Long before autotune was popularized in pop music, there was a phenomenon known as the talkbox. The talkbox helped guitar god Peter Frampton come alive. With the Wee-Wow for iPhone, you don't have to be Frampton to get the same effect with your iPhone.
A talkbox is a unit consisting of a tube that goes into an effects box. You hold the tube between your lips and shape the sound with your mouth. It gives off a strange sound that is part robot, part alien. It's pre-autotune at its finest.… Read more
There's no disturbing lack of faith among Kickstarter supporters.
After all, a crowdfunded project to construct the Death Star that was launched less than a week ago already has nearly 1,500 backers and an astonishing $364,772 in pledges.
Well, the Rebels aren't taking that threat sitting down. A rival Kickstarter campaign to build X-wing fighters has just taken off. Its goal is to build one of the famous spaceships from "Star Wars" and then more. … Read more
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This week on Crave, Japanese scientists teach moths to drive mini trucks, and a new app called Dognition claims to improve our relationship with man's best friend. Also, we decide if a $30 million Death Star Kickstarter campaign is worth it, and Montana is apparently full of badasses! Those stories and more, plus a round of "Into It, Not Into It." … Read more
The Epiphany One Puck may well be the world's most awesome coaster. It may also be the most useful. The One Puck doesn't just protect your coffee table from drink sweat, it also charges up your smartphone.
You don't have to plug the Puck into an outlet. It uses a small Stirling engine to provide the power. The device has two sides, one red and one blue. Place a hot drink on the red side, or a cold drink on the blue side.
Stirling engines have been around since the 1800s. They work by turning heat disparities into energy. Epiphany Labs has built a working prototype of its One Puck, though the company is still vague on just how long it takes for the device to charge up a phone. There are a lot of variables at play, including how hot or cold the source is.… Read more
"Star Wars" fans don't like taking "no" for an answer. The White House may have denied a petition to build a Death Star, but that hasn't stopped Dark Side wannabes from taking matters into their own hands. There's now a Kickstarter project gathering funds to build an open-source Death Star.
The project has a modest initial goal of just $30 million. That will fund initial plans and the massive amount of chicken wire needed to protect the reactor exhaust ports. The first stretch goal is where things get more serious. If the project raises $850,000,000,000,000,000, then work will begin on the actual construction. OK, that's a mighty big "if," but a geek can dream, right?… Read more
The cloud may be the future of all things storage, but the present is more complicated: it can be expensive, potentially insecure, and you're left trusting a third party with all your data.
That's what inspired The Transporter, a Kickstarter project started by former employees of Drobo. Transporter aims for something more secure and distributed, while still being sharable. The concept largely works like Dropbox, with a Transporter folder that lives on your desktop and syncs with files stored on the physical Transporter drive (which resides someplace you designate). You can easily give others access to specific folders, … Read more
If you're a cyclist, you know it's always a good idea to sport enough lights that motorists can see you while you pedal away at night. This is where the Halo Zero LED messenger bag, a Kickstarter project, comes in.
Each handmade bag will be crafted by Rickshaw in San Francisco and is big enough to fit a 15-inch notebook. The bag includes two front pockets as well. Halo Zero's fiber optic LED light attaches to the front of the bag via velcro. … Read more
It's a new era for lightbulbs. Incandescents are well on their way to being obsolete. Compact fluorescents are reigning champs, but LEDs are rising through the ranks, looking to challenge CFLs with advancing technology and falling prices. As fast as the tech changes, we're still pretty hooked on the old-school incandescent shape. We still want our bulbs.
The NanoLight Kickstarter project wants to give us LEDs without sacrificing the traditional bulb shape and ability to shine light in all directions. The result is a bulb that looks like it was designed by a Cubist painter. The makers claim it is the most energy-efficient light bulb in the world.… Read more