Gizmos and gear for the well-wired home
NUVOMEDIA’S ROCKET EBOOK Think paperback novel with an LCD screen. Connect this electronic book (under $500) to a Web-enabled PC, then download up to 4,000 pages of text and graphics (about 10 novels) from an online bookstore like BarnesandNoble.com. Handy for all-nighters or pre-power lunch prep. The screen’s even bright enough to read at the beach — just don’t leave it there.
PHILIPS’ FLATTV This high-end, 42-inch home theater system hangs on your wall like a Manet — and, at $15,000, it’s so much cheaper. Just 4.5 inches thick, it has a split-screen feature that lets you watch Oprah on one half and a DVD flick on the other. You can even plug your PC in for more boom in your Doom. Sure, it’s a wallet buster, but it’s beyond cool.
SABRINA’S PSYCHIC CRYSTAL BALL No, it’s not a snow dome: This ’90s update of the Magic 8 Ball ($19.95) is styled after TV’s fave teen witch. Ask a yes-or-no question and presto — one of 100 prophecies appears in news-bulletin fashion. Plus: Twilight Zone sound effects guaranteed to drive Mom or Dad insane after five minutes!
INTERACT’S V3FX RACING WHEEL Driver’s ed for gamers. This 300- degree steering wheel ($59.99, available for PlayStation and Nintendo 64 in November) clamps on to a desktop or secures under the racer’s legs. Pop in, say, Gran Turismo and you’ll feel every crash-and-burn thanks to force-feedback technology. Separate gas and brake pedals let you floor it without fear of getting pulled over by a state trooper.