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Some gadgets will impress your seatmate; the $499 i-glasses may encourage him to go sit somewhere else. This device — known as a head-mounted display — is not subtle. Strap it on and you’ll be the biggest nerd on the plane, looking like a cross between an Apache helicopter pilot ready for night attack and a Power Ranger. The model I tested — in the privacy of my own home — glowed blue when I turned it on (you can opt for a nonglowing version). A quick glimpse in the mirror convinced me that I wouldn’t need the optional battery pack, which allows you to roam freely. Some things are best not shared with others. Not sure what I’m talking about? Check out www.i-glasses.com. That said, the i-glasses are a lot of fun — once you get used to them. Plug the glasses into a portable DVD player (or just about any device that outputs a video signal), strap them to your head, and the glasses create the illusion of an 80-inch screen floating 11 feet away. For the first hour or so, the experience is pretty nifty: You’re looking at a giant image while built-in headphones deliver crisp stereo sound. The picture is not nearly as sharp or vivid as you’ll get on a DVD player’s own display, but it’s far better than you’d expect, given how gimmicky the device appears. You will, however, want to opt for the $10 “immersion visor.” It helps block out ambient light that can reflect off the lenses and create an annoying glare. The problem is that after that first hour, the 8-ounce glasses get heavy. I tried watching the four-hour movie “Gettysburg” with i-glasses, and by day two of the battle, I — unlike Robert E. Lee — had had enough. Eight ounces doesn’t sound like much, until it’s wrapped around your head. After some trial and error, I found that the best way to use the i-glasses was to strap them on, fire up a movie, then lie down in a totally dark room and stare at the ceiling. Sure, that’s not terribly social, but with this bizarre thing glowing blue, you probably don’t want anyone seeing you, anyway.

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