Geeks Gone Wild During Bad Economy: Gadgets You May Not Know About

You may know a lot about gadgets, but, unless you have been actively researching the geek market, there are a few you may not know about. Many of these objects are more like toys for grown men and women, but there are a few you can put to real use, depending on your job, hobbies, and interests. This story will focus on these specific gadgets.

Do you have an office job, work at a cubicle, or simply need some privacy about your computer usage? The Stealth Switch might be the tool for you. Plug it in your computer, place it on the ground near your foot, configure the software and start using your machine the way you really want to. When danger approaches, simply tap the switch with said foot and your game window disappears, even from the taskbar. As soon as the threat is gone, tap the Stealth Switch once more and your devious procrastination software is back. Perfect for the addicted gamer as well as the gift-shopping spouse and the job-hunting executive.

Do you need a WiFi signal, but are irritated by stopping every few meters to see if there is one, and, when you finally find one, to realize that you cannot connect to it? That is what WiFi detectors are for. If yours is advanced enough, it might even display the security information necessary to determine whether or not you can connect to that signal. It is an ideal tool for those who travel with their laptop and for gamers looking for a multiplayer quick fix on a handheld console.

If you happen to be a driver and also happen to drink from time to time, you might sometime wonder on which side of the legal limit you stand. As it turns out, alcohol detectors are not simply for police officers; you can also carry one around, when visiting friends and family, to make sure that you will not endanger anyone when you sit behind that wheel. Accuracy may vary with the model, but, if you are close to the limit, simply do not risk it. Had to put that in. Also, supposing that saving lives is not powerful enough an incentive for you, it will keep you from being arrested.

Did you hear that? It is a mysterious and annoying beeping sound which occurs every few minutes, but always after a different lap of time. If you do, you might be the latest victim of the Annoy-a-tron, a device invented to drive people up the wall. About as large as two quarters, the Annoy-a-tron can easily be hidden for best results. Is this story not about actually useful gadgets, do you ask? Well, it has its uses. For example, you might be competing for a promotion against someone in your office. The one who is able to work in an environment devoid of any maddening beeping device should produce much better results than the one who turns his whole work area upside down and then tries to ignore the sound with little to no success. Of course, NewsBlaze does not advise any such use, but the decision is entirely up to you.

You might have heard the term green many times these last few years. You might even be concerned about the state of our planet’s environment. Therefore, it is entirely conceivable that you would keep a close watch on your energy consumption. This is where the Kill-A-Watt device comes into play. Plug it into the wall and then plug any device into it and it will tell you its Kilowatt-hour usage. You can then tell just how efficient or inefficient your appliances are. You can also forecast their weight on your energy bill. So, whether you are green or greedy, this is a useful gadget to have around the house.

If you found this story in the High Tech section, there is a chance you take apart and put back together electronic hardware. These devices use some bolts and many screws. You might also need to use small metal tools for these operations. For you, there is the MagnoGrip, a magnetic wristband to which you can easily attach all of these small pieces without running the risk of losing them. Whether you are a custom computer enthusiast or a seasoned contractor, you will find the MagnoGrip a useful tool to keep handy, which is extremely easy as it fastens to your wrist.

You probably use a cell phone. In fact, you might be reading this story on your cell phone. However, if you are living far away from the source of your signal, your reception might only be a bar or two. To improve your situation, you do not need to move. Instead, you can get a cell phone signal extender for your home. You will have to mount the antenna close to a window with the help of a bracket, but that will be the only hard work you will have to do, unless you consider linking the antenna to the base with a coaxial cable hard work. When you are done, say hello to the five bars and goodbye to your dead zone.

If you have problems waking up, there is a solution for you: the Sonic Bomb Alarm with bed shaker. This alarm can sound up to 113 decibels, which is about as loud as a chainsaw you handle yourself. Of course, you can lower the volume if you do not need it to be that powerful, or you can turn it off entirely and use the bed shaker instead. Slip it under your mattress and you will be vibrated right out of your dreams. You can set the two together in case you are really hard to wake up and you will never miss a 7:00 meeting again (and, if you put in a backup battery, not even power failure will be able to stop you).

It is well-known that the average age of the population is rising. Most of you are thus older, but that is not a bad thing. It means that you have experienced more than your younger fellows, such as audio cassettes and vinyl records. If you have some of these lying around, you will be happy to know that you can buy USB turntables and cassette decks in order to play that old funky music, and even to store it to your hard drive or to newer media. It is true that most of the records have been converted to cassettes and then to compact discs, but these oldies have sentimental value. Somehow, they always sound better than the newer ones.

When putting videos on your iPod, it might feel awkward to have people on the subway and on the bus watching them with you. For more privacy, you can get the iPod video goggles. That way, you will be the only one to see your downloaded content as if you were looking at it on a 24-inch television set while sitting two meters away. When you are not using them, just keep them on to be the most advance-looking person around.

Now, your job might require you to set up a lot of macros on your keyboard, or that might just be your many online games. Whichever the case may be, your keyboard might be a risky place to use the Ctrl key. You could just leave it the way it is, or create an entirely new keyboard suited to your exact needs. It works by sticking keys on a blank slate and by programming them to do exactly what you want, making them either into simple letters or shortcuts designed to equip your staff and blast a bolt of lightning on your enemy’s head. The DX1 Input System could replace your current keyboard or become an additional one to assist you in your complicated technological work. It is surely the most versatile tool on this list.

Our final gadget might look a bit out of place in this story, but it could certainly be useful to many of you. It is nothing less than a portable photo studio. How many of you have used eBay before? It can be an incredible shopping website, but you might also want to use it to sell some unbidden gift from your godparents. A professional picture of said gift sitting in a 16-inch cube portable photo studio would certainly help you get it out of your closet for some cash. You might also want to showcase an art piece your daughter created or even to take tasteful pictures of rodents. The choice is yours, but, whatever you do, your pictures will look a lot better than if you were to use your floor or your floral wallpaper as a backdrop.

This concludes our story about useful gadgets you may not know about. However, now, you do. We hope that it was as interesting as it was entertaining, or vice versa. If one of these devices grabbed your intention or sent you dreaming about some other geeky invention, by all means, look for it. After all, there might be a gadget out there that will make your life much easier, or delightfully more complicated.

Source: ThinkGeek (