Great deal on the Parker Jotter, the best cheap yet superficially classy pen

Amazon is dumping Parker Jotters for only $8.99 today, less than half the usual price.

It's a basic, good ballpoint pen in a sleek metal casing that will last forever and is something of a cult favorite among EDC types, not least because it's "tactical" without broadcasting itself as a pointy six-inch metal stabber. It's even Bond-approved: GoldenEye saw the superspy issued a weaponized example by Q.

Q-Branch supplies Bond with a Parker Jotter pen that is a C4 grenade: three clicks arms the four-second fuse, another three disarms it. A classic pen, still widely available.

The ones Amazon are selling don't come with plastic explosives.

Parker Jotter [Amazon] Read the rest

Kindle Paperwhite just $85 today

The Kindle Oasis is lovely, but $200 is too pricey for an e-reader. The Kindle Paperwhite is the one I recommend and 35% off today at Amazon, bringing the price down to $85. This is a great deal and maybe signals imminent new products, but it's not as if "basic decent e-reader" is a category vulnerable to disruptive innovation in 2020. The Paperwhite has high-dpi text, subtle backlighting and weeks of battery life, and that's probably all you need.

35% off Kindle Paperwhite [Amazon] Read the rest

Good deals today on 2018 iPad Pros

I finally pulled the trigger on the new iPad Pro because of today's deals at Amazon; affiliate links follow below. Every year I throw all my computers in a dumpster and make another desperate, clawing, doomed effort to use an iPad Pro as my "only machine" and it is once again Time.

Here's what's up:

11" models

2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi, 64GB) – $749.99 [$50 off] 2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi, 256GB) – $879.00 [$70 off] 2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi, 512GB) – $1,064.81 [$84 off] 2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi+LTE, 64GB) – $899 [$50 off] 2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi+LTE, 512GB) – $1,199 [$100 off] 2018 11" iPad Pro (WiFi+LTE, 1TB) – $1,589 [$109 off]

12.9" models

2018 12.9" iPad Pro (WiFi, 64B) – $1067 [$81 off] 2018 12.9" iPad Pro (WiFi, 256B) – $1,067 [$81 off] 2018 12.9" iPad Pro (WiFi, 512GB) – $1,249 [$99 off]

Other iPads are on special too, but don't bother, they're all old and soon to be replaced. Read the rest

Great deals today on Logitech stuff at Amazon

Logitech stuff is sharply marked down at Amazon today, so I'm going to give you my recommendations and a couple of nopes too. The links here are all affiliate ones, so I'll get a cut.

1. The G-series mice are great. I have the basic model, the G603, and it makes me mad I ever bothered fooling around with other supposedly-premium brands. The "lightspeed" dongle wireless works so well I never have to think about it, but they have Bluetooth too if you don't want to sacrifice a USB port. You do, though, because Bluetooth is trash.

2. However, avoid the K-series and all the basic combo keyboards, with one exception (below). These are the bread-and-butter of the lineup and look OK, but the reality is that they're only marginally better than cheapo generic models. The squidgy, stiff rubbery keys of most of Logitech keyboards are neither one thing (the low-travel laptop fingertip numbers we're at least used to nowadays) or the other (the deep-travel mechanical or rubberdome switches of yore).

Instead, go for:

3. The Romer-G series or the Romer-K840. These may be controversial picks, because Romer is Logitech's attempt to muscle in on the effectively open-standard world of mechanical keyboards with a proprietary switch hardly distinguishable from the ubiquitous Cherry Brown. But they're good gadgets at good prices today, so here they are. (Logitech does makes a Cherry-switch keyboard, the Orion, but it's just OK and doesn't have a rainbow inside it)

4. The C922x streaming webcam is about the best on the market and is half off. Read the rest

Great deal on Nintendo "SNES edition" 3DS XL

Nintendo's retro-themed 3DS XL is rarely marked down, but is currently $150 at Amazon, which is $50 off the normal price.

By far the weirdest and most portable of the company's growing rack of retro-fueled gear, it's also one that has a serious library of modern games to play too, in addition to the oldschool cool that comes with it—in this case, Super Mario Cart.

Nintendo's classic consoles, dating to decades-old designs, now regularly top the hardware charts, driven by cheap prices and an endless reservoir of nostalgia.

SNES edition 3DS XL [Amazon link] Read the rest

Guide for buying a cheap game-ready laptop

$1000 is a lot of money; too much for a new laptop if all you want to do is play games on the go. At Laptop Mag, Rami Tabari wrote a guide on how to hunt for a good one.

4. Whether you're going cheap or all out, avoid touch screens. All they do is hike up the price.

It's a good guide with all the necessary caveats; the most important one is that the GPU is by far the most important factor. The entry-level GPU is the Nvidia MX150, which gets you playing older and casual titles easily and fancy new games with the settings all on low. But if you're gonna bother, you may as well fork a little to get to a 10xx-series chip so you know it'll handle the hits of 2020.

Here's my one-sentence guide: go on Craigslist or Facebook marketplace or OfferUp or whatever, search for "1060 laptop", and buy the cheapest on offer that looks kosher to you. If you don't want to risk used, but want something good under a grand, this Dell is about $950 [Amazon link] and won't mark you as one of The Gamers, with only 2 (two) red LEDs and no leprechaun swastika logos. Read the rest

Amazon Prime day just started but the only thing worth buying so far is this giant bag of penis-shaped candy

Amazon Prime Day kicks off at the hour, heralding what its hype claims is a better set of deals than the traditional November stampedes. I eagerly hit the previews in expectation of interesting tech bargains and whatnot, but the only things I could find worth buying are are these enormous bagfuls of colorful candy cocks.

That said, I can hardly say I'm disappointed. Read the rest

Arduino clone on sale for $8.68

Grab this Elegoo UNO R3 Board while you can for $8.68 on Amazon. If you don't have jumper wires, LEDs, buttons, resistors, etc. you can buy a bunch of goodies for $7.86. Read the rest

Wirecutter and Sweethome purchased by New York Times in "more than $30 million" deal

In a deal reportedly worth "more than $30 million," The New York Times announced today that it has purchased The Wirecutter and The Sweethome, consumer product review sites created by our friend Brian Lam. Congratulations, Brian and team! You built something amazing and we can't wait to see what you do next. Read the rest

Boing Boing & MorningSave's House of Marley watch collection

Boing Boing has teamed up with MorningSave to offer this deeply discounted collection of House of Marley watches!

House of Marley is committed to building superior, eco-friendly products, and every sale supports the Marley family's charitable organization, 1Love.

I really like the wood accents on these watches!

Boing Boing & MorningSave's House of Marley watch collection Read the rest

Deals on gadgets from Boing Boing and Morningsave

We've come together with our pals at Morningsave to offer you a couple neat gadgets! All three were things we collectively thought were fun to play with, and that you might like! Check them out...

First up, for only $39, we've got the Ion Audio Vinyl Motion Portable Turntable. This portable record player comes in a suitcase, just like that first record player you got 40 years ago. Unlike the tinny sounding beast of yesteryear, this guy comes with both RCA and USB outputs! Readers with an eye to the future will encode their vinyl as MP3s!

Next we've got the Nabi Look HD action camera. Unlike more expensive models, at 5 to 10x the price, this camera is cheap. $35 cheap. If you want a camera that'll record 1080p video, in an underwater housing, that you don't mind losing or destroying, this is the camera for you! While the Nabi Look outputs to microSD, and has a bunch of other features, mostly what this camera is notable for is not being valuable. Opens up a lot of possibilities in the world of action cameras, doesn't it?

I was excited to see some photos taken with the Cheerson CX-10C Video Cam Quadcopter. I am still waiting. Thus far I can barely get the thing to hover without careening into a wall. The copter does come with a 2GB microSD card and certainly implies that a competent pilot could capture some interesting shots. Maybe you'll have better luck. I'd stick with the record player. Read the rest

The benefits of owning a sailboat (with footnotes)

While perusing the Practical Sailor website, my husband came across this advertisement selling a 27-foot sailboat for $5000 (or best offer): Read the rest

"For Sale"

Photo: Rob Beschizza (cc) Read the rest

Should you buy an unlimited-ride Metrocard?

Unless you count a three-month internship in college, I've never lived in New York City. But, between friends and work, I've managed to visit every couple years or so and I've nearly always picked up an unlimited-ride Metrocard for my week in town. Turns out, choosing to do so is an excellent example of Maggie not being super great at math. Michael Moyer has plotted out the numbers on unlimited-ride Metrocards. He says the purchase only makes sense if you're riding a lot—averaging 14 rides a week for the 7-Day-Pass or 12 rides a week for the 30-Day-Pass. Any less and you're actually better off paying a la carte. Read the rest

Turn air miles into train miles

Do you like trains? Do you have a lot of Continental Airlines OnePass miles? Until December 31st, you can turn those air miles into Amtrak GuestRewards points. There are certainly some people this wouldn't make sense for, but I know some of you will be interested, so I thought I'd post it. Call the Continental service center at 713-952-1630 to make the switch. (Thanks to my Twitter Train Buddy rstevens!) Read the rest