By Kevin | 9th January 2013 | Category: Auto Shows | Leave a comment

CES Master

The International CES (Consumer Electronics Show) is taking place in Las Vegas as we speak (or read), and is once again presenting electronic technology that we will either not be able to do without or will become the next Betamax or 8-Track cassette.

Last year, Nvidia showed off their in-car entertainment system (and they continue to innovate this year) and other previous exhibits have included the Solowheel (a cross between a unicycle and a Segway that can travel at 10mph), a heated computer mouse pad, a television for children in the shape of a giraffe (a polar bear and panda were also available) and a musical stylus that can take calls, manipulate the screen of your phone, tablet or computer and play music.

There are over 3,250 exhibitors in Las Vegas at the moment gorging on the 20,000 new technologies and inventions unveiled at CES.

“We couldn’t be more excited to kick off this record-breaking show.” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CEA. “CES has an incredible story to tell with every major technology company spanning the globe participating in this year’s CES to showcase their innovations.”   In amongst the 84” Ultra HDTVs, NCredible headsets, Cameras, smartphones in all shapes and sizes, voice recognition technology, and computers are some bits of technology that could be useful for car users.

Admittedly we already have technology that helps us park, not crash, wake up and get where we want; but it can always get better – or so they would have you believe. This year Livio have introduced FM Connect that “enables in-car FM radio listeners to interact with FM broadcasts from the dashboard through a Bluetooth-connected smartphone” and VOXX have their NM100 rearview navigation; and these are just the ones that have had publicity.

But what would actually be useful in a car? What would make our lives easier?

There are things that I believe could make the life of a driver a lot better, so if anyone who fancies a go at Dragon’s Den; here’s a few ideas.

  • A gadget that talks to the Sat nav instead of the driver when it doesn’t tell you anything. This will save you swearing at it.
  • A flashing sign attached to the car on the roof that flashes up messages to the car in front or behind so that road rage can be portrayed eloquently rather than verbally. A series of messages can be pre-programmed into the sign and a button pressed to display the relevant one – or maybe even a sign; two fingers, one finger, a sticking out tongue…..
  • An invention that counts the number of times a driver gets criticised by their partner in the front seat or back-seat driver so that when they say “I said nothing” you can ask the car how many times.
  • A voice activated music player from a bank of songs that the car holds. This will make it easier to change tracks and play what you want. The only problem is when the kids are in the car and you have to listen to One Direction all the time or, in the case of my grandson, The Beatles. (Although I am force-feeding him the Jam in an attempt to wean him off.)

Actually, the most talked about item at the CES is The HAPIfork. Incredibly enough it is an electronic fork that monitors your eating habits by giving precise information about your eating schedule; telling you when you are eating too fast, not chewing long enough and putting on weight.

I’ve already got one of them. It’s called ‘My Wife’.


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