Updated 12/12/2006 05:00 AM
Gift ideas for the mobil technophile in your life
Take more of your living room with you. There are lots of high tech gifts this year designed for just that. Take personal media recorders for example: at around $200 there are a bunch out there like the iRecord
, Neuros OSD
, or iLuv i80
. They let a loved one watch just about anything they want on their iPod video, PlayStation portable or similar devices.
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“You hook it up to a video source like your cable box or DVD player, record content in real time. It makes a digital file of it that can be played back directly on the iPod, PSP, smart phones, your PC,” says Johan Abadie of Neuros Technology.
Or, for the PC user who prefers to watch what's on TV right now, also for around $200, here’s something brand new this year: TV antennas that connect to a notebook through the USB slot. There are a few that work like the ONAir GT. It picks up all sorts of broadcast TV including high definition TV and comes with software that lets you set up recordings of shows. Another option is the Pinnacle PCTV. How well those shows come in though, of course, depends on where you are.
The myvu personal media viewer is finally now available to consumers. You connect it to devices like a portable DVD player or video iPods and rather than relying on a tiny screen, you experience something more like watching on 27-inch TV. Before dropping $300, make sure it's compatible with whatever particular device it'll be used.
Finally, if the mobile person in your life really just wants to keep an eye on what's going on back home, the PC Bot can help. Basically, it's like the PC you already have only in robot form.
“It can move around your house, it can check on your kids, check on your dogs, it has a webcam, it has a microphone,” says Richard Lepack of White Box Robotics. “It plays music, plays videos, it can capture video for you. So the basic principle is it does anything your computer does. You can do your spreadsheet, you can write your word processing documents.”
Though, kids who are intent on doing something naughty need only to seek refuge on an alternate level of the home since the PC Bot, at least initially, can't do stairs.