The superefficient Biolite woodstove will boil water in minutes from twigs and charge your phone while it does it.
I first saw the $130 campstove demonstrated by Vinay Gupta, a permaculture/refugee tech guru whom we've featured here before. It uses an electric fan to drive combustion to unthinkable heights, allowing it to power a small thermoelectric generator that keeps the fan going (a small battery starts things off). The generator puts out enough power to run a USB charge-port that you can use to keep your phone and lights charged.
The whole thing is the size of a 1l nalgene water-bottle and weighs 2lbs, and runs on small twigs. It's rugged enough to take camping, and the company that makes it also donates units to developing world communities.
Mark wrote about the Biolite in 2012, and I kept my eye out for one ever since. As Pesco wrote, Biolite stations were used to keep phones charged after Sandy. The price has not come down in more than two years, which is kind of a shame, but having now seen the device in action, it's something I've come to seriously covet.
The Lixada LED Handheld Flashlight is a $9 stocking-stuffer ($29 for 4): a six-LED/36 lumen flashlight that clips directly over the terminals of a 9V battery, forming an easy flashlight rated for up to 10,000 hours (battery life depends on whether you're switched to 6, 4 or 2 LEDs). One reviewer uses 9V batteries swapped […]
Wired takes a long look at the rapid progress in oral health in the 20th century from this: In 1899, the British Army was recruiting troops to fight in the Boer War and recruiters were appalled at the health of the men who were turning up. They were stunted, malnourished and had appalling teeth. “It […]
The business end of KOKUYO Beetle Tips highlighter looks a bit like a rhinoceros beetle’s horns, hence the name. Three-way refers to the fun you’ll have with the highlighter when you make three different kinds of marks with it. Amazon sells a colorful 5-pack for . [via]
Weighted blankets are officially a thing. And if you’ve ever tried one, you know there’s a reason for the fuss. Parents have known for generations that swaddling a baby has a profound calming effect, and the gentle pressure that blanket weights provide can have the same effect on restless sleepers. Pretty much all parts of […]
Walk through any office, and you will likely spot a few bobbleheads. These wobbly figurines are great fun to have around, although most celebrate people we will never meet. For something a little more personal, try Handmade Custom Bobbleheads. These mini caricatures are sculpted and painted by skilled artisans, based on any photo you provide. […]
In the early days of the web, everyone wanted a .com domain for their site. As a result, all the good ones got snapped up. But .com no longer has the cachet it once did. In fact, many new businesses and individuals are opting for other top-level domain extensions. One of the most memorable is […]