Hands-free, self-saranwrapping toilet at O'Hare Airport


Amir captured this video of O'Hare Airport's hygiene-freakout toilets that automatically and in a hands-free fashion wrap the seat in fresh, germ- and piss-free plastic film between each user. Read the rest

Chtulhu Yahtzee and Monopoly


They're available for pre-order from the Big Bad Toy Store, with delivery estimated for Christmas 2015. They Yahtzee ($35) features a Cthulhu figure dice cup; while the Monopoly ($45) has a selection of Cthulhu player-tokens, Cthulhu money; and Lovecraftian properties. Read the rest

Compact 5000mAh USB charger for $8


This smallish portable USB charger from Kmashi is rated at 5000mAh and is on sale now for $8.38 when you use promo code: PIRVWBWG on Amazon. I have a few different Kmashi chargers, and have used them for over a year with good results. Read the rest

8-pack of LED flashlights for 14 bucks


The flashlights in our household have a tendency to wander off. Where do they go? I gave my last remaining one to my daughter for a camping trip, so I just reordered an 8-pack of metal LED flashlights for $14. Each flashlight has 9 LEDs and uses 3 AAA cells (included, though some reviewers on Amazon have reported that they did not come with batteries). I keep one in the car, one in my travel bag, and the rest in a kitchen drawer, where they no doubt plotting their escape. Read the rest

Inexpensive battery tester


Unlike a multimeter, this battery tester isn't battery powered. Instead, it measures the voltage across the terminals of 9V, AA, AAA, C, D and 1.5V button type batteries. It's also easier to use than multimeter probes. It's only $6.61 on Amazon and has a 4.5 star rating with over 1500 reviews. Read the rest

A very useful illuminated hand held magnifier for 3 dollars


This handheld magnifying glass has two bright LEDs and is powered by 3 AAA cells (not included). The manufacturer says the magnification is 40X. I think it is less than that, but it is still plenty powerful for my needs - mainly, reading the markings on tiny electrical components and checking the layer fusion on 3D printed parts. I have a few different magnifiers, and this one has quickly become my favorite.

It's not like a regular magnifying glass. It's more like a jeweler's loupe. To use it, you hold it up to your eye and move close to the thing you want to look at.

It comes with a fake leather pouch. At $2.93 + free shipping on Amazon, it's a great value. Read the rest

Dieselgate for TVs: Samsung accused of programming TVs to cheat energy efficiency ratings


The European Commission is probing whether Samsung televisions' sensed when they were being tested for energy efficiency and changed their power consumption to get better ratings than they deserved. Read the rest

Moon glass reveals the phases of the moon as you drink


The curved bottom of the cup peeks through your drink as the level drops down, moving the "moon" from full to a fingernail-paring sliver. Of course, it works better if you drink something cloudy and white -- it's designed some cloudy Korean rice-wines, but would also work with Pernod and water, I'm thinking. Read the rest

10-foot-long inflatable Jabba lawn decoration


At $170, the 10' long, 6' tall light-up Jabba inflatable isn't a cheap lawn decoration, but he'll certainly make an impression on the neighbors. I think he'd go well with my brand-new custom lawn-flag. Read the rest

How does the iPhone 6s camera compare to every Apple smartphone before it?


Thinking of buying an iPhone 6s or 6s Plus? If photographic quality matters to you, check this out first. Read the rest

Dual USB charger with 10000mAh for under $10


Kmashi's Dual USB portable charger packs a beefy 10000mAh and is just $9.29 when you use coupon code MHLSNM2R at checkout in the Amazon store. It also includes a micro USB charger cable. I have one of these and I'm pretty sure Jason does too. Read the rest

Ornate Cthulhu stein


Munkstein's forthcoming, $70 Cthulhu mugs are billed as "official" which actually sounds kind of sinister, in that it implies that there's a nest of true Elder Gods cultists who are in a position to grant such a designation. Read the rest

Homemade steampunk neck-brace


What do you do about the huge, ugly neck-brace your doctor wants you to wear after spinal fusion surgery? Read the rest

5-port USB desktop charging station great for family travel


When we were at the Mission Inn for Weekend of Wonder, this 5-port USB desktop charging station, on sale at Amazon for $10 kept 3 iPhones and a tablet well-fed. I used the additional port to charge a battery pack. The great thing about it is that you can plug it into a wall outlet (which are always in weird places in hotel rooms for some reason) and set the charger on a desk for ready access. It even comes with a suction cup mat to hold your soap in the shower! Read the rest

Yet another pre-installed spyware app discovered on Lenovo computers


A factory refurbished Thinkpad shipped with Windows 7 and a scheduler app that ran once a day, collecting usage data about what you do with your computer and exfiltrating it to an analytics company. Read the rest

Ultra-thin USB powered light box


A light box is an excellent tool for illustrators. It allows you to place a sheet of paper with a sketch on it, then place another piece of paper on top of it, and trace the original drawing. A lot of artists do a pencil sketch on a sheet of paper, then use a nicer piece of paper to trace the sketch in ink.

Andreas Ekberg, a wonderful illustrator who makes beautiful stenciled skateboards (like this Jackhammer Jill deck) and other things, told me about this USB light board. I already have a light board, and I've used it for over 30 years. It's a clunky metal box with fluorescent tubes and I used it draw illustrations for the early issues of the bOING bOING zine.

If I didn't already have my lightbox, I would snap up this 5mm-thick USB powered light box ($45 on Amazon). It looks so much better than my old-school light box. The brightness level is adjustable, the LEDs will last much longer than the bulbs (mine currently has one burnt out bulb and I've been using it that way for years), and best of all, it is much more portable. If I get back into hand drawing in a big way, I'll get one. Read the rest

Hands-free magnifier great for detailed hobby work


I use this magnifier to doctor playing cards for magic tricks, but I imagine a 2X magnifying glass with foldable legs ($10 on Amazon) has other uses as well. It also comes with a 10X spotter and has a handle when you need to use it like a traditional magnifying glass. Read the rest

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