My former Kotaku colleague Brian 'LOL' Ashcraft has plied mysterious "sources" in Japan with sake, reducing them to salaryman-style drunkenness. Plucked from their chaotic drunken ramblings? Some details about the next iteration of the Nintendo DS.
According to Ashcraft, several industry sources outside of Nintendo claim that a new DS is being prepared... one with a top-mounted touch screen. The screens will also be slightly bigger.
It's plausible. The DS is still early in its lifestyle: exciting games are still coming out for the platform. A top-mounted touch screen would allow for new types of games to be developed while maintaining library backwards compatibility without a built-in emulator.
I think the part of me that is struggling with this rumor is I simply don't know what a top touch screen would add: the bottom touch screen is used meaningfully seldom enough as it is. On the other hand, Nintendo has a way of making seemingly useless gimmicks into system-defining backbones that make me feel foolish for my skepticism.
Either way, we've got a lot of time to speculate: Nintendo won't even announce these babies until 2009. Providing they aren't just unicorns.