The weekly gadget review at Ubergizmo

By February 11, 2008
Keywords : Smart city, Mobile, Europe
Space Solar Power System

Each week, Atelier reviews what is trendy on the web magazine of our great expert contributor. is dedicated to consumer electronics news and reviews.

Each week, Atelier reviews what is trendy on the web magazine of our great expert contributor. is dedicated to consumer electronics news and reviews.

Space Solar Power System

I guess it is apparent by now to everyone that the world will soon be plunged into an energy crisis, no thanks to growing economies in the east as well as the general decadence in the west, but there are people from all walks of life who think otherwise and try to make their lives as green as possible. Relying on nuclear power alone is a wee bit too dangerous IMHO, so this plan by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to build a Space Solar Power System (SSPS) gets my thumbs-up. The end result would be to see the SSPS running by the year 2030 comes around, where huge solar collectors in geostationary orbit will convert sunlight into microwave beams that are then sent to receiving stations on earth 36,000 km downwards and subsequently converted into electricity for everyday consumption. One thing's for sure though, while it sound much safer than having a nuclear reactor blow up, what happens if the SSPS experiences a technical breakdown? Do we need to send a rocket up into space just to fix it?

Yuno PC Concept

Most folks often read the morning news with a hot cup of joe in one hand, but the Yuno PC concept wants to bring both ideas together in a single device. It is a coffee mug that keeps your favorite morning beverage warm while delivering news and information such as weather, time, stocks, traffic and more wirelessly on its wraparound touch screen display. Sounds pretty difficult to read, especially with a curved surface facing you. I think I'd stick to my standard paper-and-mug combo, thank you very much.

Sonim XP1 Indestructible Phone

We’ve just got word that Sonim will be showing its Sonim XP1 “indestructible” phone at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. At the show, the company will challenge the attendees and particularly attending media to hurt the phone.

”If you’ve been watching the videos on YouTube, you’ll have seen the Sonim shot with a Glock 9mm by Mobil magazine and a Remington rifle by Metro, the largest paper in Sweden” Bob Plaschke, CEO of Sonim

Anyone who refrains from using a cellphone because of a difficult environment could be interested in the Sonim XP1. Press Release

Chanel Coco Phone Concept

Designed by Fred de Garilhe, this phone would have a lower sliding part that contains the display and the function buttons while the upper-piece would hold the numeric pad. When not in use, all the user interface elements would disappear to reveal a pure shiny surface.

Check out the photo gallery. More concepts.

Power-Generating Bionic Knee

This power-generating knee has been adapted from a knee brace. Although it is said that it could power a small device like a cellphone, it is not aimed at consumers. Instead it could be used by people who don’t have an easy access to electricity, like workers in remote areas or explorers. The inventors hope to have a commercial product for field workers in five years. [more at TimesOnline]

Explay Oio Nano Projector

Explay is specialized in projectors that are small enough to fit in a pocket but that can project an image that is 20 times their size. The current product is a matchbox size solution that can project images as big as 30”. One of the secret behind this prowess is the use of uber-small light sources such as lasers and LED lights.

There are no details on the actual resolution or prices at the moment.

PC Guardian Physically Locks USB Ports

It is known that USB keys can be used to steal data or install malware/spyware software on your computer. If you believe that you’re at risk, you could think that this USB port lock is what you need. After all, it’s easy to install and is a simple physical look for the USB port.

The issue is that now you also need to lock the whole case. Also, it’s not clear to me how it protects the two USB ports just underneath the locked one on the photo. Anyhow, it’s up to you to see if this is going to help, but it doesn’t seem unbreakable at all.

Wikipedia Offline for iPhone and iPod Touch

Patick Collison coded an offline Wikipedia app for the iPhone over his Christmas break because he likes “the warm fuzzy feeling of having the sum of all human knowledge in his pocket”. For the same reason that we do not own an iPhone yet, he wanted to prevent online Wikipedia users to go nuts over the slow EDGE connection.

The app takes 2.2 GB and I am not sure if iPhone users would like to spare the storage space for it. If you do, watch Patrick’s tutorial video on YouTube about the installation.

Walkman Case Hides iPod

iPod theft has gotten pretty common since Apple's portable media player took the world by storm, so what's an iPod owner supposed to do? Well, other than make sure it remains well hidden, you can always take the ingenious route by storing it inside the shell of an unused Sony Walkman. How ironic, using the dead "body" of the 80s iconic audio player to keep the millennium's top PMP away from the sight of many. Just make sure you don't use the iPod's famous white earphones with it or you'll probably give the game away. Folks who are great with DIY jobs will be able to find this a very viable project to keep them occupied over the weekend.

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