Ricoh lets Hello Kitty project herself

Hello Kitty is everywhere these days, so it’s inevitable she’ll appear on gadgets. But perhaps one of the more unusual items to get a Hello Kitty makeover is Ricoh’s home-theater projector, which will be released on Nov. 1, the famous feline’s birthday.

Although Hello Kitty’s face and iconic red ribbon make up the rectangular body of the projector, this is definitely not a toy. It produces high-resolution projections, making your photos or movies particularly clear and vivid — and it costs ¥138,240. It’s also compact in size, has a mobile high-definition link (MHL) terminal that can be used with a smartphone or tablet and it comes with a collection of other Hello Kitty-themed covers.

Kids may pester their parents to get one of these, but if you want one you had better be quick as only 1,000 will be made available in Japan and China.


For those who can’t give up pen and paper

It doesn’t seem to matter how much smaller computers get or how many tablets there are out there, we still like to make hand-written notes. But what if you want to keep track of your doodles, without the hassle of hanging on to scraps of paper? It turns out even your scribbles can be digitized.

Wacom’s smart folio Bamboo Spark is designed to convert your handwritten memos into digital images, but unlike with a stylus, you draw on real paper.

The folio has a pad of paper on the right that you write on using a smart ballpoint pen that records your strokes. The left side of the folio has a pocket for your tablet or smartphone.

Once you’ve completed your memo, simply press a small button at the center of the folio and the pen starts pairing with your device. Your notes will appear in digital form and can be edited by a Bamboo Spark set of tools. A full charge lasts up to eight hours and if you’re not connected to the Internet, the pen can still save 100 pages of notes, so you can sync them later.

Priced at ¥17,800, the Bamboo Spark will be available from October.


Angling for a new power extension lead?

Extension cords are not something people usually get excited about, but this is a very smart idea for anyone with few power sockets in their homes. Sanwa Supply’s new multi-socketed extension cord not only has four outlets, a USB charge port and 2 meters of cable, but it can also change shape.

Most multi-socketed extension leads are cumbersome bars, but this one has hinges between each socket, allowing you to swivel them around corners or create extra space between them for large power plugs. Whether it’s on a desk or in the corner of the room, you can tidy it away by angling it to make maximum use of a small space or just leave it like a regular extension bar. Available in brown, red, white or black, you can find them in stores now for ¥3,780.


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