Never let it be said that the crapgadget factories of the Pearl River Delta don't know how to recycle surplus/rejected material.
VPhone is a wee "phone", surely the most wee of them all. It has a 1.54-inch touchscreen display, Bluetooth, FM radio, pedometer, 128MB (megabytes!) of storage, a heart rate monitor, some social network-monitoring apps, and a choice of "simple and stylish" black or silver trim. — Read the rest
We went to our neighborhood Halloween store yesterday to find cool stuff with which to celebrate the best holiday of the year, and came home with one of these $30 animated, spooky eyeball doorbells, which I am now officially obsessed with.
In the 19th century, the nascent advertising industry took notice of the fact that postmasters could send each other letters for free, and bribed them to forward packets of mail to one another to pass on to townspeople ("To Superintendent Sunday School OR ANY ONE INTERESTED IN MUSIC").
Last December, Vtech, a crapgadget/toy company, suffered a breach that implicated the data of 6.3 million children, caused by its negligence toward the most basic of security measures.
Remember the Hong Kong-based crapgadgeteer Vtech, who breached 6.3 million kids' data from a database whose security was jaw-droppingly poor (no salted hashes, no code-injection countermeasures, no SSL), who then lied and stalled after they were outed? They want to make home security devices that will know everything you say and do in your house.
Last week, security researcher Chris Vickery discovered a database containing 3.3 million accounts from Sanriotown, a commercial Hello Kitty fansite operated by Sanrio, Hello Kitty's corporate owners.
The @internetofshit account posts sardonic observations about the Internet of Things, which is filled with the most depressing array of useless, dangerously insecure, exploitative junk imaginable.
The Hong Kong-based toymaker/crapgadget purveyor didn't even know it had been breached until journalists from Vice asked why data from its millions of customers and their families were in the hands of a hacker, and then the company tried to downplay the breach and delayed telling its customers about it.
They're terrible, don't buy them.
If you own the new 12" Macbook, you have one USB-C port. It's also the power port, which means if you have anything plugged into that port, you're losing battery charge. To both stay plugged-in and operate a USB peripheral—a backup drive, say—you have two choices: an $80 AV adapter from Apple that does things you don't need, or an enticingly cheap $20 third-party dongle that supposedly does. — Read the rest
Marketed as packing twenty-three functions into one pocketable gadget, the Kelvin 23 is a screwdriver with 15 bits, a hammer, a level, an LED light, a tape measure, and a magnetic picker-upper.
When it arrived, I decided to use it to hammer a nail into drywall. — Read the rest
My anti-boredom lightbox has become a psychic vampire. So I'm going back to a plain "feature" phone for a while, just to see what life is like outside of cyberspace. Help me pick the right one!
Now, there are a few approaches to the peak of dumbphone mountain. — Read the rest
I scored the damndest crapgadget yesterday: Disney's Disneyvision is a little box styled like a vintage TV. Where the tube would go is a flexible plastic wand attached to a variable motor, lit by a strobing white LED. You put a wiggly rubber 2" characters on the wand (effectively sticking the wand up its butt), turn on the motor and the light, and the strobe creates a zoetrope effect that makes it seem like the characters are energetically dancing. — Read the rest
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The algorithmic overlords of Alibaba are sending me astonishing stuff via their "suggested crapgadgets you might be interested in" hourly email. Wireless car key duplicators and GPS jammers came first. But today they have truly outdone themselves, suggesting that I might be interested in a "small attack UAV".
Alexis Madrigal on the weird tape that Olympic athletes are sticking on themselves:
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It's called kinesio (or just 'k') tape. Athletes use the tape as a kind of elastic brace that they say helps relieve pain. The tape and technique were developed by Kenso Kase thirty years ago in Japan.
Let the whiteness shine through with today's Gold Box Deal of the Day! [Ta, FP]
Update: They fixed it !
Sam Biddle rounds up the most appalling, terribly-made cellphones money can buy. Pictured right is the Pantech Jest (as in "surely you").
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Why are these awful phones for sale—some for very much money!—when you can buy phones that aren't awful and cost zero dollars?
This 12-port USB power-strip looks like just the thing for people like me, who have three or four USB switches daisy-chained behind our desks (in fact, I could use a 24-port model). I have no idea if this is a crapgadget or not, but I like the underlying notion. — Read the rest
The census is one of America's great institutions, the way the country knows itself. Here then is the 1870 statistical atlas of the ninth census, scanned at high rez. Your one-stop shop for 1870's best infographics: "Presented here are all of the maps and charts from the first statistical atlas of the US Census, widely praised in its time and still a wonderful example of sophisticated graphics, the out-of-date racial/psychological nomenclature notwithstanding. — Read the rest