Monday, March 16, 2009

Leapfrog - Tag

Imagine this:

You have a pen in your hand, which when touched on a specific word reads the word out for you. Touch it on a picture, it says something about the picture. Touch it on some predefined images and it asks you questions for which you could answer by touching your pen on some figure.

And now imagine what ease of learning would it bring to your kid. Imagine its ability to ease up pronounciation and spelling to the kid.

Now, that's exactly what this 'toy' from LeapFrog is all about. Do check this link:

To get into the technicalities a little, the pen consists of a infrared image sensor that is used to identify the words. The books are special - they are printed with a special technology that will enable the infrared sensor to recognize the words by checking 'em against a dictionary of words and generate appropriate sounds by mapping them to a dictionary of sounds. These dictionaries need to be uploaded to the pen through a USB connection to a PC. The pen uses AAA batteries for its power. The books can be purchased separately - that's how Leapfrog makes money.

Got to experience it firsthand when Keya, my neighbor's kid, brought it home to show me her new toy that her uncle gifter her. And must admit, was totally fascinated. 

Obviously, its on my shopping cart. Just waiting for some friend to tell me that he is returning from US.


Monday, March 9, 2009

Touchbook - Netbook based on ARM

Came across this 'Touchbook' - a netbook based on ARM platform - recently.

So what, you might ask? Well, one - its OpenSource - based on OpenHardware and ofcourse, Opensource software. Hardware - specifically, the Beagleboard and software - Angstrom distro. More on this here.

The Touchbook has a plethora of features:

Dimensions: 9.4" X 7" X 1.4"
Weight: 2 lbs with keyboard
Storage: 8GB micro SD Card
Display: 1024 X 600; 8.9" Touchscreen
3D Accelerometer
Wifi 802.11 b/g/n
10 to 15 hrs of battery life
speakers, microphone and headphone slots
6 USB slots
Formfactor capable of using the device in multiple ways: as a laptop, handheld gaming device, video player etc.
Two modes of operation - one that uses keyboard and the other that uses the touchscreen.

More about the features - here.

In Me's opinion - this is one helluva device. Needless to say, one that Me'll target to buy in the recent future.