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Christmas Gift Guide

TV on a roll, and in a roll

Get your glow on

A twisted look, but straight-ahead sound

Bikes come into the fold

Use it any which way

Spongy rectangular keyboard

Dangerous curves, too daring?

Stay flexible with a paper-thin flat-panel TV

Self-unfolding origami robot

Paper-thin cell phone curls up when you get a call

Flipping, er, swiveling the script

Gray's monotony

E-ink paper phone with fold-out versatility

Samsung, the future's just around the bend

Slinky power-surge snake strip

Twisted old-school mind bender

OLED screens are the latest thing in television technology, thin and flexible enough to roll up like a poster and technically advanced enough to deliver vibrant daylight colors and deep midnight blacks.

They're also indicative of a larger trend: embracing tech (new and otherwise) that's anything but stiff.

Caption by / Photo by LG

The Kangaroo Light is a squishy, foldable and bendable bundle of hexagonal light that illuminate the contents of any pouch, even if you're not a marsupial.

It eases into the bottom of a purse or backpack like nobody's business and lights up those dark nether regions with USB rechargeable LEDs. Crikey!

Caption by / Photo by Studio Banana Things

The iSound Twist is a wireless speaker that gives the standard-issue sound-brick a lovely little half turn. Who else is suddenly hungry for Twizzlers?

Caption by / Photo by Brian Bennett/CNET

The bicycle ain't exactly a new-fangled gizmo, but foldable electric bikes are a whole 'nother story.

There are many hip brands to choose from, but this VeloMini model puts some cool into the formerly sad-sack moped marketing niche.

Caption by / Photo by VeloMini

Versatility has gotten twisted in a good way with the Thinkpad Twist, the laptop/tablet hybrid that gives you a choice of viewing angles from straight on or either side.

You can even flip it all the way around, and it works as a tablet -- the upside of multiple personalities.

Caption by / Photo by Lenovo

When you live in a pineapple under the sea, you've got to be flexible, so this keyboard fits right into SpongeBob's world.

Underwater usage not tested. But then again, neither was the plausibility of a talking kitchen sponge living it up in the deep.

Caption by / Photo by Sakar

This cuff-bracelet styled prototype Apple timepiece was curvaceous and cool, but it didn't come close to carrying the day, as Apple opted for a smaller, simpler device to launch its watch.

That said, the curved OLED screen demoed in this take from Yanko Design does open up a lot more real estate, so maybe someday soon, we'll see something like this.

Caption by / Photo by Yanko Design

Coming soon to someone with a massive bank account near you! LG recently showed off this prototype wallpaper OLED TV that's less than a millimeter thick.

You can never be too thin or too rich...the former if you're a TV; the latter if you're trying to buy one of these -- the price tag right now for such tech is about $9,000.

Caption by / Photo by LG

You know that robots are getting close to taking over when they can unfold themselves and walk away in four minutes...like this high-tech origami crab cooked up by researchers at MIT and Harvard.

At the moment, these flat-packed bots can do little more than escape, but watch out! That's more than we thought they could do four minutes ago.

Caption by / Photo by Weiss Institute, Harvard

We've heard of curling up with a good book, but this is ridiculous! Ridiculously cool, that is. Researchers at Queen's University in Canada have created a phone prototype that does ab crunches when you get a call. So at least one of you is getting some exercise.

Caption by / Photo by Queen's University

Smart phones may have been the coffin nail for swivel phones like this Nokia Twist or that O.G. hipster choice, the T-Mobile Sidekick, but that doesn't make us appreciate their place in history any less.

Now that we're all equipped with do-it-all smart phones, few people want to go back to 2007 -- or do they?  Consider: This retro-cool phone is still selling on Amazon.

Caption by / Photo by Nokia

Microsoft totally rocks the boring-but-functional, as its new Universal Foldable Keyboard demonstrates. This slim Bluetooth plays nice with iOS, Android and Windows devices, and switches off when it's folded closed. Nothing fancy, but curiously exciting in its own plodding way. Yes, the future will also be like this.

Caption by / Photo by Microsoft

A piece of paper that folds up and fits in your pocket is an appealing metaphor for a phone. And in a working prototype being explored at Queen's University in Canada, the concept is stacking up nicely.

This PaperFold phone's context-dependent folding system means each sheet can function as a solo screen, or they can team up to work together on larger images or functions. Shapeshifters: We must have them!

Caption by / Photo by Human Media Lab

Phones that can be curled into bracelet watches are still a ways down the technology superhighway, but Samsung is flexing its phone muscles now, promising that bendable OLED display phones could hit the market as soon as 2016.

Caption by / Photo by James Martin/CNET

Not all twisty tech needs to be lofty -- and the Pivot Power Genius is a prime example, perfectly grounded in more than one sense.

Undulating like a power-strip python, it squeezes in wherever it's needed. Plus, this stylin' surge protector is app-controlled, so you can switch off lights and all your other bendy gizmos remotely if you like. Totally plug and play.

Bonus: It's like a Rubik's cube anyone can solve.

Caption by / Photo by Colin West McDonald/CNET

Speaking of the Rubik's Cube, it's a great, low-tech way to twist your mind as you're twirling those little color squares into place.

Unless you're tossing it into the corner in frustration. If the latter, no worries, because robots now solve the cube faster than even blindfolded Hungarians have managed to do it.

And if you want to celebrate our utterly twisted future, go ahead and pour yourself a cocktail -- with a twist.

Caption by / Photo by Rubik's/Seven Towns
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