For behind the scenes pictures, stories and special contests, follow us on Facebook!

Monthly Archives: June 2007

iPhone Day Parody Video

Yeah, it’s iDay. iPhone Day. The Day The World Comes To An End In An iPhone Singularity. Or something. While everyone is covering the mass hysteria in some degree of seriousness, we bring you a fantastic parody video, from the good folk at Collegehumour.

Check it out.

LED Based Fluorescent Tube Replacements

EverLED Fluorescent Tube Replacement (Image courtesy LEDdynamics)By Andrew Liszewski

While fluorescent lights are far more energy efficient than their incandescent counterparts I’m still not thrilled with the health risks they pose. The fluorescent technology relies on chemicals like mercury that aren’t exactly non-toxic but they still get discarded like a regular lightbulb. Not good. That’s why I’m relieved to see LED technology progressing as fast as it has and a company called LEDdynamics is now producing an LED-based fluorescent tube replacement called EverLED.

Switching to the new bulbs is as easy as removing the old fluorescent ones and inserting the LED versions. The EverLED bulbs have patent pending electronic circuitry allowing them to be used in existing fluorescent ballasts so to upgrade to the new technology the only thing you have to replace are the actual bulbs. And not only do the EverLED bulbs have a 10 year life cycle but they also provide the same amount of light as the fluorescent models while using only about 80% of the power.

Regrettably while the bulbs are available in 5 different color temperatures ranging from 2900K up to 6500K they’ll set you back $149 each which is going to make it really difficult for them to catch on.

[ EverLED Fluorescent Tube Replacement ] VIA [ EcoGeek ]

Miles Rug – The Harsh Reality Of Driving

Miles Rug (Image courtesy BIG-GAME)
By Andrew Liszewski

Every little kid who plays with Hot Wheels or other toy cars dreams about what it must be like to get behind the wheel of a real car and hit the open road. Well those of us who are old enough to drive know that in reality it’s nothing like cruising around the living room floor.

On the other hand this Miles Rug accurately recreates the experience of driving on a major freeway and interchange in a large city. The complicated maze of turns and loops actually compose an infinite freeway and the lack of any signs telling you where your off-ramp is will prepare the kid for the good times they’re sure to have behind the wheel. It also includes 3 wooden cars but I think if they’d included about 300 it would perfectly finish off the experience.

The Miles Rug looks like it’s available from BIG-GAME but I have no idea for how much.

[ Miles Rug ] VIA [ Cribcandy ]

Who Likes Free? Proporta Giving Away Replacement Silicone Earbuds

Proporta Replacement Earbuds (Image courtesy Proporta)By Andrew Liszewski

So I’ve been holding off on posting this until I was sure everything was on the up and up but it looks like Proporta is indeed giving away free replacement silicone covers for Sony earbuds. I’ve been exclusively using this type of Sony earbuds for about 4 years now and while they’re comfortable I can’t tell you how many times one of the silicone covers has popped off while the headphones were in my pocket. So far I haven’t needed to find replacements from Sony but I know people who have and it wasn’t the easiest of tasks. Thankfully I now have a backup set and don’t have to worry so much about losing my current ones.

I also wanted to point out that not only is Proporta giving away a 3-pack of the silicone covers but that also includes free shipping. In fact I was surprised to see the package arrive in only a matter of days since I was definitely expecting a 6 to 8 weeks arrival at best.

Now unfortunately it looks like Proporta is currently out of stock of the replacement earbuds but their website says they hope to receive stock again soon. You can find out all the details about their giveaway on the Proporta website including the fact you need to quote the promocode EARBUD when checking out.

[ Proporta is giving away replacement earbuds…for free ] VIA [ Gear Diary ]

Lawn Chair Takes It Literally

Lawn Chair

By Evan Ackerman

I love relaxing on a lush carpet of grass, but I’d love it even more if it had adequate lumbar support. The Lawnchair, from Fung + Blatt, consists of an aluminum frame supporting pillowy, pure sod in all of its grassalicious goodness. Since the grass is real, it’s in your best interests to keep it alive, a task which is made easy by an integrated “moisturizing system.” And of course, you’ll need to mow your chair… That may take some creative programming of your lawn mowing robot. Look for it in limited quantities this fall at an undisclosed price.

P.S.- The iPhone comes out today. Bam, covered!

[ Fung + Blatt Lawnchair ] VIA [ Cool Hunting ]

Personal Portable Smoothie Maker

By Evan Ackerman

Smoothie MakerI love smoothies. They’re vaguely healthy, and yet they’re full of sugar. They’re a meal, and yet they’re dessert. They’re portable and they’re drinkable, but they’re expensive and generally a pain in the butt to make. The Shake ‘N Take™ Personal Smoothie Maker makes it all simple by combining a portable smoothie sipper with a cute little blender base station. The 16 oz spill-proof cup will fit in your car, and at only $30, it’s not a bad deal at all. I won’t expect a lot of torque, but it might be more powerful than you are.

If, like some people, you have a problem with kitchen unitaskers, keep in mind that you can use this to (try to) blend anything, not just smoothies.

[ Shake ‘N Take™ ] VIA [ Coolest Gadgets ]

Vortex Bots Suck Bigtime

By Evan Ackerman

My apologies for the lame (but obligatory) headline. Vortex Regenerative Air Movement Mobile Robot Platforms (that would be VRAMMRPs) employ patented “tornado in a cup” technology to suck themselves onto flat surfaces including walls and ceilings. They then use 6 drive wheels to get around, and can send back video via secure Bluetooth. Current versions are controllable with a joystick, but they have the capacity for autonomous operation and room for a variety of payloads. Although the website says they’ve “minimized audible sound emission,” if you made it to the end of the video above (the first two scenes are muted, as far as I can tell), I think you’ll agree that they sound more like a dust buster. These bots may not quite be ready for stealthy deployment, but as the video above shows, being able to drive on walls does have distinct tactical advantages.

[ Vortex VMRP ] VIA [ Robot Living ]

Push-pin Night Stand


By Evan Ackerman

Feeling like you’re growing up too fast? Here’s an easy fix: surround yourself with everyday objects in gigantic sizes and pretend to be a little kid again. The Push-pin lamp/night stand comes in lime, marine-blue, mandarin, or matte-clear. Turn the lamp on and off by pushing the pin into the base, which is cork, allowing you to stick real pins into it, which turns the night stand into a microcosm. Or is it macrocosm?

As far as I have been able to discern, you cannot remove the pin lamp from it’s block and use it to stab people. The Push-pin was available from Design Town for $50, but (as with everything else on Design Town) it’s not available anymore, so you’ll have to get creative if you want one.

[ Push-pin Night Stand ] VIA [ epotpourri ]

Zacod Brings Mobile Keyboards Into Third Dimension


By Evan Ackerman

It’s not often that the keyboard gets revolutionized (Dvorak, anyone?), but Zacod is giving it a shot with an innovative new type of keyboard for mobile devices. The Zacod MK-100 concept keyboard condenses a full size keyboard into almost an effective tenth of the size by making each key into a little joystick. When you push a key, rocking it on it’s axis allows you to select up 9 different characters. It works with both physical keypads and touchscreens, and Zacod claims (“claims” being the key word here) that you can input faster on a Zacod keyboard than on a conventional QWERTY.



The obvious downside here is that in order to take advantage of the Zacod keyboard, you’ll have to retrain yourself out of QWERTY mode, which is self perpetuating due to its ubiquity. It’s kinda like the Windows vs. Linux debacle: Linux may be a better OS, but Windows is already everywhere, and by the time you’re competent enough to make the (right?) decision, it’s too late and you’re too lazy to switch. Your only other option would be to dual boot your fingers, but that’s unhealthy.

And dang it if I’m not happy I managed to make it through this article without accidentally typing “Zaphod.”

[ Zacod ] VIA [ AVING ]