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Category Archives: Innovation

The World’s Leanest Keychain from TIK

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Ever had a woman ask you “Is that a gun in your pocket or are you just happy to see me” and realize that it was that cumbersome, overloaded keychain in your pocket she was referring to? Now you never have to worry about an embarrassing bulge because the TIK keychain is here. It is literally the leanest keychain in the world because creator Daniel Farkas has done away most of the key, leaving the functional parts intact and attached to a link in a bike chain! He claims that it gives “greater leverage for each key in the chain” and expands the “grip surface” so it’s easier to hold. Originally featured on Gizmodo, the product is backed by a Kickstarter campaign, meaning it won’t see the light of day if the campaigners don’t get at least $23,000 worth of pledges for the product. Why not thin down your side profile, prevent those pesky pressure marks on your thighs from the keys you’ve been carrying around all day and invest in a unique product all in one go? It only costs $49 for the pledge, and you’d be doing yourself and everyone else a favor.

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[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmodo ]

Smart Meters Coming Sooner Than You Might Expect

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By Gilberto J Perera

This guest post was written by Gilberto who is the main article contributor for Laptoplogic.com, where you can find the latest laptop reviews.

How would you like to set your thermostat at home while you’re at the office? Wouldn’t it be nice if you forgot to turn off your water heater for a two week vacation and you were able to log on to an online portal and turn it off? How about using an energy management system for your home that charges when electricity is the cheapest and avoids the peaks where electric costs are higher? These are all scenarios that will be possible in the next 5-10 years as utilities move towards Smart Grids. The days of a mechanical meter and a visit from a meter reader are slowly approaching to an end.

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Xerox Solid Ink Cuts Print Costs by 62%

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MS Arc Mouse Reviewed. Verdict: An Excellent Travel Companion

By Ian Chiu

For road warriors going on a business a trip, the second most important thing other than a notebook is a mobile mouse, which can greatly affect productivity. Having said that, Microsoft has had numerous laptop mice over the years that are both functional and portable, but none of them is more eye catching as the Arc Mouse. The aptly-named Arc sports a hinged semicircular shape that allows it to close to nearly half-size for travel, and to unfold to a full-sized mouse. The mini USB dongle is also hidden in a crevice on the underside of the folding wing, which becomes the mouse’s palm rest.

After Everything USB spent nearly two weeks with the Arc, surfing the web and checking emails, they found the mouse to be spot-on for most tasks while preventing fatigue. The rubberized sides also allow you to get a good grip since the surface of the Arc is in gloss paint with a glass-smooth finish. In the end, while there are certainly some minor flaws in usability and set-up, the Arc mobile mouse is praised as “an excellent travel companion” that is well worth the price.

[ Full Review @ Everything USB ]

Ultra Motor Announces A2B Electric Bike

This post is syndicated with permission from Gadgetoholic.com

Whether you live in a big city and simply don’t have the space or inclination to own a car, or you’re simply looking for alternative transportation that doesn’t pollute the environment — walking or biking are probably high on your list of ways to get around. However, there’s always going to be some point when you don’t feel like walking and you don’t feel like pedaling a bike around. For these times, you need something like the new A2B Electric Bike by Ultra Motor.

I’ll say right off the bat that the bike is odd looking to my eyes. It uses mountain bike style suspension and upright riding position with an oversized seat for comfort. A small tray that sticks out from behind the bike, under the seat, and can be used for stowing computers or other items that are small. The bike has pedals that can be used if it runs out of battery power or to increase the cruise speed, but the pedals are not needed for normal operation.

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Toyota Unveils Winglet Mobility Robot

This post is syndicated with permission from Gadgetoholic.com

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announced today that it was developing what it calls a Personal Transport Assistance Robot known as Winglet. TMC says that it is still in the process of refining the Winglet and it plans the device to be a small and compact robot that will offer ease of movement and expand a user’s range of mobility.

I can’t tell from that description if it intends the Winglet to be a scooter for the masses to use rather than a car, or if this is one sort of assistance device for those with problems walking like the elderly. At any rate, TMC has created three different Winglet models that only vary in how tall they are. The height difference for the models is from the different length handles used that give riders something to grasp.

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Oh Buoy, Something To Keep Your Keys From Disappearing In The Lake

By Jonathan Kimak

I like being out on the water in a boat, be it a kayak or a speedboat. I’m usually pretty good about keeping all my valuables safe from falling overboard and sinking to the bottom of the lake where it will stay forever. But even though I’m careful, it would be nice to have some extra protection, and this is where the Water Buoy comes in handy.

This little device looks like a standard key chain but if (or when) it gets submerged underwater it inflates a balloon that will float it and whatever it’s carrying to the surface.It also has an LED light that will start blinking for up to 24 hours. It can hold up to 1kg(2.2 pounds) so in addition to holding your keys it could hold onto your cellphone or any of your other beloved gadgets. Of course the electronic devices might still be damaged from even a few seconds in water. But at least you’ll be able to retrieve it and have a chance at repairing the damage.

[ Water Buoy ] VIA [ New Launches ]

At Least It Won’t Hit On You When You’re Drunk

By Jonathan Kimak

The Asahi Robot Bartender was unveiled at Selfridges Department store in London, England a couple days ago. “Mr Asahi” as the creators like to call him can serve beer in draught pints, half-pints and can take the cap off a bottle. He can serve a person in 2 minutes and even has a few programmed replies to customer questions.

He was “trained” for six months before being revealed to the public on July 2. It took 200 hours and eight engineers to assemble this robotic beer baron. He is also lifesize and weighs over 250 pounds so if he had working legs he could probably throw you out of the bar if you were drunk enough to pick a fight with an inanimate object.

For a bar this could be a great addition. An employee that never needs to get paid, doesn’t need to keep it’s own tips, never takes a break and never steals drinks. And maybe after a few hundred years he’ll turn into Wall-E but with a built-in keg.

[ Selfridges ] VIA [ Trusted Reviews ] VIA [ Ubergizmo ]

Bar of Soap Multigadget Knows What You Want

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By Evan Ackerman

Leave it to the MIT Media Lab to come up with a concept as innovative as this. The Bar of Soap is a prototype gadget that figures out what it’s supposed to be doing based on the way you’re holding it. So, if you pick it up and hold it like a camera, it’ll operate like a camera. Hold it like a cellphone, and it becomes a cellphone. TV remote, MP3 player, whatever… As long as you hold it in a unique manner (and research suggests that people have clearly distinguishable ways of holding different gadgets), it can theoretically be anything you want. The unit itself is a plastic block, with a touchscreen, an accelerometer, 72 touch sensors, and internal bluetooth. At the moment, it’s not offering much in the way of functionality, since it’s designed to test the grasp classification concept (currently, it’s about 95% accurate at knowing what you want). This is one of those things, though, that’s an easy trickle-down technology for things like the iPhone, which already is a touch sensitive gadget with an accelerometer and multiple modes of functionality.

[ Bar of Soap ] VIA [ Architectradure ]