The first introductory events of this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) kicked off quietly this weekend, giving the world a glimpse at the coolest, shiniest new gadgets out there. The show doesn't actually start until Tuesday, but the sneak previews are a great chance for companies to get out in front of the inevitably oversaturated tech news cycle that the week brings.
One cool-looking gadget that caught our eye comes from Lenovo, the makers of the very boring-looking ThinkPads. It's called the IdeaCenter Horizon Table PC and is eye-catching mostly because it looks like something out of an Onion article about zany gadgets at CES, except it's absolutely real and you can totally buy one. What is it? Well, for lack of a better analogy, it's like one enormous iPad that you can carry around your house, play boardgames on and use as a table. Just be careful not to spill your drinks.
To be exact, the Horizon's 27-inch touchscreen is the equivalent of eight iPads jammed together. Its guts are comparably scaled up and include everything you might expect from the latest desktop PCs. It runs Windows 8 as well as a new operating system developed by Lenovo called Aura. It's also portable thanks to a built-in battery, though it only lasts two hours. "Portable" might be a bit of stretch, too, since it weighs 17 pounds. Nevertheless, you can prop it up on your desk and write emails to your grandma then pick the thing up and take it to the living room where you can lay it flat and play a fun game of Chutes and Ladders with the kids. Lenovo also made a bunch of accessories like joysticks and air hockey paddles for even more fun for the whole family. There are also some prototypes on display that integrate the machine into pieces of furniture like a coffee table so that the computer really is a part of the home.