This week on Top 5 Coolness Countdown, we separate the coolness from the lukewarm with a new streaming video player from Amazon, the return of the Windows Start menu and a robotic kangaroo.
If you’d like to hear us talking about this week’s countdown, listen to our Top 5 Coolness Countdown podcast:
5. Spiroo is a Life Saver
A small device called My Spiroo could save lives. Spiroo is a peak flow meter, a small tube that measures your exhaled breath. Asthma sufferers can use it to send data to their doctors about potential problems and because it connects to a smartphone you can see your peak flow right on the screen.
4. USB Relief
Do you find USB cables annoying, plugging them in the wrong way half the time? So do I. There’s help on the way — a new USB 3.1 Type C cable that you can’t plug in wrong no matter what — it works like Apple’s reversible Lightning cables. Type C cables will be available later this year, eventually replacing all those clunky USB cables we struggle with now.
3. Festo’s Robot Kangaroo
Robotics company Festo has created a small robotic kangaroo that mimics the movements of an actual kangaroo. Why? Because it’s cool and because it allows researchers to understand how to model real-life behavior using electronics.
via Daily Mail
2. Amazon Fire TV Debuts
Amazon launched its Fire TV streaming and gaming box, a thin black square with a quad-core processor inside. In addition to Amazon’s own Prime Instant Video, the $99 box streams Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora Radio and many others, and can be controlled by speaking into its remote control. It’s available now in the U.S. for $99.
1. Stopped Windows Start Menu Returns
The Start menu is back! Microsoft announced that in the next Windows 8.1 update users will have access to the Start menu, a move that will give diehard XP fans a reason to upgrade. It’s about time!