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Monthly Archives: April 2008

RC Jump Jet Plane For Vertical Take Offs And Crashes

RC Jump Jet Stealth Plane (Images courtesy Drinkstuff)
By Andrew Liszewski

I’m really enjoying this trend of lightweight, easy-to-fly RC planes and helicopters. Not only can they be enjoyed indoors where you don’t have to deal with the wind, but they can easily survive those inevitable crashes that happen every few minutes. The latest addition to the fleet is this RC ‘Jump Jet’ which can take off and land vertically like a helicopter, but also fly around the room like a plane. Think of it as a slightly cheaper, quieter and easier to fly version of the Harrier Jump Jet.

Like with most of the indoor RC aircraft available today, the Jump Jet itself uses a small rechargeable battery to keep it as light as possible, while the remote itself runs off 3 AAA batteries. I’ve included a video of the craft taking off and flying after the jump, and to be perfectly honest it really just looks like a 4-bladed helicopter that’s been adorned with small wings and a tail to make it look like a plane. There’s no control surfaces that I can see, and this thing would have to be moving pretty quickly through the air to generate any kind of lift with those wings. However, that doesn’t make it look any less fun.

You can find it at for about $140.

[ RC Jump Jet Stealth Plane ] VIA [ Coolest Gadgets ]

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Panamatic Mount Makes Taking Panoramic Shots A Bit Easier

Panamatic (Images courtesy
By Andrew Liszewski

At one point panoramic photos and interactive viewers like Quicktime VR were pretty popular online, but over the years they’ve kind of disappeared like so many other internet fads. However that doesn’t mean you still can’t take the occasional panoramic photo. In fact a lot of point and shoot digital cameras actually include the functionality to make shooting and stitching together a series of photos really easy. But what if your particular model doesn’t? The Panamatic is designed to mount on any standard tripod and ensures that each photo you take is properly lined up with the next.

Once it’s attached to your tripod and you’ve ensured it’s level with the built-in bubble center, you simply index the ratcheted wheel (which your camera is attached to) one click at a time around its own axis. A full rotation equals 12 photos which you can easily stitch together with any piece of software designed for that purpose. And if you’re shooting skyscrapers or other tall objects, the Panamatic can also be mounted in a vertical position but you’ll need to buy a third-party angled mounting bracket for your tripod. (It’s not included.)

The Panamatic seems to be exclusively available from for $24.95.

[ Panamatic ] VIA [ The Gadgeteer ]

iChime Digital Doorchime

iChime Digital Doorchime (Image courtesy iChime)
By Andrew Liszewski

I wasn’t exactly thrilled when I discovered there was a device that allowed people to use the same annoying ringtones they have on their cellphones, for their land line phones. But mankind seems adept at finding new ways to annoy each other, and the latest weapon in that arsenal would have to be the iChime. It replaces the standard ‘ding-dong’ of your doorbell with a pre-recorded song, sound effect or message of your choosing.

The device easily integrates with your existing wired door chime system and features a 2 wire ‘no mistake’ installation process that I’m sure people will still screw up. The control panel/speaker is where you actually make the recording, either through the built-in microphone or a line-in jack for hooking up an MP3 or CD player. It’s limited to just storing six-custom chimes at a time, but you can re-record them whenever you need. A USB connection and the ability to upload sound files directly to the iChime would have definitely been preferred, but their website actually spins that con as a pro, claiming it doesn’t need complicated USB software. So your potential clients can’t handle a USB connection, but they can install and properly wire their own doorbells?

You can order the iChime directly from the manufacturer’s website for $89.95. It also supports auxiliary speakers that can be installed in other rooms, and they run $24.95 each.

[ iChime Digital Doorchime ] VIA [ UberReview ]

Seiko Slimstick Measures Your Silly Walk

Seiko Slimstick

By Evan Ackerman

Pedometers are meant to measure the number of steps you take to give you a sense of how far you’ve gone, and by extension, how much exercise you’re getting. Unfortunately, there are some people out there who don’t walk… normally. The Seiko Slimstick uses dual-axis gyro sensors to to determine not only how many steps you take, but also what sorts of steps they are, to better reflect the amount of calories you’re burning and the overall quality of your exercise. It only weighs 15 grams (2cm x 6.4 cm x 0.89 cm) and clips right on to your clothing. It’s currently available from Seiko Japan in a couple different colors for between $55 and $67.

Since it’s Monday, enjoy some very very silly walks after the jump.Continue Reading

Spore Creature Creator Available In June


By Evan Ackerman

I haven’t been this excited for a video game in, I don’t know, forever? It’s been a long, long time coming, but Will Wright’s epic, epic bacterium-to-universal-domination game Spore is… Um… Still not ready to go. But the good news is that the Spore Creature Creator, the core of Spore if you will, is going to be release stand-alone in June. The retail version will be $10, or you can try out the demo version, which allows access to only 25% of the available body parts.

I got to try out the Creature Creator at Yuri’s Night, and it was very easy and very, very fun, with almost unlimited possibilities for designing both the simple and the complex. From what I saw, little kids were by far the most creative, able to sit down and (with zero practice) create some of the most awesomely bizarre life forms. Adults, on the other hand, seemed very concerned with practicality and mostly made creatures that resembled dinosaurs. Check out a few pics of took, after the jump.Continue Reading

Atari 2600 Games I Kind Of Remember

Atari 2600 Games (Images courtesy
By Andrew Liszewski

Here’s a great post from the people at who claimed to have found a genuine working-condition Atari 2600 at a garage sale, complete with a huge stack of classic games that they’ve scanned for our enjoyment. In reality, it’s a huge post of classic video game artwork that’s been updated with titles and descriptions that more accurately reflect what’s being depicted on the cover. If you’ve ever looked at an old video game and wondered how the artist came up with those over-the-top covers when the games barely featured a few pixelated sprites you’ll find these pretty amusing. And really, do you have a better way to spend your Saturday morning?

[ Fun From Yesterday! ] VIA [ Fazed ]

That Zune Tattoo Guy’s Got Nothing On This

Spiderman Tattoo (Image courtesy Emptees)
By Andrew Liszewski

It seems more people are getting tattoos these days to show loyalty to a particular brand or product than for traditional rebellious reasons. We’ve all seen our share of Nintendo, Apple or even Zune tattoos, but none of them come even close to the ink that one Spiderman fan had done. The tattoo is designed to look like the guy’s skin is actually being torn away to reveal the Spiderman costume underneath. While I personally think having the Superman logo revealed on his chest would’ve been slightly cooler, this tattoo is still an impressive piece of work.

Spiderman Tattoo (Image courtesy Emptees)

You can check out the thread that this tattoo spawned on, but I have to warn you that some of the other tattoos are definitely not safe for work.

[ Emptees – Craziest Tatoo I’ve Seen (NSFW) ] VIA [ Geekologie ]

Performance Water Cycle

Performance Water Cycle (Image courtesy Born Rich)
By Andrew Liszewski

If you’re an avid cyclist who’s always been frustrated that your local lakes, rivers and ponds are off limits to your bike, then Hammacher Schlemmer has the solution for you. The Performance Water Cycle is a single seat bike designed for use on water instead of land. You’ll have to sit in the same position as if you were riding a recumbent bike, but the pedal-powered 15-inch 2-blade propeller will allow you to reach speeds of up to 7 mph. I guess that’s where the ‘performance’ part of Performance Water Cycle comes in. While you won’t be hydroplaning across the surface of the lake, it’s apparently faster than an Olympic swimmer or a traditional paddle boat.

The Water Cycle can support up to 350 lbs and the fiberglass-covered high-density foam core features precisely balanced pontoons on either side for a stable ride. It needs at least 2 feet of water in order to operate, but it can apparently remain upright even in waves as high as 3 feet. You can get it from Hammacher Schlemmer for $2,995,95, which is smart pricing because if they had listed it for $3,000 I would said it was too expensive.

[ Performance Water Cycle ] VIA [ Born Rich ]

From The Road: Is This The Most Effective Way To Advertise Your Cellular Service?

Solo Mobile (Image property of OhGizmo!)
By Andrew Liszewski

While walking home last night I happened to notice this bizarre truck stopped at a red light. It was your standard cube van, except for the fact that the cube portion featured windows on all sides. And while it’s kind of hard to tell in this photo, inside the truck was someone dressed like an alien on vacation. The rest of the aliens were actually similarly dressed mannequins, but I guess they felt they needed at least one actual person to make it more realistic.

I can’t deny the fact that the truck served its purpose of grabbing people’s attention (I did stop and take a photo after all) but it was really a lame advertising stunt. And I can’t help but feel that other people might decide to arbitrarily boycott this company like I have, because of it. (It doesn’t take much.) If you work in advertising and are reading this post here’s my suggestion on how to improve this idea. You should replace the aliens with a machine that shoots out money, and instead of driving around the city you should just park in front of my apartment building. Then I’ll buy whatever you’re selling.