The Life Aquatic: Relaxing & Compact Hi-Tech Aquariums

The Life Aquatic: Relaxing & Compact Hi-Tech Aquariums

Jason Yang
Aug 22, 2013

The dream: an aquarium full of beautiful aquatic life to add a relaxing element for the home. The reality: a dirty tank requiring lots of maintenance. But in the last several years, the once humble aquarium has seen a hi-tech makeover, thanks to LED lighting, self-contained and low maintenance filtration systems, alongside new decor-friendly designs for for a shelf...or even hung from the wall!

The stylish BiOrb Flow Aquarium ($129.99 to $179.99) comes in 4 and 8 gallon sizes, as well as Apple design playbook shades of black or white.  The Biorb Life Aquarium is available in 8, 12, and 16 gallons and adds intelligent lighting to simulate the natural light cycle, offering a secondary function as a lovely mood light.

The massive Aquavista Panaromic Wall Aquarium ($1,195.00) hangs on the wall just like a flat screen TV, making for an impressive display, while taking up zero floor space. An embedded touch screen panel controls a built-in automatic feeder, dual filtration, heater, air pump, lighting, and carbon dioxide generator. There are many different styles and models available from Aquavista, including a floor standing Vector model and an amusing dual-duty wall fish clock!

Switching from fancy to frugal, the Fascinations USB Desktop Aquarium is an inexpensive $30 fish tank powered by - you guessed it - the USB port from a computer. The desk accessory offers nature sounds, adjustable overhead light, filtration system, pump, LCD calendar, weather, and alarm clock all at the touch of a button. Note: the small tank size makes this primarily suited for aquatic plants, snails, small shrimp (Sea Monkeys!), or naturally small-spaced fish species like the betta (no goldfish, like the image above!).

Who needs real fish when there are no-maintenance pixelated digital fish instead? NYU masters candidates turned water into a touchscreen, allowing these faux digital fish to be "fed" by simple gesture based interaction. The setup isn't exactly compact nor available for purchase, but a very cool example of interactive technology and rather fun (and relaxing) to watch nonetheless.


(Images: BiOrb; as linked above)

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