Archive for January, 2009

The Smash Alarm Clock lets you get out morning aggression

Here’s a great way to kick off the morning.  There is no better way to greet the day than to start it with a bit of violence.  No one really likes their alarm clock, for a great deal of reasons really.  First of all it is dragging you out of bed and to top it off, most alarm clocks are just plain annoying.  I know it’s had to occur to you on at least one occasion to pick up the clock and chuck it at the nearest wall or at the very least to pound it into tiny pieces.

This alarm clock allows for you to get that frustration out every morning.  To make it stop that obnoxious beeping stop, just punch the top of the alarm.  It might even make it fun to wake up in the morning.  You get to look forward to actually having a valid excuse to hit something every single day.  Then if you get frustrated midway through the day, just “accidentally” set it for five minutes from then.  Sadly, it’s still a concept design, but hopefully something like this will hit the market sometime soon.

Source: OhGizmo


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LeapFrog releases Tag Junior system

LeapFrog’s brand name is strongly associated with the edutainment industry, and it comes as no surprise that their latest product is a toddler-sized “book explorer” known as the Tag Junior book pal. It will be out this summer, so kids can always get themselves prepped up for school during the summer holidays before they actually dive headlong into their books when school opens. The Tag Junior system was specially designed to cater for little hands and aims to help young ones build a lasting interest in and love for reading - something that is sorely missing among the youth today who would much rather want to be entertained passively by a game or movie without using their own brain to think. The Tag Junior system has its own nine-book library that will feature classic books, favorite characters as well as original titles that we’ll look at right after the jump.

The Tag Junior pal is a character-based handheld device which allows toddlers to interact with specially printed board books. All your little one needs to do is touch the book pal’s base anywhere on any page of a Tag Junior board book, and the page will be read aloud, accompanied by sound effects that will further enhance the images while a soundtrack is played for that added immersive adventure. Of course, when I was much younger and running around in my diapers, Enid Blyton’s tomes were extremely precious to me, and I didn’t need no soundtrack and effects to help me stay absorbed in the Faraway Tree or the chaotic scenes found in the Naughtiest Girl in School. Well, this is better than having junior grow up while getting an education from MTV, I suppose.

The Tag Junior book pal works best with children ages 2 to 4 years, and will retail for $34.99 while individual Tag Junior board books are $10.99 a pop.

Press Release


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4moms Goodnight Sleep Trainer teaches your baby to sleep all night

Tired of all that pesky parenting?  Well now you can pick up the 4moms Goodnight Sleep Trainer and take at least some of the thinking out of parenting.  All joking aside, it’s a pain to figure out how long to let your newborn cry before you rush to their aid at night.  If you rush too soon then they get attached and expect it, if you stay away too much then you’re neglecting your child.  If you are getting overly anxious about doing the right thing, then maybe it is time to turn to an electronic device such as this to help you out.

In reality, you could replace this by getting a book that teaches the method and keep a chart going.  However, that’s a bit more of a pain to do.  Instead, you can hit a button to let this device know when your child starts crying, it will then let you know exactly how long to wait before comforting your child.  It starts out that you immediately go in, and increases the time from there.  Eventually your child learns to sleep through the night.  Of course they recommend to discontinue use if your child is ill, but until then, hopefully you can get your baby to the point that you can sleep for once.  You can purchase the Goodnight Sleep Trainer for $29.95 at Target.

Source: Ubergizmo


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Police Siren Alarm Clock

Although we know that criminals and the authorities are often at loggerheads, they do sleep in the same bed at times. Ideally, of course, the latter will be out trying to catch the former, and criminals tend to bolt at the sounds of a police siren when they’re mired in illegal activity. What happens when you give your Uncle Bob the Police Siren Alarm Clock and realize that he gets up in a second the moment it goes off? Does that mean he is a hardcore criminal whom you know nothing about, or is he just a light sleeper? Maybe all those secret places he goes to without telling anyone could be drug den for all you know, but then again this looks like one effective device to get you out of bed, criminal or not. Powered by a trio of AA batteries, the Police Siren Alarm Clock retails for $14.95.


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Frog-to-Prince transformation kit thrills little girls

Most of us have heard of this joke before - a frog meets up with a fortune teller to find out what’s in store for the new year, only to have an extremely optimistic outlook of a beautiful lady who takes such an interest in the frog while overlooking other more suitable candidates around her as a life partner. Little did the frog realize that he was going to end up as a specimen in the biology lab! Well, this Frog-to-Prince transformation kit should be reserved only for little girls who have a fondness for the particular fairy tale that involved a tryst between a human and an amphibian. It takes around 72 hours for the frog to turn into a 4″ prince, and there is no word of any reversion. For $6, this is one of the more interesting items you can pick up online.

Product Page via Gizmodiva


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Ford Unveils Earth-friendly Dashboard

I believe it was Al Gore in his book Earth in the Balance who said that an ordinary car is one of the greatest threats to the environment. Clearly, all automotive companies need to be thinking about Mother Earth the next time they roll their next model off the assembly line.

I suppose this is why Ford has come up with a new dashboard that literally shows you how earth-safe your driving is. Part of it has to do with measuring your fuel efficiency, which is not gauged by a meter or a number, but a picture of a vine.

Apparently, if your driving is fuel-efficient, the vine will start budding and blooming until it is healthy. However, if you are wasting gas, you will be forced to watch that vine shrivel up and die. Yes, it is odd to have a visual cue instead of an exact scientific reading, but I guess we consumers have been trained to react to pictures instead of raw data.

Personally, I think this new type of dashboard is nice simply because it looks cool. I mean, look at it, it’s like selecting new tracks for iTunes, for crying out loud! Of course, that type of display can’t be cheap, so you’re probably looking at a few hundred dollars being tacked on to the Ford in your future.

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The iShelf takes design cues from Cover Flow

There really isn’t much to do with CD cases.  In reality, very few people even bother to buy CDs in the first place, but there are some that will buy the CD of a band or singer that they respect a great deal.  That way they can check out the cover art and have a physical CD to hang onto.  Well if that is your habit, here’s an interesting way of displaying the CD case.  After all, even if you respect the artist a great deal and wanted the CD, the case is still bulky and in the way.

CDs can at least go in a book along with the rest of your CDs.  Which is a far easier way to store them, as opposed to leaving it in the case and trying to stack them all together.  Well if you like the look of Coverflow, you’ll likely enjoy this shelf.  It gives you an attractive way to display a few of your favorite artists and show your love for Apple products.  This will only work with standard cases, no two disc sets will work.  It was designed by Li Jianye and sadly probably won’t be hitting stores anytime soon.

Source:  bbgadgets


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Inbi-Out lets you choose your trips with the flip of a coin

Every once in a while, some new concept device will come out that is so out there, it requires several technologies that we don’t really have in order to work. Case in point, the Inbi-Out, a GPS Coin.

Designed by Ju-Wei Chen, this is essentially a device the size and shape of a silver dollar, with a GPS display on each side. Why would someone want this? Let’s say you’re trying to decide where to take a family vacation: Disneyland or Yellowstone. Or you can’t figure out what restaurant to eat at, but you narrowed it down to two choices. Somehow you load the destinations into the Inbi-Out with an Inbi-Out coin reader, and then give it a flip.

Tech-blogs everywhere are making a lot of Harvey Dent jokes about the Inbi-Out, and justly so. I can only picture Two-Face having the dualistic mindset necessary for using this device. I mean, why have only two destinations? Wouldn’t it be better to make a list of many destinations, and then use some “random trip generator” software on the GPS device itself to figure out where to go?

This way, you don’t have to make a coin with two display screens, which might be ahead of its time as far as our present day technology is concerned.

Still, it is a nifty concept. What do you, the readers, think? If you could use the Inbi-Out GPS coin for free, would you even use it? Drop me a comment for your answer.

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Nikkai In-Car Journey Recorder for taping the Road Ahead

When I was on the road to Vegas for CES, I wished I had some sort of video recorder so I could just speak my mind and write about it later. It would have definitely saved me some time and would have made the trip a lot less boring. On a somewhat related note, Nikkai has created the In Car Journey Recorder, which is the inverse of my idea.

Yes, the In-Car Journey Recorder is designed to affix to the windshield to record the road ahead, not the driver. It uses a 1.3M CMOS image sensor, which can record video footage for your insurance or lawyer in case of an accident. Now you have proof that it really wasn’t your fault in a collision case, when it’s your word against someone else.

The In-Car Journey Recorder records to an SD card for up to 2GB capacity, which is good for up to 18 hours worth of video footage. It can capture intervals between 2-3 seconds and 3 minutes.

As for power, it is powered by two AAA batteries for four hours of continuous use. It is also capable of being powered by a DC 12V charger. You should be able to purchase the Nikkai In-Car SD Journey Recorder at the Maplin site for about £39.99.

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Mickey Mouse undergoes a transformation

How many ways are there that Mickey Mouse can be monetized? Apparently the boffins at Disney have yet to exhaust all avenues, as evident by this new Transformer toy from Japan that features Mickey Mouse in a robotic form factor. As usual, with Mickey being the de facto leader of the pack from Disney, he will take over the role of Optimus Prime, great leader of the Autobots in the classic Transformers cartoon. On display at the Tokyo Toy Forum 2009, the Transformers Mickey Mouse will definitely cause parents to scratch their heads, wondering why can’t toy companies leave their kids alone so that they won’t have to spend so much money to keep the little ones happy. I remember when I asked for some toys during my younger days, my parents either booted me out of the home to spend the day outdoors with my imagination or throw me a paper and some color pencils. If you’re adamant on getting your hands on this toy, look out for it this February as it retails for $38.57 a pop.

Source: Slippery Brick


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