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Digital Movie Creator: Screen Play

Mattel and Intel create digital camera for kids

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One of last year’s most futurific kids’ toys was the X3 Microscope, a digital-camera science gadget created by Mattel and Intel. The newest translucent blue microchip-powered plaything from this computer-age partnership is the Digital Movie Creator, a handheld camcorder that captures video and plugs into a PC, where kids 8 to 12 can edit multiple clips, add sound, and throw in special effects like slime or 3-D butterflies. It lacks a built-in microphone and captures only eight seconds of video when untethered from the PC. But for $99.99 you can’t find a more kid-friendly vidcam that runs on AAA batteries. While the Movie Creator may not win anyone an Oscar, who knows — it may turn out a group of directors who actually deserve to be called the Brat Pack.