With the spate of bad publicity surrounding all those Kickstarter projects that never make it beyond the funding stage, there's a certain surreality to actually holding a crowd-funded device in your hands. But here it is, the Node, a project we highlighted in its infancy, way back in February. The whole thing blew way past its funding goal, scoring $76,000 out of a requested $50,000. And now, roughly eight months later, the product has been shipped out to enthusiastic supporters all over the place, inside an unassuming white box. Since its inception, the Node's been an interesting (if not particularly easy to explain) proposition. Now that we've got our hands on one, not all that much has changed -- which is to say, in its early stages, there's a lot of potential, but its still a bit of a hard sell.
Hardware-wise, the Node's a solid proposition -- the size and shape of a roll of quarters. The body is made of a white plastic, with Node logos indented on either side. Next to one, you'll find a micro-USB port for charging, and by the other, you get the power button, which also serves to turn on the flashlight module. Inside the body, you've got the battery (which should give you 12 to 14 hours with Bluetooth on), an accelerometer, magnetometer and gyroscope.