Desktop toys: USB Cafe Pad needs to turn up the heat

I just published a TechRepublic gallery examining a desktop toy called the USB Cafe Pad, which is essentially a beverage warmer. I've never been much of a hot plate on my desk kind of guy, so I was skeptical about the capabilities of the Pad from the start. I prefer the more passive keep things warm technology centered on the nature abhorrent vacuum.

Unfortunately, the USB Cafe Pad failed to impress. You can get the full details from the gallery, but I'm thinking the USB port does not have enough power to run a heating element that will actually keep my precious cup of coffee warm. The thermal mug I use everyday can keep my coffee warm for hours, which means I can drink it slower, which further means I don't get to the "bouncing of the wall" stage of caffeine high any more. Am I suggesting I'm addicted to caffeine --- you are darn tootin' I am.

Next on my list of Desktop Toys is a USB powered drink chiller --- I'm betting it will have the same lack of power problem, but I'll keep an open mind about it. Maybe it will surprise me.


Mark Kaelin is a CBS Interactive Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He is the host for the Microsoft Windows and Office blog, the Google in the Enterprise blog, the Five Apps blog and the Big Data Analytics blog.


I mean, pleaseeeeee. I have a boat load of things using my usb port, but none of them are warmers/coolers. Extra ide drives, flash drive, cam, printer, keyboard, gamepad... I mean, who has an extra port for that kind of stuff. By the way, I just brewed a freash pot. Dan


I have to agree. While I like my coffee warm, I am not about to give up a precious USB for a warmer. Instead, I sit the cup next to the exhaust fan on the laptop. It keeps my coffee at the perfect drinking temperature without making me sacrifice my external hard drive or external DVD. I need those for Civ. :)

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