USB gadgets for work, rest and play

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OFF DUTY: The office can be a dreary place at times, full of empty coffee cups and half eaten cheese sandwiches from a rushed lunch time. So how about brightening up your work space and bringing a bit of fun to your desk with some USB gadgets?

There is a plethora of fun gadgets to chose from and, normally, without having to stretch your budget. Here a rundown of 10 USB gadgets to bring a smile to your face on a Monday morning.

The first, and possibly favourite, of our top 10 is the Pop Up Pirate USB hub. Remember this game? If you didn't play it as a child we bet your kids did. The fun game has been transformed into a four port USB hub giving you a practical yet piratical purpose. Play away me hearties for just under 15 of your booty.

Our next, and slightly more useful, item is the Cup Warmer. Also a four port USB hub, this nifty gadget is a round platform to put your tea or coffee on and will keep it at a good temperature, saving you from getting distracted by having to leave your desk to make yet another cuppa for your troubles. At just under 13 it could be worth the pennies.

Ok, back to pointless but fun gadgetry, or the best kind! Third on our list of USB gadgets is the plasma ball. Reminding you of university days or that brief spell you had as a hippy, this enticing and attractive ornament is powered through your USB port and is guaranteed to bring a smile to your face, as long as it doesn't distract you too much.

So now for the geekier amongst you. Star Wars anyone? But this isn't just any Star Wars gadget, it's a web cam designed to look like one of Darth Vader's very own TIE Fighters. The 3D camera has a microphone built into the starship as well as an extra nifty feature meaning that when the camera is being used, the guns light up. Made to impress any fellow Star Wars fanatics, it can be clipped to the top of your monitor.

How about something more calming? Coming in at fifth on our list is the USB aquarium. Rather than worrying about cleaning them out, feeding them or finding them floating at the top of the tank, this little gadget sits nicely on your desk illuminating two tropical "fish" and even generates its own current to make them look like they are swimming along quite happily. Perhaps not a necessity for any desk but a nice relaxing decoration nonetheless.

Jennifer Scott

Jennifer Scott is a former freelance journalist and currently political reporter for Sky News. She has a varied writing history, having started her career at Dennis Publishing, working in various roles across its business technology titles, including ITPro. Jennifer has specialised in a number of areas over the years and has produced a wealth of content for ITPro, focusing largely on data storage, networking, cloud computing, and telecommunications.

Most recently Jennifer has turned her skills to the political sphere and broadcast journalism, where she has worked for the BBC as a political reporter, before moving to Sky News.