Why The ChargeDrive is Everything You’ve Always Wanted In a Cell Phone Accessory


There are some burdens, like hang overs, we learn to live with because we come to accept them as the way things are. A big part of the reason the gadgets world is great, is because it’s essentially the combined effort of a group of people trying to make those burdens as few as possible. However, even in that effort there are a few added burdens that not always get addressed properly.

Thankfully one of those few burdens may soon be getting addressed thanks to a Kickstarter project for the ChargeDrive. Essentially the Swiss army knife of cell phone accessories, the ChargeDrive combines a charger, a stand, a tripod, and a USB flash drive in the hope of eliminating the burden of dragging around all the accessories needed to get the most out of your cell phone.  It’s about as large as an older model flash drive so the size is about right, and its clever design which includes a base that folds out into a sturdy tripod supported by the flash drive handle, and charger that only requires a USB drive on the other end, mean it looks to be practical as well.

If I had to throw a complaint here, it’s that the charger set up is better for a laptop, but otherwise this is a hell of a design. The problem with devices like this in the past, is that they incorporate a design just isn’t visually appealing, and often detract from the supposed usefulness of the all-in-one. That doesn’t appear to be the case here, and the inclusion of a tripod into the usual accessories combinations without ruining that design is genuinely inspired.

Going for an early backers price of $39, the price is about right for the ChargeDrive if it really is all it looks to be. Jump on this now then, while you have the chance.


This Water Fueled Jetpack Will Have You Thinking of Summer Long Before You Should


With the possible exceptions of the laser gun and the flying car, I feel the longest running sci-fi tech desire is the jetpack. Though we may have advanced in unthinkable technological ways since the first time someone came up with the idea of strapping rockets to your back and soaring through the world with absolute, and badass, freedom, there still remains a great interest in popular culture concerning the classic idea of the jetpack, despite the number of practical barriers impairing it from existence.

The always entertaining folks at Hammacher and Schlemmer offer up the newest interpretation of the jet pack design, by taking the concept out for a swim with the Hyrdo Powered Jetovator.

This seat with dual throttle controls is powered by a 40 foot hose which supplies the main component the user rides on with enough water to support its three jet propulsion system, which both gets it airborne and keep it afloat. Capable of speeds up to 25 MPH (upwards?), the ferocity of the Jetovator is not in question, nor is its maneuverability, as through the throttles the user can allegedly perform a variety of aerial stunts which include barrel rolls, flips, and even underwater dives.

Though conversations of safety and practicality can often hamper any gadget discussion, here the questions are impossible to ignore as every capture of the Jetovator in action instantly conjures the image of something going terribly, terribly wrong. However, part of the appeal of the jetpack design has always been its carefree disregard of practicality, which is one aspect of the traditional model the Jetovator nails on the head. You can only imagine the sheer joy that comes from using this thing successfully before those brief moments where everything goes terribly, terribly wrong.

I say “only imagine” because with a $7,000 price tag, this isn’t likely to become a household item any time soon. It is a reasonable facsimile of a water fueled jet pack though, and is well worth cozying up to as many rich folk as possible just on the off chance they’ll purchase one for the summer and let you have a go on what just may be the most dangerously exciting aquatic gadget produced yet.


Charge Your Batteries Through Your USB Port With This New Design


Fewer and fewer devices in our life rely on batteries, but they are still prominent enough to insure that every now and then, you’ll fumble through your things looking for that final set of AA’s you are sure you had, and juggling between the ones in the Xbox controller and the TV controller as needed.

Rechargable batteries have been around for years to prevent scenarios just like those, and while they’re impressive technology in their own right, the classic rechargeable set up doesn’t quite feel up to speed with the modern tech world, and looks out of place in any home, not to mention the inconvenience it puts on travelers.

There is a design out there for a AA battery that looks to alleviate the modern issues with rechargeable batteries, by outfitting a standard AA battery with a USB plug-in. The set up would allow you to plug the battery into any USB port, and recharge it without any additional equipment required. Even better, the battery itself doubles as a 4GB USB flash drive for additional file storage.

Perfectly built for traveling, or really any use, this is not an idea without precedent, but it’s never looked more effective than it does with this design. Unfortunately it is just a design at the moment, and any plans past that concept are just that.

The inventor, Wonchul Hwang, sounds committed to making this concept work though, which is perfect, as so long as this device’s price doesn’t break the bank, everyone is going to want a couple of these around.


An Oil Free Deep Fryer for Those Starting Early Christmas Lists


I like to think of myself as a practical man who at least recognizes the rules of the world, even if I don’t always understand them, and doesn’t live to long with his head in the clouds pondering on impractical notions.

But for the life of me, I just don’t understand why dieting means I can’t eat fried foods.

Sure they’re just about the worst thing in the world for you, but they’re also really, really good. No that doesn’t justify them as a health food, but it’s not fair that we can’t eat the most delicious achievement in culinary evolution just because you can feel it chipping away at your life as it goes down.

Recognizing the problem lies in that delicious oil that frying takes, Hammacher Schlemmer have crafted a viable deep frying alternative that instead uses infared heaters to reach temperatures of up to 400 degrees and produce perfectly fried foods that are actually, if only slightly, healthier for you. You even get separate compartments so you can have even more slightly healthier for you deep fried foods.

Minor health element aside, the real appeal of the lack of oil to use this device is the fact that cooking oil for deep frying is actually incredibly expensive and, as news stories every Thanksgiving remind us, very dangerous if not handled properly. For $250 then, this is actually not an entirely impractical kitchen gadget, for those who want the ability to take a perfectly reasonable food, and deep fry the hell out of it at their leisure.


The War on Mosquitoes May Have Just Gotten Easier

Along with death and taxes, we’ve just come to accept mosquitoes as an inevitability. Sure there are a host of devices out there that promise to keep them away, but ultimately all of the Off spray and ultrasonic replants in the world won’t save you completely from bites. Come every summer then, we either accept the annoyance, or hunker down with a few complete series DVD’s or the latest grabs from the Steam sale to keep us inside until winter.

Despite this, it seems there is at least one annual invention that promises to solve the problem for good. Some may be more effective that others, but if any of them worked like they said, tales of mosquito horror would have turned into campfire stories, around campfires not burdened by a single flying bloodsucker.

Put away that well supported cynicism regarding these solutions, however, and you may see the newest of those inventions, the Kite Patch, might actually be different.

Designed from findings over years of research, the Kite is a small wearable square patch that effectively blocks a mosquito’s ability to read  the CO2  from your body that draws them in the first place, thanks to a multi-step system that works for up to 48 hours

The important thing to understand, though, in thinking this approach may be different, is realizing that the Kite wasn’t designed to repel mosquitoes at the backyard BBQ, but rather to repel them in areas of the world where they are one of the top killers. In fact, the true field test for the Kite will take place in Uganda where malaria cases are some of the worst in the world.

That effort of providing the Kite to the areas that really need it is brought to the forefront on the product’s indiegogo page, where all contributions send the Kites to families in Africa, and other problem regions, while only larger amounts net you some personal ones as well (assuming you’re in the US).

Already the Kite has surpassed its goal by around $200,00 with over a month to go.

With a good idea built around good intentions, it would be a shame if the Kite goes the way of the sonic emitter and becomes yet another curiosity at the museum of the war against mosquitoes. Given everything shown so far though, we could finally be looking at the real deal.