Saturday, April 4, 2015

April Fools 2015 review, from Pacman to miniature drones

We just concluded the years' most busy day which was full of innovative product announcements. Heck yeah, the amount of announcements being made on April 1st can be compared to that of a single day at CES or MWC. Whether you ended up feeling excited for the imaginary product or you saw through the trick, there's no harm in creating some laughs and hypes during this special day.

Sometimes I just think that if companies would be as innovative as they were on April 1st, the market will definitely be filled with creative products. Well, thankfully some of these 'inventions' do end up being a reality. Take for example the Gmail April fools prank last year about shelfies, Google still keeps that feature on till today am loving it.
This year there was no lack of new innovations being shown off to the world from tiny drones all the way to autonomous cars that'll save you from a parking ticket, here is the lowdown on what went down.

Clippy invades GitHub

In a similar move that Microsoft made last year, Clippy returns to the internet once again but this time the talking paperclip makes it's way to the popular online repository. The prank here is that they say that developers will be able to download the code of clippy to integrate into other apps, but the catch is that the website basically does not respond.

If you do try to click the download button or basically any button on the page, Clippy will pop out and say a few words. Well, the annoying 'artificial intelligent' engine from Microsoft did bring some laughs all around.

Pacman munches away the streets

Google always loves to add new features on to their products during April 1st and this year with Google Maps, they are not recruiting new Pokemon masters but Pacman has evidently made it's way to the streets all around the world. I'm quite sure you've at least heard about this as this was one of the first April fools prank to spread out.

The game which can be played on the Google Maps app or maps.google.com is set on any neighborhood you zoom into. Like the original Pacman game, there is the yellow Pac-Man which roams the map in search of the yellow bits and not to forget the colored monsters will also randomly go around the map.

This elevates Pacman to a whole new level as the map isn't always straight, the difficulty heavily depends on the geography of the map.

Google.com goes reverse

This is another one of Google's creative tricks, we're all quite familiar with the animated Google Doodle which signifies a special occasion but on April 1st the company mirrored google.com and the entire page was...well mirrored.

On top of that, Google also merged an existing easter egg feature in which you search barrel roll and the page does a few 360 turns. But when you do that on the inverted com.google, the page will actually turn back to the usual non-mirrored google.com.

Corsair announces the "mechanical" gaming mouse



We're all familiar with the mechanical keyboard and if you're old enough you will also remember the mechanical mouse with the ball to track the mouse's motion. Well, Corsair's new M63MM mouse is a gaming mouse which does not feature any fancy optical tracking laser but it does feature BIG balls.
"The M is for Mechanical"
Yes you heard it right, the new M63MM RGB gaming mouse from Corsair goes old school by using a ball to track your motion. Corsair engineers say that their patent pending Boron Infuse Graphene material is the perfect material for their new mechanical gaming mouse.

Smartbox by Inbox



The Google Inbox service was revealed late last year and Smartbox by Inbox is the next evolution in mail. Unlike Inbox, Smartbox is actually a physical mailbox which not only notifies you when you have new letters, it'll also help you sort out your mail and also defends your mailbox from receiving spam letter.

In addition to that, you can also bring around your mailbox and interact with it like you would with a smartphone/tablet. Sadly, this isn't real at the moment but this is one of those cool inventions we wished wasn't fake.

Tesla's ticket-avoidance-mode

Now here's a funny one which everyone wishes to be true and that is Tesla's ticket-avoidance-mode which will assure that your car does not ever receive a parking ticket/fine. This apparent software update from Tesla will enable your Model S to not only autonomously drive around but it will also be able to contact you.

In terms of the abiding to the law, this feature would be on the blacklist in law we live today but maybe in the near future when the court rules out that autonomous driving is possible, Tesla might just make this a reality. 

MD-DOS Mobile lands on Windows Phone

photo credit: windows central
If you are born in the '80s, you should be familiar with Microsoft's MS-DOS which was Microsoft's version of an operating system based off a command line. This year, Microsoft seems to realize that Windows Phone is just no match towards the competition so they released MS-DOS Mobile which can still be downloaded from the Windows Phone Store today.

The free app enables Windows Phone users to go back to the days where everything is done in the command line and a simple type will stop you from getting where you wanna go. Microsoft has included quite a number of tricks in the app like the ability to use the camera which makes images look pixelated.

Galaxy Blade edge

Samsung is always eager to release new hardware and April 1st is no exception, their new Samsung Galaxy Blade edge is the first of it's kind and is part of the company's Chef Collection series of cooking hardware.

Apparently, this new smartphone from Samsung is not only a cutting machine with diamond edge blade and is also a fully functional smartphone. It is also safe to know that the new Galaxy Blade edge is waterproof and also comes with a magic stylus which doubles as a thermometer.

#motoselfiestick 

The selfie revolution is taking the world by storm with companies implementing better cameras on the front for the best photo of yourself. Motorola is joining the April Fools fun by announcing their very own custom selfie stick which incorporates hand carved wood and premium leather stitchings. 

Motorola should totally consider actually manufacturing the moto selfiestick as it does look like a pretty handsome looking accessory which would blends nicely with the leather and wood backed MotoX.

Asus ROG Neptune


Asus seems to know the importance of a good cooling system for graphics card which is why they have engineered the Asus ROG Neptune. The new graphics card does not feature your standard liquid cooling system, instead the card is cooled by LN2.

Office for cats

Microsoft Office 2016 will be launching later this year alongside Windows 10 and last month a preview of the new office suite was released to enterprise users. But forget about that as Microsoft has announced on April 1st a new preview release of Office 2016 specifically for cats. 

The internet just love 'em cats and Microsoft is not leaving the cute feline animals from trying out the next great version of Microsoft Office. Microsoft Office 2015 for cats preview includes three programs, namely Powerpounce, OneNap and Meow. What are you waiting for, ask your cat to give this a try!

OnePlus DR-1

At first this might sound like a April Fools joke with the company's claim that it's the world's smallest remote controlled drone. But as it turns out, the OnePlus DR-1 is indeed a real device and the company even took orders for it but the affordable price made the device sold out quickly.

At $19.99, the OnePlus DR-1 only weighs in a 15g and the company says that a 20 minute charge will enable the device to propel up the skies for up to 8 minutes. unfortunately, the offer to buy the device is over and OnePlus says that the drone is a one time offer and will not be making it's way back to the company's online store.

Conclusion

The announcements these years are quite creative but the things i'm covering here is just part of the laughter during April 1st this year. Do check out the links below for roundups of what happened during April Fools day from other perspectives. 
So, what is your favorite April fools announcement?