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Future brings mobile gadgets for real estate

Mobile translator, location-based info device soon to be available

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SAN FRANCISCO–In a glimpse of the future, real estate agents will whisk off to home showings in their flying cars, unlock the front door by voice activation and give home buyers visors equipped with drop-down computer screens. Or maybe they'll just skip the showing altogether and instead send ASIMO, the office robot. These innovations were among the 100 hands-on technology exhibits featured this past weekend during Wired magazine's NextFest. The event featured innovations in the future of design, communication, security, transportation, health and exploration. Most of the exhibits were prototypes of products to come, and most are not yet available for purchase by consumers. One device potentially useful for real estate is HP Labs' Websign technology. The service enables users to get location-based information by simply pointing the device in the direction they are headed. A magnetic compass and Global Positioning System identify the user's position while a wireless Web connectio...