Pink bubbles and rubber ducks can get a little bit boring sometimes, even if they're unconventional rubber ducks. And not all of us can afford to install a Hydro-Massage Bathtub with a built-in TV. So how can you liven up the in-tub entertainment? Of course, the answer comes out of Japan. TokyoMango has written up these flashing bath balls that might just be able to elevate the common bath to an ethereal level. You fill these little guys with bath salts, put them in the tub, and they'll float and release the nice-smelling salts while flashing their lights. … Read more
There's a new buzz in the air at CES, and robotic toy company WowWee is creating it. The FlyTech Dragonfly is a remote-controlled dragonfly that can fly, flutter, swoop and crash with gusto. The little Styrofoam-and-plastic bug is thrown like a paper airplane, then controlled using the included Xbox 360 controller-like remote. Because it uses wings rather than a propeller to generate lift, it flies like an erratic airplane. While it's slightly harder to keep in the air and can't take off on its own, it's far easier to steer than spinout-prone remote-controlled mini-helicopters.
The Dragonfly … Read more
I wish I had a little yellow submarine that I could putz around in. Motorized would be optimal, but I could even deal with foot pedals, as long as it's a submarine and it's yellow. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find one within my price range, nor a piece of dock space where I could keep it securely stored, so I guess I will have to settle for this, which was featured on ShinyShiny. It's a fully-functional FM radio with a waterproof speaker, is powered by four AAA batteries, and it's designed to float … Read more
Home telephones are like TV sets of the '70s and '80s--except for the cordless breakthrough, technology has seen scant change compared with other consumer products. VTech wants to change that with its new "infoPhone" (not to be confused with the iPhone, thank you very much).
The landline handset is designed to handle many functions that most people reserve for the computer. As Gadgetell says, "The new ip8300 infoPhone uses the Internet to access information directly on the cordless handset's color LCD screen, including news headlines, weather reports, horoscopes, local directory searches and more"--all according … Read more
Speaking of parental duties, what kind of values does something like a toy ATM machine indicate? At least a play cash register implies some responsibilities, such as work, commerce and what it takes to buy something. But an ATM?
Hammacher Schlemmer claims that the toy "helps children learn money management as they maintain a savings account up to $999.99." Two points here: First, so far as we can tell, many kids think of ATMs only as machines that spit out money. Second, $999.99?? That says it all. Maybe the smarter ones will teach themselves how to … Read more
Here's yet another offline use for all of those digital photos you've been storing on Webshots, Flickr, iPhoto or the like.
The photo lunchbox from Ogg Studio is $35 for one photo, $45 if you want a photo on each side. Yes, each photo can be different. BabyGadget points out that kids love things with pictures of themselves; so maybe this is a good gift idea for one of the little egoists in your life. Ogg will also put artwork on the box.
Hopefully, you will find an image of something more inspirational than your dog or child … Read more
Toy guns have come a long way from the days of Nerf. This one, the Airsoft Submachine Gun featured on ThinkGeek, is about as far from those neon-green pistols as they get. It has freaking LASER SIGHT. And an illuminator flashlight built in. And it's so awesome, it comes with protective goggles. Not to mention the fact that it actually looks like a legitimate weapon, rather than something out of "The Jetsons."
Don't you love when innocent playground activities meld with extreme sports?
This is not the pogo stick of our childhoods. No, no, this one's inner compression spring generates more than 1,500 pounds of thrust capable of hurtling you seven feet in the air, which incidentally is the world record for pogoing set by--you guessed it--The Pneumatic Drive Highest-Jumping Pogo Stick. Air can be added by bike pump or air compressor … Read more
Was there anything cooler than an Erector Set when you were ten? Twenty?
Billed by Thames and Kosmos as a "computer systems engineering kit," the Microcontroller appeals to those same instincts for constructive adventure. It comes with circuits and prewritten programs that will allow you to turn ordinary objects into "smart objects."
Actually, this $150 toy for kids is also a cool way for adults to mess around and learn how to assemble circuits and write computer programs.
The microcontroller contains a computer processor, storage for memory, timers and ports. The kit comes with 100 programs … Read more
That irritating mosquito copter we wrote about earlier had better not run out of batteries around this thing, or it'll be squashed like the RC bug that it is.
Hammacher Schlemmer has come out with this all-terrain "screw-propelled remote control car" that would gleefully crush anything in its path. Why "screw-propelled," you ask? As any schoolboy knows, that refers to the technology used by the "Snowbird 6 vehicle that crossed the Bering Strait during the Ice Challenger British exploration expedition of 2002," according to the product literature. When constructed wisely, a pair of … Read more