Greetings, impartial travelers, and welcome to the spring edition of Gadget Dreams and Nightmares, the column that smiles at the exquisite gadgets in the full gadget and rapidly ejects the dreadful suffocating weeds.
Our garden wonder this week may feature a new BlackBerry tablet, a printable humanoid robot, a powerful portable charger, and a smart watering can.
As always, these are not reviews. The rating is only related to how interested I am in using each item, and I have nothing to do with how likely each product is to go to Hirewire.
Print this robot
The PLEN2 (pictured above) is simply adorable.
A robot can seemingly fix all of the world’s problems, if its Kickstarter project is anything to believe, the PLEN2 is possibly the happiest humanoid machine I’ve seen in years.
Maybe I am a little bit dominated by the infectious theme song in the pitch video.
The idea is to sell basic robots and to let customers get creative using open source tools and 3D-printed parts so that they can adapt PLEN2 in any way.
The most compelling, beyond the innate charm of the talk, is the multitude of control options the owners promise.
Sure, you can tell PLEN2 what to do by tapping your smartphone, but why do it when you can command it through facial expressions or the brain?
I have an immediate soft spot for PLEN2 and even though I am not able to make it a mainstream success, I would love to see it everywhere in classrooms to help children understand the fundamentals of machines and robotics.
Berry Secure Tablet
At first glance, the announcement of the new BlackBerry tablet is a huge surprise. The PlayBook did not set fire to the world, as the candle failed to light.
However, scratching beyond the headlines, there is something more interesting. BlackBerry has taken the Samsung Galaxy Tab S and designed it with its well-known security measures to make it secureable.
This version of the tablet, which BlackBerry co-created with Samsung and IBM, aims to protect sensitive data, while still ensuring that owners can check Facebook and watch YouTube videos.
It is targeted at public sector markets and enterprise customers, and with a price tag of US $ 2,380 it is hard to imagine parents giving one of these to their children to stream their favorite cartoons. It is more likely that it will remain in the hands of big businesses and governments.
It is encouraging BlackBerry to try something new, even when it is licensing its security systems and integrating them with other platforms and devices. I appreciate its efforts to help protect data. I just wish it wasn’t so expensive and more accessible to everyone.
Device battery life and portable chargers are increasingly important to me. It is necessary to ensure that there is enough power to get through the day.
So the Lithium-Pro Pro – a portable charger that fits inside my pocket and can regenerate an iPhone quickly compared to a wall power supply – sounds almost too good to be true.
It is encouraging that most smartphones will be covered via the built-in connector, although you will have to attach your own Lightning cable to charge the iPhone.
The Lithium Card Pro looks fiercely industrial, as if its case is made of discarded steel of a suit of armor. Still, if it happens as promised on the tin, I will have some more complaints.
Smart plant care
I am not the best at taking care of my plants. It is devastating to see one die after being a part of the house for a long time. A smart watering surface is a good idea, but sadly Freiya is a leaky one.
I can’t really understand being smart watering, which connects to my smartphone, only to do all the later work. If I need to scroll through a huge list of plants to find the right one and add it to my watering schedule, I am less likely to do so if I image recognition of leaves to determine plant type Can use
If Freya needs to make things easier, why can’t I connect it to the sensor in the soil that tells me exactly when it’s time to give my plants some H2O?
I appreciate the ability to keep temperature in mind, but I need more than this to justify considering shopping. Oh, and water can look ridiculous.