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Photos: The top 10 USB gadgets for Christmas

From alien aquariums to Star Trek gadgets...
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By Tim Ferguson on
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1 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

From alien aquariums to Star Trek gadgets...

You might think those funny ports on the side of your computer are just for your mouse or memory stick - but the USB port can be the source of hours of entertainment given the right gadget.

Here's silicon.com's pick of the USB gadgets we think techies might like to see in their Christmas stocking this year.

First up is the USB Massage Ball. The device vibrates to ease away those work stresses - particularly useful after a recession-filled 2009. You simply hold it against the relevant bit of your body (neck, shoulders, back or temples) and it soothes those aches and pains.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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2 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

This USB wrestler is ideal for winning office arguments. After a countdown, competitors simply race to press a button at either end of the device, with the quickest reflexes winning the bout.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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3 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

The USB cup warmer is great for that cup of tea your colleague brought you an hour ago, before you got distracted by that conference call.

It also serves as a USB hub: if you're running short of ports it provides another four to plug in the rest of your USB devices.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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4 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

The Tengu is ideal for keeping you company during those long nights of coding.

Put on some music and Tengu will light up and lip sync to the tune. It has different facial expressions depending on the music and simply goes to sleep when there's no tune being played.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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5 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

For something a bit more futuristic, you could get your tech team one of these: a USB-powered plasma ball.

Just like the devices you see in science museums, the device responds to touch with pretty electrical patterns. Apparently it's very therapeutic.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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6 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

This USB circus cannon is great for waking up a colleague who's overindulged on the mulled wine.

It fires model acrobats into the air by the click of a mouse or computer keyboard.

It also comes with a catch net in case you want avoid hitting your boss with any flying objects.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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7 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

Something less annoying for your workmates is this USB UFO aquarium which features aliens with glow-in-the-dark eyes.

Picture credit: Gadgetsquick.co.uk

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8 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

This Star Trek USB communicator may fit the bill for the more geeky people working in the tech department. The replica of the communicator from the original series of the sci-fi classic can be used to make calls via Skype and other similar online phone services.

And, possibly more excitingly, the device makes the memorable chirp noise from the TV show when opened, along with 21 other sound effects.

Picture credit: Amazon

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9 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

More decorative than functional, this USB-powered Christmas tree will light up your desk and be easier to clean up after than the needle-dropping real thing.

Picture credit: Amazon

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10 of 10 Tim Ferguson/ZDNet

And what better to power your new Christmas toys than these batteries which can be plugged into a computer USB port to be recharged?

Picture credit: www.firebox.com

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