5 Coolest Things On-Line 2007 -- so far

A look at some of the coolest gizmos made thus far this year

Wednesday, July 18, 2007 by Frogboy | Discussion: Personal Computing

I don't know about you but I hate having to wait until the end of the year to read those "best of" lists.
This is doubly true because those lists almost always favor things released near the end of the year. Well, we're half-way through 2007 already and so here's our list of the top 5 coolest things we've seen
so far this year!
 
#1 Erector Spykee Robot. A brilliant idea made real. This is a remote control robot that has a microphone and camera on it that will transmits what it sees and hears to you no matter where you are. You can control it from remote and have it drive around your home or office while you are somewhere else talking to other people and listening to what they say back.  My only complaint is that it looks a bit too much like a toy when in reality it could be a decent little tool.

 

#2 Art Rage. This is easily the most amazing paint application I've ever seen and it's only $20!  If you have a tablet PC of any kind, quit reading this and get this program. It will absolutely blow you away. No seriously, it's incredible.

 

 
#3 iPhone. Yea yea I know, the most overhyped thing in the universe.  But the iPhone really has lived up to much of the hype. While the lack of 3G is a bit of a put off and the non-removable battery is a downer, the iPhone is the coolest phone I've ever seen. 

 

#4 Liquid Desktop.  For users who have Windows Vista Ultimate, you can download the free program DeskScapes and then get Liquid Desktop. It does an insanely good water effect on any desktop wallpaper. Think of the best video game water effect you've ever seen and now imagine in on your desktop. It has tons of different options and settings to custom-tailor it to your own preference. If you have Windows Vista Ultimate, get this.

 

 
#5 Windows Home Server.  With more and more people having multiple computers in their household, Microsoft's Windows Home Server really is the right product at the right time.  Right now, my wife, kids and I shuttle a USB drive around the house for family pictures, video, and other files depending on who's using the computer.  True, we have network shares but they're not a friendly interface for my wife and kids to deal with. It just automates and simplifies having multiple computers in the house.

 

 

[digg]http://digg.com/gadgets/5_Coolest_things_of_2007_so_far[/digg]
Island Dog
Reply #1 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 3:51 PM
Great list.  Can't wait to see the rest of 2007.


Lantec
Reply #2 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:29 PM
Gonna have to look into that Windows Home Server

I've learned not to get impressed with phones. It's like PCs in the 90s......the day you bring it home, something better-faster hits the market.
foreverserenity
Reply #3 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:34 PM
This is really a great list! I'll look into the home server too, great idea!



Cafin8ted
Reply #4 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:48 PM
Awesome - A list for 2007 already - I knew time was flyin, now I have proof. I need that BOT
vStyler
Reply #5 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 5:12 PM
I'll take everything but the Iphone.. I can't stand the cheesy little jingle they use in their commercials. It has a "look how smart we are" smack to it.   

Liquid Dream Rawks.   
starkers
Reply #6 Wednesday, July 18, 2007 9:23 PM
I'll take everything but the Iphone..


Same here....saw Zoomba's write up on the Windows Home Server, and upon further investigation it looks perfect foe the home with 3 - 4 PC's, as ours is. Was already sold on the Liquid Desktop and Dreamscenes....and if those robots can be trained to fetch cuppa's as well, I'll take a dozen....yeah, I know, but I do drink an awful lot of tea.

I can't stand the cheesy little jingle they use in their commercials. It has a "look how smart we are" smack to it.


Like any Apple ad....has the look of "how hard I wanna smack it."
Jeffrey Bombard
Reply #7 Thursday, July 19, 2007 1:39 AM
Top 3 okay sounds cool.

4 while cool, the fact that you need Windows Vista Ultimate(and this is really the only reason to get Ultimate or Vista for that matter) is very very uncool.

5 just sounds like you guys are getting a little too comfy with MS. I mean we are talking about buying a server to replace all the functionality of a USB hard drive. Granted it saves you some leg work around home, but we are talking about buying a server to do this. I'm actually surprised you guys at Stardock haven't come up with a handy utility to simplify copying files across the home network. Just seems like buying a server to do this is overkill.
Quentin94
Reply #8 Thursday, July 19, 2007 2:57 AM
5 just sounds like you guys are getting a little too comfy with MS. I mean we are talking about buying a server to replace all the functionality of a USB hard drive. Granted it saves you some leg work around home, but we are talking about buying a server to do this. I'm actually surprised you guys at Stardock haven't come up with a handy utility to simplify copying files across the home network. Just seems like buying a server to do this is overkill.


It seems you don't know what you talk about....
Stardock and Microsoft are two DIFFERENT societies!

In another hand Do you know how runs a network and a Sever network guess not
A server is not a USB hard drive ROFL do you ever read about the speed different between a USB cable and a Network cable; we don't talk about a ... oh nevermind
Simply you compared Vinyl to DVD hope you'll get the Picture
Erk.
Reply #9 Thursday, July 19, 2007 3:25 AM

Windows Home Server

I was fortunate enough to be accepted to beta-test this ...and I gotta say it's doing it's job extremely well. I have 4 computers [Vista and XP Pro], all networked to the HomeServer. I have it set to auto backup all files on all computers, which it does once a week, or you can set it to do it more frequently. So far, every backup has gone without a hitch.

I'm using it on an older tower, with much of the hardware 2-3 years old or older, and everything works, and works well.

Microsoft is definitely working diligently on this one, and there's great feedback for it on the HomeServer forums, with all mentioned serious bugs being looked at and fixed promptly.

This is the one to get, for those with multiple computers. Just great!

danioc
Reply #10 Thursday, July 19, 2007 8:32 AM
Cool article.

I would include WB6 and SS6 to the list too but then we'll need a top 7
Zoomba
Reply #11 Thursday, July 19, 2007 10:04 AM

I sooo want that robot kit.

And WHS has me fairly impressed.  I have a spare PC that I could chuck a new hard drive into (500GB drives are just a hair over $100 now).  I may pick WHS up at some point in the future and shuffle most major storage off of my PCs and on to the network.

starkers
Reply #12 Thursday, July 19, 2007 10:39 AM
I mean we are talking about buying a server to replace all the functionality of a USB hard drive.


Jeffrey, WHS offers considerably more than a replacement for a USB drive....ie: more convenient/complete home network management, permanent storage for users files, thus reducing clutter/hard-drives/AV scan times on each PC on the network. Yep, and given the choice, I'd rather be getting into bed with MS than Apple any day.
DarwinRGarcia
Reply #13 Thursday, July 19, 2007 2:40 PM
Okay... cool list, except iPhone, unless I get it free   

Now a question thats really worthy of Stardock...

How can I get Liquid Desktop (aka DreamScapes) on my WinXPPro???

  
fr4nk1yn
Reply #14 Thursday, July 19, 2007 8:10 PM
Windows Home Server? #5?

I so the same with an old computer, including 240gb of RAID, with FREENAS.
Ronnie The Mick
Reply #15 Friday, July 20, 2007 3:02 PM
And WHS has me fairly impressed. I have a spare PC that I could chuck a new hard drive into (500GB drives are just a hair over $100 now). I may pick WHS up at some point in the future and shuffle most major storage off of my PCs and on to the network.


Well, if you read all the information about WHS on the Microsoft site it appears that, at least initially, the software will not be available separately. You'll have to purchase a "server" with it preloaded. No using your existing spare hardware. And of course this conflicts with other reports that say an OEM version will be available for purchase separately.

Reminds me of the Media Center Edition that initially could not be purchased separately also.
Zydor
Reply #16 Friday, July 20, 2007 3:52 PM
I hadnt realised Home Server was around until Frogboy pointed it out - looks good in theory, they certainly have spotted a market gap yet again), lets hope their solution fills that gap. If it does, they will get another sale out of me. I personally am not a microsoft basher - sure I'll joke about it in a fun sense (they are market leader, comes with the territory to be clobbered if you are the big guy - if you dont like the heat get out the kitchen), but if they come with good stuff, which they frequently do, I'll buy it. Its that simple, if it does not meet my need I wont, its easy.

Some (not all by any means) of the "competitors" bleating about monopolies are the same ones who in 1985-1990 stuck their pompous noses in the air, in effect a "it'll never catch on" attitude, or "anyway we are far superior technically" - even after Windows V3 first came out that attitude was far from unusual. Microsoft are not paragons of virtue, far from it, but they spotted the correct market gap and went for it - the others didnt simple as that. Many of the latter have bleated ever since as they struggle to catch up having not the same quality of business perception that was self evidently found wanting. Thats business life, deal with it.
ronb
Reply #17 Saturday, July 21, 2007 2:40 PM
A question (to anyone) about WHS - does it also act as a print server? At the moment I have an old PC that's now doing time as a file server and a print server. I have been thinking about WHS on it, but I haven't seen anything about printer support in WHS. Without that, the machine running XP SP2 appears to be doing just fine.

I was also wonder if WHS will be available as a stand-alone software product. The MS WHS website talks about "hardware options available in the fall", but nothing about WHS on its own.

Ron
Body-Philosophy
Reply #18 Saturday, July 28, 2007 9:40 AM
I like the I-phone myself but have you seen the G-shot?!
KinniStyle
Reply #19 Wednesday, August 1, 2007 7:46 AM
KinniStyle
Reply #20 Wednesday, August 1, 2007 7:47 AM
G-shot


its cool isn't it

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