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Monthly Archives: March 2012

It’s Time To Go Medieval On That Office

By David Ponce

Nothing says “I’ve been shopping at Thinkgeek!” like showing up at the office with a desk catapult. Or trebuchet. We’re not sure. See, the rubber band says catapult, as does the fact that its mechanism relies on it. Also… the name. But that plastic “weight” at the bottom of the swing arm says trebuchet. We’re going to side on catapult though, since a little plastic nubbin would probably not contribute much weight to anything. So yeah… nerdy discussion aside, what you have here is a device capable of throwing spiky foam balls at up to 40ft. That should be far enough to keep you occupied for an afternoon, after which you might have to spend some time explaining to HR why you spent the best part of a day running around the office picking up little foam balls from the floor.

It’s $15.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Uncrate ]

Sonastand Is Practical, Portable iPhone Sound Amplifier

By David Ponce

This little object has been making the rounds lately but we were a little slow on the trigger and missed the mark entirely. Better late than never, we say, and so we bring you news of the Sonastand. It’s a fully funded Kickstarter project consisting of a piece of machined aluminum we certainly wouldn’t mind carrying around. See, it’s both a stand for the iPhone and an amplifying horn in one. There’s no complicated docking maneuver to use it, you simply slide the phone in and the speakers will be positioned right where they need to be. In audio tests, the Sonastand has shown to provide considerable decibel improvement. It’s easy to carry around; a little pouch is even provided. It will eventually come in 4 sizes to accommodate cases and the like. And the best part is that it’s not too expensive, at $35, with expected delivery in June of this year.

Hit the jump for pictures, a video, and links.

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Laptop Sleeve To Cost 10,000 Times The Price Of The MacBook Pro It Could “Protect”

By David Ponce

We’ve always wondered what an object covered in 8,800 diamonds would look like, and how much it would cost. Well, you’re looking at it up there, and it costs $11million. Inspired by the infamous IAmRich $999 iPhone app that came out in 2008, Coverbee (the company behind this product) has spent the time since “perfecting” the sleeve. They needed to find a way to make sure the diamonds would stay put and that the sleeve itself wouldn’t scratch the laptop its supposed to be protecting. To this end, they fitted the opening with rare black sable fur from Siberia. Each one of its diamonds is graded VS clarity and F in colour and has its own certificate of authenticity. And if you have the cash and decide to buy, it’ll be shipped to you “by a prominent Secure Logistics company, that is normally used to carry gold bars and bank notes of the Federal Bank.”

We have a feeling this could be a hoax of some kind, simply because of some of the things said in the description of the product. Hard to explain what, other than saying it’s a hunch. Still, in case it’s an actual product, you have to get in touch with Coverbee directly to place an order (as opposed to, say, pressing a couple buttons on an ebusiness website).

[ Product Page ] VIA [ BornRich ]

iRetroPhone Brings Back The Rotary Phone For The Apple Age

By David Ponce

There are certainly some of you reading who have no idea what a rotary phone is. We’re looking at you, 90’s born kids… But for the rest of us, the above iRetroPhone docking station/cradle will either make us cringe or lust. Or leave us indifferent… Really, we’ve no idea how it’ll make anyone react so lets just cover all the bases. The iRetroPhone cradles your iPhone, charges it, lets you sync if you want, plugs into the 3.5mm jack and lets you make phone calls old school style. You can even download an application that will replicate the rotary dialler for an even better simulation.

As a matter of fact, there’s a bunch of features on this thing, much too many to list here. It works with iPods, old iPhones, iPads, even Android devices. There’s a noise reduction system, a radiation absorber… Just hit the link below to see all the features. Out here you get to find out that if this floats your boat, you’re looking at a wallet ding of $100.

[ Product Page ]

Play The Pizza Roulette Game To Decide Who Pays For It

By David Ponce

The above is a dish with an imprint of a gun’s magazine, with one of the chambers blacked out. Put a pizza/cake/pie on it and use the plate to decide who gets to do pretty much anything you want: pay for it, do the dishes, go fetch more beer, get the dog out of the bedroom… Really, only your imagination is the limit to what sort of things can be decided fairly, while enjoying a slice or two of your favourite sliceable meal.

It’s €30, which is about $40.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmodo ]

Future Printing Tech May Be Able To Remove The Very Ink It Deposits

By David Ponce

One day the world will truly end its dependance on paper, but it’s going to take a pretty long time to get there. Until then, efforts continue to be made to reduce the impact on the environment that our need for dead trees has. One recent development comes courtesy of a team of engineers at Cambridge who are in the process of creating a device that can zap ink right off a page, leaving the paper free to be used once more. “The device works by using lasers at the wavelength of green light in pulses of four nanoseconds each, vaporizing the ink while preserving the paper underneath.”

The system is still in development and is not perfect. For one, it leaves a faint trace of ink, though for less than important documents, this may not be a deal breaker. Also, it can only be done a few times on any one sheet since it also strips off some paper in the process. But it is a step ahead of another similar solution on the market because this one can be used on any laser printed paper; one solution by Toshiba relies on a special blue toner.

Sadly, there are no patents or immediate plans to make this available to the public.

[ New Scientist Article ] VIA [ Chipchick ]

Your Rice Cooker Can Now Interface With A Smartphone

By David Ponce

Rice cookers are pretty important in Japan, so it’s no surprise to see manufacturers pay attention to them and bring them up to speed in terms of their technological abilities. Panasonic’s SR-SX102 is perhaps at the forefront of this trend, with the introduction of a cooker that can play nice with your smartphone. Simply wave your supported FeliCa-enabled Android phone (FeliCa is a contactless RFID technology developed by Sony Corporation) over the blue dot on the lid and you’ll be able to set the rice type, cooking type and timer. Also, the phone can then connect to Panasonic’s cooking cloud server and access up to 100 recipes.

This appears to be a Japan only affair, and if pressing buttons directly on the lid and downloading recipes off the Internet like a regular person abhors you, then you’ll have to shell out $600 and find a way to import the machine.

[ Press Release ] VIA [ CNet ]

One Handed Bottle Opener

By David Ponce

Why a bottle opener is better when used with one hand is not clear. Yet someone must have thought this to be the case, otherwise why design an opener made specifically for one-handed use? It’s called The Kebo and is “inspired by the Theodore Low bottle opener from the 1930s.” We admit it looks kind of cool. But are you prepared to pay $25 to open your beer bottles like a boss? It’s a lot of cash to pay for something whose 2-handed version can be bought at a dollar store.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gadget Review ]

Give This To A Creationist, They’ll Be Amused

By David Ponce

The above is a simple eraser. Apparently these are used to remove graphite markings on thin white sheets made from dead trees. Weird, we know. But there you have it. More interestingly, these particular erasers feature an ape on one side and a human on the other. As you use it, it will either evolve or devolve, depending on which side you prefer. It’s fairy large as far as erasers are concerned, measuring around 60 x 30 x 55mm (2.4 x 1.2 x 2.2″). And it’s also pretty expensive: $25.

[ Product Page ]