Computational creativity and the future of AI

Flash Drive

New flash drive with scrollable display of stored files plus SD Card Reader/Writer

March 28, 2006 More innovative thought is being focussed on the flash drive than we thought possible, because every week or so, we seem to run another story about an important new design feature incorporated into a flash drive. This week it’s a USB 2.0 Flash/Jump drive with a scrollable window display enabling consumers to view stored file names without a computer connection. The Royal EZVue Vista Drive will be available in of 256MB (US$50), 512MB (US$80) and 1GB (US$100) memory sizes plus there’s what we think will be a killer app – a US$30 SD Card Reader/Writer with the same scrolling display, offering a wide-range of really useful applications including digital photography and music storage. On-the-go consumers can now easily find the files they want in a muddle of SD cards.  Read More

FlashDisc – the new flash-based floppy?

March 16, 2006 Now we’re not sure if this one will fly or not. msystems has announced the introduction of FlashDisc, a new flash-based storage category. The FlashDisc has between 16 and 32 megabytes of data storage and a USB interface, which allows sharing of data on virtually any PC or Mac. The format is a response to market research which has identified an apparently unmet consumer need for small, easy to use, rewritable media with storage density higher than the old floppy diskettes, but lower than that of personal USB flash drives typically used today. As yet there’s no price been announced, and we’d suggest this product will be very price sensitive, as it’s essentially a personal give-away for people who haven’t heard about the internet yet.  Read More

World’s largest flash drive – 16GB

March 11, 2006 Iocell Korea released the world’s largest flash drive at CeBIT this week – a 16GB version of the company’s Celldisk. The drive is the same size as other flash drives, though the drive is USB 2.0 compliant. There’s no indication of the availability or price just yet.  Read More

US$3,500 White Lake USB Memory Golden Stick

March 4, 2006 The luxury goods market exists because people will always enjoy having exquisite objects, showing their status and wealth and expressing their individuality. That’s why people will pay hundreds of dollars for a cigarette lighter, thousands of dollars for a pen, and tens of thousands of dollars for a watch. So it was inevitable that when flash drives became personal, that we’d see an upmarket version, similar to the Vertu range of high end mobile phones. Flash drive manufacturers White Lake have created a top-of-the range USB flash drive named the Golden Stick which will be showcased at CEBIT next week. The Golden Stick is made of 14 carat gold with five embedded diamonds, though you can have it in 18 carat gold if you wish, but it’ll cost more, and if you think the diamonds are a bit gauche, you can leave them out and reduce the price from EUR 2,950 (US$3,550) to EUR 2,400 (US$2,885). We’re not so sure about making top shelf items in the rapidly moving technology fields – having a 4GB Golden Stick might not be so cool this time next year when everyone else has 16GB.  Read More

Developments in convenient personal storage continue

February 27, 2006 Just how many different form factors can personal storage take? We’re often amazed at the ingenuity of storage manufacturers in striving for bigger, faster, more convenient and simply devilishly clever new form factors, and we saw a few of them at this weekend’s PMA show in sunny Florida. Not new (but bigger) is the US$134.99 SanDisk 2 GB Ultra II SD Plus card, that looks and functions like a typical SD card but folds in half to reveal a high-speed USB 2.0 connector. Going one better was Pretec, which offered the first look at the both the world’s fastest CF Card and a flash drive with built-in card reader. The Pretec 133X CF Card is capable of running at up to 20MB/sec and 14MB/sec of access speed in read & write. The Pretec e-Disk II+ is an expandable USB flash drive with an embedded 512MB flash memory (default) which can be expanded to 4.5GB by simply inserting an optional SD/MMC card  Read More

USB flash drive with e-paper capacity meter

February 3, 2006 With flash memory and miniature hard drives proliferating, there are many new ideas coming to market for clever, differentiating features and compelling storage form factors. Storage specialist Lexar Media has released a preview of one of its products that we think will be a winner – a USB flash drive with a unique storage capacity meter to its popular drives by integrating an innovative electronic paper display from E Ink Corporation. The E Ink display is a paper-thin, shatter proof, easy-to-read meter that’s non-volatile in that it does not rely on power to show the capacity information when disconnected from the computer. The Lexar JumpDrive Mercury will be the first USB flash drive to feature the on-board non-volatile smart capacity meter that will let customers easily monitor their available storage capacity.  Read More

World's Slimmest USB Flash Drive fits comfortably in a wallet

January 19, 2006 A boy’s first wallet is unquestionably one of the male rights of passage – a step on the road to the status of manhood. At first, the problem is finding anything important enough to carry in the wallet, but as life becomes more complex with age, the problem soon becomes how to fit it all in. In recent times, the small size and growing importance of portable storage has already seen a lightning fast adoption rate leading to a remarkable diversity in the form factors of portable drives – wrist bands, key chains, and now a card holding up to 2GB that is designed to fit into a wallet and at the same time offer an advertising and promotional medium with substantial advertising space – the Walletex Wallet Flash 1.1, is the world's first credit card-sized wallet flash drive (the marketers have coined their own acronym – WFD – but we suspect this will not become part of everyday language).  Read More

FingerGear Computer-On-a-Stick with Biometric recognition

October 14, 2005 FingerGear Computer-On-a-Stick USB Flash Drive now has fingerprint security. The Computer-On-a-Stick is the world's first bootable USB flash drive - the OS and all Desktop Software applications come preinstalled and occupy as little as 200Mb of flash memory. The device also features Atmel's FingerChip sensor for convenient and accurate one-swipe secure data access, and a large font LCD display for the ultimate user-friendly experience.  Read More

USB Flash Drive with Operating System Plus Office Suite

July 24, 2005 FingerGear, the consumer brand of biometrics specialist Bionopoly, has announced a Computer-On-a-Stick Flash Drive. The Computer-On-a-Stick is a bootable USB 2.0 Flash Drive that is the first flash device to feature a complete onboard Operating System. The device also features the OpenOffice Productivity Suite, along with many of the most commonly used desktop and Internet applications. The Computer-On-a-Stick allows users to take their entire software environment with them anywhere securely. The device is bootable from any PC with an x86 processor, regardless of its resident Windows or Linux OS. All bookmarks, address book, emails, and office documents are stored securely on the device and never leave a trace on the host PC. Users enter a login password at each session.  Read More

USB ShareDrive: the thumbdrive with a brain

June 8, 2005 The FlashPoint ShareDrive is a new type of USB thumb drive that allows users to copy data stored in the FlashPoint flash memory to another flash drive or a USB device such as an MP3 player or digial camera WITHOUT a computer. The new FlashPoint ShareDrives have an integrated female USB connector so users can plug a cable or another device into the same USB port in which the FlashPoint ShareDrive is attached, chaining devices. Computerless copying to another sharedrive is compelling functionality and , arguably well worth the US$200 price for a 1GB drive – more than double that of a standard 1GB thumb drive.  Read More

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