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Brainy tape measure works three ways

Although the classic tape measure continues to be a very useful tool, there are times where that curled metal tape just isn't right for the task at hand. Well, that's why Bagel was developed. It's a "smart" tape measure that offers three methods of measuring, along with built-in data storage and Bluetooth connectivity.Read More

Bicycles

No-contact bike trainer enlists the eddies

Whether they use fluid, fans or magnets to create resistance, most stationary bicycle trainers require users to place the bike's rear tire in contact with a roller. This wears the tire down quickly, and creates a lot of noise in the process. Canada's STAC Performance is out to change that. Its STAC Zero trainer leaves the tire untouched, keeping its rubber intact and the noise level down.Read More

Good Thinking

Smart backpack helps you keep track of your stuff

Backpacks are one of the most convenient ways to carry around a wide range of gear throughout your day – but only if you remember to pack it up with all you need in the first place. Forget something and the usefulness of the backpack drops significantly. By combining technologies that already exist in one form or another into one backpack, the Klifit – now raising funds on Kickstarter – aims to keep you organized, charged and secure.Read More

Bicycles

Sat nav bike bell keeps cyclists on course

A Bluetooth bicycle bell – so, what would that do? Well, in the case of the Blubel, it syncs with an app on your smartphone to provide navigational cues. Additionally, if you want to alert other users to hazards on your route, you just ring it as you would a regular bell.Read More

Music

The new beatbox: Cardboard drumkit puts a basher on your back

Cardboard. As we've already demonstrated, it's not just for packaging. Signal Snowboards, Earnest Packaging and Fender Custom Shop added to that list of clever uses last year with a one-off Stratocaster that sounded much better than it looked. Now French startup Obilab is introducing a new member to the band in the shape of a cardboard drum kit that collapses down to be carried like a backpack between gigs.Read More

Bicycles

Intelligent bike helmet brings brains to head protection

While the basic helmet may keep your cranium covered, it's probably doing little more than that. Newer "smart helmets" combine modern features with protection, but the latest from Brooklyness may offer an experience like no other. The Classon bike helmet is designed to improve safety and visibility with gesture-activated turn signals, automatic brake lights, blind spot detection, and more.Read More

Bicycles

Best electric mid-drive adds serious muscle and speed to existing bicycles

In addition to the hordes of e-bikes out there, the market has plenty of aftermarket kits designed to turn standard bicycles into electric-assist machines: electrified wheels like the Centinel and FlyKly, friction drives like the ConoDrive and Rubbee 2.0, and mid-drives like the Bimoz. With the exception of the rare powerhouse, like the 3,400-watt EGO-kit, these add-ons tend to use modestly powered motors for speeds between 15 and 20 mph (24 and 32 km/h) or so. The new mid-mounted Bikee Best kit packs more power potential and torque than average, aiming for better hill climbing capability and speeds up to 30 mph (48 km/h).Read More

Music

Hand-made guitar dials in MIDI effects with the wave of a hand

Electric guitars that have MIDI control cooked in aren't exactly a new idea, as evidenced by the now up for pre-order Expressiv Infinity Guitar. Heck, even acoustic guitars are muscling into MIDI territory courtesy of the upcoming ACPAD controller. But controlling effects by waving a hand in front of a laser isn't something you see every day. That's precisely what's on offer with one of the three new hand-made Drop guitars from Lithuania's Lava.Read More

Electronics

Elex Pipe takes circuit building off the board

Though we use all manner of electronic gadgetry every day, few of us know what makes them tick. Learning about electronics and programming can be tough though and, let's face it, a little dry. A number of startups have made efforts to spice the learning process up recently – making use of robots, modules and micro labs to make experimentation fun and accessible. The latest to join the crowd is Mad Tatu with a circuit building system that rises up from the table top for 3D projects that look like a crazy plumber has turned his hand to teaching. Read More

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