GW-94

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J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
G A D G E T W A T C H
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
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Issue No. 94
Monday, March 17, 2003

(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)

Name: Epson "Monsieur II"
Category: Robots
Price: TBA
Release date in Japan: TBA

The Gist: Due to be launched at April's Robodex exhibition, these
little guys are claimed to be the world's smallest and thinnest
micro-actuator- and Bluetooth-equipped robot prototypes. Monsieur II's
predecessor, "Monsieur" (no, really?), got into the Guinness Book of
Records on account of its extreme tininess -- the new robots are
smaller and better. No longer just moving around autonomously and a
bit aimlessly, the M2s can now be radio-controlled via Bluetooth. They
can pootle forward, pootle backward and turn left and right. And not
necessarily at the same time. Sometimes they'll just turn left. Or
just right. They're crazy little fellas like that. And they move at
speeds of up to 70mm per second (our brains are too small to work this
out, but we believe this is close to about 100 mph in real money).
Size-wise, the robots are less than 20mm all round and weigh 12.5g, so
they are probably not quite up to helping you with the housework.
Maybe when they grow up.

More info:
http://pc.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/2003/0310/epson.htm

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Name: Iiyama ProLite C480T
Category: AV
Price: 159,800 yen
Release date in Japan: March 21, 2003

The Gist: Now, your Iiyama ProLite C480T is basically a 19-inch SXGA
LCD display with a built-in TV tuner. We've certainly seen a few of
those recently. But Iiyama is a very well-respected PC peripheral
manufacturer, and this product could very well turn out to be a heavy
hitter. With a 1,280x1,024-dot display, 170-degree viewing angle,
600:1 contrast ratio and brightness of 430 cd/m2, the C480T is
certainly no lightweight on the tech-specs scales. The response time
is nice and fast at 25ms and there are twin 5W speakers positioned
either side of the screen. Sockets for input sources include one for a
TV antenna, a D4, S-video, composite and DVI-I -- so that's pretty
much all the input bases covered. The display looks the business and
is at least as lovely looking as Sharp's very popular Aquos series
(better looking, for my money), and you have the bonus of the high
definition SXGA display thrown in. Iiyama has pictures of it hanging
on a wall, much like the more expensive plasma displays, and it looks
awesome.

More info: http://www.iiyama-sales.com/products/monitor/c480t_tok.htm

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Name: Iomega mini-USB drive
Category: PC Storage
Price: 9,800 yen
Release date in Japan: March 10, 2003

The Gist: This new little widget from computer storage company Iomega
is a 128MB key-ring-sized USB device. Measuring 23x71x11mm and
weighing in at 15g (less than a disposable lighter, fact fans!), the
mini-USB drive is compatible with all flavors of Windows AND Mac OS.
The super-fast data-transfer rate maxes out at 1MB a second, so it's
handy for quick data swapping, and the main unit has a detachable cap
section that is rigged to act as a key holder, which is handy for, um,
holding keys and stuff. The thing comes pre-loaded with "Mini Lock"
password-controlled security software, so your data's protected while
on the move. It's on sale right now via the company's Web site,
IomegaDirect.

More info: http://www.iomega.com/jp/news/current/20030310.html

To purchase: http://www.iomega.com/direct/main/home.jsp

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STAFF
Written by: Max Everingham (max@everingham.net)
Edited by: J@pan Inc editors (editors@japaninc.com)

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