The 2014 edition of the Consumer Electronics Show is in full swing right now, and while the crowds seem down – perhaps thanks to east coast storms and 3000 canceled flights – the tech here is as intriguing as ever. Yesterday I told you about the best of what I saw on day one, and Rick weighed in with some of the more ludicrous exhibits. Here’s some more stuff that got my attention as the show continues.
Mother. Sometimes your aging loved ones need some additional help, but continue to live on their own. Mother helps address that problem; it’s intended to be a seamless, invisible technology that surrounds them to keep you informed about when they need help. Mother is comprised of a base station and a set of Bluetooth “cookies” that you affix to stuff around the home, like toothbrushes, medicine jars, and even the front door. You get reports on how your loved ones interact with these items, so you know if you need to intervene. Mother ships in the spring and costs about $220 for the base station and 4 cookies.
Self-balancing electric skateboard. Remember the electric skateboard I mentioned yesterday? Well, this one blows it away. Check out Newheel, a self-balancing electric skateboard. Gyros and electronics keep it upright, and it is being crowdfunded through Kickstarter right now.
TRAVR. This is exactly what I would have wanted as a kid. Correction: This is exactly what I want right now. Imagine a real-world virtual reality rig that lets you look and walk anywhere in a computer environment without actually moving – but you get the full sense of movement? When you strap into TRAVR, you can walk in any direction and the “floor” senses your movement and sends you in the appropriate direction within the computer environment. It works with all existing first-person computer games, and when paired with a VR headset like the Occulus Rift, it is the next best thing to being on a Star Trek Holodeck. While it might look like something you’ll only find in a video arcade, you can buy one today for a surprisingly low $450 and put it in your own gaming basement.
Lit Motors C1. I tweeted about the C1 earlier this year, and it’s something I was very excited to see with my own eyes at the show. The C1 is an all electric, gyroscopically stabilized 2-wheeled vehicle that should enter production at the end of this year. You can think of it like an enclosed motorcycle, I suppose, with a 200-mile range and gyros that keep it from falling over. I’ve already pre-ordered one.
3D Copier. 3D printers are still a technology on the bubble – probably about to go mainstream soon, but not there yet. But check out the 3D Copier – it does exactly what it sounds like; it’ll print a replica of any object you put on the scanning/printing tray. I love the “Fax” button on the printer, which lets you scan an object and have it print on another 3D Copier halfway around the world. It’ll cost $2500 when it starts shipping. Eventually.