TrackingPoint’s Intelligent Digital Tracking Scope and Precision Guided Firearm

Today, I was pretty excited at seeing the Popslate, and I was feeling pretty good about where technology was headed. Now, I saw TrackingPoint’s Intelligent Digital Tracking Scope and Precision Guided Firearm, and I am slightly afraid.

The reason why is that it is a gun that will automatically fire on its target. All that is required is to look through the scope and “tag” a target like you would a friend’s photo on Facebook. Okay, it is a little bit different than that, but it is interesting that they use the term “tag”.

Once a target is “tagged” all that is necessary is to squeeze the trigger and the gun will automatically fire when the scope lines up perfectly with the tag.

My Source tells me that TrackingPoint will be at CES this year. I don’t see them having a booth with actual guns. Check out the video after the jump.

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Popslate, an iPhone case with an E Ink screen on the back

This is why I keep working. Ah yes, every once in a while I see a product that has huge potential.

Today, it is the Popslate, and it is an iPhone 5 case that has a four-inch e-ink screen on the back. This is a screen that is always on low-power, which is like a second monochromatic screen for the iPhone.

Popslate uses a social imaging app which allows the user to take and share pictures, and then “pop” them to the back of the phone. All you need to do is tap on the backside of the screen.

You can watch the video after the jump. Granted, this is a Indiegogo project which is like Kickstarter, which is another crowdfunded source that is becoming very common these days.

I don’t know about you, but I can totally see an age where every phone has two screens. The Popslate could be the accessory that starts this trend. After all, it feels like every new smartphone has two cameras, one in the front and one in the back.


HyTAQ Hybrid Quadrotor Robot

I just reported on some very futuristic transportation with the Series Lo MagLev train, and now I have something very special with the HyTAQ hybrid quadrotor robot.

You might want to hit the jump and watch the video for this one. Allow me to simply say that it is essentially like the time-traveling Delorean from Back to the Future. Not only can it do the roads, but where it is going, it doesn’t need roads.

Yes, this machine, designed by Arash Kalantari and Matthew Spenko, allows a quadrotor device to be placed within a cage. Not only can it fly like a quadrotor, but it can roll along on almost any terrain.

Granted, the flight time is only 5 minutes and 1,969 feet, but this is in miniature. I have no idea if there is any plan to turn this into a vehicle that I could drive. That would make our current roads a little too narrow, but I like the idea vehicles that can fly, even if it is only for a few minutes for a charge.

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Series Lo MagLev train to rocket across Japan

This is one of the times where watching the video here probably won’t help. That is unless you are fluent in Japanese, but I wouldn’t recommend using the YouTube translator. I have heard about a lot of fails from that.

Here is what you need to know: this is the Series Lo, a Mag-Lev train developed by Japan’s JR Tokai, is planned for finished construction in 2027. In case you are not familiar with the Mag-Lev construction, it uses magnets to levitate the train above the tracks. The end result is a smoother ride for the travelers.

The Series Lo MagLev train will travel at speeds of 311 miles per hour, which is speedy enough for going from Tokyo to Nagoya in just 40 minutes. The current bullet trains travel that in about 90 minutes.

So by 2027, trains will carry 1,000 passengers in 16 cars at a great speed. If that works, the track will be expanded all the way to Osaka, and the speed will be 500 KPH.


And now, for your entertainment pleasure, Christmas light houses

Every year, I see houses with Christmas Lights create these videos that are simply amazing. This year, since that rapper PSY has had 800 million hits on his “Gangnam Style” video, it seems only appropriate to do a Christmas tree light video to that song.

I hope that you are amazed by this. I have four questions that I would like to address after the jump. Also, I have some other videos of Christmas house light videos. Is this what they are called?

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Nintendo Wii Mini goes for $99

By now, you have heard that the Wii U is out there, and I am certain that it is the holiday “must have” item. I am guessing that there is no way that every one who wants it for Christmas can get it, and sometimes I wonder if the company does this deliberately to create a demand.

But enough of my corporate conspiracy theories. I think it is interesting that Nintendo wants to keep the Wii alive with the Wii Mini. The Wii Mini is a remodeled Wii that can play all of the original Wii games, and has a matte black finish with a red border.

Unfortunately, the Wii Mini will only be available in Canada. There are two other drawbacks: the Wii Mini has no internet connection and is not backwards compatible with the GameCube games.

I feel that Nintendo is sort of getting the Wii Mini out of its system, and I can’t help but wonder if we will be seeing the Wii Mini next Christmas. If I had to guess, I would say…no.


Skullcandy PLYR2 Wireless Headset

Skullcandy puts out a great number of headphones and earbuds every ear, and the quality is quite good. I recently reported that they were doing gaming headphones, and the PLYR2 is apparently the company’s first pair of wireless headphones.

Yeah, that took me by surprise, but the PLYR2 has 2.4GHz wireless audio with “Supreme sound” technology as well as three different EQ sound modes. Also on board is GMX Stereo transmitter to balance out the game and voice audio, and it has an adjustable boom mic.

It is pretty expensive at $129.99, but I have seen more expensive like the Plantronics Commander at twice that price. You can get it in black, white, or teal. In case you are curious, there is a PLYR1 coming out early next year with Dolby sound on board.


TaskOne, the iPhone 5 case for MacGyver

I have been reporting on a lot of iPhone cases these days, but I will have to say that the TaskOne case is one of the most versatile. I have to admit, I can’t see any reason why someone would not combine an iPhone case with a Swiss Army knife, but now I can’t see why not. I guess this is another brilliant yet simple idea, like the Paperclip headphones.

As you can see on this image, it has lots of blades, screwdrivers, Allen Wrenches, not to mention a bottle opener, wire cutter, and needle-nose pliers. I would imagine that if they ever updated MacGyver for this decade, he would wield a TaskOne on his iPhone.

Of course, this had to be a privately funded project, doesn’t it? That means that if you pledge your money, you can get it when the particular goal is reached. If you pledge $90 at the site here, you can get your hands on one.


The Hirobo Personal Microhelicopter

This is a pretty interesting story, as it is about something that I really would want to try out, a personal helicopter, or microcopter.

I suppose that years of playing with remote-controlled helicopters has made me want to fly on my own personal chopper, and this is where it gets kind of strange.

You see, Hirobo is a Japanese company best known for producing small remote controlled helicopters, and they are wanting to produce this HX-1 helicopter that you see here.

This completely electric vehicle can travel through the air at over 60 miles per hour at 30 minutes per charge. I have no idea how high it can go, and I also don’t know if we will ever see it.

After all, my Source says that Hirobo will have to invest $125 million in this project for the next 7 years. The first test flight is scheduled for 2013, with a rollout in 2021. The price would be about $375,000 per chopper, which seems pretty expensive to me.


Mini Fridge bears resemblance to Dr. Who’s TARDIS

I have recently discovered a British gem known as Doctor Who, a show which has been going on for several decades. I have only seen the most recent offering which began in 2001, and I enjoy watching it immensely.

Yeah, it probably is worth one of my speculative fiction articles, but if you watch the show, then you know about the enigmatic Time Lord simply known as “The Doctor” who travels through time and space with three things: a companion, a sonic screwdriver, and a TARDIS (acronym for Time and Relative Dimension in Space), a time-travelling ship that looks like a Police call box.

I wouldn’t consider myself a big-time Doctor Who fan, but I like the show in small doses. For those who are huge fans might love to have a TARDIS Mini Fridge. It is only large enough to hold a six-pack of soda, which is odd, because on the show, the TARDIS is quite a large room in the space the size of a phone booth.

It works on a standard US outlet or DC 12V car socket, and it makes the trademark VWORP VWORP sounds when the door is opened. I don’t think there is a light that comes on the inside, but there is a flashing light on top.

As you might have guessed, this is an official Doctor Who collectible, which means it might be worth a lot some day. As it is, it is worth about $79.99 now, and can be purchased here on the ThinkGeek Site.