[A friendly warning, there are 100 pictures in this trip report, so you may want to wait until you have access to a fast internet connection before viewing it all]
The last time I attended a show was several years ago for the New York Auto Show and the now no longer PC-Expo. Back then, I went to see new stuff and to get swag (stuff we all get). Fast forward to present day, my visit to the Digital Life show had a new mission, to find cool products to share with Gear Diary readers. Digital Life focuses on the ultimate in consumer technology, gaming and entertainment. I feel there is a broad range of products on display of interest to everyone.
In planning my Digital Life visit, robots were number one on my list. Those who know me well know that I love robots. The top two companies to showcase robot products at Digital Life are WowWee and Nikko.
The WowWee booth was packed with show visitors and the highlight was the new FlyTech Barry B. Benson. FlyTech Barry B. Benson is based on the lead character from the Dreamworks Animation’s Bee Movie, starring Jerry Seinfeld.
The retail box of the FlyTech Barry B. Benson:
The following three pictures show one of the WowWee reps flying the FlyTech Barry B. Benson high above the show floor:
Picture of FlyTech Barry B. Benson with the radio controller:
The FlyTech Barry B. Benson, is a modified version the
Above and below, the WowWee rep tells Digital Life visitors about the Flytech Dragonfly.
Also, at the WowWee booth was, Robopanda, and crowd favorite Roboquad.
Robopanda sort of reminds me of Teddy Ruxpin. But this robot bear is so much more. Not only can it tell stories, Robopanda can sit, crawl, walk on all fours and even give hugs. There is no remote, all control and interaction is via touch and audio sensors.
People who saw the Roboquad, all commented how cute the robot is.
Next up was thebooth. It is hard to say which was the most popular robot at the booth. I have to say it was a tie between the Spykee and the R2-D2 Wireless Remote Webcam.
The R2-D2 Wireless Remote Webcam is a roving robot which you can operate via remote using the lightsaber replica remote controller, which also functions as an IP phone. The special bundled remote access software allows you to access the R2-D2 Wireless Remote Webcam from anywhere in the world, using it as a surveillance camera to capture video and still pictures.
The Spykee, “the Spy robot,” looks really cool! The robot is a video surveillance system, music player, VOIP phone, and webcam.
In the Spykee’s main configuration pictured above, it reminds me of Johnny Five from the 80’s movie Short Circuit. I feel that is no coincidence. Johnny Five in the movie not only looked great, he was stable and able to travel over different terrain with its wide tank tread base. According to the Nikko rep, the Spykee will operate on hard floors and just as well on carpeting.
The Spykee kit being under the Erector brand, means it is a building kit. The following four pictures show some of the different configurations.
Also, additional Erector set parts can be used to make new custom robot designs. The robot comes with a charging dock station. The robot will find and automatically dock to it. And just like the R2-D2 Wireless Remote Webcam, Spykee also can be remotely controlled over the internet.
The following picture shows the remote control software running on a Mac. The Spykee also comes with software for Windows.
Last up at the Nikko booth is the R2-D2 Digital Audio and Video Projector. This is a hardcore Star Wars fan boy dream come true. This model R2-D2 is fully tricked out for projecting video and playing audio and video from a variety of sources.
There is a CD-ROM drive to play CD and DVD’s. There are memory card and USB slots. Computer media files playable are mp3 and mp4. There are also VGA, audio/video inputs, onboard 20-watt stereo speaker system, IPOD docking station and R2-D2 sounds.
Also featured is the remote control which is a scale model of the Millennium Falcon, complete with a display stand. The really major feature is the full-motion remote control that allows you to make R2-D2 roll around your home.
Continuing on with cool tech toys, I stopped by the Hasbro booth. Featured is the Power Tour Electronic Guitar. Making music is big this Fall, made popular by the past success of Guitar Hero, toy companies are jumping in for a piece of the action.
The Power Tour Electronic Guitar has touch sensitive sensors instead of strings. There are twelve built-in songs for learning how to play guitar. In learn mode. The touch sensors light up showing which note to play. This Guitar looks like a lot of fun.
Hasbro is evolving the i-Dog line with the louder i-Dog Amp’d. Accessories on display were doggie bags and the i-DOG Chill sets that include hat, ear warmers, sweater, scarf and socks.
Another featured item at the Hasbro booth is Squawkers McCaw. This electronic Parrot offers animatronics and voice recognition. Squawkers McCaw will dance to music that you play. The included remote allows for programmable features. Squawkers will also respond to voice commands with funny and playful phrases.
Over at the Mattel booth, there was another electronic guitar on display, the Fisher Price I Can Play Guitar.
This guitar plugs into the TV and features learning how to play guitar with song and game cartridges. This guitar has buttons for the chords and metal rods for the strumming strings.
What caught my attention at the Mattel booth for innovative use of technology were two products in theline. IM-ME and Video Journal. These products are used with a Windows based computer.
, is a safe portable wireless messaging device. IM-ME users can only chat with other IM-ME users that they approve, keeping strangers away. Since the IM-ME is portable, girls can chat with friends without being in front the computer. IM-ME comes with a USB wireless adapter and works with your existing home internet connection.
is a fun high tech diary. The Video Journal set comes with a digital camera and journal software.
The digital camera links directly to the journal software for uploading of pictures and video. The journal software is full featured with assorted templates and graphics. Also, included in the journal software is a calendar for keeping organized. Pages of the journal can be printed out and password protection and hide button features keep out snooping siblings.
JAKKS Pacific, had a very cool device, the. It is a handheld electronic 200x microscope that plugs directly into the TV. Very cool!
This next product is not a electronic toy, but it is a great tool to help parents manage their kids screentime. The device is called the BOB Screentime Controller, by Hopscotch.
The TV electric cord plugs into BOB, then the locked cover with a cut out for the cord covers the plug and BOB plugs into the electric outlet. BOB can manage time for up to six users. When the programmed hourly, daily, or weekly limits are reached, BOB shuts off the TV.
I next started to cover the gaming portions of Digital Life, first up was the Gleemax booth which had an interesting attention grabbing giant brain in an exoskeleton bubble.
Gleemax is a web site for gamers. Offering social networking, online gaming and game related content.
At the next booth there was a familiar looking game called. From what I can tell, it is a Mario Kart clone for the PC. It is an online multiplayer racing game and is free.
Look! Power-up cubes, just like in Mario Kart.
Konami had a booth setup with a pair of the arcade Dance Dance Revolution and was holding DDR competitions. The booth was crowded with many watchers all day.
The Pyramat booth had gaming furniture on display. What looks like chairs with speakers built into them.
No one seemed interested, in the furniture, they were all watching this dude play Guitar Hero.
I next make my way over to the Intel/Dell Mobile Gaming booth. Where Intel and Dell had a custom semi truck all pimped out for the.
My jaw dropped as I never saw so many Dell XPS gaming systems in one place before. Those XPS computers are so sweet!
Look at those pretty lights.
The Intel/Dell Mobile Gaming booth was dimly lit, so that the pretty lights of the computers can be seen.
I really want my next computer to look similar to this one.
Above and below: Intel had this over-kill setup with formula one racer shells to enhance the gaming experience.
I then made my way over to the tournament area. The tournament is held by. I did a quick interview with one of the people at the registration table. The tournament area is where people play online games for prize money. The pros get to play on stage. He also told me that they flew in one of the top gamers from Korea. I heard about video gaming competitions, but I have never been to one in person. It is incredible! Just like a sporting event, there are spectators and game commentators.
Kind of hard to believe that people would want to sit and watch other people playing video games. I rather be one of the people playing.
Some of these kids are going to be future gaming pros!
W.O.W. – World of Warcraft stations.
The last two pictures show the game commentators area and their hardware.
Dell showed off their new gaming PC’s. Below is the new model . Notice that this laptop has a full size keyboard with numeric keypad. Also, it is the first notebook to have the Logitech GamePanel LCD. The XPS 1730 is one really sweet computer, but I can’t justify spending over $3000 for it.
Dell high-end desktop PC’s, the XPS 720 and XPS 720 H2C. The XPS 720 line sports thick aluminium panels that will not dent or make metal ripple noises when you press in on them. Both the XPS 1730 and 720 line also feature lightFX, which allows you to light up the computer with a range of up to seven color choices.
The Dell posts awhile back.. I admit that I have never seen a m2010 in it’s full glory before Digital Life. I saw bits and pieces of it in one of Judie’s
This computer is wicked! It really looks like a ultra fancy desktop computer does’nt it?
Look! The keyboard detaches and is wireless!
And… the whole thing is portable!!!
When HP bought Voodoo a year ago, I thought that they would run Voodoo as a completely separate entity. Well, I was totally wrong. Very high profile at the HP booth was the HP Blackbird. The Blackbird computer is a blending of HP and Voodoo technology.
Inside of this Black glossy beauty is the tattoo “Voodoo dna” to indicate its roots.
Closer view of the CPU, fans, memory and some heat piping.
A corner of the HP booth was set aside for. I suppose to let the world know that HP owns Voodoo.
Above, thein blue and below, the Envy in red. For those who do not know, Voodoo computers are available with sports car painted finishes. These are some sexy computers!
Just when I thought that there were no more computers to impress me, I came upon the Xyber Technologies booth. Xyber offers completely fan-less computers.
The cases of Xyber computers are giant heatsinks drawing away heat from internal components. Aluminum tubing filled with inert gas is used to draw heat away from components that typically require fans. Without the fans, Xyber computers run on only 90 – 240 watts.
The buzz and best of Digital Life 2007, the.
The Gateway One, is a all-in-one computer with a heavy emphasis on “one”. The computer sports a only one cable design, so the keyboard and mouse are wireless.
On one side of the One are fireware, USB ports, and headphone and mic jacks.
On the opposite end is the CD/DVD drive slot. Coming out the back is one cable.
The One has a tool-less access case. A latch quick releases the chassis cover for simple upgrading of hard drive, memory and wireless options.
The One’s power supply and media remote.
Tucked away on the opposite side of the Gateway booth was this nicedisplay. This display is huge!
Why is it extreme? Gateway says that it is four times the resolution of typical HDTV (720p), which makes this display 1600p. The extreme HD sports a 2560×1600 resolution and six inputs of, HDMI, VGA, DVI, composite and S-video. All included is a six-port USB hub.
There were some cool gadgets shown at Digital Life that are worth mentioning.
First is the Headplay Personal Cinema System.
This visual headset delivers a virtual 52″ screen for viewing video from portable media players, game consoles, computers, and DVD players. I got to try out the Headplay, it is very nice.
Below, people trying out Halo 3 on the Xbox with the Headplay.
Now for those who enjoy internet radio, you no longer have to listen via your computer. The Phoenix WiFi Radio by Com One will allow for listing of internet radio anywhere there is WiFi access. It sports stereo speakers. Can play MP3 and WMA files on USB flash drives or MP3 players that connect via the onboard USB port. And runs on batteries and AC power.
In cameras, thisis very impressive. Why? Because it is waterproof with a JIS Class 8 rating and will allow for underwater photography of up to 3m below the surface.
For those who love their iPods, the portable, shatterproof, waterproof EGO sound case will allow you to take your iPod to the beach, pool or any environment that will pose a risk of damaging it. Yes, the iPod in the EGO is submerged in the tube of water.
Some Gear Diary readers may remember my article about my experience with Reactrix back in June. It was cool to find them at Digital Life. At the show, Reactrix Systems announced their partnership with Hopelab to promote the ‘Ruckus Nation’ competition to get kids moving. Gear Diary readers with good ideas may want to check it out and get a chance at winning $300,000 in prizes.
High above the show floor, the Reactrix projector unit.
Some kids enjoying the Reactrix gaming.
Some more kids enjoying the Reactrix gaming. There are some smaller kids who are so amazed by Reactrix, that they just stand there on the Reactrix tile.
I met the representatives from Reactrix Systems, Inc and they were so kind in providing some video footage of the Reactrix in action.
Even Geek Squad attended Digital Life. To draw attention to their booth they had the crusher. Geeks were answering tech questions from show visitors.
They were supposed to crush a hard drive every hour, but the countdown timers were not on. I had no idea when the next crushing was to occur. I missed the crushings as I was too busy looking around at the other stuff on the show floor. All I got is this picture of the aftermath carnage.
For swag, I got a nice batch. There are the typical stuff, product information sheets and cards. A few CD’s, pens, and some post-it-notes. The coolest swag was from Dell and Microsoft.
Dell gave me this really cool USB flash drive bracelet. It is only 256mb, but it is still cool.
And, Microsoft gave me a deck of Windows Vista branded playing cards.
Digital Life was fun with lots of cool stuff to see. It was especially fun to try out many of the products on display. I wish that I was able to attend the event on more than one day instead of squeezing it all into one visit. Maybe next year I will plan ahead for a multiple day visit.
4 Responses to “Allen Visits Digital Life 2007”
- Kerry Woo Allen, very nice writeup! Thanks for being the tour guide…
- Judie Lipsett So many robots and shiny new computers!! Have you looked at the price for a custom painted VooDoo? I did the other day and almost fainted. And I loved peeking at your swag – it’s one of my favorite things about going to CES!
- Allen Hong Kerry: Thanks for the kind comment. Judie: You almost fainted? LOL.I priced a Voodoo when I first found out about them a few years ago. The laptop I wanted, came out to $6000 fully loaded. Hopelessly out of my reach.
I would have to say that the best swag I ever got was the USB flash drive bracelet. What was the best that you got from a show?
- Judie Lipsett Yeah, I specced one out at about $5k…and then realized that painting it the color I wanted was an addition $1600 or so on top of that. Holy Cow…as if!! Call me crazy, but no laptop is worth almost $7K to me. The best swag I ever got? Well, last year at CES it seemed like all of the booths I visited were loading me down with review samples. I think I mailed something to most of the team members to review just from stuff I had collected on the floor! But if you mean swag in the traditional sense, I like cool pens, t-shirts and tote bags best.