A good solar powered LED illuminated street address sign

I bought this solar powered LED illuminated street address sign earlier this month and am really happy with it. The light is is bright and makes it easy for people to find our house. It comes with several sheets of adhesive numbers that you stick onto a white plastic panel. It also comes with mounting screws, but I attached it to the side of a metal mailbox so I used outdoor mounting tape instead. My address has five numbers and I had no problem fitting them on the panel, using the included cardboard placement template.

I paid full price for it, but the seller has a code 5UZYEDUV to let you buy it at a good discount. Read the rest

Use promo code to get wall charger with 2 AC and 4 USB outlets at a discount

I have a similar Aukey charger and it's great for travel or in a room where you want to charge a lot of devices at once. It has 2 AC Outlets and 4 USB ports. I just bought this model for my bedside table. Use code 8US35ZN2 at Amazon to get it for a discount. Read the rest

This metal Swingline stapler isn't red, but it's cheap

My red Swingline stapler has been sparking joy since 2008, but if you don't care about the color, this black version is just on Amazon. At that price, you won't be tempted to set your building on fire should someone take it from you. Read the rest

Extend your Wi-Fi with powerline networking

I’ve tried many ways to extend Wi-Fi through my house. Powerline networking, which creates networks through electrical wiring, works the best for me. TP-Link has this kit with 2 units. One unit plugs into your wall outlet and router. The other unit can be plugged into any wall outlet in your house to provide Wi-Fi in that area. I've had great results with it.

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Anker PowerCore 10000mAh portable charger on sale

I have an earlier version of this Anker PowerCore charger and it's the one I use most frequently. It's small and light and will charge my Nintendo Switch as well as my iPhone. Amazon has it on sale right now. Read the rest

Interview with Douglas Rushkoff

Douglas Rushkoff is one my oldest and dearest friends. He's also one of the sharpest media theorists and cultural critics I know. It's always a thrill to have a conversation with him because he makes me question my opinions and I alway end up with a changed brain. So it was great fun to have him on the Cool Tool podcast.

Douglas is named one of the "world's ten most influential intellectuals by MIT. He's an author and documentarian who studies human autonomy in a digital age. His twenty books include the just-published Team Human, based on his podcast, as well as the bestsellers Present Shock, Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus, Program or Be Programmed, Life Inc., and Media Virus. He also made the PBS FRONTLINE documentaries, Generation Like, The Persuaders, and The Merchants of Cool. He's a professor of Media Theory and Digital Economics at Queens College, a columnist for Medium, and his novels and comics, Ecstasy Club, A.D.D., and Aleister & Adolf are all being developed for the screen. You can find him on Twitter @rushkoff and Youtube.

Subscribe to the Cool Tools Show on iTunes | RSS | Transcript | See all the Cool Tools Show posts on a single page

Show notes:

Written language Written language is definitely a tool. It's a medium. It's an environment. There's all these ways to think about it, but I love thinking about words as a tool. Because particularly, when I'm mad about something or I feel like there's something that people don't get, once I can put words around it, once I can articulate what's happening, what people are feeling, or the dysfunction, or the paradox, I feel like it empowers me and so many other people to then go do something about it. Read the rest

Beloved metal-body Rotring 600 mechanical pencil on sale

The iconic Rotring 600 is on sale on Amazon today for . Unlike the 500 (which I also like) the 600 has an all-metal body, which a lot of people prefer. At current prices on Amazon the 600 is cheaper than the 500. Read the rest

Excellent low-cost brush pens for art and calligraphy

Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pens come in a 2-pack for on Amazon. They look like pens, but instead of a nib they have a brush, which allows you to draw lines of varying widths. They’re a lot of fun to use. Read the rest

This 20-year-old label maker is still going strong

Sean Michael Ragan enthuses about a Brother Label Maker that he has been using for 20 years. He also takes a look at the latest iteration and also likes it.

Cool Tools has a YouTube channel with many more tool reviews Read the rest

Hardware and craft cabinet - great for makers

My daughter and I have a nice little home makerspace going, but we have been storing all of our components (resistors, capacitors, solder, arduinos, raspberry pis, etc) in plastic boxes stacked into a larger box, which makes it hard to find what we need. It was time to get a cabinet, and this one is perfect, with 44 clear sliding drawers. It's only about 6-inches deep, which is a good thing because it doesn't take up a lot of room on our worktable. It's on Amazon. Read the rest

Good showerhead for low-water pressure

In 2015 I installed this Delta Water-Amplifying showerhead in a shower that has low pressure. It really does deliver a nice spray with large droplets. It's got a little knob that lets you switch between 2.5 and 1.85 GPM, but I had a hard time telling the difference. Installation is simple.

Here's a good video that shows how to change a showerhead:

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Here's the pen cartoonist Tom Gauld uses

Tom Gauld is one of my favorite cartoonists. (see my reviews of his previous books, Mooncop, You're All Just Jealous of my Jetpack, Goliath, and The Gigantic Robot).


I met him a couple of years ago and he gave me the pen he uses to draw his cartoons: the Pilot Precise V5 Roller Ball Stick Pen. It makes a very clean line, and Tom told me the ink does not fade, even after many years. Now that I've started sketching again (I post some of my sketches on my Instagram account), I was reminded of Tom's pen and reordered a box. Read the rest

Flexible sanding sheets are much better than sandpaper

I’ve started whittling spoons again and I recently discovered flexible sanding sheets made by 3M. I’ll never use sandpaper again. These sheets are made from some kind of semi-stretchy plastic that makes it very easy to get the grit into tight spots (like the hollow of a spoon). They last much longer than sandpaper, too. Read the rest

Great deal on the Rotring 500 0.5mm Mechanical Pencil

Amazon has a good deal on the Rotring 500 0.5mm Mechanical Pencil. It's .

Here's a video review of the 500:

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Must-have travel gear - inexpensive zipper bags

Ever since I started using these nylon mesh zipper bags, my travel experience has improved. I have one bag for paper stuff and pens, one for medicine and first aid, one for tools and gear, one for cords and portable power, and one for snacks. When I get home I leave the bags in my suitcase, making packing much easier the next time I take a trip. The bags are see-through and very durable. A pack of 8 sells for on Amazon. Read the rest

Great price on a set of precision screwdrivers

If you like to repair your own electronics, this set of screwdrivers probably has what you need. It comes with the following drivers: Phillips (PH000, PH00, PH0, PH1), Torx (T5, T6, T7), Torx Security (T8H, T9H, T10H), Pentalobe (P2, P5, P6), Triwing 3.0, and Slot 2.5. It also comes with a number of other useful tools: spudgers, tweezers, and scissors. It comes with a pouch and Amazon is selling it for Read the rest

These cheap noise canceling headphones are good

Last month I bought a pair of TaoTronics active noise cancelling bluetooth headphones for my two daughters to use on an 18-hour plane trip. They said they were excellent, and they also used them in the hotel to watch videos, play music, and play games. I tried them myself and was pleasantly surprised by how well they worked. You can use PSXIGLQM to get them at a good discount. Read the rest

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