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I'm Dick DeBartolo, MAD's Maddest Writer, host of The Giz Wiz on TWiT, The Giz Wiz on ABC's World News Now and on Computer America. But wait, there's More »

 

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    As "Special Correspondent" - once a month, for a full hour, I join Craig Crossman and Co-Host Ben Crossman on Computer America - America's longest running nationally syndicated radio talk show about computers. But when I'm on the show we talk about every kind of gadget! To hear the show, or to go to the archives (which now covers the past two years) click below www.computeramerica.com

    Wednesday
    Feb252015

    From Toy Fair in New York City Something New from WowWee.

    Last year we talked about the MiP robot who can zoom around balancing things like a can of soda of a tray he can carry. Well the folks at WowWee said they felt MiP needed company, so they created the MiPosaur. Here what WowWee says about their new creation. The MiPosaur is a highly intelligent robotic creature with an incredible, evolving intelligence and personality. It can sense its own surroundings and environment, and interact with them in a unique and lifelike way. In addition to featuring GestureSense technology that lets you control it with the swipe of your hand, the MiPosaur has sturdy MIP (Mobile Inverted Pendulum, created with the UCSD Coordinated Robotics Lab) balance and comes with an interactive TrackBall equipped with BeaconSense technology. With it, the MiPosaur can chase the trackball, play with it, guard it, as well as alter its moods depending on the various interactions. The MiPosaur is fully interactive with the MiP robot and a BLE enabled app, compatible with both iOS and Android smart devices, and will feature exciting and engaging games. MSRP $119.99 Mid Q3 2015 Release which usually means Fall 2015. 

    Company website: http://www.wowwee.com/en/search?q=MiPosaur+ 

    Wednesday
    Feb252015

    What toy has remained basically the same for the past 55 years?

    Give up, even though there are clues everywhere? Yes, it's Etch-A-Sketch!  

    For more than 55 years, the Etch A Sketch has been challenging kids to twist and turn their way to a masterpiece. To make a sketch, simply turn the vertical and horizontal drawing knobs and watch the line appear on the magnetic screen. To erase your doodle and start again, simply shake the toy. Bring it along on a car trip for mess-free fun in the backseat. Over 100 million Etch-A-Sketch units have been sold in those 55 years and it's still going strong. Ohio Art, says Etch-A-Sketch is great for kids ages 4 years and up. It’s available in several different sizes, colors, and prices, from about $10 to $30+, but it works the same it did as when it first came into the marketplace 55 years ago. It was invented in France.  In the video I shot at Toy Fair 2015, you'll see Bryan Lee Madden, a professional artist, who makes a living doing Etch-A-Sketch portraits of people, pets and scenes. You'll even see me accidentally mess up one of his Etch-A-Sketch pictures. Very embarrassing, indeed! 

    Giz Wiz Video: http://youtu.be/XTWQBnte4Tw

    Company website: http://www.ohioart.com/brands/etch-sketch

    Bryan's website: www.bryanetch.com

    Wednesday
    Feb252015

    A whole new kind bubble-blowing experience.

    When I stopped by the Amazing Toys Booth at Toy Fair 2015, I didn't expect to be invited to hop onto a bed of nails. But I was, and I did. I didn't know what to expect, but it was fun, and totally pain-free.You can see it happen in the video below. The company does not sell a bed of nails, but they do see other Amazing Toys, like their new Epic Bubbles. Unlike most of the toys I saw at Toy Fair, which won’t be out until summer or fall, Epic Bubbles are already on Amazon. Here’s what Amazon says about them: “Mind blowing bubbles that vanish in a puff of smoke. Bubbles are cool... but bubbles filled with fog are even cooler! This amazing kit allows you to generate your own fog filled bubbles, and bounce them in the palm of your hand! Just fill the bubble generator with dry ice and warm water, dip the rubber tubing in bubble solution and get ready to make the most epic bubbles you've ever seen. The science of bubbles just got better. Dry ice not included... just in case you were wondering. MSRP $24.99. It’s a couple of bucks cheaper at the Amazon link below. 

    Be Amazing Toys Epic Bubbles Jar Science Experiment Kits

    Wednesday
    Feb252015

    Two Fun Gadgets From ThinkGeek.

    Over at Think Geek, I learned about two fun gadgets; one is already on sale and one won’t be along until summer. In the video you’ll see the prototype of GoBricks. GoBricks is a building brick compatible system (it can work with Lego bricks for example) that lets take two motors and wheels so you can add motion to something you've built. In the kit you'll get two motors, two wheels, two remote controls and a robot 'driver' figure. MSRP is under $30, and it’s coming this summer. As of 2/25/15 it was not mentioned on the ThinkGeek website. 

    www.thinkgeek.com

    The second game, Hoverkraft, is already available. In Hoverkraft players take turns stacking pieces on a platform... that levitates. Using magnetic repulsion, the game board defies gravity. The object is to stack translucent game pieces higher and higher or remove them as the die you toss dictates. The last player to place a block without causing the platform to tumble wins. Hoverkraft is intended for two players, but it's fun to challenge yourself to build bigger and better structures. And it's a fast game, lasting anywhere from 30 seconds to 5 minutes. $29.95 

    http://www.thinkgeek.com/product/1531/ 

    Monday
    Feb232015

    These cars with Artifical Intelligence are out to beat you!

    THE NEXT GENERATION OF ANKI DRIVE IS COMING! 

    Anki Drive is a high-tech slotless car adventure that has really taken off. At Amazon, the $150 Anki Drive starter kit was their second best selling toy last Christmas. (A Frozen doll took top spot, and it’s not even remote control!) Based on that success, something new is coming September 2015, Anki OVERDRIVE. As you’ll see in the video below, the new Anki OVERDRIVE features a modular track system that lets you snap pieces together quickly with magnetic connectors. You’ll be able to build and rebuild endless numbers of unique battlefields in seconds and get racing! Go head-to-head with friends or step up your game against elite AI (Artificial Intelligence) Commanders and their crews to (hopefully) become the champion of the Anki OVERDRIVE tournament. Anki OVERDRIVE Supercars are high-tech, intelligent vehicles that keep learning as they play. Built in computers combined with visual sensors make sure you stay on track even during the most legendary battle moments. You can add endless amounts of optional modular track and customize your Supercars with upgrades. You control everything with your iOS or Android device. The start-up kit will be $150 when it becomes available on September 15th, 2015. You can sign up for updates at the link below. 

    Giz Wiz Video: http://youtu.be/EqgfZGnSkI8

    Sign up for updates at https://anki.com/overdrive