June 29, 2015

Magna Carta Baby Pacifier


It's never to early to start, what?

This year being the 800th anniversary of King John's affixing his seal to the Magna Carta, the British Museum and the Library of Congress and others are offering all manner of Magna Carta swag, including this functional little gewgaw.

From the website: "The Magna Carta (originally known as the Charter of Liberties) of 1215, written in iron gall ink on parchment in medieval Latin, using standard abbreviations of the period, authenticated with the Great Seal of King John. The original wax seal was lost over the centuries. This document is held at the British Library and is identified as "British Library Cotton MS Augustus II.106."

White, Blue, or Pink: $13.95.

June 29, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

June 28, 2015

Europe 2001-2011: Population shifts


Red, gained population. Blue, lost population.

[via Bruce Sterling]

June 28, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

June 27, 2015

Stem Gem Strawberry Huller


Reviewed by Mark Frauenfelder in Cool Tools as follows:



It didn't take me long to get the hang of the Stem Gem Strawberry Huller and once I did, I was able remove the stem and core of strawberries much faster than I could with a knife.

To use it, you push the button on the back to extend the retractable Alien-esque jaws.

The deeper you push the button, the more the jaws open. Then, plunge the jaws into the strawberry, twist, then pull.

There you go, a cleanly cored berry.


My kids fight over who gets to use it.



June 27, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (6)

June 26, 2015

San Francisco burning after the 1906 earthquake


[via back-then and Bruce Sterling]

June 26, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

June 25, 2015

Agaru Sleeping Kogao Hammock Face Mask — "Chin cheek sag slack stretching massage"


From the website:



A "hammock" for making your face smaller (kogao), retaining your beauty and youth couldn't be any easier than by just slipping this Agaru Sleeping Kogao Hammock Face Mask on over your ears, and letting it do all the hard stretching and massage work for you.

It will pull back on your skin and keep it firm and youthful, fighting the sag or slack that inevitably comes with age. 

We think you'd be hard-pressed to find a simpler but nonetheless effective way to fight aging.


It really is just a case of putting this on while you rest or sleep, while the mask combats gravity's effects on your skin.

Features and Details:

  • Made in Japan
  • Material: Elastomer
  • Instructions: Japanese (but easy to use)
  • Size: 200 x 95 x 2mm (7.9 x 3.7 x 0.08")
  • Note: If you experience discomfort or skin reaction, cease wearing the mask immediately and see a specialist. This is not a medical tool.



June 25, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

June 24, 2015

What is it?


Answer here this time tomorrow.

Hint: smaller than a bread box.

Another: one size fits all.

A third: requires minimal effort for optimal function.

June 24, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

June 18, 2015

Sounds of the Downhill

Some of the top ski racers in the world describe what it's like during a World Cup downhill — literally, life on the edge.

June 18, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

June 6, 2015

Basting Tape aka Sticky Measuring Tape


From the website: "This stuff is used to stick pieces of cloth together and measure them so you don't have to use 15 pins and a wooden ruler. Our version is 17 feet long and has 1/8" and 1mm markings that repeat every 12". Tape is fairly tacky, reusable without leaving a residue, and measures 3/4" wide. From Singer®."

Perhaps a reader with experience using this sort of thing can expand and/or expound.


June 6, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

June 5, 2015

IRL [In Real Life] Club

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 1.02.54 PM

Founded by, among others, journalist Adrian Chen, "IRL Club is an evening of talks by cool people from the internet."

Put another way, it's "a regular gathering for people from the Internet to meet 'in real life'" in the greater New York City area.

The next meeting is on Monday, June 15.

You can find out more on Facebook and Twitter.

June 5, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

June 4, 2015

Starry Night Lantern/Projector

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 1.08.02 PM

From websites: "This Starry Night Lantern illuminates any outdoor campsite wonderfully — it also projects a flowing field of stars overhead when used indoors."


Features and Details:

  • Battery operated — requires 4 AA batteries (not included)
  • Can be used to illuminate a room or campsite
  • On/Off switch on side of lantern above base
  • Battery compartment under lantern base
  • Dual modes: Lantern or Star Projector
  • Includes explorer activity guide
  • Dimensions: 6.2" x 5.5" x 7.5" 


Where was this when I was a kid?


June 4, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

June 3, 2015

Nell Zink — A mystery wrapped in an enigma


Kathryn Schulz's May 18 New Yorker piece on the chaotic, unlikely life of Zink, a fifty-one year old novelist whose recent emergence from complete obscurity almost belies belief in terms of paths taken and not, is absorbing, amusing, and eye-opening.


For those who want more, there's Zink's interview in The Paris Review.

June 3, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

June 2, 2015

Experts' Experts: Bike Pros' Allen Wrenches


Wrote Mark McClusky in Wired: "The toolboxes of pro bike mechanics are a thrilling glimpse into a world of organization and obsessiveness.... What I do have is the same set of stunning Allen wrenches that many ProTour mechanics rely on — these USAG T-handle hex keys. The precisely machined ends keep fragile bolts from rounding off, and the USAGs have a magical balance that shows how thoughtfully each one was designed. I can't climb like a true contender, but at least I can work on my ride with the same tools."

Set of six: $63.

June 2, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 1, 2015

Telelift single book transportation system

This one's in a library in Stuttgart, Germany.

A YouTube search will bring up a zillion similar systems in any number of industries throughout the world.

Perfect if you're in the mood for that sort of thing.

June 1, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

May 31, 2015

Superhero Oven Mitt



May 31, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

May 30, 2015

Engineering Flow Chart


[via No puedo creer]

May 30, 2015 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

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