22 October 2009

Sony's 360-degree display

Sony is demonstrating a 360-degree tabletop display this week. They claim it is a "highly-multiview" autostereoscopic display, rather than a 360-degree 2-D display.

Have any of you seen it? How did it look? Is it a rotating LED paddle, or something different?


Recent update, with more images:


I dimly recall coming up with the term "highly-multiview" for an article a while back... but maybe that was just a coincidence of the translation.

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ps Thanks to Andrew Woods for bringing this to my attention.

01 October 2009

Two sub-$5 toys with curious operational mechanisms

Hi -

Ever wish your 3 year-old had a toy or two which, despite being < $5, triggers a sense of wonder about how on earth it works? Here are two toys that I (finally!) found at Henry Bear's Park. Both are made by Toysmith (Auburn, WA).

I first saw this at a friend's house and spent two years tracking it down. This odd little ball is black with colored dots. When you roll it across the floor, it seems to frictionlessly glide along - it's actually floating within a clear sphere. If you smack it just right, the dots glow and blink. $4!

It's a wind-up plastic UFO that scoots along a tabletop, but a little mechanism inside makes it change direction just before it would have plummeted off the edge! The salesperson suggested that it would be a fun way to keep your one-year-old entertained at a restaurant, since it can't fall off the table. $2!

I hope to see more inventive toys with curious mechanisms inside...

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