Look to the stars

January 1, 2007
Peter Myers

LCGC Europe

LCGC Europe, LCGC Europe-01-01-2007, Volume 20, Issue 1
Page Number: 50

Star gazing will be made easy with a new handheld device, known as the SkyScout, that uses advanced GPS technology with point and click convenience to identify thousands of stars, planets and constellations.

Star gazing will be made easy with a new handheld device, known as the SkyScout, that uses advanced GPS technology with point and click convenience to identify thousands of stars, planets and constellations.

The device works by pointing it at any star and clicking the "target" button. Alternatively, if you wish to locate a star or planet, select the object's name from the menu and follow the directional arrows through the viewfinder. The SkyScout will tell you when you are on target.

The built-in database contains approximately 6000 entries and can be updated by the USB port or SD memory card slot.

Micro mosquito

This device could be an alternative solution to sending inter-office e-mail if you want to pass a piece of paper to a colleague across the office or in the laboratory.

The Micro Mosquito features two bright green LED "eyes" and has full helicopter manoeuvrability. Its digitally proportioned control allows precise flying with a smooth motor system giving a clean take-off and landing, as well as full forward and reverse control. It can be flown straight from the box and comes with a helicopter launch pad that doubles as a charger. A 45 minute charge will give you a full 10 minutes of flying time before it needs refuelling. You can take it off from your hand, fly it round the room and land it back on your hand again.

A pen with a difference!

Now you can take or record lecture notes by talking to your pen, which comes as an extension to the memory sticks that we have all seen. It can be used as a normal ballpoint pen to write; an MP3 player to store and play your favourite songs; as a recorder to record meetings, conversations and lectures (recordings can be listened to directly from the pen or uploaded to your computer for playback); as a flash drive to transport all your important files or to take verbal notes while you are working. Furthermore, it conveniently fits in your pocket.

Giant Swiss army knife

Wenger has come up with a huge Swiss army knife known as the Giant Knife Version 1.0 that could replace your laboratory tool box with one item. It has 85 features and can perform hundreds of functions. Some of the more surprising features include a cupped cigar cutter with double-honed edges, a mineral crystal magnifier, removable tool for adjusting bike spokes and a golf club face cleaner.

Dennis Pireta, Wenger's marketing director put it succinctly when he noted, "This is not exactly going to win any awards for lightest, smallest or most efficient tools..." The knife weighs 2 pounds, 11 ounces and measures 8.75 inches.