The Weekly Round-Up: PC dinners, Kinect is king and CeBIT's bots

Move over TV dinners, Kinect takes top gadget spot and CeBIT's robots can work and play...
Written by The Round-Up, Contributor

Move over TV dinners, Kinect takes top gadget spot and CeBIT's robots can work and play...

Pass the cheese and mind my mouse, please.

What's the Round-Up rambling on about now? Well, for decades families up and down the land have carefully prepared their evening meal, sat down and utterly ignored each other in favour of the TV.

The TV has been the traditional place to eat dinner for years, at least for those of us who don't appreciate the value of a traditional, heart-warming meal around the dinner table with the family playing Mario Kart on Nintendo DSes.

But now the days of the TV dinner are numbered. Instead, the days of the PC dinner are upon us. Less goggle box, more Google box?


Or just crowd uncomfortably around a laptop on the sofa eating your pasta and risking indigestion.

According to a study by online TV service Seesaw.com, around 60 per cent of us have switched on the laptop or desktop as soon as we've finished making our evening meal. And more than 20 per cent of survey respondents admitted to eating their dinner in front of a computer on a regular basis.

So it may be that the family that plays together stays together, and the family that eats together tweets together.

Inevitably, 15 per cent of people watching the computer instead of watching TV are actually watching TV on their laptops over a meal. And the most popular programme of choice is Come Dine with Me, which the Round-Up gathers is about a bunch of punters bitching about each other's bisques.

After all, why sit around complaining to the rest of the family about the quality of your dinner when you can watch somebody complaining about the quality of their dinner on TV?

The PC dinner is on the rise, with a third admitting they are more likely to chow down with their laptop than they were a year ago.

Indeed, this trend of dinner with your laptop could be a big money spinner for those PC repair guys. In the office, if you drop crisps or a sandwich on your keyboard it's not a big deal. But evening meals have the potential for far more mess.

Comic caption comp

And some hot news just in – silicon.com's Caption Competition is back. Oh yes, if reading the Round-Up inspires you to comic heights (or simply makes you think, 'I can do better jokes than that') then here's your chance to a) show off how funny you are and b) give yourself a chance at winning a bottle of Champagne. All you have to do is take a look at this week's picture, think up a funny caption and post it as a reader comment underneath. The funniest caption wins a bottle of bubbles. Simples, as the meerkat says.

Kinect is king

Great, fantastic, unbelievable news for Microsoft. Words the Round-Up hasn’t written for a while, but credit where credit is due.

The Seattle giant has trounced everyone with some very impressive sales figures in the consumer technology space. No, really. Record-breaking figures no less.

News emerged this week that the company’s Xbox Kinect add-on, which detects and interprets movement from video gamers, has become the fastest selling consumer electronics device ever - outstripping sales of the iPad and iPhone from arch-rival Apple.

Sales of the infrared accessory have also resulted in sales of more than 10 million related games to date.

The bragging rights were confirmed by Guinness World Records editor Gaz Davies, who said: "We can confirm that no other consumer electronics device sold faster within a 60-day time span, an incredible achievement considering the strength of the sector." iPad? iSchmad.

Microsoft has shifted eight million Kinect devices since the start of November - averaging 133,333 units a day, which isn’t bad going.

The Kinect isn’t just restricted to games, either, as this impressive range of third-party hacks proves. The device could also have a significant effect on the business market.

It’s also a big win for CEO Steve Ballmer, and proves that the leaping-around-a-room-and-waving-your-arms-about-enthusiastically approach to business is a winner. It’s also the key to a high score in some of the games, too.

Socialise with silicon.com

Don’t forget to make silicon.com part of your social network today. Our Facebook page lets you discuss the top business and technology stories and also gives you a behind-the-scenes peek at what’s happening at Silicon Towers. Our silicon.com networking group is growing fast on LinkedIn too, and we've got some really big plans for Twitter, which our followers will be finding out about very soon. So connect with silicon.com today to make sure you have a chance to get involved.

And finally this week - robots. Mechanical friends or our soon-to-be overlords? The Round-Up will let you decide. But in the meantime, check out silicon.com's gallery of robots at CeBIT this year, from the slinky Aila to the cute football-playing droid. Who'd have thought it? Perhaps the first humans to be put out of a job by bots could be premiership football players and WAGs…

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