In Brief: Dec. 20, 1999

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LOOK OUT, FURBY Just when it seemed we were safe from those cloying Furbies, along comes another batch of furry wannabes. Wuvvies from Trendmasters ($30) are bright blue or green toys that sing, talk, laugh and speak gibberish when kids age 4 and up touch hidden sensors on the Wuvvy's forehead, back and mouth. But unlike Furbies, the larger Wuvvies have blinking antennae and little kangaroo pouches that open to reveal a baby Wuvvy that sings and talks with its mom.

DUST BUSTER Why hire a housekeeper when technology can do the dirty work for you? Dyson's DC06 robotic vacuum cleaner, unveiled last week and due out in May, uses three onboard computers and 50 sensors to navigate its way around your plants, pets and furniture--all without tumbling down the stairs. The DC06 hums along at 1.5 ft. per sec. and can negotiate small inclines up to 1-in. high. If it sounds too good to be true, perhaps the price will bring you back to earth: at $3,500, it's more expensive than hired help.

TUNED IN If listening to MP3 music or Internet radio on your computer leaves you cold, SonicBox's imBand Remote Tuner, due out early next year for $50, may be the answer. A small transmitter hooks to your computer's USB port and wirelessly transmits a signal from your PC to any FM tuner in your house. You select which station you want to listen to with a remote control, shown below, that you can set by your side, whether you're lounging on the couch or soaking in the tub.

--By Anita Hamilton