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Tech

At the electronics mecca that is CES, it’s easy to get caught up in all the big ideas–things like Ultra HD, connected cars and natural input–that aim to transform the world. But sometimes, the neatest gadgets can be found on the fringes of the show floor, where the goal is simply to make life a little easier.

Here are a few of my favorite small-scale, clever ideas from CES 2013:

Wi-Fi-Connected Light Bulbs (pictured above)

Greenwave Reality has gotten rid off all the electrical work required to remotely control your house’s lighting, and instead just stuck Wi-Fi chips in its light bulbs. That allows users to turn lights on or off–either by room or individual bulb–through a free smartphone and tablet app, or with an included remote control. Users can also set lighting profiles, such as “Work” or “Away,” and program daily lighting routines.

The up-front price is a…

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