Weekly Tangent – Android Controllers – The Wave Of The Future?

Hello ‘Tangenters,

Controllers sometimes have a reputation of being for the hard-core-est of the hardcore gamers.


Like these adorable dudes.

Okay, so maybe things have changed a bit in the last decade or so… and, now, controllers are more universally accepted (many thanks to the Wii).

Anyway, I was surfing the web and I came across this article about Samsung manufacturing controllers for their popular Android devices.


The Wikipad transforms into a traditional tablet… and I hear 80’s robot sound effects in my head. Am I the only one?

Another tablet, the Wikipad, has also had a lot of exposure lately. (Full disclosure – The WildTangent Android App already comes pre-installed on the Wikipad. Cool, right?)

More and more, devices are coming with controllers or manufacturers are making separate controllers for our favorite Android gadgets. It’s all very reminiscent of some of my favorite handheld game systems from when I was younger. It’s kind of a retro-futuristic direction to go, isn’t it?

Have you ever thought about using a controller with your Android phone or tablet?

I sure have!

Do you think that history will repeat itself? Is this the future of mobile gaming? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!


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10 Responses to “Weekly Tangent – Android Controllers – The Wave Of The Future?”

  1. Spock January 13, 2014 at 10:56 AM #

    I don’t think things will gt too retro. I still remember my first PC, a 48K Apple ][ that I purchased in 1977 for $1400. It had two 140KB SSSD 5¼” floppy drives to augment the audio tape storage. There was an 8-pin connector on the motherboard that gave access to I/O signals. I took two potentiometers and wired them into an 8-pin plug and had a rudimentary “joystick” … I just had to use one hand to control the vertical axis and the other to control the horizontal. It seemed like a giant leap forward when I was able to replace the potentiometers with actual joysticks later. 😛

    • Mari January 13, 2014 at 1:06 PM #

      “Audio tape storage??” Now, that IS retro! I love it!

      It’s pretty amazing how much things have changed just since 1977! :)

  2. Spock January 13, 2014 at 5:36 PM #

    Sometime around 1974 I bought my first “Calculator”. It was an HP-65 Programmable that had more computing power that fit into my shirt pocket than any of the first generation computers had that were housed in entire buildings!

    • Mari January 13, 2014 at 5:42 PM #

      What a great story! That must have felt so revolutionary. Do you still have your calculator or that first computer?

      I believe that my dad still has his old slide rule somewhere… those are pretty cool, too. :)

  3. Spock January 13, 2014 at 7:19 PM #

    I still have my HP-65 and it still works. I gave my original Apple ][ away to someone who needed a computer more than I needed that one but I still have an Apple ][e with 768KB RAM, dual SSSD Floppy drives, and a 20 MB HD. I used to use it to create custom software.

    I also still have an original 256K Mac and an Apple ][c.

    As far as “calculators are concerned, I still have my HP-41CV with extra modules and a card reader. At one time I flew in an Anti-Submarine aircraft with the US Navy and wrote a program for it that helped us maintain contact if we lost our onboard computers.

    My “dungeon” looks like a computer graveyard, must really clear out most of this mess or people will start thinking I’m a hoarder!

    • Mari January 13, 2014 at 7:22 PM #

      How COOL!

      Also, it’s not a “graveyard” – it’s a “museum,” right…?

  4. Spock January 13, 2014 at 7:24 PM #


    Differences between the C, CV, CX and Option 001

    The HP-41CV was the same as the HP-41C except that it had four memory modules built in for a total of 319 registers. (With the four ports still available to add other modules.) The HP-41CX was the same as the HP-41CV but added the Time module (stopwatch plus clock with alarms), an Extended Functions / Extended Memory module, a text editor, and some additional functions. The Option 001 version of the HP-41C had no labels on the upper rows of keys or on the surrounding keypad. This version was meant to be heavily customized by the buyer.

    I won’t post any more, because you are here to talk about your games, not computer history. 😉

    • Mari January 13, 2014 at 7:30 PM #

      That’s super interesting. So on the 001, were you assigning actions to the keys and that’s why they were unlabeled?

      Don’t feel like you can’t or shouldn’t post, Spock. :) These are definitely my “what I learned today” facts!

  5. Spock January 13, 2014 at 7:41 PM #

    I never had an “001”, I have the “CV”. I was showing it to someone once and joked that it was called the CV because those were my initials … and they believed me!

    I had to quickly say that I was just joking but, sometimes, it felt like I knew that tiny little computer better than any I’ve owned since.

    Museum? More like museum storage! I have a couple of paths through the stacks of manuals, storage media (remember 8″ floppy disks?), printouts, punch cards (yes, I used to program a mainframe as well), mag tapes, etc.

    You know I shouldn’t be in here bugging you. I need to get back and copy more posts over. I just know that I will see one final topic that is just too “historical” lo leave behind just as the WT forum shuts off forever! 😮

    Please don’t forget to register before the forum goes down in case you have trouble getting in. We’ve had some problems already. Our “Spam Trap” is designed to keep spammers out but it seems to do a pretty good job of keeping new members out as well. :rolleyes:

    • Mari January 13, 2014 at 8:57 PM #


      And, thanks for the reminder, Spock! :)

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