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Thursday, August 11, 2005

The Ambient Orb

The Ambient Orb is a device that slowly transitions between thousands of colors to show changes in the weather, the health of your stock portfolio, or if your boss or friend is on instant messenger. It is a simple wireless object that unobtrusively presents information. Imagine if you had to go to your computer and type in your zip code whenever you wanted to check what time it was. Your important information should be as accessible as looking at a clock, now the Ambient Orb can make a variety of information just a glance away.
The Orb arrives set to indicate the Dow - glowing more green to indicate market movement up and red to indicate movement down, or yellow when the market is calm. If the market is up or down more than 1.5% the Orb will pulsate. It can be customized to a set of free channels, such as market indices (Dow, Nasdaq, S&P 500) or weather in select cities. Optionally, you can upgrade to access more premium channels, such as your customized portfolio, local weather, pollen count, or IM buddy watch. There's also a developer interface where any semi-savvy web programmer can control the color of their Orb with a simple http "get" call. Track how full your hard drive is, traffic on your website, Slashdot posts, or your credit-card debt.
The Ambient Orb is simply plugged into any standard 110V power outlet and it is up and running on a nationwide wireless network - no internet connection required. The Orb does not attach to a PC. The channel for the Orb can be selected via a web interface and will update in a short period of time. Depending on which channel the Orb is monitoring, it will receive updates every few minutes, or perhaps once per hour for some channels.

The Ambient Orb has these features:
LED lighting that can produce thousands of color combinations
Orb can also produce color pulses
The Orb is made of glass
Pre-configured to monitor the Dow - can be reconfirgured online or through an 800 number
Premium content available for about $1/week
Does not require a computer, phone or internet connection
Three brightness level settings
Includes power supply, power cord, and glass Orb
Can monitor: Stock market, weather, pollen count, IM buddies, or custom data
One-year manufaturer warranty

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