A review of Starbucks' fancy $80 mug

YouTuber Dave Lee starts off his video review by saying that he went into Starbucks during the holidays to get a cup of coffee and was soon persuaded by their heavy advertising to buy an $80 Ember mug*. Read the rest

$1000 smart teapot discontinued

Apparently enough people weren't smart enough to appreciate a $1000 wireless teapot that only accept proprietary tea bags. After blowing through $12 million (in a Series A round led by Translink Capital) and spending three years trying to persuade tea drinkers to ditch their dumb teapots for one that uses an algorithm that "masterfully accelerates and extracts desired sets of flavor compounds while suppressing the extraction of undesired compounds," Teforia (pronounced tay-foria) is calling it quits.

In letter similar to the one sent by Juicero's CEO to drinkers of overpriced juice, Teforia CEO expressed disappointment that people just didn't get it:

In our mission to deliver the best tea experience, we didn’t compromise on the Teforia Infuser technology, quality or the premium tea packaged within our Sips. The glass within the infusion globe and carafe are hand blown by a glass artisan, one at a time. We spent a tremendous amount of time pioneering our Sips tea container to be 90% compostable and completely recyclable. We went to these extraordinary lengths because we believe premium loose leaf tea should be delivered in the most delicate and sustainable way possible.

We believe our customers are deserving of the best. Most of you agree with us. In fact, the prestigious World Tea Expo awarded Teforia with the 2016 Best Tea Industry Innovation Award and designated Teforia as the 2017 Best Tea Brewing Device.

We achieved all of this with a most amazing team of 15 highly passionate and highly skilled professionals, with the common belief that the tea experience should be simpler, more elegant and more rewarding.

Read the rest

The Refrigerator Unexpectedly Showed Dick Doodles and Streaming Porn to a Visitor

In the Internet of Shit, Grosseries Department, a colleague and friend of this reporter who requested anonymity for themselves and their client relayed a story of a Samsung fridge that had a distinct odor about it — not of rotten food, but of a subverted Internet-connected Family Hub.

Samsung envisioned this $3,200 refrigerator as a kind of dashboard for families — even though every individual might have their own devices — that could share information, calendars, notes, and drawings, and surf the Web. This is part of the practice of turning a family into a kind of little corporation.

What Samsung may not have thought of is how to advise people setting up the Family Hub in a shared area. In which many unrelated people pass through. At different times of the day. Without anyone else being there.

My friend, who dealt with the clean-up, says that it might have been construction workers or other folks who were responsible, but somebody — somebody! — drew dicks all over virtual sticky notes across all the swipe-through screens. This was discovered when the organization’s head toured a visitor through the office, and wanted to show off a streaming feature on the Samsung fridge. My friend writes:

dicks swipes dicks. swipes dicks

The head finally gets past the dicks, brings up the browser, and it starts streaming high-definition porn from a Web site.

My colleague didn’t see the dicks, which were deleted by the time they arrived, but they did see the porn history. Read the rest