YouTuber IAA015 likes to demonstrate fun decorative gadgets for the home and office, like this nicely designed Stirling engine that can reach speeds of over 2,000 revolutions per minute. Read the rest
Toy model manufacturer Revell agreed to discontinue its model of the Haunebu II Flying Saucer, described as "the first object in the world capable of flying in space." According to the product description, the Nazi aircraft never made it past its 1943 test stage due to World War II. Thing is, none of that is true. From The Local:
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The fact that Revell's product’s description fails to mention the aircraft never existed is risky in that people who buy it might actually believe the Nazis possessed superior technologies, (said historian Jens Whener of the Military History Museum in Dresden, Germany).
"Enthusiasts can use this as a strategy to cast doubt on what we know today about National Socialism," the historian said.
The company said it agrees with the MHM, adding that “it is in fact a legendary, extraordinary aircraft which cannot be proven in terms of its existence.”
"Unfortunately, our product description does not adequately express this and we apologize for it," Revell said in a statement.
Edwin Olding hacked together a Barbie Power Wheels Ford Mustang chassis with an old go-kart frame and a customized Honda dirt bike engine. This hot pink whip now races at 70 mph. From The Drive:
Olding told The Drive, "I wanted to find the cutest Barbie Power Wheels car online and turn it into a drift kart."
With the miniature Mustang's tiny electric motor and plastic tires, that would not be an easy task. Instead of trying to boost the Power Wheels' weak performance, Olding decided to chop out everything that wasn't the car's outer shell and drop that onto a pre-built go-kart found on Craigslist. That, however, presented its own problems. The kart's frame couldn't fit into the Mustang's 36-inch wheelbase, so it had to be cut down and welded back together.
In another career, I used my set of Rock'em Sock'em Robots to settle meaningless employee disputes. They worked successfully at several startups, until I met some online media sales people. They didn't know to stop when their block was knocked off.
Creative Beats is a single-serving music box designed to show how easy it is to create things when simple, effective tools are available. I reviewed a Novation Launchpad once and could barely figure it out, but I'd gotten something out of this within a couple of minutes:
Pro toy photographer Mitchel Wu creates these stunning scenes using "practical effects," physical effects created without computer-generated imagery.
I create and craft stories through toy photography...capturing the illusion of motion and emotion where none exist. Bridging the gap between toys and the stories in one's head - it's all fun and games...
See more on Wu's Instagram too!
Three hundred and fifty bucks doesn't seem unreasonable for this kids' electric VW T1 Camper Van. The red-and-white two-seater IS an officially licensed product, so it may be of decent quality. Not only does it have working head and tail lights but it also goes forward and in reverse. It can only handle up to 110 lbs., so grownups will just have to get a real one (or get this T1 fridge).
The Hoberman Switch Pitch Throwing Ball is a $12 toy that instantiates a dual polyhedron: every time you throw it, it turns inside-out; there's a wealth of scientific literature that explains how this works, including this open-access paper from the Journal of the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures. Here's JWZ's summary: "The curved body panels that make it look like a sphere hide an internal structure that is a cube; or really, two tetrahedrons embedded in a cube; and when it its its activation energy, the tetrahedron becomes its dual, swapping faces and vertices." Read the rest