Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Good Thinking

The TrakBelt360 allows pouches and tool holsters to be rotated around it, while the belt i...

If you're perched on a ladder or are dangling in a harness, then twisting around to grab something from the back of your tool belt can be rather challenging. That's why New York firefighter/photographer Chris Landano created the TrakBelt360. It's a tool belt that lets you rotate pouches or tool holsters all the way around it, so that the item you need ends up right at the front.  Read More

The Handie ensures you're pleasuring yourself consensually by making you make the 'OK' ges...

Some machines are so perfect, so ingenious and so fit for their purpose that they endure, unchanged, for centuries. Millennia, even. The wheel. The bucket. The knife. The human hand. The hand is one of the crowning evolutionary achievements of our species. Its opposable thumb makes it an incredibly versatile tool, capable of grasping and manipulating complex objects. It’s also super grouse to grab and tug your genitals with, in a manner familiar to teenagers, Gizmag writers and lower primates alike. But that doesn't mean it can't be improved upon. Meet the Handie.  Read More

A conventional fire shelter after exposure to the heat of a forest fire (left) as compared...

Last June, a wildfire near Yarnell, Arizona overtook and killed 19 firefighters – even though they had set up fireproof shelters. This inspired Phoenix-based SunSeeker Enterprises to develop a shelter that's better able to withstand the high heat of forest fires. Utilizing a material licensed from NASA to protect the Space Shuttle on re-entry, the Fire Blanket is the result.  Read More

The RiutBag from UK designer Sarah Giblin

Traveling to work in the city on a crowded train or bus has become a necessary part of the daily grind for many urbanites, and the backpack is often the weapon of choice for the transport of commute necessities. But Sarah Giblin spotted a design flaw in this useful storage solution and set out to do something about it. The problem is that unless you take it off or wear it to the front when enjoying the rush hour squeeze, all of those exposed compartment zips are just asking for probing fingers to dip in and remove the contents. Giblin's answer is the RiutBag, which has no zips on the outer shell.  Read More

The Yardarm Sensor fits into the grip of a firearm to monitor use in real time

Anytime a police officer draws their weapon, it's likely to be a tense, confusing situation where split second decisions can be the difference between life and death. In an attempt to reduce some of the confusion, Yardarm has developed a wireless sensor that allows firearms to be tracked and monitored in real time thanks to a small electronics package that fits into the weapon's grip.  Read More

3D sound and 360 degree panoramic images help visitors get a real feel for a city

If you’ve ever wanted to experience the sights and sounds of cities like New York, San Francisco, Stockholm or Oslo without leaving home, take a look at the Sound City Project, an immersive audiovisual experience combining 3D sounds and panoramic views of popular and iconic world locations.  Read More

The researchers behind the Ear-IT project say a city's acoustics can help reduce traffic c...

As the Internet of Things starts to take hold, we're seeing the emergence of gadgets equipped with all kinds of sensors to improve the world around us, from energy-saving climate control systems to smart locks for the front door. But have you ever thought about how sound might be measured and used to bring another level of automation? For the last two years, the Ear-IT project has been monitoring acoustics in the Spanish city of Santander, and says the results could improve the lives of its residents in ways ranging from improved traffic flow to energy savings in the home.  Read More

The Future Hunter Gatherer concept is one of the six finalists remaining in the Electrolux...

When it opened for entries in February of this year, the Electrolux Design Lab competition challenged students from around the world to come up with innovative appliance concepts for the homes of the future. "Creating Healthy Homes" was the theme and after previously announcing the 35 semi-finalists, the organizers have now whittled over 1,700 entrants down to six finalists, who will look to wow a jury with their designs in France next month.  Read More

The wolffepack, doing its swingin' thing

Backpacks are certainly a convenient way of schlepping your stuff around, but they do have at least one shortcoming – you have to take them off to get at what's in them. British engineer David Wolffe set out to address that, with his wolffepack. It features a tethered detachable cargo section, that can be swung around in front of the wearer as needed.  Read More

Uni translates sign language to sound and text

People who are deaf or hard of hearing are constantly met with the challenge of communicating, since most non-deaf people don't understand sign language. But modern technology is once again offering new solutions for old issues, and this time it comes in the shape of Uni, which uses motion gesture recognition to translate sign language to audio, and spoken word to text, in real time.  Read More

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