It is all about 'Iconic Events' and when they took place. The game is for at least two players but it states 2-20 players. You could play in teams with teams always being able to confer.
A central London location was the setting for the UK launch of Acerís latest mobile product. Michael Fereday was there.
How small is small? Some would think that an atom is small enough to satisfy even the most demanding when it comes to the lack of size classification. I mention this because the Atom is the name that Intel has bestowed on its new purpose built lower power mobile processor. An Intel Atom processor N270 (1.60GHz, 533MHz FSB and 512KB L2 cache) sits at the heart of Acer's new Aspire One product which is described as being the company's first Internet device.
A 12MP mass market digital camera is still rare, a 5x zoom one even rarer, this offering from Kodak is both. Even with both those advantages it looks like a standard small digital camera.
This is a very dark grey unit with a silver flash and silver ring round the lens, it is 9x6.5x3.5 when switched off. The 3.5cm width doubles when on full zoom. It weights around 175grams. For a camera with potentially so many plus points to find it is powered by two 'AA' batteries is unexpected.
An on-line service to turn your digital prints into so much more - from prints and enlargements to collages and collages; from cushions and handbags, to photobooks and wall art.
photos were all filed in virtual albums on the Photobox in a the passworded account I created earlier.
click to enlarge On-line Digital Photo Printing from Photobox You know the story.
Suites continue to be a popular flavour with utility developers as can be seen with an offering from Avanquest.
By bundling together three software utilities, Avanquest has created Perfect Image 11 Backup & Protect Suite. The titles involved in this suite are Perfect Image 11; DiskCopy & Clean; and AutoSave 2. This collection of titles is aimed at providing the means to deal with different aspects of hard disk management.
Time to splice the main brace, raise the Jolly Roger and live the life of a pirate if you dare.
As part of the Reload White Label, : Two Treasures is available at the
(plus £2.99 shipping) Software Publishing Ltd. As the title suggests this Ascaron developed game involves pirates and all the different types of activity normally associated with this seafaring, criminal element. Tortuga bargain basement price of £4.99 from Avanquest The game, which requires both ActiveX 9.