Lunching on larvae: This desktop farm lets you grow and harvest edible mealworms

Roughly 80 percent of humans on this planet eat insects, according to Marcel Dicke, professor of entomology at Wageningen University; so when you think about it, it’s kind of weird that we don’t. Plus, Dicke predicts we’ll be eating grubs (or grasshoppers or crickets) for grub some day in the not-too-distant future.

If you’re ready to embrace a six-legged snack ASAP, there is, naturally, a Kickstarter for that. Livin Farms is making a “desktop” hive for the appropriately named mealworms. You know when an answer in the FAQ starts with, “This is a totally serious project and we’re real honest people bringing this to life!” that it’s not your run-of-the-mill campaign.

Katharina Unger and Julia Kaisinger created the hive, which ushers your mealworms through all phases of its lifecycle. There’s a loveshack for the beetles to mate in and a pupation department for hatching. The hive also has fans and ventilation to deal with excrement smell and sensors and heating elements to make sure your bugs stay safe before you grind them up into dinner.

There’s some maintenance involved, as you’re obviously taking care of living critters. There are several steps involved in the care and feeding of your mealworms, but they can live off your kitchen scraps. First, the beetles are in the loveshack makin’ babies; the mealworms hatch from the eggs, then grow to eatin’ size (about an inch). Some become pupae, which then become beetles. The rest of the mealworms are yours to eat. While the hive helps the insects drop down to different trays throughout the cycle, you have to provide the food and activate the harvest weekly. You’ll also need to clean the system and empty some the bins.

This Kickstarter has a lot of FAQs, because it deals with living beings. After you harvest your clean mealworms, you put them in the freezer, killing them softly. (The creators say the insects basically go into hibernation before they die.) You’ll want to make sure you freeze them long enough and cook them thoroughly before consuming them. But, if you follow the guidelines — and Livin Farms says they’ll have plenty of recipes and tips when the hives are ready to ship — you can actually get pretty creative with your mealworm meals, including roasting, frying, boiling, and so on. You hive should yield around 200 to 500 grams of the little buggers a week.

There a quite a few steps the company needs to go through before delivering the hives in November 2016, including getting FDA certification. To get on on an early-bird special, it will cost $499, which comes with a kit including beetle pupae.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: heat-powered watches, phone cases with reflexes

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 sure is fun to gawk!
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.
Mobile

Having trouble logging in? Here’s how to reset your Apple ID password

To use any of Apple's services, you need to have an Apple ID and know your password. Thankfully, there are ways to deal with forgotten passwords and regain access to your account. Here's how to reset your Apple ID password.
Home Theater

Here’s why you’re not getting Netflix in HD or 4K, and how to fix it

Are you having trouble watching your favorite movies or TV shows on Netflix in HD or 4K? We explain why loading takes so long, why the picture quality fluctuates, and what you can do about it.
Smart Home

This Silicon Valley studio rents for $1,500 per month — to 2 cats

A man in San Jose, California, rents a studio apartment for $1,500 per month for a very important reason: So his daughter's two cats have a place to call their own. It may be the swankiest cat pad on the West Coast.
Deals

Amazon drops prices on Roomba robot vacuums by up to $150

Amazon is offering discounts on iRobot Roombas and other robot vacuums to help you get a leg-up on those chores. We've rounded up the best deals available now and put them all in one place.
Emerging Tech

CES 2019 recap: All the trends, products, and gadgets you missed

CES 2019 didn’t just give us a taste of the future, it offered a five-course meal. From 8K and Micro LED televisions to smart toilets, the show delivered with all the amazing gadgetry you could ask for. Here’s a look at all the big…
Smart Home

Speed up cooking with one of the best pressure cookers on the market

Not all pressure cookers are created equally. You have to choose between stovetop cookers, multicookers, canners, and even microwave cookers. Our pressure cooking buyer's guide includes our picks for the best in each category.
Smart Home

Brew it fast, hot, and flavorful with our favorite coffee makers

Whether you're looking for a simple coffee maker to get you through the morning or a high-end brewer that will impress your taste buds and your friends, you'll find some of the best coffee makers around on this list.
Smart Home

This just in: Alexa can now deliver the news like a professional newscaster

The Amazon Alexa team has given Alexa a newscaster voice that improves the way she delivers the news and reads Wikipedia articles, making the smart assistant easier to understand.
Product Review

Ring Video Doorbell 2 is the simplest entry into a smarter doorway

The Ring Video Doorbell 2 may lack the style and sophistication of premium door-dingers, but few can match its simplicity and versatility. The device, available in both wired and wireless configurations, is easy to set up and adds instant…
Smart Home

Ring security camera catches man licking the doorbell for hours

A family in Salinas, California had their Ring camera capture something pretty unexpected: a man licking the doorbell outside of their home for more than three hours. The incident took place around 5:00 a.m.
Smart Home

GHSP makes a (back)splash with its touchscreen concept kitchen

One of the coolest concept kitchens from CES 2019 came from GHSP. It created a backsplash entirely made of touchscreens. That means the control panel for your kitchen is accessible no matter where you are.
Product Review

Kwikset Kevo Contemporary review

Tired of carrying around keys? Make keyless entry so easy that all you have to do is have your phone nearby to open the door. It’s a little pricey, but sleek lines and simple features make the Kwikset Kevo Contemporary a great choice for…