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Days before the Game Developers Conference kicks off in San Francisco, Valve sent its latest Steam Controller prototype to WIRED. The new controller was meant to feature a touchscreen in the center, with four buttons around it, but the new one still doesn't feature a touchscreen.
Instead, it has morphed into more of a traditional console controller, with two diamond-shaped arrays of buttons. It looks (at least in the picture) a little more comfortable than the first Steam Controller, but I would've liked to have seen a touchscreen on the controller. The circular touchpads are still in play, which match both the precision and resolution of a mouse, giving gamers more precision than traditional controllers.
Jason Allenmann makes some truly amazing things with Lego, but his latest creation is something for PC lovers: a fully-functional keyboard made out of the little plastic blocks.
Underneath the keyboard is the traditional circuit board and sensor pad from a normal keyboard, but the exterior is entirely made out of Legos. Allenmann said that his biggest hurdle was to interface the Lego keys with the sensor pad, but instead of using custom-painted tiles or stickers, Allenmann used printed tiles that Lego has officially released over the years.
Allenmann was quite creative with this bit of the keyboard, where the Home key is represented by a roof-shaped Lego, while a tile with a photo of a scroll is used for the Scroll Lock key. The Caps Lock? A mini baseball cap - a nice touch.
Razer recently revealed two of its in-house designed and engineered mechanical keys: Green and Orange Razer mechanical switches. The company behind many well known gaming oriented hardware claims that these switches are made specifically for gaming.
Razer claims that since traditional mechanical switches are made designed primarily for typing, these are designed and made from scratch for gaming. The green variant offers tactile feedback with an audible click and with an actuation force of 50 g. The orange counterpart also offers tactile feedback but without the click and with the actuation force of 45 g. Razer also claims that its mechanical keys are rated up to 60 million operations, while Cherry keys are rated up to 50 million operations.
Logitech has been making its line of Harmony universal remote controls for a number of years. These remotes are notable because they all have macro buttons that make changing multiple inputs on your home theater system as easy as pushing a single button. Logitech has rolled out a new Harmony product called the Harmony Smart Keyboard.
The device is exactly what you think it is, a keyboard that can be used as a universal remote. The device is compatible with set top boxes like the Apple TV, Roku, Xbox 360, and PS3 consoles. It will also work with the Xbox One, but support for the PS4 isn't mentioned.
The QWERTY keyboard lets you easily type searches or chat. The keyboard also has the buttons you expect for controlling media and has a guide button. The keyboard also ships with the Harmony Hub that launched last summer as a standalone device.
If you spend lots of time during the day stuck in front of a computer, you are probably out for anything that can make all that computer use more comfortable. There are few things that are more of a literal pain in the neck than having to look down at a computer screen all day because it won't go high enough for your comfort.
There are bunches of monitor stands out there that will lift the screen up to a more comfortable level. Satechi has a new monitor stand that will lift up your screen or notebook and has some features that make it more like a docking station as well.
The monitor stand is called the Satechi F1 Smart Monitor Stand. The device will lift the screen of your computer or notebook up several inches. It also has a quartet of USB 2.0 ports on the front and jacks for your headphones and mic.
Razer has a very short and sweet tease on its Facebook page, announcing: "We're excited to announce that we'll be working with Microsoft to bring out peripherals for the Xbox One. Stick around for more info to come".
The peripherals maker teases an image with the Xbox One and an announced Razer-made Xbox One controller, with the simple: "Coming to Xbox One." It'll be interesting to see what Razer does with the peripherals on the Xbox One, but I'm sure it'll end up surprising most people with something new, and fresh for the just-released next-gen console from Microsoft.
I've yet to even use a Kinect sensor myself, but it looks like Microsoft's motion tracking device is being used at the borders of North Korea and South Korea, an interesting use, to put lightly.
Jae Kwon Ko created some software that uses the Kinect sensors to work out the differences between animals and humans, allowing the sensor to notify a nearby outpost if a person is getting too close to, or attempting to cross the border. The South Korean military is being hush-hush about this technology, but Ko did add that they're looking to update the system already, with heart rate and heat detection.
Today, HighPoint Technologies announced the launch of a new line of PCIe Expansion Stations that feature Intel Thunderbolt technology. The new NA211TB and NA211TB-LD Thunderbolt Expansion Stations can be connected to any system featuring Thunderbolt connectivity to transform that system into a powerful workstation.
"Why sacrifice performance for portability? Why give up efficiency for expandability? With HighPoint Thunderbolt PCIe Expansion Stations, you no longer have to trade the convenience of compact form factor and portable computing for the performance and versatility of a traditional desktop," the company said in a release. "HighPoint Thunderbolt PCIe Expansion Stations enable any computer with a Thunderbolt port harness the power and flexibility of full-size PCIe cards - all via a single compact port!"
The new NA211TB features support for up to three Thunderbolt-Aware, full-length PCIe cards, and connects to your PC or Mac using only a single cable. The NA211TB is the perfect platform for any I/O requirement - whether adding video or audio capture card for a media project, networking support or external storage expansion for business applications, or simply adding SAS/SATA or USB 3.0 connectivity to your laptop.
Hasbro stopped by the Engadget offices to show off its latest NERF blaster, the N-Strike Elite NERF Cam ECS-12 Blaster - quite the mouthful, isn't it?
The latest blaster is the usual semi-auto NERF blaster, but it features a tiny camera built into the barrel of the blaster, with a tiny screen on the stock. You can use the screen to lineup your target, but the camera will let you record your battles in the first-person perspective, which should be filling YouTube's servers in the coming months.
LUXA2, a division of Thermaltake specializing in mobile products, recently announced the GroovyW Bluetooth speaker with wireless charging station.
The LUXA2 GroovyW is Bluetooth 3.0-enabled and offers a sleek design, LED touch panel, speakerphone option, and NFC capability. The unit can reportedly play music for up to 15 hours, or 30 hours, when using a charging pad designed for any Q1 electronics, and easy portability. The LED touch panel provides instant access to volume control, play/pause and on/off features on top of the unit.
There is a growing demand for Bluetooth-powered portable speakers, as more consumers have smartphones and tablets - and tend to enjoy streaming music from online radio stations or previously downloaded music.