Awesome tech you can’t buy yet, for the week of May 25, 2014

Quitbit Lighter

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 there’s no shortage of weird, ambitious, and downright stupid projects out there – far too many for any reasonable person to keep up with. But here at DT we are not reasonable people. We spend an inordinate amount of time poring through crowdfunding sites and product blogs in search of the next Oculus Rift or Pebble Watch, so we’re here to bring you a quick roundup of the best projects that are currently up and running.

WindPax Wisp — Portable wind turbine

WindPax WispDropping off the grid every so often is good for you, but what if you just want to get into nature without giving up your gadgets? Windpax’s vertical wind turbines are specifically designed to harness the wind using three collapsible fins that capture passing currents and spin a turbine connected to a generator, creating power wherever there’s wind. You can easily stow the compact turbines in your car or hiking pack, and once you’ve found a spot with adequate wind speeds, the device telescopes out in less than two minutes. Most importantly, the 4-pound device is constructed of flexible plastic and features a removable internal battery stick with USB and Mini-USB hookups, allowing you to charge your smartphone and other electronics miles from the nearest wall socket.

Quitbit Lighter — Smart lighter and smoking tracker

Quitbit LighterQuitting smoking isn’t easy. While there are a bevy of fitness devices aimed at tracking your calorie intake, running distance, sleep patterns, and other components of your overall health, Quitbit is the only device aimed at measuring your smoking habits. The rechargeable smart lighter and accompanying, Bluetooth-enabled app help you better understand your smoking habits, tracking your smoking trends and providing options for setting custom reduction plans or limiting the times you smoke. The small device lights your cigarettes using a heating element akin to most car lighters, while simultaneously counting how many you’ve smoked and how long it’s been since your last drag. The data remains accurate and secure — even if you’d rather not see the statistics displayed on the lighter’s built-in display.

GOkey — Jack-of-all-trades keychain

GoKeyNo device offers everything, but the GOkey comes pretty damn close. The small device conveniently hooks on to your key ring, allowing you to tote its functionality wherever you go. Constructed of high-quality plastic and donning a metallic exterior, the slim device allows you to sync your smartphone to your computer and even charge said phone for an additional two hours, whether you opt for the MicroUSB or Lightning model. Furthermore, the GOkey also functions as a 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB flash drive, providing ample storage and password protection for all your documents, photos, videos, and other precious multimedia. It also helps you locate your keys and smartphone via Bluetooth, displaying the appropriate signal strength on your phone’s interface and prompting your smartphone or GOkey to ring when you’re within range of your desired device.

Marbel Board — Electric skateboard

MarbelMarbel’s electric skateboard isn’t the first of its kind by any stretch of the imagination. However, Marbel’s offering is the lightest of its kind, weighing just shy of 10 pounds and measuring a mere 30 millimeters at its thickest point. The weather-resistant, electric skateboard is capable of achieving speeds of 20 mph — whether on flat ground or careening up hills — and sports an ultralight unibody build constructed of carbon fiber and Kevlar. The built-in battery charges in less than 90 minutes, lasts up to 10 miles on a single charge, and comes bundled with a handheld remote for adjusting the throttle and braking. Moreover, the sleek board connects to iOS and Android device for further customization, presenting you with three pre-defined ride modes and granting you the ability to set acceleration and top-speed levels. 

Graffmap — Street art-sharing app

GraffmapGraffmap brings together street art and social media in a way Instagram has yet to capitalize on. A mobile extension of an established website, the app will cull crowd-sourced photos of graffiti from all over the globe, allowing you to peruse and like street art photos from different users in your local area. Photos can also be geotagged, retrofitted with captions, and uploaded via the usual social-media channels. The app is shooting for a cool $9,000 to cover the cost of development, and if funded, it will be a available on iOS and Android platforms for free. And no one says you have to create the art, just view it.

Photography

Sweet 16: Wacom’s Cintiq 16 pen display makes retouching photos a breeze

Wacom’s Cintiq pen displays are usually reserved for the pros (or wealthy enthusiasts), but the new Cintiq 16 brings screen and stylus editing to an approachable price. Does it cut too much to get there?
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S10 update gives manual control of Bright Night mode

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Smart Home

Ring home security system now works as a hub for smart home devices

Ring is helping the issue of smart home fragmentation with its Works With Ring program. It lets thousands of smart home devices built on Z-Wave connect to Ring's Alarm Base Station.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Halfbikes, VR for all your senses, and more

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it's fun to gawk!
Emerging Tech

Scientists manage to 3D print an actual heart using human cells

Scientists at Tel Aviv University have achieved a world-first by 3D printing a small-scale heart, complete with blood vessels, ventricles, and chambers. Here's why that's so exciting.
Emerging Tech

Drown out noisy neighbors and rest easy with these white noise machines

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Emerging Tech

Watch a pack of SpotMini robot dogs perform a terrifying feat of strength

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Emerging Tech

Feast your eyes on the wildest, most elaborate Rube Goldberg machines ever built

Want to see something totally mesmerizing? Check out several of the best Rube Goldberg machines from across the internet, including one that serves cake and others that do ... nothing particularly useful.
Emerging Tech

Notre Dame fire: How drones and a robot called Colossus helped limit the damage

The fire that devastated the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral on Monday shocked many around the world. In a bid to prevent even worse damage to the structure, Paris firefighters opted to deploy drones and a robot called Colossus.
Emerging Tech

New gunfire-detection system alerts police of shooters in seconds, not minutes

The Safe Zone Gunfire Detector is a fast gunfire-detection system that could help avert potential tragedies in public places like schools, malls, or anywhere a mass shooting might occur.
Emerging Tech

NASA chooses a special spot for its next crewed moon landing

Following the U.S. government's announcement last month of a desire to see American astronauts set foot on the moon again in the next five years, NASA has revealed a location on the lunar surface where it would most like to land.
Emerging Tech

Adidas has created a running shoe that’s made to be remade

Adidas has unveiled the Futurecraft Loop running shoe that it claims is the first performance footwear to be 100% recyclable. The shoe is the latest green initiative by the sportswear company and will go on sale in 2021.
Emerging Tech

How emotion-tracking A.I. will change computing as we know it

Affectiva is just one of the startups working to create emotion-tracking A.I. that can work out how you're feeling. Here's why this could change the face of computing as we know it.
Emerging Tech

Yale scientists restore cellular activity in a pig’s brain hours after its death

In what some may view as a porcine version of Frankenstein, Yale University scientists have restored circulation and cellular activity in a pig’s brain four hours after its death. The study is likely to be used to study brain function