CES2008: Bug Labs Shows Off BUG

Tucked away near the edge of the show was a booth with a rather innovative item. Bug Labs was showing off their BUGbase and BUGmodules. What could be better than building your own gadgets on the go? Not much that I could think of. The modules allow you to do just that!

The BUGbase is equipped with a ARM processor, 128MB RAM, WiFi, rechargeable battery, Ethernet, small LCD screen, as well as many other hookups. Initially, four BUGmodules will be available at release (Q1 2008): GPS, digital camera, touchscreen LCD, and accelerometer. You can buy each module separately, and connect to the BUGbase any you want, and then using their custom IDE (at the show integrated into Eclipse), build drag and drop programs for your own device. You can also go deep and code in anything you want, since this runs off of a Linux OS and Java architecture. During the conference, we were told someone had just written a program to have the GPS notice when you go near a store, and pop up on the LCD a grocery list. With over 40 more modules planned, this do-it-yourself gadget may prove to be the last one you would ever need.

Link: Bug Labs

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OK the device looks a bit....chunky to be really portable in this "micro" age...however, I'm sure the design will evolve. I love the idea of a truely free gadget though....open source community would jump on this surely?

I dunno...i think I'd rather have a laptop with me or something. In fact, most people who would be interested in carrying around such a device probably are already carrying around a laptop... so i'm not sure what that would add, exactly, over a portable PC. There are certainly a lot more peripherals for a laptop...

I guess I just don't see the point of this device, nor the marketability. Do-it-all devices rarely do well...there are a few exceptions and this may be one. But something that does everything in a mediocre way and doesn't do one thing really well just aren't very useful.

From what I read it sounds more like a modular cellphone/camera/music play/accelerometer/pda rather than a laptop. I don't think this one is trying to replace the laptop/PC.

I saw it first hand with Doug. The idea is very innovative and yes it is clunky but it is also the first kind of it's device. I am sure with future releases the design will get much better.