An LGR Oddware Christmas: The Gift of Tech Nonsense

An LGR Oddware Christmas: The Gift of Tech Nonsense

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[jazzy Christmas music] [clicky keyboard typing sounds] - Greetings and welcome to LGR Oddware, where we're taking a look at -- - [Clone] Christmaaaass. - [Clint sighs] Yeah... I don't know. Hardware and software, that's Christmas or suh-something... So the Clone about a week ago gave me these. Um. It's a first, I haven't received any Clone gifts before, so who the heck knows what's in here? He says these are for Oddware, right? - [Clone] Christmas, Christmas! - Okay. Well, I mean, what does that mean to a Clone? It's probably gonna be close, hopefully.

Let's open these up, see what we got. Well, here we go. Eh. At least this one's not

gonna take up too much space, I guess. Hmm. Well then Merry Lights, USB, LED light chain [laughing] it apparently goes around your monitor bezel or wherever, but sure. "Plug in USB to spread holiday cheer" "in the office or at home." "Decorate your computer mini tree or desk."

Mm, we got ideas. "Compatible with USB port and any USB wall adaptor." "Designed, distributed, and built in China by DCI in 2015." I'm getting some Big Clive vibes. I don't know about you.

And what the heck is this guy? The DCI Plug Hugger. [laughing] Plug Hugger? Oh my word. It looks like a Santa ball gag. You just jam that plug straight in his mouth.

Sold separately at Mm-hmm. All right. I mean we have to at least test it out once, but sorry, Clone, I don't expect to use this for very long. - [Clone] Christmas. - [Clint] Yeah, well, at least you're not offended, I mean, I guess not.

I can't really interpret everything you're saying, but yeah, just any of these cheapo light thingies, especially from watching random videos showing how awfully these are made over the years. I just either expect them to not work, barely work for a little bit of time, or blow up or overheat, die out spectacularly. You know what, let's test this out first and see what kind of, yeah. Ugh. All right. Handy little USB meter/tester thing.

Let's see what we are working with. Okay, so that's not bad. That's about what I would hope for. Or even a little bit less, actually, in terms of the current being drawn. With 5-volt LEDs often rated at 20 milliamps per bulb. And we've got 10 here, so this is what, like 12 across the entire string of 10? So yeah, this leads me to believe they've wired this up how you would hope with resistors.

But yeah, I feel cool plugging these into a laptop. So let's do that. All right. Since the package kinda looked like it had a MacBook on it, I'm gonna use my old MacBook here from 2015, appropriately. It's just been serving down here in the basement as kind of a CD ripping/backup station. But anyway, yeah, let's just plug this crap in.

Man, do I miss having full sized USB on my modern one. But all right, here we go. We've got our built-in suckage going on with these little [suction-induced laugh] stupid corner pieces. Oh, ah. They're supposed to suck, but they don't suck. And that sucks! I guess it's just kind of flopped apart over the years.

Adding a little bit of moisture... See if that makes any difference. Nope! Oh, well. At least the lights work and they're not... I don't think I'm gonna gonna blow anything up or something stupid. I mean [exasperated sigh] Sure, whatever. I mean, it's kind of fun, but it would make more sense on a CRT where you had like a proper bezel going on back in the day.

Even if these suction cups worked, you're gonna be losing a good chunk of information in the corners. I mean, I guess, well, it's not like they're really gonna stick on the metal side either. But like, see, I think this would make sense, sort of, right? Like, yeah, at least you've got a nice thick bezel going on with a CRT. And that way, it's not covering up too much of your image. But that is not what it was made for. This is for laptops or whatever from 2015.

Definitely makes more sense as like a, yeah, whatever other options it had on the package like wrapping up a tiny little Christmas tree. Thanks, Clone. But this is silly. - [Clone] Christmas, Christmas! - Well, that was a thing. We've got some polka dots. Oh, more lights...

How enlightening. Well, this is Smart Christmas Music Lights, 25 pre-loaded songs. Bluetooth LED lights with a speaker built-in. Oh, and an app. [laughing] I don't know if that's still gonna be around or even worth downloading.

When the heck was this one made? Also 2015. Clone, how long are you holding onto these? - [Clone] Christmas! - [Clint] Well I guess that explains it. "These lights will liven up any holiday party." [laughing] "You choose the lineup of lighting effects and holiday tunes too."

Okay yeah, it's just lights with a daggone speaker and Bluetooth transmitter. It really reminds me of those trees that just come with this kind of thing built into them now, I don't know if you've seen those. But just light shows and speakers slapped straight onto your tree and you just buy it that way. You don't even have to put crap on there anymore, you know? Pre lit, pre speakered up.

That's Christmas these days if you want to go that route. Yeah, I don't know about you, but I've never had any desire to have my Christmas tree sing to me or play music. I mean, from the tree directly.

I'd rather just play music on my own through whatever the heck. Apparently it has a "powerful speaker that fills the room with the sounds of Christmas." "Play songs from your personal music library," I think I'm gonna have more fun with that assuming we can get it working.

Bluetooth 4.0, 65 foot range. I mean, that makes sense for 2015. And iOS 6 or Android 4.3! Wow! Yeah, we've moved on a bit. I am really curious if this app is gonna do anything, or...

Anyway, we do have just a fold-out thing showing outdated phones and apps and how to plug it in and not set your friggin' tree on fire. Ah. All right. Some hateful packaging. Well, we have a golden cube little speaker there. Well, it's holding together.

I'm curious what's inside. Well, I'll probably open it up later. Maybe there's a set of screws under here.

There is. [chuckle of anticipation] This is interesting. So on the end of the light, it looks like three-and-a-half mil audio.

Same for this, but it's just for the lights. Yeah, it's just for power. Right? So it's using power over headphone jack, effectively.

Oh, that's fun. Like look, here's some headphones. Just plug those in. [chuckling] Do not do that plugged into the wall! [sniffs] Whoo yeah, I thought, yeah, that has a smell.

This whole thing smells toxic. Oh man. Like a cheap kiddie swimming pool from Kmart or Roses, circa 1994. Kind of a petroleum smell. It's not great.

Anyway, let's plug this scary bit in there. At least that screws together pretty nicely. And yeah, just wow, the cheapness again. I mean, I know these are built to cost, but hoo, that feels like nothing. I guess we're gonna test this out and see how that goes.

Christmas Clone, are you trying to kill me? - [Clone] Christmas... - [Clint] Ah-huh. All right. Christmas tree right here, but it's already pre-lit. So let me get that turned off.

Hey, Flerbnerp. - [Clone] Christmas?! - [Clint] No, not you. Flerbnerp! - [Flerbnerp] What do you need me to do? - [Clint] Turn off the Christmas tree. - [Flerbnerp] Got it. Turning the Christmas tree off. - [Clint] There we go.

All right, let's get these speaker lights installed. Yeah, you definitely want another strand or two for a full seven foot tree here, but all right, let's get it plugged in. Oh! [speaker startup tune] All right. Well that's pleasant enough, I suppose. That seems to be just on a continually repeating soft color-changing pattern. I don't see any way to change that.

I'm assuming we would be able to do that with the app. Let's see if we can get the app going. So we're looking for "Smart Christmas Music Lights" by Emio, Ee-me-oh? [chuckles] Yeah, I don't know about that. I mean, there's an awful lot coming up as you'd expect, because honestly there's like a bajillion of these stupid smart lights.

Well, let me do some research, see if I can find any of these that actually work. Well, I've been screwing around with it and the answer to "is the app still around?" It's a big old no. [laughing] Go figure! I've checked the Android and iOS stores.

Nothing comes up for this specific device and none of the ones that I've tried that didn't look super shady work either. They do connect to it as a Bluetooth speaker but that's all you can do. There's no way to control anything else.

Yeah, like I said, you do at least have the option to Bluetooth it. [glitter sound effect] You get that pleasant sound effect there. And it just shows up as a Christmas speaker, or "Xmas-Spk."

So let's try it out, get some nice, fitting, seasonal Christmas music going. [Duke Nukem 3D theme plays because of course] All right, well! It is actually very room-filling as it was described, but kind of sounds terrible. That being said though, considering it's just meant to play dinky little Christmas carols, I assume, then yeah. This is perfectly suitable for a Christmas tree speaker.

Okay, let's try something actually Christmasy. [jazzy Christmas tune plays] [chuckles] And the more I hear it, the more it really doesn't sound that bad, y'know, for a little cube inside of a tree. I still would much prefer to just play any Christmas music through a regular speaker system. But hey, it's kind of cool, I guess that it's built into some lights. Shame we can't do anything else with the lights other than this right here. All of this is useless.

Like, oh yeah, changing light cycles and the actual color wheel and albums and sound effects and playlists. Nope, useless! Can't do it! It's obsolete seven years after it was made. You know, I've got stuff that's 30 years old, that's Christmas stuff. It still works just fine. This on the other hand, not even a decade and most of its functionality can no longer be done anything with. But whatever, man.

Let's open that little box up. See what's in there. [Christmas music continues] Yeah, that's a little two inch speaker all right.

Four ohms, three watts. And inside [laughing] about what you would expect for a simple Bluetooth setup. Three-and-a-half mil jack for the lights, power just soldered in there. And hot glue globbed on and basic power circuitry for that and the plug. Bottom left there,

we have our three watt amplifier circuit, an 8002B with a STC8051 microcontroller above that. And yeah that little board just soldered into the rest of the PCB there. That whole thing is just a pre-made Bluetooth module one of those Beautiful Enterprise Company things with an ATS2805BA chip right there, the big one in the middle. And then a Realtek Bluetooth controller to the right of that with the antenna. Yeah, not a lot at all.

But that is about what you'd expect, I suppose. It does the job, and seems to have just enough space in this plastic case to provide a speaker that actually doesn't suck terribly much. Yay, Christmas.

[music concludes] All right, well, this is a delightfully packaged thing. What the heck? Oh dear. [laughing] Okay. Little People Christmas Activities Center for Windows 3.1! And 95, 98. So later '90s thing, but wow.

Support all the way back to Windows 3.1 is kind of surprising, actually. Two CD software set. It's got a toy, some labels. Wow. This is a thing.

"Deck the halls with holiday fun." Yeah, it's got Avery Kids' sticker labels. "Trim your tree with decorations." "Sing along to Christmas songs."

Build your own snowman, dress 'em up. Okay. This is an all-around activity center made with Macromedia. Oh, good times. Hey, I'm quite fond of these types of activity centers.

I really like that one WizardWorks thing that I did a number of years ago. It's a hybrid CD, I guess, it's also for Macintosh, but look at that. 486-66 or faster in 1998.

Suitable for all ages by the RSAC! [relaxing music plays] Well there is our toy. Did I have Little People as a kid? I don't know. I don't know, I remember them being around for sure, but I probably had a couple toys or something. I just don't remember much about 'em.

I would've been like four. Certainly didn't leave many lasting memories. And why is the CD packed in there like that? You gotta take the whole... Oh my word! [befuddled laugh] All right, well here's the daggum CD, and it is two CD-ROMs.

So we have a Windows and Power Mac and oh, "Learning in Toyland." That's a totally different thing. Was that even listed? Oh, yeah.

"Bonus, Learning in Toyland CD ROM included" "six activities for kids, three to six." Okay. Well, I don't know if we're gonna check that out but we're definitely checking this out.

Registration card. Ooh, Sierra. Software catalog. Yeah, I'm really not familiar with a lot of this stuff.

It's a little too young for even my taste in kids games. I mean, I played a couple of these, I think. Nope, not a single one of them. Nevermind. You also get a dollar back by mail. If I could get that in-store I would totally try it.

All right. And there we go, we have two sheets. Some square ones, circular ones, just stickers, restickable stickers. 3113 and 3111 are the Avery sticker codes.

All right, let's try this out. All right, I'm ready for some activity centering. Of course. [pleasant intro music] Well, isn't that pleasant? - [Santa] Ho-ho-ho, welcome to the Fisher Price Little People Christmas Activity Center.

- Hm! - Just type in your name on Santa's helpers list and press Enter. - Well, we certainly have a budget here. Some effort went into this. And I was actually looking it up and this cost $30 back in 1998, which, actually believe it or not, was on the higher end of kids games. Most of them didn't cost much more than that, if at all.

So yeah, it's got some money behind it. - [Santa] Jingles. I'm sure glad to have you as a helper. - I bet you are. [Christmasy music] - Howdy-ho. Santa told me you were coming. I'm Dudley, his number one elf.

Ready for some holiday fun? The tree sure could use some decorations. Want to give it a try? - I don't know. - Look out the window. See that big pile of snow? Click on it if you'd like to build a snow person.

Click on the art supplies to make your own Christmas crafts. - Mmhmm? - If you'd like to join my friends and I to sing some Christmas carols, click on the piano. Click on the sleigh button to exit. Exit means to leave. [laughs]

You can drag the bell to make it sound louder or softer. See you soon! - I like how he clarified exit means to leave. It's a very important thing to know. We might wanna leave here sooner than we think. Well, so far, a very classic kids activity center from the late '90s.

Laggy cursors, mousing over things to make them animate. Can't seem to actually click on it. Well, you can click on the activities, I guess, but yeah, you just mouse over things, don't have to click on them, huh. All right, well, let's decorate this tree. - Decorate Christmas tree.

- Yeah, that's what I just said, kid. - [Kid] First, let's pick a tree and a tree skirt. Use the tree cursor to click down the tree to change it.

Now, let's choose a tree skirt for the tree. - Heck yeah. ♪ Let's decorate the Christmas tree ♪ - Oh... dear! ♪ The Christmas tree, the Christmas tree ♪ ♪ Let's decorate the Christmas tree ♪ What is this mus--[chuckling] We've got a whole show tune! I mean, I'm digging these bonkers tree designs. Got your classic Charlie Brown.

What? Chili peppers! Hey, there we go. Yeah, I want a chili pepper tree. That's awesome. Yeah. Cherries and lemons.

And yeah, got some balls. Go to have some balls on our tree. Put some balls on the ground. Sweet. That's what that is. I guess you can print it. I'm not gonna do that, this abomination.

I don't want that on a sticker. - [Kid] It's a beautiful tree. - Sure. [cracks up laughing] Well, that's just what our tree looks like now. Oh, that's brilliant. Can we do the same thing with a snowman, I guess? - [Kid] A snow person! - The snow *person,* sorry! Yeah. Could be like the same thing.

Oh, we've gotta form the snow person first. And this music, my goodness, they did not skimp out on these full-on songs. Ensemble of children and everything.

All right, so we can decorate this guy now, let's give him a face right there. So that... going with sort of a, I don't know, Eldritch horror theme. Yeah. Why not? Oh yeah, I can give you some horns. Oh yeah, this is kinda great.

Oh, this is way better than I thought it would be. - [Kid] It's so funny! - It is! That kid gets it. I hope it's outside the window. [goofy laughter] It is! Ah yeah, that's pretty great. I like how we're just slowly ruining this scene with our junk. All right. So what else is left?

I think just Christmas carols and arts and crafts or whatever. We'll do arts and crafts last, I think that's like a printout thing. Or, what I want to try and print stuff. - Fa-la-la-la-la-laaa - Oookay. Considering the amount of music and songs we've had so far, I'm thinking we're gonna get some pretty involved Christmas carols.

So we have, ♪ We Wish you a Merry Christmas ♪ Deck The Halls, Jingle Bells, 12 Days of Christmas. Blah blah blah. All right. So we got five songs to choose from.

Which one is the least annoying? [chuckles] Or the most annoying! Actually, that would definitely be 12 Days of Christmas. Let's do that. Yeah, that's the worst. Just goes on way too long. Once again, that budget on full display here, we got little animated childrens.

♪ On the first day of Christmas ♪ ♪ My true love gave to me ♪ ♪ A partridge in a pear tree ♪ ♪ On the second day of Christmas ♪ ♪ My true love gave to me ♪ ♪ Two turtle doves ♪ ♪ And a partridge in a pear tree ♪ Well, okay. So I guess we have like, individual singers for each thing. That's cool. All right, I'm already tired of that.

Well anyway, yeah, that is the Christmas Carol singalong. It's fine. I mean, made for three-year-olds, right? It's sounds and visuals and it's pleasant and well-made. I cannot really complain. It's a heck of a lot better than many Christmas things I have tried over the years.

Okay, last one. - [Kid] Christmas crafts! - Christmas craps! - [Kid] Wreath, stockings, fireplace! Make your own! - Make your own. Sounds like my kind of jam. All right, so we have an assortment of little items to just plop down wherever. Okay.

That's about what I expected. Yep. Let's do whatever the heck you want. And we can print them to gift tags, cards, pictures, and wrapping paper. [laughing] How does that work? Yeah, I'm assuming that's just gonna let us print out a full size sheet of like eight-and-a-half by 11 paper.

What are you supposed to do? Just wrap up a little gift and it's just a full sheet of paper? I was really hoping to be able to print like, the stickers! Like shouldn't there be a layout for these? Like just little stickers? Can't believe I'm having to look at the manual for this. Okay, let's see here. So the sticker layout, you only get those in the Christmas tree and the snowman, not the arts and craft section. Well, that's... odd. Try the print of our terrible tree. I really didn't want to--yeah, there it is.

This is what I was expecting for the other one. So yeah, square stickers, big round stickers. Rectangle stickers.

We didn't get those but we do have the square and big round. That's those. We have different borders.

Eh! All right, well, lemme get a printer hooked up and we'll try this out. All right, well... Unfortunately, I have a bit of a conundrum. I don't have a color printer. I mean, I do, just not one that apparently works. I have this old Compaq one from the year 2000.

It does work, but the ink apparently is all dried up and I didn't realize that. And I went to go look and see if there was any available nearby and they don't make it anymore. So that's fun. Can still get it online, whatever, got some ink ordered. But in the meantime, I have the lovely Star NX-2420 Rainbow, which is a color printer.

But... [defeated chuckle] the color is also dried out on there. I mean, how sad. Anyway, I guess we're just gonna be printing with this in black and white.

Ohh. I like this thing. Hopefully the black is still good. It was good last time I checked.

All right, our hideous tree is looking great. We got the big round stickers. Do we want borders? Sure. Put candy canes around it. Make sure it is on black and white. It is. Okay! [printer beeping, loudly begins printing] Guess I put it in backwards.

That was dumb. [laughing] I mean, maybe it is a good thing I did that 'cause it's very much off center by a good quarter inch. I have to think in Star Rainbow Logic. I mean that's on-center. Okay, so let's try that again. [printer prints onward] [cheerful music plays] Well, that's deeply disappointing.

Yeah, we're running outta ink there too. And it was still off-center even though I tried to compensate for it. I guess it didn't matter.

It just doesn't like whatever I'm doing. Bad luck with printers. But you know what? Doesn't matter if it's Christmas or any other time of year, printers suck! At least we got like almost a half of a sticker, so let's just take that.

Oh wow. They're barely even sticky anymore. But anyway, yay. There's our terrible Christmas tree, part of it. Yeah, we're just gonna put that right there, as a mark of shame. Ah yes.

So festive! Well, I suppose that is it for this episode of "Oddware." Y'know, Clone, I'm not entirely sure that these all qualified. - [Clone] Christmaaas! - [Clint] That's fine.

It's all an arbitrary definition anyway, and I appreciate the gifts and the effort, and I hope that you appreciated watching this whatever the heck this was. It's just a little bit of silly seasonal fun. That's what I like to do this time of year. And ah, I'll be moving back on to the regular LGR thing here pretty soon.

But whatever! For the moment, it's Christmas almost, and I hope that you have a good one. And if you enjoyed this bit of holiday silliness then do check out some of my other silly holiday things that I've done here in the past. I might do one more this year, we'll see. If nothing else, stick around please for the normal-ish videos that are gonna be coming soon after all this is done. And as always, thanks for watching!

2022-12-22 10:44

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