Gigando touch screen remote, from Palladium
You may never feel comfortable about slapping a bowl of chips and a couple of beers on this coffee table, but it surely would impress the folks visiting your super yacht, and it’s wicked fun. Tucked somewhere in that table is a full on Mac computer that’s networked to a full on distributed entertainment system — curtains, lights, movies, internet, whatever! As usual, the megayacht sections of the The Fort Lauderdale show were awash in wretched excess, but also as usual, the good folks at Palladium Technologies demonstrated how creative, even joyous, cost-no-problem electronics can get…
Last year, for instance, Palladium introduced the iSiMON iPhone/iTouch interface to its flagship monitoring and control system, which has been updated a lot since (demo available on iTunes), and is deservedly a nominee for a 2009 Dame Award. And in 2006 I was impressed with Palladium’s translucent trackball/alarm gadget, and I’m still hoping something similar will appear for less-mega yachts. All of which is not to suggest that Palladium isn’t a darn serious systems company. In fact, this year they’ve also introduced an Electrical Division whose massive hardware cabinets involve giant relays and mission critical PLCs. Founder/CEO Mike Blake is particularly proud of the power cabinet’s touch screen control system because, while it looks almost as sexy as the giant remote or iSiMON, there is no Mac or Windows OS between it and the work it does. But obviously Mike (below) and his team are having fun with the non mission critical stuff, and that’s fun for the rest of us.
PS Here’s an image of the Rosie touch screen control that commenter Chris mentioned below. Of course a photographer has to take shots of the room with each light on and off, curtains open and drawn, etc. — all from the vantage point of each controller — and a programmer has to map the switching to the photos. But the end result certainly is intuitive, and fun.