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Gadgets, Gizmos, and Games for Geeks

Microsoft Brings Back the Blue Screen of Death

Microsoft Brings Back the Blue Screen of Death
Not that your screen really needs saving these days, but some cruel jokers over at Microsoft TechNet have released the Blue Screen of Death Screen Saver for those of you with a sadistic streak. The screen saver accurately emulates the dreaded OS hard crash that Windows is (in)famous for.

Classic Video Games in LEGO Form

Classic Video Games in LEGO Form
The guys over at Brick Flick have painstakingly built a series of LEGO vignettes based on classic video games. The scenes include Mortal Kombat, Castlevania, Shadow of the Colossus, Contra, Excitebike and my personal Favorite, Katamari (Block)acy – shown above.

Art Lebedev Does Sound

Art Lebedev Does Sound
Industrial designer Art Lebedev is known mostly for his Optimus Mini Three OLED keyboard and his nifty cursor shaped mouse. Now his clean, minimal designs will be showing up in a new desktop speaker system. Art’s new Sonicum speaker system is a 2.1 system featuring two satellite speakers and a powered subwoofer.

Xbox 360 Gets HD Movies, Tv, Possibly Larger Hard Drive

Xbox 360 Gets HD Movies, Tv, Possibly Larger Hard Drive
On November 22, the Xbox Live Marketplace will start offering movie and television downloads for the Xbox 360. Microsoft has announced agreements with CBS, MTV Networks, Paramount Pictures, TBS, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and Warner Brothers to offer an initial lineup of over 1,000 hours of TV shows and movies on the Xbox Live marketplace.

Belkin Shows Zune Accessories

Belkin Shows Zune Accessories
In case you’re planning on picking up Microsoft’s new Zune player for the holidays, you might want to check out some of these new accessories being offered by Belkin: TuneBase FM Transmitter($79.99): Broadcast tunes to your car stereo; able to work in either portrait or landscape mode TunePower ($59.99): Special case which includes a battery for up to 6 hours of extra playtime and a “kickstand” for hands-free video viewing Acrylic Case ($29.99) Folio Leather Kickstand Case ($29.99) Microfiber Holster Case($29.99) Neoprene Sports Armband Case ($29.99) Sports Jacket Case with Armband ($19.99) ClearScreen Overlay ($14.99) All accessories should be released in North America by the end of November.

Xbox 360 HD DVD Playback: Over 4.7 Million Lines of Code

Xbox 360 HD DVD Playback: Over 4.7 Million Lines of Code
In this post by Shaheen Gandhi, an engineer on the Xbox 360 Platform Team, a massive amount of code went into the HD DVD playback system for the Xbox 360. As a result of the complexities of decoding HD DVD audio and video content, as well as providing a user interface and DRM, over 4.7 million lines of code went into the HD DVD software.

The Vibro Sounder: Any Surface Becomes a Speaker

The Vibro Sounder: Any Surface Becomes a Speaker
With a name like The VIBRO Sounder, I wasn’t sure if this was an audio device or a marital aid. It actually turns out to be a sonic transducer that turns any nearby surface into a loudspeaker.

The Ultimate Vaporware

The Ultimate Vaporware
Just in time for the holidays, The Onion – America’s Finest News Source, will offer the ideal holiday gifts for the guy or gal who has everything. Gotchabox is a set of three boxes from completely fake, yet surprisingly real sounding bad gift items, the USB toaster (are you sure this isn’t real?),

Pinball Reincarnated in Digital Format

Pinball Reincarnated in Digital Format
At this week’s Pinball Expo in Chicago, a little company called Global VR showed off their UltraPin pinball machine which brings back the feel of old pinball machines, but updates the concept for the 21st century.

Samsung’s Hip Mini Mp3 Phone

Samsung’s Hip Mini Mp3 Phone
Samsung’s latest mobile phone, the SGH-X830, features an innovative slim swing-open design and full media player capabilities. When closed, the phone measures just 3.3″ (h) x 1.18″ (w) x .78″(d), and weight just 75 grams (about 2.65 ounces).

See Your iPod’s Innards

See Your iPod’s Innards
Looking for a way to spiff up your iPod? iPod mod company, iPodMods has introduced their new iVue Crystal case mod which lets you see the inner guts of your iPod, while still offering protection from normal use.

Video Watch Plays Mp4s for Under $100

Video Watch Plays Mp4s for Under $100
The MP4 Watch from Hong Kong importer Brando has the ability to play video, music and photos on its 128×128 pixel LCD screen. The watch is a full-fledged portable media player with 1GB of flash memory on board.

Minesweeper Made Out of Pixelblocks

Minesweeper Made Out of Pixelblocks
From the “someone has too much time on their hands” file… A true geek going by the screen name Cursors managed to take enough time out from his busy office life to build a giant reproduction of the Windows game, Minesweeper, entirely out of tiny plastic pixelblocks.

Pac-Man: the Existential Pie Chart

Pac-Man: the Existential Pie Chart
I saw this image over at The Museum of Tolerance today, and laughed so much that I just had to post it: ‘Nuf said.

Sony Vaio G: Ultra Portable Laptop

Sony Vaio G: Ultra Portable Laptop
Lately, Sony’s been having more bad days than good ones, what with flaming batteries, Playstation 3 launch concerns and other financial woes. Well today, we get to report on something coming from Sony that actually looks good.

Nokia’s Clear Boombox

Nokia’s Clear Boombox
This cool boombox comes from an unlikely source, mobile phone maker Nokia. The minimal briefcase-style design features a unique transparent plastic enclosure. There’s a dock for a Nokia music-capable phone (not sure if anything else will dock there), and then two substantive speakers with all their guts exposed for the world to see.