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Around The Home

In an age of Twitter, Facebook, and texting, a physical mailbox may seem like a relic of the dead (letter) past, but postal theft is still a big problem and people still get annoyed at fruitless journeys to the curb. The Gate smart mailbox is a 21st century variation on the old switch-and-doorbell mailbox alert setup that not only lets you know when the post arrives, but is also intended to combat theft.

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A London-based startup is looking to bring yet another level of refinement to the kitchens of coffee aficionados by launching a smartphone-controlled micro-roaster. Billed as the world’s first digital micro-roaster, the Ikawa countertop machine can roast green coffee beans in 3-10 minutes, ready to be dropped in your smartphone-controlled coffee machine.

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If you get a particularly nasty stain on a piece of clothing, chances are you'll want to give it a good spot-scrubbing in the sink before throwing it in the washing machine. Samsung has set out to make that pre-washing process easier with the release of a top load washing machine with a built-in sink.

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Tired of waiting for pour-over brewing and turned off by the grit left at the bottom of his cup by French presses, Fellow founder Jake Mille assembled a team of designers to tackle the age old challenge of making a decent cup of coffee. The result is Duo.

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A group of Lund University students has created a kitchen that can be hacked to the preference of its users. The Ikea Hacka was a response to the "Concept Kitchen 2025" project that sought ideas for kitchens of the future. It is aimed at allowing for modification and personalization.

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Italian company Vado Libero recently launched a collection of innovative furniture pieces designed to compliment a cycling lifestyle. We checked out the collection during this year's Milan Design Week and it stood out by virtue of its practical design, craftsmanship and use of high quality materials. The collection includes three modules, which not only make storing a bike and its accessories easy, but also offer an aesthetic which transforms your bike into an interior show piece.

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When you run out of something at home, it's all too easy to forget to add it to your next shopping list. This prototype device is aimed at ensuring that no longer happens. The GeniCan attaches to a trashcan so it can be used to scan barcodes of items as they are thrown out. They can then be added to a list or automatically reordered.

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Many of us like to have houseplants in our homes, bringing a little of the outside inside. The problem is remembering to water them on a regular basis. Tableau is a new take on an automatic watering system for houseplants that aims to make it easy to avoid either over- or under watering these fussy lodgers.

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Ottobox is a smart home automation device that its makers claim could reduce your electricity bills by up to 50 percent. It does this by monitoring the appliances plugged into your wall sockets, and turning them off when they're not in use. The thinking is that all the energy wasted by appliances sitting in standby mode can soon add up to a hefty amount. Read More
Sweeping the floor can be a hassle in its own right, but for some people, having to stoop down and collect the sweepings in a dustpan is just too much. If you're one of those people, you might like Bruno – it's a garbage can that automatically sucks up debris that's swept toward it. Read More
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