Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Stick-on helmet speakers, bikes kids can build | Tech News
At any given moment, there are approximately a zillion different crowdfunding campaigns happening on the web. Take a stroll through Kickstarter or Indiegogo and you’ll find no shortage of weird, useless, and downright stupid projects out there — alongside some real gems. We’ve cut through the fidget spinners and janky iPhone cases to round up the most unusual, ambitious, and exciting new crowdfunding projects out there this week. That said, keep in mind that any crowdfunding project — even the best intentioned — can fail, so do your homework before cutting a check for the gadget of your dreams.
Kits that teach kids STEM skills are a dime a dozen these days. Take a stroll through Kickstarter or Indiegogo and you’ll find them in just about every shape/size/configuration you can imagine. But of all the skill-building toys we’ve ever seen, Infento is one of the most intriguing. In addition to teaching kids how to build stuff in a very hands-on and interactive way (without a screen), this kit also transforms into a bunch of different rideable gizmos your kid can zip around on.
“Our modular Kits empower your family to become makers,” the creators explain on Kickstarter. “You create something tangible together and spend quality time: building while bonding. At the same time, you give your child an important skill set for the future. With one Infento Kit and one hex key, parents and kids can build a wide variety of rides together. One box packs fun for the entire childhood; from toddler to teenager.”
Electric bikes are all well and good, but regardless of how advanced or long-range they are, they all still suffer from teh same big drawback: they look like electric bikes. Do you really want to be that guy or gal riding an aluminum ox to work? Do you want to grunt and groan every time you have to hoist your behemoth of a bicycle onto the wall rack at work? Of course you don’t — and that’s precisely why this new ebike on Kickstarter is so enticing.
“The AM1 is a lightweight motorised bike,” the creators explain on their campaign page. “It looks like a bike, handles like a bike, weighs the same as a bike but rides like you’re freewheeling downhill with a tailwind. It brings together the lightweight handling and simplicity of a single speed bike, with the effortlessness of an electric bike. It has a lightweight 20-mile battery that easily covers an average commute of 8.5 miles each way with plenty of range spare to meet your friends after work. A lean battery meant we could create a compact motor that gets rid of gears altogether. We’ve merged the best of a classic single speed bike with the effortlessness of an electric one, into a sleek, minimal design.”
Here’s a quick cut to our full article, which ran earlier this week: “Remember how, in Christopher Nolan’s Inception, Leonardo DiCaprio’s character Dom Cobb uses a spinning top to work out whether he’s awake or dreaming? If the top spins a few times and then topples over, Cobb knows he’s awake. If it keeps spinning in perpetuity, he understands that he’s asleep. Well, the team behind a new Kickstarter campaign just blurred the lines between reality and the dreamworld in a big way, courtesy of a metal top that’s capable of spinning for hours on end.
Called Limbo, the metal spinning top achieves this by way of a hidden silent mechanism which functions as a gyro, and keeps the top running as long as the battery still has some juice left. Inside the top, there’s a rechargeable battery, a special asymmetric flywheel motor, a high-end motion sensor, and an advanced system-on-a-chip which constantly monitors Limbo’s stability and applies dozens of motion corrections every second.”
Here’s DT’s Amanda Ellis with the scoop: “Traditional helmet sound systems require cumbersome wires or inserts, leaving you less aware of your surroundings. Portable carry speakers can be loud and distracting to people around you — and you don’t really want to end up being “that guy” on the slopes. But listening to music while performing your favorite activity can be inspiring and enriching. This is why Elevety Sports is back on Kickstarter with a new-and-improved version of its Domio Helmet Audio Device, which effectively transforms your helmet into a sound system.
The device easily mounts to any helmet — on the side or the top — and comes with an extra support strap for added security. The system is powered by vibro-audio technology, which utilizes micro-vibrations and transforms the inside of your helmet into your own personal sound system. As opposed to transmitting sound through air, as a traditional speaker does, vibro-audio technology takes micro vibration pulses and transmits them through a solid, i.e. your helmet. This results in audio that only you can hear while allowing you to remain alert to your exterior surroundings.”
Ever since the first toothbrush was invented, designers have been trying to re-invent it. And ever since the dawn of crowdfunding, this effort has ramped up considerably. Whether it’s crazy new bristle designs, sensor-studded brushes, or subscription-based oral care packs; we’ve seen a veritable boatload of new toothbrushes come out of Kickstarter and Indiegogo in the past few years — and the trend is showing no signs of slowing down. Case in point? This clever new toothbrush from Chiiz.
“CHIIZ is invented to help your brush your teeth correctly,” the creators explain on Kickstarter. “With 360-degree coverage of every one of your teeth, the automatic toothbrush applies sonic technology to help brush your teeth in a smart and hands-free way. To brush with CHIIZ, all you need is to pop it into your mouth and bite down slightly with your front teeth. Applying a fixed strength, CHIIZ will then start brushing automatically for 30 seconds. Its brushing strength is gentle but effective enough to remove plaques on your teeth. Thus, these harm-free methods prevent your gum tissues from hurting or receding, ultimately preventing your teeth from becoming sensitive to hot or cold temperatures.”