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Smart Textiles Company Creates World’s First Musical Tablecloth

If you’ve secretly been perfecting your table drumming skills, now is the time to show off. Thanks to this unique musical tablecloth developed by Swedish company ‘Smart Textiles’, you can entertain your dinner guests with your musical prowess. The one-of-a-kind fabric has a drum kit and piano keys printed on it, which actually produce musical sounds when pressed!

Li Guo and Mats Johansson, the brains behind the company, explained that making a musical tablecloth is all about using sensors. While Mats is passionate about music, Li has a doctorate in textile sensors and is studying ways to integrate them into garments. So they put their heads together to combine Li’s research and Mat’s ideas, and came up with the innovative tablecloth.

“We wanted to combine sound and textiles and visualise the possibilities of textile sensors in a fun way,” Mats said. “Since I’m interested in music, we decided to create a musical tablecloth.”

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How India’s “Menstruation Man” Changed the Lives of Millions of Women

Meet Arunachalam Muruganantham, an award-winning social entrepreneur from Coimbatore, India, better known as the nation’s ‘Menstruation Man’. Deeply disturbed by the unhygienic menstruation practices among women in rural India, Muruganantham took it upon himself to find a solution to the problem. After several years of hard work, he invented a machine that women can use to produce their own sanitary napkins, at less than a third of the cost of commercial ones.

Born in 1962 to handloom weavers in Coimbatore, Muruganantham was forced to drop out of school at age 14 to provide for his family after his father’s death. For years he lived in poverty, working a number of jobs – machine tool operator, farm laborer, welder, and sales agent – just to make ends meet. But things were about to change soon after his marriage to a woman named Shanthi, in 1998. He discovered that his wife used filthy rags during her menstrual cycle because they couldn’t afford to buy sanitary pads, and this troubled him greatly.

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IKEA-Style Home Can Be Built in 4 Days Using Only a Screwdriver

French architecture firm Multipod Studio has come up with a revolutionary housing prototype – the PopUp House. This unique dwelling comes in the form of stackable blocks that anyone can put together IKEA style, using only a screwdriver. It’s supposedly as easy as building with Legos.

The company unveiled their PopUp House design in 2014, but was once again picked up by several media outlets last month, and since we missed the initial launch two years ago, we decided it was a good opportunity to include this amazing concept in our Architecture collection.

The PopUp House prototype, located in Aix-in-Provence, is a 1,614-square foot structure with an open layout – the living room is connected to a kitchen, dining area, and terrace. It also includes two bathrooms, an office, a master bedroom, and two smaller bedrooms. It doesn’t sound any different than a conventional house, but what really makes the PopUp House special is the construction process, which only takes four days and only requires an electric screwdriver.

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Bicycle Washing Machine Will Clean Your Clothes While You Exercise

Laundry workouts might soon be the new fitness trend, thanks to a new invention by a group of students at China’s Dalian National University. They’ve created a washer that’s powered by a stationary bike, and they’re calling in ‘b.w.m’ (short for Bike Washing Machine).

“Riding a bike is a popular exercise, washing laundry is something that you might do on a daily basis or at least once a week, so why not combine them into a single useful equipment/appliance,” the makers wrote on Tuvie, a blog dedicated to tech innovations.

The clothes fit into a large drum positioned at the bottom of the stationary exercise bike “When you ride this bike, the pedaling motion causes the drum of the washing machine to rotate, at the same time, the superfluous electricity is generated which can be used to power the display screen or stored for future use.”

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Scottish Company Launches Made-to-Measure Bulletproof Furniture

In light of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris an other parts of the world, Scottish company Osdin Shield has come up with a new bespoke range of bulletproof sofas and chairs. These made-to-measure pieces will come with armor-plating sewn into the cushions, ensuring ballistic protection during a shooting.

“Unexpected gun attacks are becoming more and more frequent all over the world,” founder Darren Osdin said. “We designed the furniture with the natural human reaction to unexpected gunfire in mind: to duck and hide behind a barrier.” So in the event of a firearm attack in a hotel or any other indoor public space, people can immediately dive behind Osdin Shield sofas for cover.

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These Gravity-Defying Sneakers Simulate the Feeling of Walking on the Moon

Thanks to these new sneakers, you don’t need to wait for space tourism to take off to experience walking on the moon. Aptly named ‘MoonWalker’, these shoes rely on magnets to allegedly simulate walking in a low-gravity environment. 

On their Indiegogo campaign page, startup Moonshine Crea reveals that the ingenious shoes are made from an “incredibly durable yet soft and breathable” synthetic fabric on the outside, while the inside is made of a DuPont Tyvek synthetic polyethylene used by NASA in space station modules. The sole, made of memory foam, is designed to perfectly fit the unique shape of each wearer’s foot.

So far the shoes seem like regular sneakers, but what sets the 20:16 MoonWalkers apart are the two special layers hidden beneath the memory foam, which are embedded with the world’s most powerful magnets . According to the company, “each layer is made up of powerful N45 magnets that are strategically placed so the north poles face each other. This creates a repellant force, which leaves you light on your feet and happy as an astronaut.”

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Artist Creates Swallowable ‘Audiopill’ That Creates a Rave inside Your Body

Czech artist Jan Poope has created an “experimental art device” that allows you to pretty much ingest music and experience it from within your body. All you need to do is swallow the ‘Audiopill’ and wait for it to take effect.

The Audiopill is ingested orally and creates “a feeling like you are standing in the middle of a concert hall with a powerful audio-system” inside your own body. According to Poope’s Indiegogo page, the pill comes in three preset beats – 95 BPM (No Pussy Blues), 130 BPM (Die Antwoord), and 143 BPM (M.I.A). Once ingested, it will take an hour to travel through the upper section of your gastrointestinal tract. Then the fireworks begin, with a “very intensive” pain in your pelvic area that could make you “regret your experimental courage.” When the pain dies down, a “beating pulse” will take effect in your abdomen, creating mixed feelings of “restlessness, amazement, and elation.”

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Google Engineer Turns His Bathroom Mirror into Futuristic High-Tech Device

When you’re an engineer at Google, you really don’t need to wait around for someone else to invent the products you want to use. Max Braun, for instance, went ahead and made a smart-mirror for his bathroom, using simple, easily available supplies. The otherwise rudimentary accessory has now become a notification center of sorts, displaying the time, date, weather forecast, and latest news headlines.

Remember the smart mirror that greeted Arnold Schwarzenegger and showed him his daily schedule in the 2000 sci-fi flick The 6th Day? Well, like other futuristic inventions showcased in movies, it has become a real thing. And it turns out that all there is to it is the smart use of a two-way mirror, a display panel and a controller board among a few other secondary components and arts & crafts supplies. Braun has provided links to all the supplies he used, and also a brief description of the build process, but in a nut shell the display behind the two-way mirror is connected to an Amazon Fire TV Stick, using a mini controller board. The Fire TV Stick runs the software, while the board is also connected to a power button and green LED.

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Innovative Wearable Chair Lets You Sit While You’re Standing

If your job involves standing for several hours at a time, then this innovative Archelis chair is just the productyou’ve been waiting for. The strap-on wearable chair effectively enables you sit while you’re standing.

Technically, Archelis isn’t really a chair. It’s more like a leg brace that wraps around your buttocks and legs, helping you choose a stance that’s more comfortable than standing upright. You can lock the device at various positions to adjust the angle of your ankle and knee joints. Once you select the position of your choice, you’ll experience the relaxation of sitting without actually being seated. The device distributes the pressure over your shin and thigh, reducing overall muscle and joint fatigue.

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UK Company Is Growing Furniture by Molding Trees into Chairs, Tables or Lamps

Money might not grow on trees, but it seems that furniture does! Gavin Munro, a UK-based designer, has come up with a brilliant alternative to chopping beautiful trees and converting them into furniture. He simply molds young saplings to take the shape of any piece of furniture he wants. Once matured, the trees are ready to be harvested and used with no cutting, sawing, or assembling required.

Munro, who runs a company called ‘Full Grown’, said he wants to “rethink our relationship with trees and time.” His idea is to get rid of environmentally unfriendly practices involved in the mass manufacture of furniture, and replace it with a much easier process.

“When you look at it from a manufacturing point of view and from a design point of view, it actually makes total sense. Why would you grow trees, chop them down with all the faff?” he questioned. “Why don’t you just grow the shape you want and it is eminently scalable? You can make thousands of these in the same way as you can make 10, but each one is unique.”

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Indonesian “Iron Man’ Allegedly Builds Brainwave-Controlled Robotic Arm from Scrap

Wayan Sutawan is being hailed as Indonesia’s very own Iron Man after building a robotic device that he claims can read signals from his brain allowing him to control his paralyzed left arm.

This literally unbelievable story started six months ago, when Sutawan suffered a stroke that left him with a paralyzed arm. Having studied a bit of mechanical engineering in high school, the father-of-three spent the next couple of months working on a robotic arm using spare parts that were just lying around in his garage. He finally created a strap-on mechanism for his paralyzed limb connected to a headband that he claims reads his brainwaves and transmits commands.

In a video report by Indonesia’s Kompas TV, Sutawan is seen strapping the device on to his left arm and covering his left hand with a thick rubber glove. He then puts on the headband, and after a moment’s concentration, the arm miraculously jerks to life. He is then able to use the paralyzed hand to perform delicate tasks. He’s also able to lift up to 10 kilograms of weight with the device on his left arm.

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Japanese Company Wants to Sell You These Awesome Levitating Bonsai Trees

Bonsai – the art of growing miniature trees in shallow pots – is pretty cool in itself, but a Japanese company is taking it to the next level with ‘Air Bonsai’an invention that has the miniature trees levitate and rotate about half an inch above their pots.

Considering how mindblowing the effect is, it’s easy to mistake Air Bonsai for an optical illusion, but it is in fact quite real. Hoshinchu, the company developing the product, apparently wanted to incorporate elements of our galaxy into the idea of miniature plants. So their creation consists of two main components – ‘little star’ and ‘energy base’.

The little star is a levitating moss ball that you can transplant any bonsai plant into. It also has a rotating mechanism that runs on an AC adaptor. The energy base is made of Imari, a traditional Japanese porcelain art. It conducts magnetic energy that makes the plant float. The system is similar to the one used in OM/ONE speakers. “Each Air Bonsai is unique,” the page states, “ranging from elegant flowering plants, bold ‘matsu’ (pines), to delightful mosses.”

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World’s First Caffeinated Toothpaste Jolts You Awake and Prevents Cavities

If you find that you simply cannot start your day without a caffeine fix, but can’t stand the aftertaste of coffee, this toothpaste is just the thing for you. Invented by American entrepreneur Dan Meropol, Power Energy Toothpaste is the world’s first caffeinated toothpaste, designed to give people that much needed morning boost as well as keep their teeth squeaky clean.

Meropol, a Brown University graduate, said he was disturbed to learn that only fifty percent of Americans floss daily, and fifty percent brush only once a day. So he was trying to come up with ways to inspire people to take better care of their teeth, when his friend Ian suggested a caffeinated toothpaste.

At first, Meropol figured that a caffeinated toothpaste must already exist, but he was shocked to learn that no one had ever thought of it before. So he decided to run with the idea and started formulating a special blend of his own. He eventually came up with Power Toothpaste, which provides an instant hit of caffeine that’s absorbed through the gums and mouth.

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Japanese Researchers Creates Electric Fork That Alters the Taste of Food

Did you know electricity can alter the way we taste food? Proving this fact is a revolutionary electric fork designed by Japanese researchers that can make any dish taste salty, thus acting as a substitute for the popular seasoning.

According to Hiromi Nakamura, a Post Doc Research Fellow at Tokyo’s Meiji University, the technology can be very useful for people on special diets. Patients with low blood pressure, for instance, can easily go on a low-salt diet and still enjoy delicious food. And with the fork, there’s absolutely no risk of over-salting your food. Luckily, the voltage is so small that there is no risk of electrocution either.

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The World’s Smallest Nightclub Is the Size of a Phone Booth

‘Teledisko’, the world’s smallest disco, is probably the most exclusive party place you can find. Started by German telecommunications company Deutsche Telekom, the nightclub – a repurposed phone booth located in the Berlin’s trendy Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg district – can only accommodate two people at a time.

The coin-operated entry ensures that no one but you and your chosen friends can  access the bright yellow party booth. Inside, Teledisko has all the trimmings of a proper nightclub – a smoke machine, stroboscope, light effects, a disco ball, dry ice, and a touchscreen that lets you select and play your favorite music. The cramped interiors might prevent you from taking selfies, but the booth comes with a built-in camera that takes pictures and records videos of your unforgettable night.

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