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After Math: Going on 'walk-a-back'
19 Feb 2017 at 8:00am
It was a big week for claiming victories (even if you didn't really win). Just look at Trump's crowing about how his administration is operating like a "well-oiled machine" (it's not). Similarly, McDonald's generated huge public interest in its new s...
SpaceX successfully blasts off from NASA's famous launch pad
19 Feb 2017 at 7:15am
After a last-moment delay, SpaceX has put NASA's legendary Launch Complex 39A back into action. The company successfully launched a Falcon 9 rocket from the historic pad (best known for the Apollo 11 mission) Sunday morning, and topped it off by lan...
BenáHeck's Portable N64, partá2
19 Feb 2017 at 7:00am
When Ben began his Nintendo 64 build, he knew it wasn't going to be easy. In this episode, he shrinks down the size of the controller, embeds the RAM expansion and begins to construct the case with design cues from the Nintendo Switch. To embed t...
Barbie Hello Hologram is a tiny virtual friend for girls
19 Feb 2017 at 4:00am
Smart home speakers like the Echo and Google Home can tell you the weather, play music and look up stuff for you. However, they stop short of attaching a face to those actions, and certainly don't have any sense of sartorial style. Mattel's latest cr...
Self-driving car race finishes with a crash
18 Feb 2017 at 11:32pm
Fans attending Formula E's Buenos Aires ePrix got a nice treat: the first 'race' between self-driving cars on a professional track, courtesy of a test from Roborace. Only... it didn't quite go according to plan. Roborace's two test vehicles (known...
Shia LaBeouf's anti-Trump livestream is reborn in New Mexico
18 Feb 2017 at 8:57pm
Shia LaBeouf's anti-Trump livestreaming art piece in New York City was ignominiously shut down just a few weeks into its planned 4-year run, but it's getting a revival... albeit nowhere near its original home. LaBeouf and his artist partners have re...
Intel made a drone to help an NBA player in the Slam Dunk Contest
18 Feb 2017 at 7:30pm
Orlando Magic player Aaron Gordon took things to a whole new level in tonight's NBA Slam Dunk Contest, one of the main events during the league's All-Star Weekend. The 21-year-old worked with Intel on a drone to use an assist prop for his first dunk...
Batmobile toy uses augmented reality to show the driver's view
18 Feb 2017 at 6:00pm
Batman's got plenty of wonderful toys bearing his name, from his trusty Batarangs to his super Batcomputer. However, none are more famous than the Batmobile. And, while diehard fans might be a little down on the design of the latest version as seen i...
TAG Heuer's next smartwatch may include a swappable timepiece
18 Feb 2017 at 4:32pm
TAG Heuer has dropped a few hints about its plans for a successor to the Connected, but the biggest news may be what it isn't mentioning. Android Central sources claim that TAG is working on the Connected Modular, a "fully customizable" Android Wear...
Robot probe no. 2 dies while exploring a Fukushima reactor
18 Feb 2017 at 2:59pm
The second robot Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) sent into Fukushima's unit 2 reactor also failed to finish its mission. Earlier this month, the cameras of the first "scorpion" robot that ventured into the reactor malfunctioned after two hours d...
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Gadget: (From Wikipedia)
A gadget is a small technological object (such as a device or an appliance) that has a particular function, but is often thought of as a novelty. Gadgets are invariably considered to be more unusually or cleverly designed than normal technology at the time of their invention. Gadgets are sometimes also referred to as gizmos.
The origins of the word "gadget" trace back to the 1800s. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, there is anecdotal evidence for the use of "gadget" as a placeholder name for a technical item whose precise name one can't remember since the 1850s; with Robert Brown's 1886 book Spunyarn and Spindrift, A sailor boy’s log of a voyage out and home in a China tea-clipper containing the earliest known usage in print. The etymology of the word is disputed. A widely circulated story holds that the word gadget was "invented" when Gaget, Gauthier & Cie, the company behind the casting of the Statue of Liberty (1886), made a small-scale version of the monument and named it after their firm; however this contradicts the evidence that the word was already used before in nautical circles, and the fact that it did not become popular until after World War I. Other sources cite a derivation from the French gâchette which has been applied to various pieces of a firing mechanism, or the French gagée, a small tool or accessory. The spring-clip used to hold the base of a vessel during glass-making is also known as a gadget. The first atomic bomb was nicknamed the gadget by the scientists of the Manhattan Project, tested at the Trinity site.
Clocks, bicycles, and thermometers are amongst the very large number of gadgets that are mechanical and also very popular. The invention of mechanical gadgets though is based more on innovation of the inventor rather than education.
Electronic gadgets are based on transistors and integrated circuits. Unlike the mechanical gadgets one needs a source of electric power to use it. The most common electronic gadgets include transistor radio, television, cell phones and the quartz watch.
Most of the modern gadgets belong to this category.
The earliest documented use of the term gadget in context of software engineering was in 1985 by the developers of AmigaOS, the operating system of the Amiga computers (intuition.library and also later gadtools.library). It denotes what other technological traditions call GUI widget—a control element in graphical user interface. This naming convention remains in continuing use (as of 2008) since then.
It is not known whether other software companies are explicitly drawing on that inspiration when featuring the word in names of their technologies or simply referring to the generic meaning. The word widget is older in this context.
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