Spinners!

This school year, the hot new thing, was Spinners. I’m not going to explain what spinners are, because if you’re living under that big of a rock, I can’t help you. I’m also not going to scoff at them. I’ve never understood why so many people have such a frothing hatred for the current schoolyard fad. I guess it just makes them feel old. So old!

However, now that the fad is fading, they’re going to have to fall back on the two sure-fire paths to success on Kickstarter

“Minimalist” Wallet

wallet_revolution

wallet_telour

Bottle Opener

FlickDeck1

FlickDeck2

MiniTISPinner

spintool

Or Potatoes?

I’ll be honest. I dunno what’s going on with this one.

spud_spinners

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Edible Lollipop Stick

The Edibel Lolipop - Kickstarter

Edible lolipop stick? What a strange idea, what’s that all about?

That's right! For the first time ever you can eat the stick of your lollipop! The stick can be any flavor and made into any color. The stick is made out of a candy interior coated with a hard candy material found on other types of candy. This coating prevents sticky hands and melting while holding it.

But … I don’t want to eat the stick. The whole point of the stick is that the candy doesn’t ever touch your hands. If I want to just hold candy in my hands, there’s plenty of non-lollipop candies I can eat, so I don’t really see the big innovation here.

Risks and challenges  There isn’t much risk involved. As an inventor I have been facing challenges and thinking outside the box to deal with those challenges for as long as I can remember. I'm excited to get the lollipop stick into everyone's tummy! Screenshot_4 Oh, this isn’t a good sign. Any time someone uses the word “Inventor” as though it was a job title it’s usually a good sign they don’t understand how the process of invention really works.

But how can that be? How can he be ignorant of how invention works? This invention is patented. In fact, most of the Kickstarter page is just a copy/paste from that patent. (Which is also worrying. How’s he going to run a business if he doesn’t understand the difference between a patent and a marketing pitch?)

A commenter solves the mystery for us :
Have you patented this? Because unless your name is Pak Nin Chan it seems this was invented in 1991 - http://www.google.com/patents/US6177110 .

That’s right, this invention’s patent, the patent he was actually quoting in his Kickstarter pitch, was invented by an inventor named Pak Nin Chan, and owned by a Hong Kong company called “Candy Novelty Works Ltd.”. Mr Chan has invented a number of interesting looking novelty candies, some of them a bit on the dumb side, but a lot of them look fun and are probably money makers.

… But I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that the doughy white guy we see in the video isn’t Mr Chan.

Who is this chancer?

Who is this “Ronnie” idiot who not only thinks it’s ok to steal someone else’s idea, but thinks it’s a good idea to actually quote the actual patent, proving that he didn’t steal it by accident?
Screenshot_6

OMG! It’s the Living Dinosaurs guy! I covered him back on the first week of this blog!

It’s like meeting an old friend again. Keep up the good work, Ronnie.


Thanks to reader Dario V. for making sure I didn’t miss this one!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Tail Toppers

These people emailed me and tried to get me to feature their project while it was still running. Presumably they were hoping I’d send them some ‘ironic’ backers, but that’s not how I do things. So here’s “Tail Toppers” a year after their project failed.

Screenshot_1
Tail Toppers journey began about one year ago when I scored a dream job at a major toy company. I noticed that leaving my cat alone for over 12 hours a day had a toll on the overall quality of life for my kitty cat. He wasn't as frisky as he used to be. He was depressed.  I did some research and realized this was a major issue with many pets, and rightly so, I mean we're the only ones who are their whole lives. It's especially worse if your cat is an indoor animal at an apartment. I feel terrible.

Aww… So sad. Poor kitty.

Screenshot_3
Ok, so … you invented a thing to pinch the nape of their neck?

Screenshot_4
Oh. Hmm…, that’s not…

Do you even know where your cat’s neck is?

Screenshot_5
Really? Huh. I would have thought that the risks of leaving a piece of plastic clipped over your cat’s butt-hole while you spend 12 hours at work would have risks that were more scatological in nature.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Rocketships for the Imaginationless

OldRocketShipAd

Generations of children saved up their allowance and lemonade-stand money to take advantage of this amazing offer.

Imagine how disappointed they were when they finally realized it was made of cardboard!

cardboard_01

Oh, But how times have changed! Nowadays the cardboard is a selling point!

That’s right, It’s another cardboard box specially manufactured for kids to play in. No longer will kids have to take a refrigerator box and design their own spaceship.

But, don’t put away those crayons just yet! Just like last time, there is a single panel specially designed by adults to be drawn on by children. (Or by an adult moving a child’s hand around, as shown in the video.)
cardboard_02

It also comes with “Imagination Triggers” which are “Short stories” to help you “improvise” when you play. Because apparently some people can’t think of a way to make spaceships and astronauts interesting to a four year old!

cardboard_04

Currently available are Castle, Space Capsule, Teepee, and Windmill. (Volcano coming soon!)

But don’t worry, they all come with “Imagination Triggers”, in case you have so little faith in your child’s intelligence that you don’t trust him or her to come up with a fun fantasy involving a castle.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Kickstarter Loves Balls

Haha, it’s a pun, right? I said “Balls” to make you think of testicles, but actually I’m going to show you articles about baseballs, or footballs or something, right?

No. Wrong. This is about testicles.

So let’s give those balls a kick!

…start.

balls_01

This project is still underway. It’s a pair of balls to hang from the underside of your desk. … so you can fondle your balls while you work.

I bet it’ll succeed. Kickstarter loves balls. Just look at this project from 2015!

balls_02

Bike balls! Why should trucks get all the ‘fun’? This project was successfull, and they’re now selling them as a product. You can order these from their web site.

They even made it on the news in Norway.
balls_03 “Confused” isn’t the word I would use.

balls_04 I’ve wondered this. If truck-nuts are supposed to make a truck look like a dog, why don’t we see female trucks with truck-vulvas? Or, I don’t know, why not just a nice, innocent truck-tail?

Why’s it always about the balls?

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Gizmo – The Dog Bowl

Kickstarter : Gizmo The Pet Bowl - The friendlier and engaging pet bowl made to reflect the personality of your best friend in the simplest way.

A pet bowl? Hope this is better than that last one.

Kickstarter : Most pet bowls on the market today aren’t made to reflect the fun and spontaneous personality of our pet friends. My goal was to conceptualize and develop a pet bowl that characterizes the key attributes of a pet while still reflecting balance and elegance. Engaging and simplistic, Gizmo is a product that a pet owner would be proud to display in their home.
Well, that’s quite a load of designer-speak.

I don’t really know what any of that means, so let’s check out the picture.

Kickstarter : Bowl set $45
They’re two thin, vacuum-formed plastic bowls with a colored stripe.

I guess it’s “fun and spontaneous” because the top curves a little?

Kickstarter - From ideation to fabrication, gizmo has made quite a journey. Through concept development and establishing various design constraints, Gizmo is finally ready for production. The prototypes for the Gizmo bowl set were made at the University of Illinois at Chicago using our lathe and vacuum-forming machines.
This project is a perfect example of why I hate the word “ideation”. It’s only ever used by people who think the act of having an idea is magical and special. It’s supposed to imply that having an idea is a process that talented people have to work very hard at.

That’s all complete bullshit. Everybody has a hundred ideas every day. Having an idea is not something to be proud of. It’s not something to brag about. It’s just a thing that happens to anybody that isn’t isn’t functionally brain-dead.

The thing to be proud of is figuring out which ideas are good, Figuring out which ideas will work, Figuring out which ideas are valuable and desirable, and then (and this is the important bit) doing all the hard work to make the idea a reality.

Kickstarter - sketches of dog bowls

So before you put yourself up on a pedestal for being special and creative enough to “have an idea” and then rush to Kickstarter to unveil your idea to the world, stop and figure out if the idea is honestly better than the sea of ideas we all wade through every single day of our lives.

Because this one wasn’t.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Steampunk Jewelry

steampunk_01

I’ll grudgingly admit that this project, to make jewelry out of 1950s watch movements ‘counts’ as real steampunk, and not just just glue-some-gears-on-it opportunism.

But here’s what caught my eye :
steampunk_02

These are bracelets, with small clocks attached to them. You’ve probably heard of this invention before, but these are special : The clocks don’t work.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

loe, the Shoehorn iPhone Cover

Kickstarter :  loe cover is a new smartphonecover with shoehorn

Have you ever wished your phone could help you put on a tight pair of shoes? Of course you have. Well this project tried to make those dreams a reality.

Back in the day it was quite common to own a shoehorn.

This genius apparently believes that shoehorns are some kind of lost technology. He probably found one on an archeological dig and realized that the ancients must have used these mystic devices for putting on tight shoes.

In actual real life, shoehorns are available cheaply in a wide variety of styles. If you haven’t seen one lately, it’s probably because you hang around with people who only wear sneakers and other easy-to-put-on types of shoe.

Kickstarter - iPhone case / shoehorn prototype

Ah, but those old-fashioned shoehorns don’t attach to your phone. … and somehow that’s a problem?

Maybe some people change their shoes so often that just leaving a shoehorn wherever they store their shoes isn’t sufficient. Maybe some people change their shoes constantly, on the road, at coffee shops, during business meetings, weddings, and other situations where they couldn’t carry a shoehorn, but they’d definetely still have their phone!

Prototype iphone case / shoehorn hybrid So go ahead. Use your phone as the handle to what is basically a small pry-bar. What could go wrong?

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail