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Dick Tracy's New Linux Box?

timothy posted about 8 years ago | from the could-potentially-are-key-words dept.

161

An anonymous reader writes "The Zypad is a new arm-wearable computer right out of Futurama. It can run Windows CE or Linux and has a 400 MHz CPU, 64MB Flash memory, 3.5 inch screen. The Zypad leaves the user's hands free — it has no keyboard, just a touchscreen and navigation keys. Voice recognition is 'being developed.' It turns on only when you look at it, so it saves power. It has GPS and Bluetooth/WLAN/GSM connectivity. Price: 1000 Euro." Too bad it's not yet available for sale — that screen looks more useful than the one on IBM's Linux watch from 2000.

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161 comments

voice recognition (5, Informative)

Douglas Simmons (628988) | about 8 years ago | (#15627672)

For those of you in search of voice recognition ware that has already "been developed" you should check out Dragon NaturallySpeaking [nuance.com] . I got it for my boss who's paralyzed from the neck down and it works beautifully, making his life easier. Training only took 15 minutes and the accuracy is impressive. It comes with a headset mic but I recommend splurging on the Plantronics CS50-USB [amazon.com] wireless headset.

Re:voice recognition (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627711)

Bet that makes a nice change from a boss who is typically paralyzed from the neck up.

Yes, it is bad taste.

Re:voice recognition (2, Interesting)

AndroidCat (229562) | about 8 years ago | (#15627818)

It'd be nice if Nuance didn't have a lock on the market by aquiring the bits of all the speech companies that crashed and burned.

Re:voice recognition (1)

Douglas Simmons (628988) | about 8 years ago | (#15627886)

... like IBM's ViaVoice?

Re:voice recognition (2, Interesting)

DrSkwid (118965) | about 8 years ago | (#15627904)

Dragon Naturally Speaking 8 Standard

System requirements :
256Mb RAM (512Mb preferred)
500Mb Free DIsk space

1Gb > 64Mb

Re:voice recognition (0, Offtopic)

AcidLacedPenguiN (835552) | about 8 years ago | (#15628209)

why would he need that Plantronics CS50-USB:: what does he need one touch control for?

*ducks*
Thanks, I'll be here all week!

Upgrade Options... (1, Funny)

Praedon (707326) | about 8 years ago | (#15627676)

I want the laser upgrade when I get mine...

Yes but... (0, Offtopic)

BronsCon (927697) | about 8 years ago | (#15627682)

does it run Mac OSX?

Re:Yes but... (1)

Fordiman (689627) | about 8 years ago | (#15627989)

Well, if it runs windows and linux, I would venture a 'maybe'. You know, assuming they could fit SSE3 into that little thing.

Futurama, eh? (5, Funny)

dema (103780) | about 8 years ago | (#15627691)

The Zypad is a new arm-wearable computer right out of Futurama.

So it's pointless, except on rare occasions when it can used for completely random tasks to fill plot holes?

Re:Futurama, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627895)

No, you seem to have Futurama confused with Firefly.

Re:Futurama, eh? (1)

thea64man (850041) | about 8 years ago | (#15628045)

"Bob Smith died yesterday after a firefighter's wrist computer running Windows CE returned a "fatal error" when he attempted to turn it on."

Re:Futurama, eh? (2, Informative)

Thabenksta (125165) | about 8 years ago | (#15628049)

Are you kidding? The "Wristlojakmator" can track objects using the YGW (you're getting warmer) protocol. I can also tell whether food is poisonous, namely popplers.

Get your facts straight bub. ;)

Re:Futurama, eh? (4, Funny)

Man of E (531031) | about 8 years ago | (#15628143)

It looks like a useful gadget ... now if only they could make it in the form of a suppository...

Re:Futurama, eh? (1)

krakelohm (830589) | about 8 years ago | (#15628269)

I imagine if your really into it you can use the current on... just gotta stretch.

mispronounced (5, Insightful)

Dun Malg (230075) | about 8 years ago | (#15627708)

Voice recognition is 'being developed.'



Somebody mispronounced 'doesn't work yet'.

Re:mispronounced (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627791)

No, they said that, the voice recognition just thought they said "being developed."

Re:mispronounced (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | about 8 years ago | (#15627841)

That's progress! Last week it thought they said "Eat up Martha".

Re:mispronounced (1)

HardCase (14757) | about 8 years ago | (#15628359)

Hot lip fungus! [kyocera-wireless.com]

Re:mispronounced (1)

Reapman (740286) | about 8 years ago | (#15627840)

Voice recognition does work, does exist, and is in use. Our department uses Dragon Naturaly Speaking as well as a few others for some of our staff that have limited mobility. Is there still a long ways to go? Yes no doubt, but it is out there. I haven't personally played with it for about 5 years (moved to a different job), and even back then I was pretty impressed.

Re:mispronounced (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628311)

He's talking about voice recognition on this Zypad device not working. Not voice recognition in general.

Stupid git.

Set Zypads to stun! (1)

Old Man Kensey (5209) | about 8 years ago | (#15627710)

For Euro 1000, this thing should have some sort of antipersonnel weapon built in. When the price comes down, this might be practical as a daily computer -- I know that with wireless Internet on one at a $500 price point I'd spend a lot more time out of the office.

Re:Set Zypads to stun! (2, Insightful)

a_karbon_devel_005 (733886) | about 8 years ago | (#15628021)

For Euro 1000, this thing should have some sort of antipersonnel weapon built in. When the price comes down, this might be practical as a daily computer -- I know that with wireless Internet on one at a $500 price point I'd spend a lot more time out of the office.

I doubt it. From the description, anything you can do on this new toy, you can do (probably easier) on a PDA-Phone. No one REALLY works on PDA-phones either. You work on a LAPTOP where you can type at a reasonable speed.

Granted, my Treo can be a lifesaver, with it's email/ssh etc. on the road, but I'd never want to spend an extended period of time typing on it. This device looks even worse!

And my question is this, why would you use this when you can have a PDA-phone which does ALL the same stuff AND has a phone. Even if this HAD a phone, who would use it? You certainly don't want everyone hearing all your conversations!

Looks impractical for most people.

Re:Set Zypads to stun! (1)

Old Man Kensey (5209) | about 8 years ago | (#15628096)

I'm assuming this thing is (or will be) slightly larger and more powerful than a smart phone at its eventual price point. As far as using it, about half my day consists of waiting for people to call in issues, so forward office phone to cell phone, and take a walk, relying on this thing for e-mail and remote access when an issue arises. If it's one of the rare issues I can't deal with in a minute or two, walk back to the office. Although since most days I'd do that I'd be hanging out in a coffeeshop browsing the web, a laptop might still be more useful. But dammit, the thing looks cool!

Re:Set Zypads to stun! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628195)

"You certainly don't want everyone hearing all your conversations! "

You obviously haven't seen all those asshats walking around using their cellphones in "two-way radio mode" with all the beeping and loud talking. I can see it's usefulness in certain situations (IT workers, etc...) but nobody needs to hear some 16 year old's inane conversation from 20 feet away.

Re:Set Zypads to stun! (1)

pintpusher (854001) | about 8 years ago | (#15628287)

These things always seem to fail, or not live up to their promise. Why? Because as the technology comes down in price to the point where it is affordable, then the technology is too dated to really impress anymore. By the time this thing (assuming it gets built) gets down to $500 the state of the art will have marched past it just enough that no one will want it. Same thing with PDA's and PDA/phones etc. They never quite do what we need/want because by the time that tech gets into those devices, our bigger devices are on to something new. The only things I think that will make any of these devices TRULY successful, to the point where they have a REAL impact on people lives/work is when reliable speech recognition makes it into these devices. That frees the user from burdensome or downright stupid methods of entering data, also, the processing required for reasonable speech rec. by default assumes more than enough processing power to handle everyday tasks that the user would expect from these devices. IANA[A:Z], just a guy who's tried a couple different pda's and decided their too much work to be truly useful.

As worn by Duke Nukem Forever! (4, Insightful)

Shoten (260439) | about 8 years ago | (#15627725)

"Too bad it's not yet available for sale..."

Too bad it's not yet in existence. When I see a radically new gadget from some company I've never heard of whose press release touts multiple moves forward in different realms of technology, and all they have to show is a computer-generated graphic of the thing...well, I've never seen any such device ever show up to market. Not ever, in my memory.

Re:As worn by Duke Nukem Forever! (1)

RealGrouchy (943109) | about 8 years ago | (#15627756)

No, I think this computer-generated graphic is shaded differently than the last one...

- RG>

And the 1000-euro question... (2, Funny)

Old Man Kensey (5209) | about 8 years ago | (#15628010)

...can I connect my Optimus keyboard to it?

Re:As worn by Duke Nukem Forever! (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628061)

Too bad it's not yet in existence. When I see a radically new gadget from some company I've never heard of whose press release touts multiple moves forward in different realms of technology, and all they have to show is a computer-generated graphic of the thing...well, I've never seen any such device ever show up to market. Not ever, in my memory.
Oh, believe me. It exists. We have a couple of them in the lab here, and they work great. They have some problems with audio, but that appears to be a problem with the 2.6.16-rc3 build of the kernel they have on the devkits. They've promised a fixed version to us in the next week. We haven't done much with them under CE, except to see that it actually works. They have the basic apps you would expect -- media player, email client, browser, etc. Not much to see except that you wear it on your arm.

Re:As worn by Duke Nukem Forever! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 8 years ago | (#15628114)

While you have an excellent point, this thing is little more than a PocketPC with an ugly case. (could they have made it look any more stupid?) The specs are identical (with the exception of some added peripherals) to my iPAQ H2210.

Re:As worn by Duke Nukem Forever! (2, Insightful)

jandrese (485) | about 8 years ago | (#15628379)

I was sort of hoping it would look exactly like Leela's wrist thingy, instead of thise euro-designed gonna-look-dated-in-three-years thing. A big bulky wristcomputer might actually be worthwhile, especially if it's ruggedized enough to handle being on someone's arm (look at the kind of abuse watches get). The one in the picture looks awfully fragile to me.

Plus, you'd build strong arms lugging it around all day.

So... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627740)

does it have an ARM processor? In that case, do you need a StrongARM to be able to use it?

Good news, everyone! (5, Funny)

saboola (655522) | about 8 years ago | (#15627741)

If you were all sick and tired of having women hit on you before, I have this new device to show you!

Re:Good news, everyone! (1)

should_be_linear (779431) | about 8 years ago | (#15628017)

You a right, each party (with girls) I was invited to I felt like having 2 of this devices on both of my arms.

Headlines (3, Insightful)

penguinstorm (575341) | about 8 years ago | (#15627742)

If it's right out of Futurama, why does the headline mention Dick Tracy?

Re:Headlines (2, Informative)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 8 years ago | (#15628019)

Because Dick Tracy beat Futurama by about 70 years.

Re:Headlines (1)

Andrew Nagy (985144) | about 8 years ago | (#15628035)

Remember that huge watch Dick Tracy had? light bulb in head quickly flickers, then flashes on, then.... BOOM! it explodes... "OOOOOOOOOOHHHH!"

Re:Headlines (1)

dr_dank (472072) | about 8 years ago | (#15628284)

Inspiration for the dupe to follow.

It's morphin' time! (4, Funny)

Mayhem178 (920970) | about 8 years ago | (#15627748)

Now all we need are wrist communicators, an evil witch thing on the moon, and a big floating head in a jar.

Re:It's morphin' time! (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | about 8 years ago | (#15627805)

And those spaceships with the showerhead jets all over them.

Re:It's morphin' time! (1)

Urusai (865560) | about 8 years ago | (#15628274)

I'm one out of three...well, it's not that big.

Haven't we heard/seen this before? (1)

Lovedumplingx (245300) | about 8 years ago | (#15627757)

It looks cool. And it sounds like it could be cool too. But will it ever be more than a nifty gadget? We've all seen the pictures of wearable computers from different cons and shows. They've been around for a while in different forms. Why is this one different? Does anyone think it will ever become mainstream until the price drops tremendously?

Is it for sale or not? (4, Insightful)

OlivierB (709839) | about 8 years ago | (#15627762)


Publishing a price means that I can bid the asking price and get the product. If it is not available, then the price is "announced to be" and is currently non-existant.

Slashdot editors could learn a thing or two by spending a week in writing/journalist summer-camp. Day in and day out they write non-sensical blurbs, never mind they don't check-out the underlying articles, at least post a cohesive summary.

Re:Is it for sale or not? (1)

saboola (655522) | about 8 years ago | (#15627819)

Slashdot editors could learn a thing or two by spending a week in writing/journalist summer-camp. Day in and day out they write non-sensical blurbs, never mind they don't check-out the underlying articles, at least post a cohesive summary.

As soon as they finish their two weeks at summer fat camp, we will set that up. Thanks for the advice.

-Slashdot

Re:Is it for sale or not? (1)

Shawn Parr (712602) | about 8 years ago | (#15628066)

Okay, I can certainly see digging at the editors for not being the most professional editors in the world, but this is a bit silly.

Anyone who has ever seen /. before knows that the blurbs are user submitted, and in many articles and the FAQ itself Taco has stated that the only editing they do is either in dire need or malformed html.

As such it is pretty obvious, especially with the new quoted view with the CSS that the price information was written up by the submitter, and the mention that it isn't actually available yet was added as additional information by the editor. Is this syntactically incorrect, as a whole without context yes, but in the framework presented, no.

When you look at it? (2, Insightful)

whobutdrew (889171) | about 8 years ago | (#15627766)

How does it "only turn on when you look at it?" How would it know? That part just doesn't make sense to me

Re:When you look at it? (1)

penguin_strut (751980) | about 8 years ago | (#15627842)

Yeah, that caught my eye too. Who needs voice recognition when it can so obviously read you rinterest level/emotions. Maybe it reads lips as well?

Re:When you look at it? (1)

nbannerman (974715) | about 8 years ago | (#15627874)

Probably a minature gyroscope or similar device. When it is rotated or moved beyond a certain angle the screen flicks on*.

The motion sensor in the new Apple Macbook's is probably a good starting point; I wonder if it is possible to hack those to only turn the screen on when the Macbook is 'on the level'.

* I admit, I could be talking rubbish here...

Re:When you look at it? (1)

Nybble's Byte (321886) | about 8 years ago | (#15627880)

I imagine it turns on by a flick of the wrist, the same way the old LED based Pulsar watches of the 70s worked. The display consumed lots of battery power.

Re:When you look at it? (1)

dissolved (887190) | about 8 years ago | (#15627885)

If you're not looking at it how do you know if it's on or off? think about it!

Re:When you look at it? (1)

aiabx (36440) | about 8 years ago | (#15627933)

Solution: like a fridge light, it's always on, whenever it senses it is being observed by anyone, including its own uptime counter.

Re:When you look at it? (2, Informative)

trailerparkcassanova (469342) | about 8 years ago | (#15628199)

You have someone else look at it.

because it's a HOAX! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628026)

gawd, linux users will believe anything.

Other uses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627767)

One word: both hands-free PDA porn!!

Ok, that's five.. but seriously. especially I'm thinking, in zero G this may be really important for those of us that, uh, you know... have no zero G partner. Hypothetically.

Well.. (2, Funny)

GmAz (916505) | about 8 years ago | (#15627770)

I would love to have one, but wouldn't dare wear it outside anywhere. Every person I know already knows I am a huge nerd, but still. By wearing that, it gives all other nerds the right to kick my @$$ too.

Well.... (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | about 8 years ago | (#15627777)

This is going to make viewing pr0n interesting......

Re:Well.... (1)

dissolved (887190) | about 8 years ago | (#15627901)

not if you're a sickly type, prone to motion sickness. This thing could kill you!

Re:Well.... (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | about 8 years ago | (#15628248)

This is going to make viewing pr0n interesting......

Be careful of which arm you put it on, or you could get very frustrated.

"It turns on only when you look at it..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15627783)

Man, I've read about people with a "hard and steely gaze", but this is the first time it'll be a requirement. Being able to turn things off/on with a glance, man, that'll do me...

It turns on only when you look at it? (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | about 8 years ago | (#15627786)

It turns on only when you look at it, so it saves power.

I didn't see any reference to how it switches on in TFA or the PR PDF. I was wondering how it detected that you were looking at it. (Is it like the old Pulsar LED watch that you had to shake your wrist to see the time?)

Re:It turns on only when you look at it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628070)

My cheap Casio watch can be set to turn on the light when the watch reaches a certain angle (the one in the looking at it range)
I turned it on once to see it work, then quickly turned it off because the (annoying) light would constantly turn on and off due to normal arm movements.

Dell? (2, Funny)

fusto99 (939313) | about 8 years ago | (#15627790)

I just hope Dell didn't have any part in making it. Ow! My arm's on fire!

Re:Dell? (1)

Aqua_boy17 (962670) | about 8 years ago | (#15627868)

If Dell ever did make these, that would give a whole new meaning to the term "Product Branding".

Re:Dell? (1)

Fordiman (689627) | about 8 years ago | (#15628023)

Heh. If Dell were making it, there'd be 'consumer branding' involved.

Gotta make sure those gateway rustlers don't steal their cattle.

64MB should be enough for everyone (4, Insightful)

Speare (84249) | about 8 years ago | (#15627802)

Sorry, but in 2006, anything with only 64MB of flash storage space will not, contrary to the website's hype, revolutionize the way we use computers. Unless you're talking about a rising desire for austere minimalism.

Re:64MB should be enough for everyone (1)

cloudofstrife (887438) | about 8 years ago | (#15628336)

If you were really into austere minimalism, you wouldn't get one of these.

Re:64MB should be enough for everyone (1)

MrNougat (927651) | about 8 years ago | (#15628343)

That struck me as odd, too. I wonder why they didn't decide to use removable flash media cards like my camera uses, which hold way more than 64MB. Oh, maybe it's because you can't stick a flash card into a drawing of an idea.

I wonder... (4, Interesting)

Aqua_boy17 (962670) | about 8 years ago | (#15627812)

'It turns on only when you look at it'
I wish it was that easy to turn my wife on.

Seriously though, I'm curious about the technology that makes this possible (no I didn't download the PDF yet). It would be pretty slick to incorporate this into other devices.

It's a cool idea, but personally if I were to drop a thousand euros on one of these I don't think I'd be wearing it on my wrist. I'm kind of a klutz sometimes and am pretty hard on watch crystals so I don't think it would take me too long to crack the display.

Re:I wonder... (1)

Crazy Man on Fire (153457) | about 8 years ago | (#15628129)

It turns on only when you look at it
That description makes it seem much cooler than it actually is. It turns on when your wrist tilts to bring it into view, even if you aren't looking at it.
The WWPC offers several wearable-specific innovations, according to the company, including a patented orientation sensor that can be configured to induce standby when the user's arm drops. Additionally, the device's tilt sensor can be used to detect motionless operator states, while a built-in GPS receiver and "dead reckoning" technology enable the device to serve as a location-transmitting beacon.

Re:I wonder... (1)

LindseyJ (983603) | about 8 years ago | (#15628238)

Additionally, the device's tilt sensor can be used to detect motionless operator states, while a built-in GPS receiver and "dead reckoning" technology enable the device to serve as a location-transmitting beacon.

Is that supposed to be a joke? If you forget to take off your computer before bed, it will alert the authorities that you've passed away?

Breakthrough???? (1)

plebeian (910665) | about 8 years ago | (#15627821)

With a little duck tape my IPAQ could go on my wrist as well. Talk about reinventing the wheel. If this thing was Shatter resistant and waterproof with a 2megapixel camera it would be a good tool for divers, but as a "breakthrough" device this thing is going to be stuck filling a couple small specialty markets. On the other hand Usable Voice recognition software for the PDA market..... that has promise!!!

Re:Breakthrough???? (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 8 years ago | (#15627865)

No kidding! I'm just wondering why somebody doesn't just build a [full-size, not watch-size] PDA that straps to a wrist. It could easily be done for $200 instead of $1000!

Physics majors have to work somewhere (5, Funny)

El_Smack (267329) | about 8 years ago | (#15627844)


"It turns on only when you look at it,..."

Looks like they have a Quantum Physics guy hiding out in R&D.

Re:Physics majors have to work somewhere (1)

Alterion (925335) | about 8 years ago | (#15627982)

actually with wrist watches this is verry easy to do- my £10 watch has a backlight that only turns on when you look at it- there's a simple tilt sensor in the watch that registeres the angle chage when you turn our wrist away from its natural position

Re:Physics majors have to work somewhere (2, Funny)

iggymanz (596061) | about 8 years ago | (#15627995)

well, it's really not on about half the time you're not looking at it. If no one ever looks at it the battery might be dead or not

Leela's Armband Computer (1)

Macblaster (94623) | about 8 years ago | (#15627872)

Kind of makes you feel bad for her, not only did she think she was an orphan and the last of her species for circa 30 years, she's stuck using a piece of thousand year old technology... Well, at least she get's Tetris on it.

Futurama Prior Art (1)

SomeoneGotMyNick (200685) | about 8 years ago | (#15627892)

These armbands aren't right out of Futurama, they're right out of Ark II [70slivekidvid.com]

Re:Futurama Prior Art (1)

booch (4157) | about 8 years ago | (#15628213)

What's with those big buttons? Will people have bigger fingers in the future?

Useless/Redundant (1)

Stavr0 (35032) | about 8 years ago | (#15627914)

THE WRIST-WORN PC THAT WILL REVOLUTIONISE THE WAY WE USE COMPUTERS Oh for goodness' sake it's just a PalmPilot/PocketPC molded to fit around the arm.

Re:Useless/Redundant (1)

SomeoneGotMyNick (200685) | about 8 years ago | (#15628031)

Oh for goodness' sake it's just a PalmPilot/PocketPC molded to fit around the arm

No, this [pcmag.com] is a PalmPilot that fits on your arm. Mine's been working well for me for a while now. It even doubles as a gaming device that DOES NOT accidentally fall into the toilet (no comment, thank you). Although I admit, having a bigger screen would be a bonus.

Wearable computer is not what we need (1)

Dark_MadMax666 (907288) | about 8 years ago | (#15627923)

- we already have a ton of them in anything from pda and cell phones to watches . What we need is wearable display ,bigger than 20x20 pixels and usable for reading and surfing the web ( my blackberry display barely qualifies for reading simple emails ,forget the web!) .And after that we need normal input , and ,no, voice recognition won't cut it . I need something usable I said - imagine even if you had perfect voice recognition but had to say every action you need perform open window->open directory ->open file ->edit at 00048h all clear out and loud and see how productive you gonna editing a trivial config file.

Futurama? More like Back to the Future... (1)

Crazy Man on Fire (153457) | about 8 years ago | (#15627951)

This looks just like something I've seen before [slashdot.org] ...

I like this part (1)

DrXym (126579) | about 8 years ago | (#15627964)

"the device could conceivably serve as an everyday tool as common as the mobile phone or the palmtop."

It could but it ain't going to happen. No one but the most extreme, purist form of nerd is going to be seen dead wearing one of these things. Might have applications in military or warehousing, but those kind of people would probably as happy to have something that sits in a holster until required.

just tape a pocket pc to your arm (1)

llZENll (545605) | about 8 years ago | (#15627987)

seriously, you would get a VGA touchscreen, 620mhz cpu, a library of several thousand apps, you could hack it to run linux if you wanted, and would only cost you about $200-400.

Geeky as hell for normal people/useful in industry (1)

ThinkingInBinary (899485) | about 8 years ago | (#15628005)

If I saw someone wearing that, I would think they were a total goofball--beyond just geeky, into the realm of "do you realize how freaking silly that looks". Perhaps in 5 years, wearable computing won't be so odd... but right now it would look goofy.

One opening I do see for this, however, is in industry. Just as the Xybernaut [xybernaut.com] (a commercialization of Steve Mann's work in wearable computers, IIRC) is selling to workers who need easy access to computer data without the heft and inconvenience of a separate machine, this will probably sell to people who need it. I could see it replacing the handheld scanners that UPS and FedEx people carry now, or allowing utility workers (telephone, internet, electricity) to run line tests or check things without climbing down from a telephone pole or running back to their van.

Back in the 80's I worked with handicapped people. (1)

mmell (832646) | about 8 years ago | (#15628080)

The one rule I figured out . . . you could make the ultimate prosthetic, aid, wheelchair, etc. - but if it's ugly, nobody will use it. That's why such a large percentage of amputees usually wear a non-functional prosthetic that looks (kinda) like their missing limb; some don't even bother with the functional "claw" type attachment at all, because they'd rather look normal than have the lost functionality back.

This thing is pretty ugly looking - even Toranga Leela would sneer at it! I predict a dismal sales record for this toy.

User interface, voice may be the way to go (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628113)

What I could use is a secretary. Of course, most of my communication with the secretary is by voice.

The closer a pda approaches the functionality of a secretary, the better the pda is. It's a pain to have to poke at a screen twenty times just so I can be reminded of an appointment. It would be much better to be able to say: "I have an appointment with Fred next Tuesday at 10 AM."

The joy of a voice interface is that the device could be very small because it wouldn't need a keyboard. Actually, there doesn't need to be a separate device at all. One could just phone one's desktop computer. If you did it right, you could make it sound like you actually had a secretary.

The more I think about it, the more I think I don't actually need one of those wrist thingies as long as I have my cell phone.

Officer Number 1-B-D-I (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 8 years ago | (#15628130)

*puts on the computer, covers one eye, and shouts "Look at me! I'm Leela!"

Yeah, right... (1)

waif69 (322360) | about 8 years ago | (#15628156)

"It turns on only when you look at it, so it saves power."

What if I am wearing sunglasses, will it ever turn on? Will it turn on for people who look at it while I am on a plane? What about animals (cats, dogs)?

From the article press release, it seems as though someone is just thinking about making this and made a mock device for photos. I don't think we will see this in the next 10 years.

awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15628205)

I'll look cool when I wear it while driving my Segway.

Left-handed model? (2, Interesting)

T1girl (213375) | about 8 years ago | (#15628212)

I'm wondering if it comes in right-handed, left-handed and ambidextrous models. Being a petite-sized person with small wrists and rather short arms, I would find this clunky device rather cumbersome. It would feel like having a can of soda strapped to your arm. A larger person with beefy arms might find it too tight, although the armband does appear to be adjustable (it reminds me of a blood-ressuren cuff.) Also, the person in the picture is wearing a short-sleeved shirt. In cold weather, would you wear it over your shirt and sweater, or would you have to roll up your sleeves. I don't even like wearing an ID badge.

Paradox (1)

XMilkProject (935232) | about 8 years ago | (#15628214)

If it turns on whenever we look at it, how can we be sure it ever actually turns off?

Wristmo-jackulator... (1)

DaFallus (805248) | about 8 years ago | (#15628235)

or whatever Leela calls it in one of the Futurama episodes. I guess they couldn't really use that name for the real product unless they wanted to advertise by showing some pasty nerd in his room watching porn on it

obligatory (1)

ClassicComposer (916856) | about 8 years ago | (#15628240)

Great, finally birth control for men that doesn't require surgery.

Emacs Bindings? (2, Funny)

Temujin_12 (832986) | about 8 years ago | (#15628283)

How long before the first emacs zealot creates the 3-button keybindings for this device?

Bar code scanner (1)

HockeyPuck (141947) | about 8 years ago | (#15628285)

It would be nice if it had a bar code scanner built in. Then they could target it to warehouses and such.

If it's right out of Futurama (1)

spyrochaete (707033) | about 8 years ago | (#15628358)

then how come it's not called a Wristlojackimator?

seems upside down (2, Insightful)

kencurry (471519) | about 8 years ago | (#15628369)

On either wrist, you would want the keypad on the inside (medial side). If you put this on either wrist, the text (as displayed in the photo) would be upside down.

Did marketing do their homework on the photo for press release?

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