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Newton's cradle 2.0

Sure, the Newton's cradle reigns supreme as the world's most mesmerizing desktop toy. But if you're looking for a replacement, we've a lot of ideas. 

Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured in this gallery.

Take ScienceGeek's twist on the classic office toy: It changes color as the suspended LED-light balls swing. 

Published:Caption:Photo:ScienceGeek/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Advertise a tiny car wash

You won't be able to look away from this wiggling-tube man as he dances the day away. One review describes him as "someone you can really count on."

Published:Caption:Photo:RP Minis/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Fidget in style

A fidget spinner for the professional who still fidgets, this grown-up toy promises brass gears, an aluminum frame -- and lots of spin time.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Wewinn/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Have a ball

This is not just another magnetic-ball set. This is a set of 216 Magneballs magnetic balls that you can use as a stress-reliever, or as an excuse to make a TIE fighter.  

Published:Caption:Photo:MagneBalls/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Who do you love?

On Doctor Who, the Adipose might have been useless, lumpen, space-alien creatures, but in the office, a toy version makes for a fine -- and squeezable -- stress toy. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Underground Toys/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Coffee mate

Put Sunnytech's Stirling-engine contraption on top of your morning mug of hot coffee, and watch it whirl and hear it clink. When it stops, you'll know your beverage has reached a pleasing drinking temperature. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Sunnytech/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Magnetic decision maker

Can't decide whether to blow off that meeting? Ask Kikkerland's handy magnetic decision maker. (Just make sure it's a yes or no question.) 

Published:Caption:Photo:Kikkerland/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Get in tip-top shape

If you're wound up like a top, then unwind with this premium spinning top. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Bruce Charles Designs/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Play tiny cornhole

You'll never get anything done at the office again when you start challenging your colleagues to tiny cornhole. We're sorry, and you're welcome.

Published:Caption:Photo:RP Minis/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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A totally useless-but-fascinating box

Per its manufacturer, Willcomes, this wooden box doesn't do anything, except dare you to turn it on, whereupon it turns itself off. Hours of good, brain-restorative fun.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Willcomes/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Get in the flow

Hey, it's a kinetic flow ring! Um, what's a kinetic flow ring? Allow Digital Energy to explain: "Think of it as a Slinky for your arm."

Published:Caption:Photo:Digital Energy/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Need coffee, stat!

This 350-milliliter beaker mug from ThinkGeek will make your morning coffee fun, as opposed to just brain-stimulating.  

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The whole Ball of Whacks

This think piece, developed by veteran workplace creativity consultant Roger von Oech is a 30-sided polyhedron that's assembled from 30 tiny magnetic pyramids and can be reassembled in almost any way you can, well, think of.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Creative Whack/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Cool, man

It spins. It hums. It fascinates. It's a Euler's Disk, and it'll space you out in a good way. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Toysmith/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Ding! Ding!

Is it coffee time at your work station or is it cocktail hour? Make things perfectly clear with this fun update on the classic call bell. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Knock Knock/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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For when you need some big balls

What's so special about these magnetic metal balls from Speks, sold in sets of five? They're big: Each ball is more than one inch in diameter. Take that, paperclip clutter! 

Published:Caption:Photo:Speks/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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This helpful robot

Mebo 2.0: Get us an energy drink, you 12-inch-tall, interactive, app-controlled, office-friendly robot, you! We can literally watch you run errands for us all day. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Sky Viper/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Ahoy!

Set your career course -- or dream of the open seas -- with this brass sextant. (And, yes, it works.) 

Published:Caption:Photo:Collectibles Buy/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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This noble knight to hold thine pen

This noble knight pen holder isn't just handy (pen included!); it's also nice to gaze upon.  

Published:Caption:Photo:JM-capricorns/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Take out your tiny aggression

Everyone gets frazzled at work. But you'll be the only one with this set of finger-sized boxing mitts and matching desktop punching bag to take out your stress, punch by tiny punch.

Published:Caption:Photo:RP Minis/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Light it up

Crazy Aaron's specializes in what it calls thinking putty. We like Crazy Aaron's Strange Attractor variety because, one, it's magnetic, two, it comes with a magnet, three, the magnet makes the putty sparkle, and four, we just know it'll make us the talk of the office.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Crazy Aaron's/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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It's retro time

Why have apps tell you when your next meeting is, when you can keep time on this 6-inch tall steampunk-styled, diving-bell-shaped (with octopus!) clock. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Veronese/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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All keyed up

Bring old-fashioned pizzazz to your desk with this tablet-stand-equipped, USB-powered mechanical keyboard that looks like a typewriter -- right down to the (programmable) return bar.

Published:Caption:Photo:Qwerkytoys/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Strike!

Got an executive-size desk? Call a meeting and make the middle managers watch you go for a strike on GoSports' nearly four-foot-long desktop bowling set.

Published:Caption:Photo:GoSports/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Meet your new office friend

If you're tired of high-tech AI assistants, then let this old-school retro robot sculpture from Uncommon Goods keep you company and class up your desk.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Uncommon GoodsDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Just the refraction, ma'am

Confuse and dazzle the office cat -- or maybe the intern -- with this four-inch-tall desktop prism.

Published:Caption:Photo:OwnMy/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Keys to cool

This laser-projected Serafim Keybo virtual keyboard actually works, and it leaves plenty of room on your desk for that four-foot desktop bowling alley.

Published:Caption:Photo:Serafim/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Fun with ferrofluid

Take iron-rich fluid, put it in a bottle, add two magnets to the outside of the bottle and what do you get? Peaks and patterns reminiscent of the black oil on The X-Files, all courtesy Mokiki's bottled ferrofluid.

Published:Caption:Photo:Mokiki/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Swingin'

Is perpetual motion possible? You'll think so if you gaze long enough at this swinging-sticks desktop toy. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Fortune Products/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Take a whack

Those long, arduous conference calls will be so much more lively when you have this tiny tetherball game on your desk to distract you.

Published:Caption:Photo:RP Minis/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Ballin'

These 12 interconnected wooden balls are like a toddler toy for precocious VPs.

Published:Caption:Photo:Playable Art/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Bombs away

The Da Vinci Trebuchet engine lets you lob a soft clay ball right into your officemate's coffee mug. Theoretically, anyway.

Published:Caption:Photo:Pathfinders/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Earth globes are so 20th century

Get out of this world with a solar-powered, rotating Jupiter globe by MOVA. 

Published:Caption:Photo:MOVA/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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This Earth globe is so 21st century

You can see the world from the comfort of your desk chair with this gravity-defying globe. It gently rotates as it floats over its base.

Published:Caption:Photo:Liberty Imports/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Makes work a beach

It ain't Waikiki, but this stylish miniature beach (or Zen garden!) may de-stress you... if you have a really, really good imagination.

Published:Caption:Photo:Kenley/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Give it a twirl

This arty helicone works like this: Twist the thin brass tube back and forth, and the 38 laser-cut wood pieces swirl rhythmically into a pine-cone shape.

Published:Caption:Photo:Playable Art/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Making moves

Powered by the sun (or indoor light), this desk-friendly motion machine will work until it gets dark. You know, kind of like you.

Published:Caption:Photo:Solarbotics/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Shape-shifters

Atop their magnetic base, these balls will bend to your executive will. Shape them as you see fit! 

Published:Caption:Photo:G-WACK/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Space toy

If you've ever wondered how a sliding fidget toy would work on the moon or Mars, this fidget toy by Moondrop is for you.

Published:Caption:Photo:Cool Fidget/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Mind-bender

This kinetic, golf-ball-size aluminum sphere promises a satisfying continuous helix (or the illusion of one) when spun on its base. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Lonma via AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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We lava this one

Turn this egg-shaped, liquid-filled paperweight over on its base and watch its red sand make like a lava flow. You'll probably put papers on your desk in order to have an excuse to expense this.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Ideas In Life/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Flipping through time

Turn off your mind, and watch the time go by in style with this hourglass flip clock from Uncommon Goods. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Uncommon GoodsDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Pin it

Anybody can put a pin in an idea. With this desk toy, you can put your hand, head or whatever into metal pins (and make art while you're at it). 

Published:Caption:Photo:ifavor123/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Still shopping?

Once you've bought all your new mesmerizing desk toys, cart them around in another one: a miniature metal shopping cart with four working, rolling wheels. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Shindel/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Very small skee-ball

Turn your desk into an itty-bitty arcade. Prizes not included.

Published:Caption:Photo:RP Minis/AmazonDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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