by Hunter R. Slaton | October 01, 2007

The Communicator

The Communicator
is a mic and more

If the medium is, in fact, the message, as Marshall McLuhan once wrote, why not upgrade the medium at your next presentation with some of the new gadgets designed to make otherwise ho-hum lectures more impressive? Here are three slick options.

Interactive Meetings’ Communicator ( resembles a bare-bones mobile phone and acts as both a wireless microphone and an audience-response system keypad. When distributed to each member of an audience, the device can transform any one-way talk into a conversation. With the Communicator, the entire room can hear all questions or comments from the floor, and speakers easily can poll attendees with multiple-choice questions on any topic.

A presenter now can avoid being tethered to a laptop while wowing an audience. The ShowMate, from Impatica (, about the size of a deck of cards, allows a speaker to control wirelessly, not to mention discreetly, a PowerPoint presentation from a BlackBerry or other compatible device. The ShowMate connects to any projector or computer monitor.

A far flashier choice is Gesture Studios’ GoodPoint (, a pair of black motion-sensing gloves that, when flicked, pushed, pointed and dragged through the air, can control every aspect of a multimedia presentation. You might remember seeing GoodPoint-like gloves used by Tom Cruise’s character in the 2002 film Minority Report; be on the lookout for the real thing soon at a tech-savvy presentation near you.