Walkie Talkies from the future!

Having finished binge-watching Stranger Things 2 just yesterday, I have to say, I really want a walkie-talkie so I can scream “Code Red!” into it whenever I’m in trouble! However, there’s nothing I have my heart set on more than the Onyx Smart Walkie-Talkies!

These beauties look nothing like the clunky brick-shaped walkie-talkies from Ye Olde days, but rather look like amazing badges you wear on your clothes. With the color gradients that look nothing short of lick-worthy, and a twisted metal rod that allows it to fasten itself to your clothes while giving the device a beautiful touch, the Onyx work like walkie-talkies, but take due advantage of technological advancements to make them better products. The Onyx has “unlimited range, and unlimited channels”, allowing you to converse over long distances (even overseas!) like a walkie-talkie, without paying a single penny to a telecom provider, and allowing you to speak mano-a-mano or even to teams.

The Onyx pairs with its smartphone app, allowing you to converse one-on-one with people on your list, or even to groups. With its own built-in speakers and microphone, the slick device works via touch-to-communicate, much like a Star Trek Communicator Badge (exactly like a ComBadge!) and can be muted by just rotating the dial. Available in a pack of twos (and with the most eye-catching gradients on the face), the Onyx is great for communicating naturally (because who makes phone calls these days). Its spontaneous, on-the-spot communicating platform helps you talk to anyone, anywhere on the planet, instantaneously! The future is officially here, ladies and gentlemen… and it looks good!

Designer: Orion Labs

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A walking (joy)stick for the blind!

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Design for so many people is such a visual medium, one must ask oneself… If you remove sight from the design experience, does it still remain a good product? I find designing for the visually impaired quite an interesting domain, because they experience products in a way we don’t, or more importantly, cant. Try doing whatever it is you’re doing right now (eating a meal, perhaps) with your eyes closed. It’s a completely different experience that most people may not be comfortable with.

The Cloudandco Smart Cane by Brandon and Max takes on the challenge of designing a product with an experience that is far from visual. The ergonomic smart cane comes as just a joystick handle with an automatic telescoping stick that shoots out when switched on. However, the walking stick doesn’t stop there. It connects to an app on the smartphone, actually guiding the user to destinations they set. The Smart Cane can give off vibration and audio feedback, guiding its user to their destination. Users can toggle through destinations using a button on the top. There’s even a braille panel on the back that can communicate with the user.

The Smart Cane takes its non-visual experience further by allowing the users to charge it wirelessly. Instead of having them fiddle with ports and cables, the Smart Cane can just be placed on its charging pad and it automatically gets charged for when it’s required next!

Designers: Brandon Cooke & Max Dahl

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An ‘Egg’cellent idea

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A good idea can save a species! What you’re looking at above is a remarkable replica of a sea turtle egg. Why would one need to make a replica of an egg? Well…

Sea turtles are facing a massive poaching problem. Already having to deal with our polluted oceans, most sea turtle species are hunted for their shells, their meat, and the eggs (which are considered an aphrodisiac and a delicacy in some culture). The Investeggator (love the name!) is a sea turtle egg replica, designed to absolutely match its texture, feel, appearance, dimensions, and weight of real sea turtle eggs. However, this 3D printed egg is fitted with a GPS, and is placed in the nests of sea turtles. The GPS in the decoy egg helps track the batch of eggs in case they get illegally poached by humans. The GPS helps lead organizations to the poachers directly, thanks to a rather clever idea, 3D printing, and some pretty basic technology, and in turn helps save not just one, but multiple species of sea turtle… for in the words of Dr. Seuss, “And the turtles of course… all turtles are free, as turtles and, maybe, all creatures should be”.

Designer: Paso Pacifico Conservación

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The Best Quality Around for Sound

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Associated with the highest of character, the crème-de-la-crème of electronic magnificence – Leica has established themselves as the brand synonymous with quality photography. The signature characteristics of Leica are hard to replicate, but Abby Chan has made it seem effortless with her Leica-X Wireless Headphones Concept. Chan toyed with material choices and finishes all throughout this concept that falls right in line with Leica – the knurling and mesh patterns, the accents of red used as interaction indicators and of course the timeless, elegant Leica logo on the rear of both earbuds. The flexible shoulder rest for these headphones is a smart move here, indicating the quality aspect of the audio device while using robust and thick strain reliefs on the cable as it enters each earbud. There are some nice interaction crossovers here in the form of the twist dials located on either end of the shoulder rest – one is used to control the volume while the other manages the equalizer for the best quality output.

Designer: Abby Chan

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Nikon AF-P DX Nikkor 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Review

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The Nikon AF-P DX Nikkor 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR is a very affordable ultra-wide-angle zoom lens for DX-format digital SLR cameras. This lens provides an effective focal range of 15-30mm, features quiet and fast auto-focusing, offers 3.5 stops of Vibration Reduction, and is very lightweight and compact. Read our in-depth Nikon AF-P DX Nikkor 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR review complete with full-size sample images…