Ever wonder how Google shoots 360º pictures for Maps’ Street View? OK, it’s not with a Bublcam, but close enough. Using sophisticated stitching software and four 190º camera lenses set around an aluminum tetrahedral design, Bublcam boasts zero blindspots, capturing literally everything around it simultaneously – up, down, and all around – to shoot 1080p videos at 15fps (720p at 30fps) or 14MP photos. The resulting photos and videos are interactive in that the point of view can be changed in the fly while watching on your computer or smartphone. Future Oculus rift compatibility is just icing on the cake.
Need? Not exactly, but that won’t stop us from seriously wanting NiqueGeek’s Batman Branding Iron. 3D printed of steel, this miniature branding iron boasts the Dark Knight’s insignia and simply snaps onto standard, ubiquitous Bic lighters. Then, just light up the flame, hold it for 60 to 90 seconds, and get to branding. Some suggested targets include notebooks, leather, and anything made of wood – though we’re certain that, given one, there won’t be any shortage of things to brand.
Find it at NiqueGeek’s Etsy page – $30
The end of summer is rapidly approaching. Stave it off some – or die trying – with a pair of Vintage 1946′s Snappers. These soft, washed-out cotton shorts convey a laid back demeanor and sit boldly above the knee for taking in those hot summer days. They also feature a functioning button and zip fly, side and back pockets for stashing your gear, and belt loops for accessorizing, though passing on one won’t hurt thanks to its elastic waistband.
Find them here - $55
Presented by Vintage 1946.
Sticking your phone in a bulky, ugly plastic case that then straps to your bike isn’t our idea of a decent mount. Studio Proper’s take on it is a little more our style. Precision machined from solid aluminum, the M Lock replaces your bike’s existing stem cap, making it harder to steal without specific tools, centering your device, and adjusting to attain your ideal angle. Better yet, it works with Proper’s M Lock iPhone case (which is compatible with a ride range of their accessories), firmly and instantly securing the latter using four powerful Neodymium magnets in either portrait or landscape orientation. And should adverse weather interrupt your ride, just wrap your iPhone in the included weatherproof sock to keep it safe and dry.
Learn more at Studio Proper – $60
Instagram’s simplicity is paramount to its success and widespread adoption. That said, Hyperlapse is bound to follow suit. This app, crafted by the former, employs Instagram’s impressive in-house image stabilization to create smooth, polished time lapse videos even while in motion: for instance, during a jog or on the back of a motorcycle. Just download the app, tap to start recording, tap again to stop, choose a speed from 1x to 12x, then save to your camera roll. And - importantly – you can just as easily share your time lapses with your Instagram followers as you could a picture.
Download a copy from iTunes – $Free
We don’t say this lightly: since occasional flats are inevitable and would otherwise leave cyclists stranded, virtually everybody who bikes long distances needs a portable pump. And as it turns out, there’s no need to stash one in your pack or on the frame, since your bike likely sports a storage compartment for one already: the hollow Shimano axle between your cranks. CrankPump makes full use of this space, screwing in to replace the standard axle cover. When a flat occurs, just unscrew CrankPump, remove and use the red and blue TireZip levers to unzip the tire, then inflate the new tube using CrankPump’s CO2 canister to 90 PSI – more than enough to head home.
Hit up Kickstarter for details – $25
Experts tell us that it takes 30 repetitions for the human brain to remember a given sequence of data. Human experience tells us that 30 minutes is enough time to forget said sequence. If you’ve ever forgotten a combination to a lock or misplaced a key – and who hasn’t? – Noke is the answer. Noke is the first Bluetooth padlock and the first padlock you can share. Using its iOS or Android app, Noke finds and pairs your Bluetooth 4.0 enabled smartphone. Then, unlock Noke at the touch of the lock’s shackle: just have your phone within 10 feet of your lock, without having to launch its app or even pull your phone out of your pocket. The app also allows for sharing the lock permanently, one-time, or anything in between. Even if your phone battery dies you’re not locked out, since Noke allows a custom access code to be programmed for access anytime, inputted by pressing on the shackle in a sort of Morse code. And since the technical prowess of a lock is moot if it can’t stand up to abuse, Noke is water-resistant, made of hardened steel and boron, and lasts up to a year on a single battery.
Find it at Kickstarter – $59
Umpteen trackers exist to quantify various elements of your lifestyle: steps taken, sleep quality, posture, and the like. But by far the most interesting in recent memory is Spire. Clip this soft, stone-like device to your belt (or bra) and it instantly starts analyzing your breathing patterns in real time, giving deeper insights into your various states of mind, for instance whether you’re focused, calm or tense. If you seem stressed, Spire attempts to pull you out of it by pushing notifications to your smartphone, discouraging shallow breathing by making you focus and concentrate on taking deeper ones. And when its 7-day battery runs out, drop it onto the included cork-lined Qi charging pad for a quick top-up.
Learn more at Spire – $120
Can your watch capture the revolution of the earth while making you cognizant of time’s fleeting passage, pinpointing the location of the sun at a glance? The UNO 24 is a new, innovative watch that brings the wearer closer to understanding the 4th dimension. On the UNO’s face the entire day is displayed with a single hand completing a revolution every 24 hours. That one hand transforms the idea of minutes and hours into an ever-changing tempis event: one glance lets you see how much of the day has passed and how much is to come. A single delicate line marks one day’s transition to the next, and at that precise moment, the date jumps forward to announce the new day. Even more impressive is the accuracy with which one can tell time with this piece. Using the special scale on the UNO’s face, a wearer can tell the time to within five minutes and even more precisely after a short period of familiarization.
Find it at Botta Design – roughly $460
The Sphelar Solar Flashlight is as much a work of art as it is a tool, and then some. This gorgeous minimalist’s flashlight features a translucent tail end packed with spherical solar cells that capture the sun’s rays from all directions, simplifying charging. Top one off and it’s good for four hours of lighting. It also boasts a lanyard hole for hanging, and comes with a wooden base that holds it upright while charging.
Find it at the MoMA Store – $150
Swing Bin is the stunning result of tireless effort, thought, and passion poured into a seemingly mundane everyday object like the trash can. A two piece design, Swing Bin consists of a wooden lid and ABS can - white with maple or black with walnut – that come together with no hinge, mechanism, or moving parts of any kind. Instead, the cleverly balanced lid sits on a slight cutout in the tube, swinging down when pressed before closing slowly with a light, satisfying click. And while it won’t hold a trash bag, relegating it to recycling or cleaner waste duties, its crevasse-free design and cover that comes right off greatly simplifies cleaning should the need arise.
Pledge at Kickstarter – $65+