Tech Goodies off the Beaten Path

Gibson Les Paul Robotic Guitar — $2,500

Music fans may not know about the technology that goes into instruments past the "pickup" that amplifies the sounds, but guitar giant Gibson gained attention with its self-tuning strummer. Limited to an early 4,000-unit run, the guitar has standard-sized tuning keys that are controlled by a CPU in the neck.

There are six pre-sets that are adjusted by a single strum that the robotic ears, brain and motors use to bring all six strings into perfect tune. Musicians have to tune their instrument each time they sit down and the Gibson robotic technology promises to make tuning faster, easier and hassle-free. An unnamed Gibson rep's assertion that, "chicks will dig it" couldn't be immediately tested, because all 4,000 guitars have been already spoken for, but Gibson promises to bring this technology to future products including other stringed instruments.

Cricket Laptop Stand — $39.95

Anyone who travels with their computer or actually puts a laptop on their lap will want a Cricket Laptop stand. The Cricket is fully adjustable, lightweight and available in three colors. The stand boosts your laptop into the air into any of six different positions to boost the computer into an ergonomic viewing and typing height. No more hunching. A simple concept that will make working on the road bearable.

iTornado - USB based micro computer that makes transferring files between Mac and PC easy — $79.95

Macs and PCs just don't want to get along and the iTornado is here to end the war. The small plastic disc has two retractable USB plugs that will each fit into a Mac and a PC. The onboard micro computer will allow the Mac and the PC to instantly access each others files for transfer. There are is no software to load. No settings to adjust. Connect the two computers and instantly start transferring. Four hundred photos take about two minutes to move between machines. Whether you're a switcher from one platform to the other or you use both types of machines you will enjoy the convenience and ease of this neat transfer gizmo.

Medis Power Pack Plus — $29.99

Fuel Cell technology for consumers has been a promise for some time and after two years of promises Medis is ready to start selling a small power pack that is ready to travel. The company recently opened a plat in Ireland to produce the devices. The eco-friendly power pack has almost no metal, can run a cell phone for up to 30 hours or media players by up to 80 hours and has significantly less total environmental impact than energy from traditional battery products. Medis has been working with standards organizations and although the fuel cell is liquid based the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration will allow each passenger up to three units on a plane. Fuel cells are safer and better for the environment and it is good to see that the innovation is becoming available for consumers.
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