The week in gadgets


18 Oct 2010

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A look at gadget, game and geek happenings in the week ahead.

Hearing aids get connected

Siemens has launched an audio system with the ability to connect Siemens hearing aids with TVs and other audio sources.

The miniTek receives sound via Bluetooth or a 3.5mm jack. Users can get audio from the TV or stereo by installing Tek transmitters.

They can also get audio from a computer, audio player or phone.

It looks pretty stylish, too, with a black, modern design and it’s also quite portable.

The miniTek’s transmitters work simultaneously, so there shouldn’t be lag time between the audio source and the hearing aid.

Android Angry Birds hits 1 million downloads in one day

Angry Birds reached 1 million downloads in just one day, after being released on the Android platform this weekend.

The record-breaking mobile game was released for free and was available first on indie mobile app store GetJar, before hitting the Android Market.

The Android launch proved popular, so much so that Rovio’s site went down temporarily on Friday.

The game lets players use a slingshot, catapulting angry birds at items in order to strategically knock them out.

Babies can believe that robots are sentient

Babies can be fooled into believing that robots are sentient beings, a study from the University of Washington’s Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences suggests.

The research was undertaken with a remote-controlled robot, with the researcher and robot acting friendly towards one another.

Out of the 64 babies that participated in the study, they found that in 13 out of 16 cases, the baby followed the robot’s gaze, suggesting that the child believed it was sentient.

Only three out of 16 cases saw the baby interact with the robot without seeing it interact with another human to begin with.

"Babies learn best through social interactions, but what makes something ‘social’ for a baby?" said Andrew Meltzoff, co-director of the UW’s Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences.

"It is not just what something looks like, but how it moves and interacts with others that gives it special meaning to the baby."

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