Who could have imagined that even garbage could look chic? Apparently Ecoist did, which is why their purses and other accessories made from recycled newspaper, original candy wrappers look so stunning. The assortment includes very usable items such as the Jumbo Coin Pouch ($22), the Jumbo Anything/Everything bag ($28), and the Shoulder Bag ($58). Their Confetti collection (my favorite) also has bracelets and lovely placemats ($68). Many of the accessories (such as the Luna Bar collection) are limited, so you need to order pretty well in advance if you want to grab them for the gifting season.
Via Chip Chick.
Every room of my house looks like an AC adapter battleground- some chargers have no cords, some don't have plugs, and others are simply waiting for a spare outlet so they can finally get some juice. This Driinn mobile device charger holder won't really solve my problem of simply having way too many gadgets, but it will help calm the chaos a little bit. The Driinn serves two purposes: it works as a cord manager to keep your cables untangled, and there's a built-in shelf for your phone or mp3 player to rest on. Nothing will make a charger into a work of art but the Driinn definitely can help it look like less of an eyesore. And it protects your precious devices from being stepped on or dropped.
The Driinn mobile device charger holder is $10 and comes in black, lime green, and red orange. Available from Spoon Sisters.
Each chocolate, strawberry, and green tea (yum?) donut measures 2.6" x 1.4" 1.4" and looks to be available for $3.63 . . . but only in bulk orders of 500. This isn't much of a problem when you think about it, though. Since everyone would probably want one of each flavor, you'd really only need to round up 165.6666 of your closest pals to get a box.
I was giddy when I picked up my 16GB Corsair Flash Voyager flash drive all those many months ago, though I immediately anticipated the release of an affordable 32GB version (that endless cycle of always wanting more). No such news from Corsair just yet, but EDGE Tech Corp recently released a 32GB version of its DiskGO flash drive, a rather unassuming-looking little thing priced at $400. Though I'm not wildly compelled to buy this particular flash drive right this very minute, I'm sure it's only a matter of time before the 16GB drive I have will seem "just too small."
Web browsing on a mobile device can be an exercise in pure frustration. Even on my iPhone, I still find myself wishing for a quicker way to browse through sites (my fingers are still a bit clumsy on the on-screen keyboard), and still sometimes opt for mobile versions when they're available (and I know about them).
Rocketshotz provides a fairly simple shortcut to mobile browsing, which is both useful and more aesthetically pleasing than regular bookmarks. The process is simple, with no software to download. You just go to the Rocketshotz website, sign up, then choose your mobile websites and place them within 5 different category icons. Your selections are sent ("blasted") directly to your mobile browser (basically, you just navigate to the Rocketshotz mobile site with your preferences set). As you update and reorganize your icons, they're instantly updated on your mobile.
If you provide the dough, the Dough-nu-matic will do the rest. In just 50 seconds, the 23" x 14" x 7" wonder will form, fry, and drain mini doughnuts of unknown diameter in its adjustable-temperature enclosure.
Available now for $130.
Via Daily Gadget.
They're finally back! Last month, these guys sold out in 24 hours (nearly as crazy as the run on the early-adopter's version of Talking Elmo). Get your Dynomighty Magnetic Desk Dots while you can!
Of the many things I've learned about being more productive at work, having a comfortable desk is among the most important. And, I'm not talking about ergonomics here. I'm referring to what it takes to personalize your workspace and have it as a kind-of home-away-from-home. While I'm not a fan of knick-knacks, I do love super useful, but also clever deskware. It's no surprise that I really love these Desk Dots.
Desk Dots can be used as an organizer, picture holder, desk sculpture, business card holder, and even stress reliever. The Dots themselves are actually ceramic magnets with a lot of staying power, so they can hold their connection to one another even with lots of stuff in between them. Both functional and fun, the dots can be arranged as you like, so you'll never have to keep things too predictable. With 6 Dots to a pack, I recommend that you buy up to 2 or 3 for the most useful and fun arrangements.
Fantastic! My list of fears just got longer. Decapitated doll heads secured their top spot a long time ago, but now I get to add pencils and pencil sharpeners to the list too.
Thanks, Living Dead Dolls Sadie Pencil Sharpener! I've always wanted to shove a dull pencil into an eye socket and not only have it come out sharpened, but also watch a scary head "vomit" the shavings.
The sharpener is sold out (awww!) now but usually sells for about $7.
Have you ever stopped to wonder if Qwerty keyboards really make any sense? I hadn't until just now, and yet, whenever I was confronted with a non-Qwerty keyboard, I become personally offended, as if the very core of my being as a person with excellent typing skills was under challenge and being ridiculed. And my initial response to an alternative keybaord was: So what if Qwerty makes no sense? The English language itself makes no sense (for instance, why is "read" the past tense of "read", only pronounced differently, and is anyone trying to change that?).
Yet, despite my right index finger's long-ingrained wiring that connects it to the letters h, j, y and u, now that the idea has hit a nerve in me, I feel that I must try this new keyboard, the New Standard Ergonomic Keyboard. What's the innovation? The keyboard follows the order of the alphabet rather than the non-sensical, but now deeply entrenched, placement of the letters starting with ones that spell out the word "typewriter" at the top row (thanks to ZDNet UK for pointing out this fact hidden in plain view). Unlike learning on a Qwerty keyboard, those coming to the New Standard Keyboard for the first time can easily remember the placement of the letters by simply singing the alphabet song.
It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that the remote control is the only device that not only has to bear the most violent treatment by every member of the family (pets included), but is expected to work well at all times. Yet the poor darlings continue to feed our slothful tendencies without any protest. Inspiration enough for designer Yuta Watanabe to design (concept only) a remote control so fragile that one has no choice but to handle it well.
The Ceramic Remote Control will make you look at remote controls from an entirely different perspective. Because (obviously) it's made out of ceramic. And it's shaped like a saucer to fit into your palm. It's difficult for my left-brain to imagine how this thing would really work. Well, if nothing else, it would make a fine (and useless) addition to my crockery.
Via Yanko Design.
Remember the numerous times you wondered why nobody thought of making mp3 players with built-in speakers? Or wished for really hassle-free speakers that you could carry and use anywhere? Even if you are in the small minority that answered "no", never mind – you will still love (and find use for) these foldable and really compact speakers from Audio Technica.
The speakers have been designed for any mp3 player with a standard audio jack and are tiny enough to fit into your pocket. The other bonus being, they don’t use batteries as they work off the power from the mp3 player itself. A completely low-maintenance travel companion. For me, the orange color is simply a great energy booster. Get yours from the MoMA store for $28.
Via Chip Chick.
I can’t decide whether I would enjoy the sensation provided by the force feedback gaming vest or get totally annoyed by the constant thumping sensation every time I got hit/shot during the game (I tend to get hit/shot a lot). I guess the only way to find out would be to try the vest first-hand, and after reading its description I most certainly will. Even if my unskilled playing causes me a lot of suffering, I think the device has the potential to make for an enhanced gaming experience. Try and imagine the chill down the spine after feeling a tapping sensation on your shoulder while playing a scary game.
The force feedback vest was initially created for remote medical investigation and was later modified and converted into a gaming device:
Physician Mark Ombrellaro designed the TN Games 3rd Space vest, which uses air pressure to produce thumping sensations wherever impact should be felt. The vest has eight zones which can simulate the direction and forces of bullet fire, explosions, and even the sensation of fingers tapping on you (great for scary horror games).
The vest will be available in November for $189, and can be pre-ordered for a litmited time from the TN Games onlie shop for $169.99. It will also be shipped as a bundle with 3rd Space Incursion and Call of Duty II.
The word "functional," as it relates to clothing, may take on a whole new meaning in the near future, when your hi-tech shirt will not only wick moisture and keep mosquitos away, but will also power your portable devices. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, researchers in Australia are developing a shirt that generates electricity when you move. These power shirts (which may be out in 5 years) will be made of piezoelectric materials which create an electrical charge with movement. That charge is then directed to flexible batteries woven into the shirt. You plug your cell phone or other small device into the shirt, and voila, you've got power.
This Ideazon Merc Stealth Illuminate Gaming Keyboard is a beautiful keyboard. Its greatest feature (hands down and fingers ready) is the awesome 3-color illumination in red, blue, and purple. Illumination applies to characters on every key and has four levels of brightness (subtle, ambient, intense, and off).
For the gamer in your life, let me tell you why it's an awesome gift to barely splurge on. There are rubberized movement keys for superior response. You can tilt it 11 degrees to match your natural wrist position (no finger/wrist fatigue). 34 gaming keys are labeled and positioned for accurate precision (if you're a great gamer) and to provide you with awesome control. And, best yet, there's a simultaneous key stroke response that keeps you from hitting phantom keys in the heat of your job saving the earth from zombies, car thieves, and those pesky aliens.
If you're like me and you haven't joined the current trend in multiple treatments of laser hair removal, but you wish you were effortlessly super smooth and stubble-free (because shaving is just so last century) a recent trip to Sephora introduced me to No! No!. No!No! is a new device and concept for hair removal. Much like the many elixirs and creams on the market it helps with hair density reduction. No mess (ever secretly or at at a slumber party tried Nair in your teen years?), no cuts, no burns, no noise (buh-bye Epilady!).
While it's not an overnight solution, or a promise that one day you'll be fully hair-free, with time and repeated use you can replace stubble with smoother skin. The device uses a thermodynamic wire (think of a warm blade) to transmit heat into the hair.
So, for $250 it's a cheaper DIY solution, but it will be a few more months before I can report back with results. Oh, and not to be used on the face or those other very personal areas.
Price: $250 at Amazon (colors: pink, black, and blue).
[JUST TWO MORE DAYS TO THE DYSON PINK GIVEAWAY]
We're all tired of hearing about gold-plated cell phones, iPods -- you name it, they'll plate it, but here's something that makes sense and has been around for an age.
For years, savvy cooks have been using edible gold and silver for party food and cocktails. Easy Leaf Products the sole importer and distributor in North America for ORO FINO (edible gold) and ARGENTO FINO (edible silver), sent me some sprinkles, petals and leaves of gold to try. While I wasn't sure 23 karat genuine gold or silver leaves were meant to be eaten, there's no denying it sparkles up an evening. For easy instructions on how to go ""Drab to Fab," just check out some of their easy recipes and instructions, like "How to Gild".
Gold is actually an inert metal that simply passes through the intestinal system. In antiquity, gold was used to prepare medicines and was considered a digestive and constitutional. It is still considered so in Chinese and Indian medicine, and is also used in homeopathy thanks to its constitutional properties (especially related to the inner organs - heart, uterus, stomach).
These rings are really super cute and definitely wearable, even past the age of fifteen, unlike many other video game inspired jewelry. They are available in silver and in gold vermeil for $68 and $75, respectively. Maybe a little pricey, especially if you would like the pair, but worth it if you are a big Pac Man fan like myself.
Both available from stars + infinite darkness.
Give your laptop a makeover with Schtickers.
For $19.99 you can now pick from hundreds of designs or custom design your own ( $24.99 for custom). Easily applied and removed, you could change your laptop skins with your mood (as I do with my iPhone cases.)
LapSchticks also protect the top of your laptop. I don't know about you, but my laptop attracts coffee and after a little mishap, my cafe latte just wipes off. If you're not sure of your laptop size, just select "Custom Size'" from the drop down and enter the exact dimensions you'd like in the notes or special instructions section on the product pages, and they'll custom trim your Schticker.
Your iPod looking dowdy? The PodSchtickers are designed to fit the G1,G2, G3, G4, and new Video iPods. (They're working on mini and nano Schtickers as I type.)
What's special about these skins is not just the special adhesive which makes them easy to switch out, but the variety of the designs. Check 'em out.
This innocuous-looking device could come in handy if you're coughing up huge electricity payments but have no clue about your usage pattern. It's a small device called The Energy Detective (TED) – a home energy monitor that can track and display your electricity usage in real-time.
For instance, when you power up the mixer or microwave, you can immediately verify the energy usage in kilowatts or dollars on TED’s screen. I think this could be a very good mechanism to monitor a device that may unnecessarily be guzzling energy. For the really energy (or budget) conscious people, there is a provision to program alerts to tip you off whenever the usage exceeds a pre-defined limit – pretty useful if you want to avoid surprises with your monthly electricity bill (who wouldn’t?).
Take TV is a storage device from SanDisk Sansa whose specific purpose is to provide a simple, hassle-free way to take video files from your computer and watch them on your TV. Take TV is easy to use. Like a USB flash drive you plug it into you computer and transfer files onto it; you can also download TV Shows and movies directly from SanDisk’s own video download site www.fanfare.com onto it. Once your files are on the device, you can place it on its TV docking station and use the included remote control to start playing your videos.
Take TV comes in two different sizes, 4 and 8 gigabytes, for $100 and $150 respectively. Available here.
I'm a person who loses everything. Yep, sometimes it occurs within 24 hours and it's an expensive experiment to run (both my iPod shuffle and nano were gone in mere moments -- too small and discrete for me to keep track of them. Bluetooth headsets are way, way at the top of the things I lose the most, to the point where I had to just give up on having one. So I'm no less than thrilled to have discovered and purchased a cheap-but-useful, and fully expendable, $19.99 bluetooth headset -- the FreeStyler500 by Soyo.
Here's why I made the purchase - one Amazon reviewer X. Liu wrote: "The urge to write something about this headset came from the joy of being able to use it after a washer accident, while the headset endured a 62 minutes washing cycle with warm water, detergent, and dirty clothings. For that, it should be praised."
Wacom's $2,000+ Cintiq (previously talked about here) and the fairly pricey Intuos3 model have lent their coveted technical talents to the development of an awesome and affordable alternative.
Has your inner-artist been craving a digital canvas to draw, paint, edit, and write? Does the amateur in you wish for a professional way to sketch in a new medium or touch up your almost-Ansal photos? For just under $100 you can put Wacom's Bamboo & Bamboo Fun Tablets on your holiday must-haves this season. You can also fulfill the techie dreams of your nieces, nephews, and BFFs. Both PC and Mac compatible, there are 512 levels of pressure sensitivity to more accurately mimic pen-to-paper drawing.
The tablet maps to your screen size regardless of the model. Speaking of which, you have a choice between the small or medium sized tables. We recommend the small size for just about everyone, but if you're a hard core graphic person who needs to work at the pixel-perfect level on large images or you just love using a mouse, go for the medium. Additionally, edit photos with Adobe Photoshop Elements, create artwork with Corel Painter Essentials, and apply photo effects with Nik Color Efex Pro. If you're one of those extra-creative or fashion-savvy individuals, Bamboo Fun is available in a variety of colors.
What do you get?
The Bamboo Fun pen tablet and pen, Bamboo Fun mouse, pen stand, package of 3 replacement pen nibs, USB cable, quick start guide, installation CD with tablet driver and electronic user manual, software DVD that includes Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0 Win/4.0 Mac, Corel Painter Essentials 3.0, and Nik Color Efex Pro 2.0 GE.
Other models and colors from $57-$180 at Amazon.
If you've wasted a good part of your life playing Guitar Hero (like most of us) then you'll want this iTunes compilation of songs unleashed in each of the Guitar Hero games plus some custom-made music playlists and a sampling of the guitar gods. With titles like Killer Guitar Gods, Air Guitar Classics, Shredders, it just makes your hands itch to pick up that guitar, doesn't it?
61 tracks in all for $60.39 at iTunes.
The next time someone is staring a little too intently at your chest, don't cover up with a jacket. Just take off your Sudoku necklace!
It was only $25 and that pewter pencil charm dangling above the silver-tone frame doesn't work anyway. Plus, the 18-inch black rubber cord everything is hanging from doesn't really match what you're wearing.
Via Shiny Shiny.
Click here to take our latest poll.
Should anyone who would want this Barbie Petal Sound System even have an iPod?
Sure, the ultra pink speaker system has an AM/FM radio, can charge an iPod while it pumps out the tunes, and is compatible with all MP3 players with a 3.5mm headphone jack, but should a little girl have an iPod? Last I checked, the iTunes Music Store was still hammering out the details of acquiring the rights to sell "The Wheels on the Bus." I mean, what else are our future leaders listening to, right?
Do not say Britney Spears. Please do not say Britney Spears.
Via 7 Gadgets.
Okay, so you’ve spent the extra few bucks on a Mac or one of the ultra-stylish high-end VAIOs from Sony. Now take a cue from the fashion “don’t” section of your favorite tabloid (c’mon, we all read that every week religiously... I mean... once in a while), and keep the blah accessories away from your work-of-beauty centerpiece.
Take speakers, for example. They’re usually some shade of beige or grey, they all kind of look the same and, while many have incredible sound, the look just isn’t up to par with the beauty of your system. You’ve made a statement with your computer, so let your style be heard (and seen) through a set of high quality speakers from Art.Lebedev studios. The Sonicum speakers from Russian designer Artemy Lebedev are genius. What better place to take a design cue for computer speakers but from the speaker icon on the computer itself. The clever ‘outline’ shape of these beauties is sure to get nods from your style-conscious friends. The three-piece Sonicum boasts two speakers, a subwoofer, and an impressive list of specs that are sure to get the nod from your audiophile acquaintances, as well.
Available from our friends at Charles and Marie.
If you haven’t heard yet, Google is going green. No kidding – the Google store has introduced organic products on sale via its Green Initiative. Though they do not have a diverse range yet, I found the collection quite impressive. Most of the products are made from recycled or eco-friendly material.
For starters, there’s this Ladies’ Bamboo T-shirt ($16.20) that looks pretty regular except that it's made out of bamboo and cotton. Or the Hemp Travel Organizer that's 100% plant based (hemp plant) and priced at $31.20. And if you have a baby, dress him/her too with the Infant Cotton Rib Hat ($9.50) to complete the happy (Google) family look. For those who like none of these, there are other products to browse. Try the Footie Bag made from – you guessed right – 100% hemp and filled with recycled plastic. And, in the true spirit of green, your orders will be sent within recycled bags as well.
Check out the Google store to pamper your green temptation.
If you've ever had those tiny capsule or "dehydrated" sponge toys as a kid (the ones that magically "grow" when you add a few drops of water to them), then you'll already be familiar with miniTISSUEs. Atrocious capitalization and irresponsible breath mint disguise aside, each individually wrapped miniTISSUE is actually a hydraulically compressed 8.6" x 9.8" lint-free cotton tissue.
The biodegradable "washcloth" not only comes to life but also fully decomposes with water, which sounds like washing up could turn into a race against time to me.
Will the tissue turn into mush in your hands? Find out 96 times for just $12.95.
In a few more months, my contract with AT&T (formerly Cingular whence we first met) ends, and so I'm out on the prowl for a new deal and a new phone (can AT&T still do it for me?). Honestly, I know that there is a super batch of new phones arriving to shelves in the next few weeks, but currently I just can't rationalize spending $250-$350 for a smartphone, when another $50 will get me the iPhone. But, I'm sworn to staying iPhone-free until its next generation model makes it to market. So, let's talk about the Motorola Ming, also known as the "unlocked phone that can do it all."
I like Ming because it runs a Linux-based interface (mmmm open source). The interface helps any user easily navigate between entertainment, contacts, documents, and more. Ming has a 2-megapixel camera for photos, a business card reader to store your contacts, and 8MB of internal memory.
Price: No contract! $280-329 via Amazon (early adopter exclusive) in black, red, or white.
Hoyun just posted about the gorgeous Cool Globe (apparently only available in Sweden at this point) which keeps food cold via an "exchangeable cooling device."
Until we can get our hands on one of those babies, here's a great alternative, the OGGI Hot/Cold Thermo Tray from Sur La Table.
It works by using a heat-sensitive gel core that keeps cold food chilled and hot food warmed for hours. To heat, place tray in oven for up to 6 minutes; to cool, place in refrigerator for up to 2 hours. Crafted of 18/8 stainless steel for easy care. Just don't stick it in the dishwasher.
$39.99 at Sur La Table.
Don't miss this week's Dyson Pink Giveaway!
AppleInsider has a very exhaustive review of the latest Apple wireless keyboard for iMacs. And gathering from the unboxing, the device lives up to its promises. It's ultralight (that’s an immediate relief, considering its rather bulky predecessor) and yet rugged, a distinctive advantage offered by its sleek aluminium construction. Typing itself could be a lot less stressful on the fingers due to two reasons. First, the key positioning is pretty intuitive. Second, the typing angle is optimized cleverly by placing the battery compartment at the top of the keyboard so that the board is raised at the required angle. The bluetooth range is also at a limit of 20 ft (in the test environment), which is a comfortable range for normal usage. The final verdict? An “incredible” 5/5 in spite of a few would-be-nice-to-have features on their wishlist.
Available at Amazon for $78.24 (ships in 4 to 6 weeks).
The Swedish-made Cool Globe is the best looking alternative I've seen to the big, ugly coolers people usually carry to picnics and barbecues. The globe keeps food cold via an "exchangeable cooling device" (I don't know what that is exactly). To keep food hot, you heat up the soapstone hotplate for two minutes in the microwave before inserting in into the Cool Globe - I would imagine this would be good for keeping food hot at home as well. Available in two sizes, it comes in a range of modern colors.
There's no information on the website about where you can buy these. Anyone seen one in the U.S.?
If your home computer is unhappy with its shapely, voluptous peripherals, you can easily shed quite a few pounds with the new Kensington SlimBlade Media Notebook Set. This ultra-thin (no Apple envy here) set comes with a wireless keyboard, laser mouse, and 17-key numeric keypad.
Right-handed, left-handed, or one of each in your home? No worries! Simply swap out the magnetically attached modules on the left or right side of the keyboard, making your peripherals adapt to your needs instead of the other way around. If you like, you can even add a media remote to the set for a little more and control your Windows Media Center and Front Row from anywhere in the room.
Price: $109.92 at Amazon (in graphite).
Or, if you like more colors and a la carte, view the entire collection here (in graphite, wine, ice blue, and deep blue).
This trio of chocolate may look like your average run-of-the-mill pack of Halloween-inspired skull truffles (you know, the kind we all got with our penny candy and wax lips), but they're anything but ordinary.
First of all, each piece has its own very distinct, very child-unfriendly flavor. Scorched caramel, anyone? How about chili pepper or bitter cherry with brandy?
And second, third, and fourth of all, the 3.24-ounce set of three truffles costs $100.
Available now from Dean & Deluca.
I am a lover of boardgames (Cranium, Scrabble, Boggle) and was once a slumber party Twister champion. Nothing beats boardgames on cold fall and winter evenings. iPod owners, get ready for some new music-based trivia and iFun with the iNo Interactive Game System.
iNo is a speaker-system dock (compatible only with iPod nano and 30/80 GB) that lets up to four players and four iPods play an easy, fun, and revealing game of "name that song," artist or album. If you've never taken a look at a friend's playlists, this is a sure-fire way to get a ton of laughs as you learn more about one another through those "secret" songs you love to jam to. (We all have em' -- I'd be lying if I pretended that Kelly Clarkson wasn't hidden deep inside my own iPod.)
Players interact by buzzing in with one of four color-coded wireless remotes and keep score on their own LED scoreboard throughout their game. However, departing from PG fun, I can also imagine that this could be easily converted into a wonderful fast-acting drinking game. If you have at least 3 friends with the standard iPods (no shuffles, minis, or most classics) and a laugh-inducing, curious, or questionable take on music, this is a great must-have at your upcoming holiday and just-for-the-heck of it parties.
I just wonder if this means that there may be a day ahead where Twister isn't a household name.
Price: $79.99 pre-order through Target.
I'm not sure what the overlap is between collectors of miniatures and collectors of guns, but if I were a member of both groups, I'd be sick with joy at seeing this real working, miniature gun, the SwissMiniGun. Now, don't get all up in arms about it, information on the company's website about ammunition clearly states that the fire power (less than 1 joule, whatever that means) is much less than that of a BB gun (I hope people aren't buying those for kids anymore).
You can acquire this for your miniatures collection for 6'500 Swiss Francs (for the stainless steel model). The 18k solid gold model (see one after the jump) is made on order, and can be customized with diamonds or other precious stones.
If you look in a typical New Yorker's apartment, you'll find a stash of plastic bags from grocery stores. You know the kind, the ones that San Francisco has banned from supermarkets. It might seem a bit excessive until you realize that San Francisco alone hands out 180 million bags a year to shoppers. There was also the "I'm Not a Plastic Bag" frenzy this summer, which ended up feeling more about "awareness creation" than making an impact on people's behavior on a large scale.
For a more practical approach, try the Minusbags, which are designed by MB Mullan in Brooklyn and hand-stitched in New Hampshire. I like the functionality of them (they machine wash and hold 3 plastics bags worth of stuff.) They have a smart design, which replaces loud corporate logos with smart graphics of fruit. I also like the given reason that minusbags are better than plastics bags: because, "you can buy a dozen Krispy Cremes all for yourself and no one will be able to see them."
The Minusbag sell at $16 at a few locations on the East Coast, as well from their online store.
Vacuums may not set the typical gadgetophile's heart afire, but one of the super-vacs from Dyson could easily change their minds. My own Dyson Slim has me vacuuming at least twice as often as I used to (twice a year now, at least).
The Dyson DC07 All Floor works equally well on carpets and bare floors, with "cyclone" technology for extra-powerful suction. It's great for unhealthy asthmatic geeks like me too - because you don't need to change bags or filters - it takes one touch to empty the bin and even with the HEPA filtration, all you need to do is wash the filter, no replacements necessary.
For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Dyson and Target are offering a special edition pink DC07. It's the same great vacuum, with a glossy pink finish, and $40 of each sale goes to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Popgadget and Dyson will also be giving away one Pink Special Editon BCRF Dyson DC07 this month. All you need to do is subscribe to our weekly email list, and we'll be selecting one winner at random. The drawing will take place on October 28th. Good luck and thank you to Dyson and Target for supporting such an important cause. And please check out BCRF for more information, partners, and ways to donate.
Leading the pack is a luxury version of the Razr2, the latest successor to its once top-selling model. With it's gold plate accents and snakeskin texture, the ultra-slim design phone will retail at close to $300. It can store up to a 1,000 songs, uses the Opera Mobile Browser 8.5, and comes with a 2.0 megapixel camera with 8x digital zoom.
So how would you like it if a cute lil’ fella could brew that perfect cuppa everytime you need one and yet never complain about being overworked? Sounds too good to be true? Nope, considering that the man Friday we are referring to is the Penguin Tea Timer. This well-groomed penguin has a built-in timer (1 to 20 mins), which you can set depending on how strong you want your tea. Simply sling the tea bag over his beak, set the timer and relax. The penguin lowers the bag into the water and lifts it out when the time’s up. Cute, huh? Can be used as a regular timer too.
Well, it's fall 2007, so the much-anticipated Yamaha BODiBEAT MP3 Player should arrive in limited release any day now. If you're a workout nut or want to become a person who embraces exercise, BODiBEAT is going to blow your socks off (and your wallet out).
Unlike your iPod, BODiBEAT is loaded with workout management features. It analyzes your playlist by beats per minute and then matches songs to the speed of your workout. There are four music modes: "free workout" that matches music to your pace , "fitness" for optimal aerobic exercise, "training" for serious runners, and "music" for chillin' and listening whenever, wherever.
There are a ton of great benefits to this technology. Me? Well, I'm addicted to my iPod, I'm a control freak about my music, I love to exercise, and my very thrifty solution is FitPod's weekly download available via iTunes and at FitPod.com.
Price: $300. Learn more and view the demo at Yamaha.
With high quality digital cameras getting smaller all the time, the idea of lugging around a heavy, old-fashioned tripod seems ludicrious. The Italian-designed Klikk camera stand, at first glance, looks and feels so insubstantial, I couldn't imagine that it's designed to hold a camera. But the larger stand handles even my 35mm Canon Rebel XT (though it's not marketed for use with larger cameras), and the smaller one holds any of my smaller digital cameras. The camera angle can be adjusted up or down 18 degrees (see how to use demo). Made of "indestructible ABS." the Klikk is so small and light, you can throw it in your purse or carry it in the included pouch without noticing the weight. The stands are also designed to serve a second purpose - to protect the camera face when not in use (which would work with most smaller digital cameras - see the demo here).
Available on the Klikk website for $14.99 Euros (no information on retailers in the U.S.).
Just check out this Rainbow USB hub and you'll realize what wonders color can do to an otherwise dreary device such as a USB hub. The device is not only distinctive but also well designed. Each USB port is a colorful plastic box wide enough for you to plug in big devices. But what hooked me is that it gives the functionality of a 4-port hub (plug-n-play, 2.0 compatible) in addition to being really flexible. How so? Well, each port is connected to the adjacent port in such a way that the ports can be arranged in a stack, tower, pyramid etc., depending on your liking. Definitely another one of those must-have USB gadgets on my list.
Available from USBGeek for $12.
Via The Gadgeteer.
All the rage in England, the online pre-orders sold-out at Bliss, but the fitness sandal is now more widely available Stateside -- at Macy's, Bath & Body Works, and Amazon - and I'm here to tell you they work. As a Southern Californian, I live in flip flops and am already familiar with the extra workout they provide.
Ever get to work and spend the day wondering if you left the iron on? Rounding the corner, you casually smell the air for smoke, squeeze your eyes shut, and send up a prayer that your home is still completely intact (it's just your forgetful mind that's been falling apart). If you're forgetful, gadget-crazy, super safety conscious, or just in need of a permanent handyman/butler, the Home Heartbeat Home Awareness System is a pretty good companion for your neuroses and practical needs.
The Home Heartbeat wireless system monitors up to 30 high-risk locations in your home. There are three major components: Base Station, Home Key, and Sensors. The Base Station monitors your home via the Sensors (placed on windows, doors, even the water heater) and relays messages to the Home Key, which is actually a convenient key-chain receiver. Key-chain too much for you? With an optional add-on package messages can be sent to your cell phone or email.
This is a great device that comes in handy when you want to be reminded to change air filters, monitor your vacation home, keep tabs on your parents/grandparents. In a worst-case scenario - let's say that this winter a major pipe bursts while you're on vacation in Aspen - Home Heartbeat can actually shut off the water supply. You can also program household maintenance reminders, like when to change the air filter in your heating system.
Sure it's a little excessive for me and my four pugs and our tiny NY apartment, but then again, there's no place like a safe home.
Price: $225 for the starter kit (up to 200 free alerts); $22-$250 for each add-on at homeheartbeat.com.
If you're one of the reported 70% of people who prefer your cereal to stay crunchy for as long as possible, even though it's covered in naturally soggifying milk (or water or orange juice, depending on your preference), the $8 eatmecrunchy cereal bowl has been designed with you in mind.
The bowl features an interior shelf of sorts that covers 70% of the bottom and keeps the milk and cereal separate. Being able to push the cereal off the shelf to mingle with the milk at will allows you to control the "sog rate" of your morning meal.
Me? I'm part of that 30% who pours the milk, walks away, and waits for the cereal (particularly Life) to turn into mush.
Frog bike, from ThisNext Blog
miniHome SE, from MoCo Loco
Yes, this is yet another case collection for the iPod. And it is simply too good to resist. Fabrix handmade cases are not only great eye candy, but they also jealously guard your iPod from scratches and light bumps as they have a comfy quilted padding on the inside. Each case is hand-sewn to perfect dimensions – so you can get customized cases for all iPods, whether classic, nano, Touch or even the iPhone. Let’s say you don’t own any of these – no cry – you can still order your own custom size for an extra $2 per case.
The lovely cases are available from Fabrix at $19.90 a piece.
Via Chip Chick.
I can't cook (or don't, which is more accurate) but I love the Sur La Table stores and site. Occasionally, I will buy my husband some cooking tool as he's the chef of the family. Anything to keep him cooking.
Sufing today I found this adorable Dama Pink stovetop espresso maker by Bialetti. Available for $39.99, Bialetti will donate a portion of the proceeds to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Since the invention of the Bialetti Moka Express in 1933 by Alfonso Bialetti, his original octagonal-shaped aluminum stovetop coffee maker has graced 90% of Italian households. As any coffee aficionados will attest, this is the ONLY way to make coffee. The "Dama" is a dressed-up version of the classic, with some thoughtful touches, such as the silicone handle and soft-touch dome knob for safety.
Along with fall foliage come flu shots, static cling between your sheets and blankets, dry heat, and colds and sniffles. As you turn up the heat in your home, you dry out the air. Just about all of us probably have owned or do own a humidifier, which is super useful during the winter, keeping your environment and your breathing balanced. A major problem with most humidifiers is that they actually cultivate mold spores in the water tank and then circulate them into the air.
The Germ Guardian Ultrasonic Digital Humidifier not only senses the humidity in its environment and adjusts to a pre-set level for warm or cold humidification, but there are microscopic silver particles embedded into the tank, which inhibit the growth of harmful fungi and bacteria. An adjustable spray function helps regulate the desired volume of spray. And it's ultrasonic, making it virtually silent when it runs.
Price: 179.99 at Amazon.
Tape dispensers are one of those things that you probably only buy once in your life. My parents still use the same sand-weighted black one from when I was a kid, and I've always assumed that I'd be using the one I bought ten years ago for at least the next fifty years.
Why this is the case, I have no idea. The average tape dispenser is cheaper than lunch at a diner, so cost is clearly not the issue. It can't be lack of innovation either, as this Tape Tape Dispenser (£12) is unique and pretty clever.
Via Coolest Gadgets.
These look like a real guitar and amp, but are miniatures - a 1GB MP3 player and guitar amp speakers. The guitar comes with headphones, guitar lanyard, and a real guitar pick with which you can pick out tunes on the miniature guitar. Perhaps not the most practical music player, but may be a fun gift for collectors of miniatures.
Available at GadgetBox for £49.99 ($102).
I've never stopped to wonder why people who drink generally don't order anything other than sake with their sushi. Why is wine appropriate with cooked fish, but not with raw fish? I'm sure there's a very good answer to this question.
Meanwhile, a restaurant in Osaka, Champagne et Sushi Cuisine Moet, is daring diners to challenge their taste buds by mixing champagne with sushi made with non-traditional ingredients such as cheese and foie gras. Sounds yummy to me, though again, I don't know why traditional sushi wouldn't go just as well with the champagne.
What's next, sake with cheesburgers (maybe if you throw a little wasabe on top)?
Via The Nikkei Weekly (subscription)
Looking around for a vacuum sealer that combines good design and great performance ? Well, I was doing just that when I came across the Oliso Frisper Freshkeeper. And the specs seem pretty promising. For one, I love the sleek oval shape of the vacuum sealer that restricts the form factor to a comfortable level, unlike most other sealers that I have used (and thrown away in disgust). The patent-pending design ensures that usage is simple as well – just fill the specially designed Vac-Snap bag (included in the package) with the product that you want to vacuum seal, place it under the Frisper lid and you are done. The device accomplishes the vacuum sealing by creating a zipped closure along pre-designated spots of the bag. Which means, you are not only spared from positioning the sealer (how frustrating that can get) but are able reuse the bag again. The bags, which are also separately available in gallon and quart sizes, are multi-layer and non-porous, and protect food from freezer burn. Works for me.
The Frisper is available for a reasonable $79.95 along with a year’s warranty from Sharper Image.
Via Cool Hunting.
We would be remiss if we didn't bring our readers some extravagant Christmas indulgence from the fanciful Neiman Marcus Christmas Book.
It was a tough decison between the $35,000 dragon topiary by artist Matthew Larkin -- a steal really considering the gold-leafed horns, claws, teeth, and fins -- and the NM Gem Triton 1000 Submarine which dives to 1,000 feet and comes with a two day instruction package. (Thank goodness, Scout would just smash it up otherwise!) Oh, it's $1,440,000.
In the end, we settled on the Vertu Signature Diamond Phone which works in more than 150 countries. But forget about that - look at those 7.2 carat white and pink diamonds, Muffy! Of course that's 18-kt. rose gold. 24-hour global concierge service? But of course. With only 100 available, you don't risk bumping into someone with the same phone.
A mere $73,000. Take it out of the piggy bank, daaalink...
I suppose that, to some degree, the idea of being age appropriate applies to your gadget purchases as well as to your clothing and jewelry (though, I would submit that even conservative middle-aged people can wear wild colors and patterns on their gadgets that they wouldn't dare put on their bodies). So, at first glance, Laptopmag.com's article Are you Too Old for That Gadget?" sounds like it might contain some reasonable (though probaby obvious) suggestions. I wouldn't recommend a pink Hello Kitty cell phone for a 50 year-old business executive, for instance, though it's none of my business if someone else decides to be eccentric in that way. But, take a look at some of the gadgets the Laptopmag writer thinks are too young for adults:
The Flip Video Ultra Series
Why are these beautifully colored, simple to use video cameras inappropriate for adults? So what if they look somewhat toyish -- they're supposed to look that way because they're fun and easy to use. What's wrong with a little payfulness at any age? The writer suggests that the black and white versions are "passable." Huh? I'm getting the lime green one (a color I'd never wear on my body, but which is my favorite on gadgets).
At the 2007 Korea Eletronics Show, Samsung Electro-Mechanics announced that it has developed a micro-fuel cell and hydrogen generator that runs on water, which, by 2010 will be used to power cell phones (for 10 hours - twice as long as rechargeable batteries). Eventually, the goal is to develop hydrogen cartridges that only need to be filled with water rather than replaced every few days.
As fall continues to slowly roll in, the days become shorter and walking your dog or playing at the local park gets a little more challenging and a little less safe. Visiglo battery-powered illuminated leashes and collars are available in 3 playful styles; Fashion, Sport, and L.E.D.
Both leashes and collars are made from high-thread count, making them durable and comfortable for dogs to wear and for owners to hold onto (just in case your "Fido" likes to pull and tug you along the way).
All collars feature a low profile power pack (powered by high capacity CR 2025 batteries) and the collar lengths have been sized to standard market sizes. Small collars adjust from 10”-14”, Medium collars adjust from 13”-20”, and large collars adjust from 16”-26.” (Additionally, Visiglo leashes are powered by two AA batteries.)
Bones Leash Price: $24.95 at Amazon.
Click here for a list of retailers and other styles.
Don't call this a toy - the ClickStart computer introduces your pumpkins to many essential computing basics, such as QWERTY key placement, screen navigation and mousing, unlike many other big companies that use alphabetical placement. Imagine how confusing that's going to be when they graduate to a PC or Mac.
ClickStart hooks up wirelessly to the TV so the screen acts as the monitor and the software teaches many school skills, including letters, phonics, numbers, colors, counting, and shapes in entertaining games, led by a green dog named Scout. When I was playing...I mean, Nicole (pictured above) Dora the Explorer, we were picking up some basic Spanish vocabulary while competing to match the most shapes. If only they had this for Advanced Algebra.
Play Learning Carnival with your child and you'll forget they're learning word building and logic. (All additional titles are $19.99.)
I'll take humble humor over haute couture almost any day. Whether dressing down or dressing up, add a dash of geek style with this clever Pacman belt buckle and tie. You'll be sure to delight and distract and earn the respect of all gamers with this dose of hipster happiness.
Belt: This original design is sealed onto the metal belt buckle with a durable coat of resin. The buckle has a standard post closure and is 4 1/2" long x 2 1/2" wide. Fits most belts with removable buckles.
Tie: 100% polyester white skinny necktie featuring Pacman and his ghost nemeses. This full length tie has a satin finish and measures only 1.5" wide.
Price: $20-25 at Ex-Boyfriend.
I'm not sure what a 3.75-inch peanut butter and grape jelly sandwich has to do with Christmas, but I don't care at all. The $7 glass ornament, accented with glitter and "vivid glazes," is just way too cute to question.
Via Nerd Approved.
The Mathmos Bubble fits perfectly in the palm of your hand. Approximately the size of a tennis ball, you'll find it's a hard device to put down. Gently squeeze the Mathmos Bubble once to turn it on, squeeze again to turn it off. Fully portable, it's great for indoors and outdoors. At an evening party you'll find it's a great way to mingle and keep attention on you and whomever you're sharing a drink with. Parents, this will make a great replacement for the cumbersome flashlight this Halloween evening. Simply slip the ball in your child's pocket or plastic candy-carrying device, and we're sure they'll have safe illuminated fun. If you're addicted to the soft glow or you find that it suits the cuddly little or big baby in your life, a recharge cable is supplied for constant light.
With space being at such a premium in crowded cities, an upstart young designer has devised a bookcase that transforms into a bed. Looking like a large wall jigsaw puzzle, the mattress stands upright in four sections, surrounding five storage shelves which are suspended in mid-air by a wall mounted frame. When the mattress sections are placed on the floor they slot together to form the bed.
Designer Karen Babel has a bright future in outfitting New York apartments.
Via Yanko Design.
If your kids are bored of pretending that the spoon zigzagging and loop-de-looping toward their open mouths is an airplane, then this Constructive Eating utensil set is a great way to rejuvenate their mealtime imagination.
Whether associating construction equipment with eating at such a young age will encourage the development of poor restaurant manners, such as shoveling in mashed potatoes or inhaling french fries, is unknown. But the easy-grip forklift fork, bulldozer pusher, and front loader spoon can be in your child's hands for $20.
Via Daily Gadget.
I felt a little bit like Harry Potter testing out the Logitech MX Air optical mouse. The mouse tracks normally on the surface, nothing new there except the touch-buttons (back, volume, play/pause--all light up when used) are in the middle of the unit (awkward, but you can get used to it). Once you lift the mouse into the air, you'll feel like a wizard in training with your first power-packing wand. Wave the mouse in any direction, pressing buttons to navigate. Like any student at Hogwarts you'll need practice to get used to it (keep your expectations to about 30 feet), but at worst, you'll turn on the TV instead of your computer;)
The mouse is definitely eye-candy for your desk, its sleek black design will make onlookers wonder "what is that thing?" My favorite feature is the touch panel sensor that takes the place of the traditional scroll wheel. It kind of makes you feel like Apple's "Slide Technology" is this season's new black for tech design. My prediction is that while this is a great new device, its next release will have tighter features that make better use of the real estate. However, if you're a couch potato, this little black toy will let you settle back into the comfort of your couch or bed and listen to music, browse photos, or surf the web without getting up once -- you'll just be waving your arms in the air.
Price: .$142 at Amazon
Hey, I bet this is comfortable! A Mac store in Maryland Heights, Missouri didn't know what to do with 20 extra Macintosh II computers, so instead of recycling in the usual way, they decided to make them into a couch. If you figure that the original price of the Macintosh II was $5500 a unit, this couch is worth over $100,000. They are now working on a matching dining set . . .
Via Crunch Gear.
Because girls are too busy painting their nails to understand things like real estate, Hasbro has chosen Toys R Us as the exclusive distributor of an all-pink boutique edition of Monopoly that swaps the traditional green houses and red hotels with pink and purple boutiques and malls.
Other thoughtful feminizing touches include pink Title Deed cards, Instant Message and Text Message instead of Community Chest and Chance cards, and a keepsake box that doubles (of course) as a jewelry box. Oh, and the thimble, dog, and all the other way-too-masculine playing pieces have been replaced with sandals, a purse, hair dryer, and other objects that girls can recognize.
The best part is that furthering gender stereotypes only costs $22.49. What a deal!
Now that the iPhone has been out for months, companies are lining up to design the second generation of their cases. Given that before the little wonder's release, companies had little to go on except the specs on the Apple site, it's no surprise that glitches showed up .
Griffin wisely has designed an entire line of iPhone accessories which are both practical and handsome. Take the Streamline, the iPhone armband, which protects your iPhone with a full-face screen protector that guards against scratches. A washable, neoprene armband adjusts two ways for the maximum in comfort and size range. And for safety at night, Streamline features built-in reflective trim.
For regular use, the iClear is my favorite -- shows off the elegant design of my iPhone but keeps it handy. Made from crystal-clear polycarbonate (the same material used in astronauts’ faceplates) it provides protection while still allowing total access to the iPhone touchscreen, controls, audio jack and camera lens.
If you're serious about your guitar practice, you'll try to find a way to always travel with your beloved instrument and an amp. Back when I used to be a dedicated musician, I bought myself one of those miniature amps that would work with batteries and to which I could attach my headphones and not bother anyone else with my endless noodling.
VOX has just come out with a new line of portable headphones amps that can’t possibly get any smaller in size. The tiny amps come in three models based on different sound styles. For £ 35, you’ll be able to rock out on the VOX AC30, on the “classic Rock” (sound based on Marshall) or on the “Metal” (sound based on a Mesa Boogie) version. All amps run on 2xAAA batteries.
Via Music Thing.
I am addicted to caffine. There, I said it. So, it's only natural that I love this babydoll t-shirt from ThinkGeek which proudly bears the caffeine molecule. Fellow addicts will recognize it and bond with you, you'll start a club...take over the world...ok, maybe that was one too many diet cokes.
The caffeine molecule t-shirt printed in lime green on a navy shirt sells for 6 cafe latttes (or $17.99) at ThinkGeek and Amazon. Amazon also carries the generic caffeine t-shirt (i.e., the non-babydoll style), in short and long-sleeve versions.
Blasphemous combination of fashion and religious tradition aside, this High Heel Menorah will certainly make that old dreidel seem a bit drab during Hanukkah this year.
Made of metal and colorfully painted enamel, the menorah measures 16" x 2" and is available now for $40.
Via Nerd Approved.
I nearly fell off my chair when I stumbled upon Scottevest (SeV), a company that specializes in "gear management clothing." One traditional must-have fall fashion item for men and women is the "hoodie."
If you sport SeV's "Ultimate Hoodie" here's how you'll roll: with black comfortable, lightweight micro fleece that's thick enough to keep the chill out, but thin enough to allow for gear control through the fabric, 11 thoughtfully designed exterior and interior pockets--some with magnetic closures, special earbud loops, an integrated Weight Management System™ to help you keep heavy loads balanced and comfortable, a built-in extendible keychain, secret pocket, 2-way front zipper, and a patented Personal Area Network (PAN) that provides the ultimate integrated wire management solution for all your gear goodness.
If you're looking for a kitchen timer that has both elegance and great utility, don’t let the Eva Solo kitchen timer pass you by. Just stick the timer on to any steel surface (it has a magnetic side covered by rubber that prevents your kitchen surfaces from getting scratched), set the lovely silver colored steel dial and let the clock do the talking, er, ticking. My (solo) grouse with the Eva Solo is that it seems a bit overpriced at $38.
Available from Amazon.
Via Apartment Therapy.
Oh . . . this is just a great find! A current fashion throwback to the past -- these three bags all feature removable retro-records, in 9 color combinations, and each has slightly different original options:
45RPM Handbag has one hand-selected 45 on each side of the bag, you get to choose the vinyl color for the sides, there are clear tub handles with yellow rope, and silver rivets fastening up the sides 8" wide x 8" high (12 w/ handles) x 4.5" deep.
The Trukette features a removable 7" record sewn into a window on the flap and is handmade in colors of your choice of high-quality waterproof vinyl with an adjustable heavy-duty seatbelt webbing strap and silver velvet lined flap that closes with two snaps.
Large Record Bag sports two random records on each side, you choose your colors, 13" wide x 13" high x 6" deep, 11" between top of 24" handles and top of bag.
Definitely a gift not to be skipped! Learn more at Queen Bee Creations.
My biggest fear when flying is loosing my luggage. The idea of reaching my vacation spot with nothing to wear or getting back home without my holiday purchases is – while admittedly superficial - very troubling to me. For this reason I am very careful to always attach a tag with the destination address on all of my luggage (as if that would prevent them from getting lost, right?).
While some of my suitcases have built-in travel tags, most of the time I have to remember to ask for one and fill it in at the check-in counter. Though, I find it much more practical to perform my irrational ritual and be able to fill in the tags beforehand at home. I really like these re-usable travel tags from Samsonite. You can write your address on any piece of paper, roll it and insert it in the cylinder shaped tag, which you can easily attach to (and later detach from) any bag you desire to travel with.
Samosonite travel tags come in four different colors: green; blue; pink and orange and are available at Amazon for $6.00.
Related on baggage tags:
Trace Your Bags All Over the World with Globalbagtags
One rule I have is that simple-is-best when it comes to great gear design. I detest music docking stations made of plastic that attempts to look sleek, futuristic, and uber high-tech. Usually, they turn out to be cheap and flimsy, crack under pressure, and smack of poor quality. A nice, affordable, non-plastic alternative for music docking is the newly released Vers handcrafted wood sound system for iPods and iPhones.
Each unit looks retro chic and is made from hand-crafted cherry veneer (no two are alike). There are 8 iPod adapters and a universal MP3 dock, 14 function remote control with 25' range, and full-range speakers that keep your music sounding crisp. Vers is compact, weighing 6lbs, and with dimensions:11.5" W x 5.6" H x 5.6" L.
Vers is kind of like a Feng shui solution for your gazillion tunes.
Price: about $179, and on sale beginning October 7, 2007 at Target and other retailers.
More information can be found at Versaudio.com.
The next time you see a kid slathering mustard and ketchup all over his face at a burger joint, you can continue eating your lunch undisturbed, nodding knowingly as the rest of the patrons look on in horror.
While the others shake their heads and whisper about questionable parenting, you'll sip your diet soda while remembering the Bath Burger Gift Pack ($10 AU). That cute burger sponge. The strawberry shower gel, mango body lotion, and lemon body scrub disguised as ketchup, mayonnaise, and mustard. Your inner voice told you to resist, warned you of the potential public humiliation that awaited you inside the paper burger box.
Now you know why.
Via Nerd Approved.
We were tipped off by Pacific Design that they're throwing a 99 cent sale on selected iPod cases to make room for the new cases coming in. While it's usually not our policy to advertise sales, with a deal this good we couldn't resist.
Even the stylish nano cover we just reviewed is on sale. Remember, it comes in various combinations, black/silver and pink/white, black/red, green/white, blue/aqua, and grey/orange. The case fits all iPod nanos and is optimized for second generation 2GB, 4GB and 8GB models.
My personal fave is the Day Tripper which fits both your nano and your cell phone and is, yes, 99 cents.
Quanties are limited. Tell 'em POPGADGET sent you.
If, like me, you have a nerdy appreciation for geeky t-shirts, you will love nerdyshirts.com. The site offers a great variety of funny techie shirts for both men and women, and even a small selection of baby shirts. From their accessories section, you can purchase, among other things, the previously covered Zelda belt.
Nerdyshirts’ newest arrival is this pajama-looking Pacman t-shirt (see picture above), which despite the initial bed-time association I still find very pretty. I wish they had it in a different color as well, as I'm sure it would look less pajama-like in bright red or black.
T-shirts are usually available for $20,- and the site will ship worldwide. You can pay via Paypal, Google Checkout or by credit card.
I prefer a softer, less serious look, but if I were buying a laptop bag for an executive type person who doesn't like briefcases, I'd consider getting Koyono's Booq Boa Backpack Laptop Bag. What impresses me about this bag is the interior design which, after comfort, is what matters most. The four main compartments are staggered, which makes a lot of sense in a bag that's tall - this ensures the best use of the different levels of space. There's a utility pocket on the outside for a phone or music player, and the main outside pocket consists of a main compartment with 5 smaller utility pockets and 3 pen pockets. If that's not enough, there's also a secret pocket on the back panel for things like passports and other small valuables. The bag opens wide, so it's easy to lift things in and out - really useful on trains and planes.
The exterior is made of high quality ballistic nylon and other rugged materials to withstand abuse. It's a versatile bag for travel, and wouldn't look out of place in a conservative work environment (see more photos after the jump).
The Booq Boa is on sale now for $149.50 (down from $165), and comes with free Cool Feet Hot Laptop Air Stand (normally $14.99).
The monastic life is not what it used to be. Reuters reports that many monasteries throughout the U.S. are connected to the Internet, and conduct their communications and business online. Some have their own websites for connecting with the public and selling goods. Monasteries are able to sell a wide range of products, such as books, music, incense, food, and wearables, through their websites. As for online communications, monks, according to this report, find email less intrusive than phone calls (I can relate to that).
There's also a site that serves the public's interest in monasteries - VocationsPlacement, basically a headhunting service that connects individuals interested in religious life with over 600 religious communities.
I find this phenomenon very comforting.
Visit monastery websites:
Monasteryfruitcake.org, Holy Cross Abbey in Berryville, Virginia
Mount Savior Monastery, Pine City, New York
God Alone, Abbey of Gethsemani, Trappist, Kentucky
St. Anthony's Greek Orthodox Monastery, FLorence, Arizona
Just in time for Halloween, Lego is selling this special 3D pumpkin pack collection to anyone who doesn't have enough orange and green bricks leftover from the giant carrot they built for Easter.
The pack is available now for $18 from the Lego Store, but if you'd rather stand out from the crowd with a gray and black or red and blue pumpkin, then gather whatever pieces you already have around the house and follow these official building instructions.
Via Coolest Gadgets.
Whack-a-mole was the first computer game I ever owned and I used to spend hours playing it on my VIC 20. Whack-a-mole is one of those repetitive yet extremely satisfying games; the goal is to whack with the aid of a hammer the little moles' heads back into the ground as soon as they try surfacing. This alternative USB version, simply known as whack-it, is built on the same principle as the original game (which was an arcade game and not my VIC 20 version). The colored heads (or whatever they are supposed to represent) light up to indicate that they need to be pushed back down by tapping your finger(s) on it.
I would have to try it out to see how playable it is, but I have a feeling that I could be spending hours tapping those shining red, green and yellow blobs down.
Available for £12.49 Gadget-Box.
While I've never paid much attention to men's razors or other shaving paraphernalia, I have noticed that there are a lot of choices, and that the shelves of cosmetics stores dedicated to products for men have been growing over the last few years (a disproportionate number of them devoted to shaving). Accordingly to a story in Chosun.com, the competition in the razor industry is cutthroat, with the most recent development being the development of a six-blade razor by Dorco called "pace 6." How far can this go and why would we want to see it going any further?
This development was foreseen a few years ago on the humor site theVoiceofReason.com, in its article "Gillette to launch 6 blade razor for 'closest shave yet" (together with hilarious animated demonstration of how each blade has a unique function). Gillette did release the five-bladed Gillette Fusion since then, proving once again that parody is prognostication.
What this means to me is that men need more beauty products that aren't dedicated to the act of shaving.
I am not usually a big fan of pimped up gizmos that more often than are tastelessly exuberant in both price and design, but every now and then someone gets it right, and then you can just admire a beautiful piece of design. This is the case with the Diamond iPod shuffle created by jewelry designer John Harrington. Etched with Herrington’s known 'Renaissance’ motif and adorned with five small diamonds, this iPod shuffle really looks like a luxurious piece of jewelry.
Available for £ 300.
This simple-looking sombrero cord manager really beats those rubber and velcro ties I have all over my house, both in form and function. You anchor this onto any surface with a screw, wrap your wire around it and feed the outgoing cord into one of the notches to keep it in place. You can choose to keep it under and behind furniture or make it part of your geeky decor, since it comes in five different colors (shown after the jump). They stack together (with a longer screw).
From Mockett.com for $4 each (discounts for multiple purchases).
They actually look more psychedelic than Mario-inspired to me, but since I've been obsessed with playing Super Paper Mario on the Wii lately, I'll say that these cute little mushroom push-lamps stand 5.5 inches tall and are perfect for anyone who 1) knows the difference between a green and red Koopa Troopa and 2) is delighted when finding an Ultra Shroom Shake in a hidden treasure chest.
Each lamp is $12 and runs on four AA batteries.
Now that the Apple ibuzz has softened to a whisper, Microsoft attempts to garner attention with their next generation Zune devices, enhanced Zune software, and redesigned Zune Marketplace — all geared toward discovering and sharing new music.
The Specs: There are two players, an 80GB hard drive-based model and a 4GB/8Gb flash model. The 80GB is available only in black, while the 4GB/8GB flash models come in black, green, pink, and red. All models share the new “Zune Pad” — a touch-sensitive button/pad for navigating. Another shared feature is the 320x240 pixel screen; the 80GB is 3.2 inches while the little 4GB/8GB has a 1.8 inch one. All still include FM tuner and wireless connectivity for synching the unit and sharing music with your Zune-bearing pals.
The Friends: Speaking of your Zune buddies, you can now send a Zune friend a song and he/she can keep it endlessly (previously limited to three days). Listening time is still limited to three plays maximum. You’re also now able to import television recorded in Windows Media Center (under Windows Vista).
The Store: Zune Marketplace has been nicely overhauled (maybe even beating iTunes, which is in desperate need of revised UI). You’ll find 3 million+ songs for sale (more than a million DRM-free MP3s). There will also be music videos, podcasts, and video podcasts. Download as you go, or listen all month for $14.99.
In an obvious attempt to compete with Apple's iPhone, Verizon Wireless announced on Wednesday their new cell phone lineup, including the much-rumored Voyager (made by LG Electronics) which has a large touch screen very similar to the iPhone, but also includes a second screen and keyboard which folds out laterally like the LG EnV.
The LG Venus, which comes in pink and black, is a slider phone with two screens: the phone keypad slides out from under a touch screen. As with Voyager, it vibrates when a user taps a menu option on the screen.
Both Venus and Voyager have 2-megapixel cameras, and high-speed wireless connections for fast music and video downloads, and since the Voyager does not come with a large built-in memory for songs and video, it offers instead a slot for memory cards up to 8 gigabytes. By comparison, the iPhone has 8 gigabytes of built-in storage. Going after iPhone's achilles heel -- it's painfully slow AT&T network -- the Voyager will connect to Verizon Wireless' latest data network, providing speeds much higher than the "EDGE" network the iPhone uses.
Like you, when I think of Hello Kitty and her 33rd anniversary, the first things that come to mind are obviously pink satin, a martini, and a deck of Kitty-adorned playing cards made from 99.99% pure gold.
The cards, which are sealed in decorated laminate, are available now through the Sanrio Online Shop in Japan for 567,000 yen (about $4,900). You're on your own in getting the satin and cocktail.
Via Pink Tentacle.
The all-important annual hot holiday toy list from trade magazine Toy Wishes was released to breathless retailers and eager parents, but the fascinating factor for us was that it confirmed how tech-savvy children have become: seven out of the 12 toys featured to be this year's most popular are hooked to either a computer or TV screen. In fact, the most popular toys are high-tech updates of such classics as Barbie, Nerf, and Rubik's Cube, as well as a giant magnifying eyeball (pictured above) and a singing Hannah Montana doll.
"Today, kids have iPods and cell phones," said Jim Silver, editor-in-chief of Toy Wishes, which based its list on the publication's review of thousands of toys and interviews with retailers. "We live in a different world of how children play."
Here's the list in alphabetical order, no favorites. The manufacturers' suggested retail price is included.
American Idol Talent Challenge (Tech2Go, $49.99). Ages 8 and up.
Aqua Dots Super Studio (Spin Master Ltd., $24.99). Ages 4 and up.
Barbie Girls (Mattel Inc., device, $59.99; accessories pack, $9.99). Ages 6 and up.
Jakks EyeClops Bionic Eye (JAKKS-Pacific Inc., $49.99). Ages 6 and up.
For all the devoted Halo fans, Mimobot, the popular manufacturer of the Art Toy USB Flash Drives, has a Halo collection available for pre-order and ready to be shipped on October 18th. The limited edition Halo series was created in collaboration with Microsoft and Bungie and features the Master Chief, Red Spartan and Blue Spartan characters. The USB Flash drives are available in 1 GB, 2G or 4GB formats and come preloaded with various Halo content including the Mimobot soundByte™ application, artwork, excerpts from the upcoming Halo novel, and a special episode of "This Spartan Life."
Prices for the limited edition Halo Mimobot series range from $49.95 to $109,95. Per-orders will be accepted until October 18th or until the supply lasts.
For just $20, the "soft, cushioning cell foam that looks remarkably real" not only keeps your wrists happy and in a more proper ergonomic position, but can also make you the easiest person to shop for in the world. Salami stapler? Lettuce keyboard cover? Mayo screen cleaner? The gift ideas are endless.
TheFind has made it easier for shoppers to search for eco/green products online, with the launch of TheFIndGreen. Now, you don't have to figure out which search terms to use in order to find eco-friendly products in every category (for instance, handbags made of vegan or recycled materials, organic cleaning products, and solar-powered or energy saving lights).
[TheFind is one of Popgadget's shopping partners.]
This looks like a cool, recreational vehicle, but is actually a four-wheel covered, electric scooter made for people who need assistance with getting around. The advantage is that it's covered with a canopy and removable doors, so it protects the rider from the elements (even has windshield wipers), and of course, it's very stylish. Equipped with headlights with turn signals, front and rear suspension, it travels at a maximum speed of 10 miles per hour. The weight limit is 350 pounds. The only problem might be that it's too eye-catching - how do you keep other people's grubby paws off of it.
As many of you know, I am a big fan of tea and anything tea related, therefore I am also interested in water kettles, and Kenwood’s Response Kettle might have just become my favorite one. First of all, it lets you choose to end the boiling process at 80 degrees Celsius, which is ideal for brewing tea and – best of all – its exterior gradually changes color from blue to red as the water becomes hotter. The Response Kettle, once it's reached the desired temperature, can be set to maintain the heat for as long as you want, therefore eliminating the need to reheat when you need a refill.
Available on Amazon.co.uk (unfortunately not available on the Amazon.com at the moment) for £ 34.99
Via Apartment Therapy.
It isn't every day that I'm offended by a piece of furniture. It's just today.
Sumo wrestling is a sport steeped in history and tradition. Words like "honor" and "respect" are typically used to describe all of the rituals that are part of the tournaments; the athletes take their sport seriously and train incredibly hard to climb the ranks.
So to strap a glass tabletop onto a sumo wrestler's back and then charge $225 for the offense is just plain wrong.
Via The Uber-Review.
I think my pups are laughing at me. Smart Home sent me their new Bark Smart to try out, which works by sending out an ultrasonic signal that only dogs can hear when activated by the barking. Supposedly, dogs learn that their barking causes this irritating sound and stop barking to stop the noise. A deluxe version of the Bark Smart is also available. This upgraded device has twin speakers with a wider range as well as a timer control option that lets you set the time when the Bark Smart Deluxe is active each day. Uh-huh.
If you're gulible, choose from two modes: audible and ultrasonic. Both modes signal your dog ultrasonically, but the audible mode also emits a tone that you can hear, which will drive you totally crazy while your daschunds enjoy a chuckle. An LED also shows when the Bark Smart is active.
Target recently began selling special edition pink iPod Shuffle bundles, with a portion of the proceeds earmarked for The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
In addition to the $79 1GB Shuffle dressed in a shade its never worn before (but otherwise the same as it's always been), the bundle includes a $15 gift card to iTunes. Your cost? Just $79.
The sets are available now exclusively at Target's brick-and-mortar stores, which is great news for anyone living in any U.S. state except Hawaii (me), Alaska, or Vermont.
When Jenna, our editor over at Babygadget, was pregnant not long ago, I'd often see her place something cushiony between her belly and her laptop when she was working. Most moms-to-be aren't comforted by skeptics who say there's no proof that electrical devices can cause harm to unborn babies, and therefore no reason to worry about it. I can't blame the cautious moms. I'm not even pregnant, and I don't generally rest my laptop directly on top of my lap.
MummyWraps were developed to protect unborn babies from "electrosmog," otherwise known as Electro-Magnetic Radiation (EMR), which comes from x-rays, radar, microwaves, TV and radio stations, cellphones, and other wireless devices. MummyWraps are made of "Swiss-Shield" fabric, which supposedly screens out EMR. The stretchy, copper-based, cotton wrap can be worn as an under-garment or as an outer-garment from conception through birth. They're priced at $69.95 on the MummyWraps website (apropos of nothing, does anybody else have the reaction that the model on their website looks awfully young?).
Berlin based arts organization Wooloo Productions operates Wooloo.org, an artists' web portal and online community. Their site allows artists from around the world to have a professional web presence as well as interact with follow artists and curators. It also acts as a platform for "participatory projects" such as Land Grab Online, which is a call for artwork related to the ownership of land.
Wooloo,org is accepting applications for a New York based project, Life Exchange, that truly caught my attention. Way back in 1973, Nancy Weber penned an ad in New York City's venerable free newspaper, the Village Voice, which basically offered to swap lives, apartments and jobs. She attempted this experiment to find out if "people can get out of their skins."
Flip forward to the present, Wooloo Productions is updating Nancy Weber's work with a one-week performance in Weber's apartment located in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. Starting on October 31st, participants can go to Weber's West 24th Street home. After an interview with Wooloo Productions, they get someone else's clothes, house key and details of another person's life, while leaving their life behind for the next participant. I am really looking forward to seeing the results of these life swaps.
Photo by: Douglas Reid Fogelson
Macs are known to be inherently creative on the inside, with the best in multimedia applications, but a small Seattle design company, iamhumannow, wanted to give people a way to express their creativity and individuality on the outside. These well-conceived skins are designed to bring human warmth and personality to your Mac.
There are three designs: Wood, Textile, and Premium. "Wood" features soft wood veneers, "Textile" features modern prints, patterns, and weaves, and "Premium" features limited edition runs of Wood and Textiles.
Indie designs like these inspire creativity outwardly and protect your laptop from dings and scratches.
Price: $30-45 at iamhumanow.com.
More images after the jump.