We know, we can’t believe it either. It’s time to start thinking about the stuff you’ll need to start yet another school year. Instead of spending weeks shopping for this year’s back to school essentials, we’ve compiled a list of all the gear you need to be the coolest kid on campus. Go ahead, enjoy the rest of summer while it lasts. DT’s got you covered.
Plug Hub ($25)
So you got a new Roku, Macbook, HDTV, and a coffee maker at your graduation party. Fun! With great power comes the great responsibility of organization, so don’t disappoint your parents by making a mess while setting all those toys up. Use the Plug Hub to roll up separate wires so everything is neat, clean, and exactly where they’re supposed to be. The cord management system can be left on the floor or mounted under the table to make it seem like the wires aren’t even there. You’ll thank us when it’s time to unplug, move out for the semester, or just plain happy to not trip over cords after a drunken night at the local watering hole.
Last year, the Belkin WeMo Switch and Motion launched at $100 per set. This time around, the price has dropped $20 but new features are sure to make your dorm room a great place to learn about home automation, energy conservation, and basic computer algorithm. The WeMo works by recognizing movement to power a specific action, such as turning the lights on or off when you enter and leave the room. It also works with IFTTT technology so you can tweet, Facebook like, or Instagram a photo to activate various tasks.
With a new update, you can program different IFTTT recipes on a single WeMo device so it can learn to do more. Not only will that Motion sensor know to shut the lights by 11 p.m., it can also send you a text message if it notices that your roommate’s back in the room while you’re out at a bar. None of that sock at the door to indicate your roommate’s… busy… in there.
In your first few weeks of college, you’re going to be tempted to go to the bookstore and pick up generic posters of bands, cult movies, and reprints of classic art work to decorate your room. Those pictures get old pretty fast. Check out this personalized artwork by Sergio Albiac instead. For a limited time, the artist will accept portraits submissions, and if they are usable, he will transform them into an artwork that combines your picture with images from the Hubble Space Telescope. Afterward, the finished product will be shared on Google Drive and/or Flickr. All you have to do is print out a version for yourself. Geeky? Sure. But it’s way more original than that Beatles poster everyone else on your floor bought on sale.
Masterlock dialSpeed ($16)
Remember what we said about all the gadgets mom and dad gave you before going off to school? Yeah, they’re trusting you to not call home and whine that they got stolen by some upperclassmen whose frat you were trying to pledge. Whether you’re off to the gym, needing to store a few things in the library locker, or keeping things secure inside your dorm room, the Masterlock dialSpeed is a refreshing update to traditional combination lock. No more remembering three two-digit numbers and artfully spinning the dial left and right – the dialSpeed uses a directional combination that you just press like a video game.
If you’re someone who’s nitpicky about the weather, complaining to your colleagues won’t magically change the effects of global warming. Just get yourself the Dyson AM05 Hot+Cool Fan Heater. The bladeless machine combines technology, design, and utility by blowing cold air when you need a little circulation and heating up the room when things get frigid. If the machine gets tipped over, it also automatically turns off so you don’t have to worry about accidentally blowing paper everywhere.
For more information, here’s our review of the Dyson Hot+Cool.
Bobble Water Filter ($13)
Living away from home can be notoriously bad on your figure now that mom’s not around to feed you the good stuff. We can’t force you to down salads, hit the gym five times a week, or yank that last Keystone out of your hands, but we can encourage a healthy dose of clean water to keep your system hydrated and flushed. The Bobble water filter bottle is an easy way to get fresh water on to go, and it comes in various colors to match your personality or school color. Just squeeze, let the water pass through the filter, and slurp in that disease-free liquid. No catching STDs here.
Your smartphone is going to be the gateway to mastering a new social life, so make sure the experience lasts even through the winter. Most touch capacitive gloves are made with wool and have specific patches that indicate the finger that’s touchscreen-friendly. Not the Mujjo touchscreen leather gloves. These babies look badass, are touch capacitive in all fingers, and are made with Ethiopian lambskin. Would you rather hold hands with your crush through itchy wool or soft, buttery leather? We think the answer’s pretty clear.