Archive | September 2007

Microsoft SideWinder Mouse

Update: Bought a Sidewinder this weekend and it is wonderful! I find myself actually using thumb buttons for once. Also, the mouse is wide and comfortable. It’s nice to see that the container for the weights and alternative feet holds the cord really well. The cord holding feature was clearly not just an afterthought – the holder has a substantial amount of additional heft beyond the mouse weights.

I’m looking forward to the new Microsoft Sidewinder mouse. Not just for gaming, but because of the optimal placement of the thumb buttons. Most mice put the thumb buttons ‘out of the way’, forcing you to reach to press them. The Sidewinder thumb buttons are positioned at your thumb’s resting position, similar to how the left and right buttons are positioned under your fingers.

GotFrag, Official Page.

I’m also looking forward to the competition this represents for logitech. I’m a huge fan of the logitech mice (I own several, including the mx510, the vx nano, and the mx revolution), but I’d love to see even more innovation.

New Rolly Video

Diginfo has a new video of the Sony Rolly (due later this month). I’m still shocked that noone has built a homebrew version of the Rolly, yet, with Lego Mindstorms.

Sony Rolly Announced

$350 US, available only in Japan (9/29/07).

Engadget’s notes here. Videos here. Original post and commercial here. Update: Akihabara News has a hands on video.

1GB of audio storage and can stream from bluetooth devices which support A2DP. Clever UI – hold the Rolly vertically, twist the top wheel to change the song. Twist the bottom wheel to change the volume. Moves, spins, moves its flippers to the music. Can be choreographed.

It does not seem to be programmable. However, if it can be controlled at a very granular level in real time via bluetooth, it may not need to be in order to be a basic robotics platform. Time will tell.

When I first read about the Rolly, I started pricing out how to builid something comparable using a Nintendo DS, a Palm TX or a Nokia Internet Tablet as the guts. All seem doable, for less than the cost of the Rolly (if you already have one of those devices), but they will be bigger, uglier and less durable than the Rolly. Still, a solution based on one of those devices would be much more programmable and would have a wifi connection.

Extreme Onslaught for Slot 1 DS Flash Cards

OK, OK, OK. You can stop asking for a version of Extreme Onslaught that works on Slot 1 DS Flash Cards. Here it is!! Thanks for testing it Kris!


The rumors for tomorrow’s Apple event have been swirling for a few weeks, as they do before most Apple events.

Normally, I’m not sure whether or not to believe the rumors the day before, but today I’m really excited. The rumors, especially the new nano, the wireless/touchscreen ipod video, and the wireless itunes music store all seem like they are due.

Meanwhile, I’m really hoping for a software update for the iPhone (EXCHANGE PUSH, PLEASE).

Sony Rolly

The wait has just begun. We saw the first (viral) video of it last week.

The wait is almost over. Word has it that there is a Rolly release party in Japan on the 10th.

So what is it? A Wii for music? The new (tiny) Aibo platform? I’ll try to remain objective, but I’m loving it. The speaker caps controlled by solenoids (or servos or electromagnets), the speakers, the rgb strips, the dual independent wheels and the potential for robot choreography are all pretty slick.