After last month’s focus on smartphones, we got to thinking: what about the unpresuming printer? The simple spectacle? By way of reparation, we’ve turned our eye this month to those innovators reinventing our favourite accessories and accoutrements
Tzukuri – the sunglasses with an in-built solar-powered iBeacon – are a perfect demonstration of how wearable technology solves problems without needing to be intrusive. Accidentally leave these stylish shades in a bar and they’ll ping you, reminding you where you left them. They’re also smart enough to know when you’re at home or work so you won’t get a message every time you take them off your head. And as it works on an iBeacon, there’s no need to keep the app open in the background and constantly waste precious phone juice in the process.
One of the principles of minimalist design is cutting back all that is superfluous to create truly iconic items reduced solely to their necessary elements. Komono has taken this to an extreme with its watch The One. Not only does it scoff at the usual swarm of complications that timepieces are plastered with but it has done away with both second and minute hands, leaving a face that is pointedly uncluttered.
Given almost every piece of tech we use kicks out a huge quantity of electromagnetic waves as a by-product, finding ways to put this wastage to good use is a worthwhile endeavour indeed. Lunecase is one of the most novel uses we’ve seen: powered purely by the EM waves emitted by your phone, this smart case picks up incoming message and call signals before your phone has even woken from its slumber, letting you see whether you’ve got love ahead of time without unsightly connections or battery drain.
LIX isn’t the first product to position itself as a 3D printing pen but it most definitely is the smallest and most compact. For those more at home with graphite than graphics software, LIX allows creative types to doodle freehand in thin air, building up 3D structures and artworks without needing to spend hours sat behind a monitor. And the results are really rather impressive, both in terms of versatility and strength, something evidently shared by its supporters: at the time of writing, it had almost amassed 25 times’ its Kickstarter goal, drawing in more than £730,000 of backing.
Need to print A0 blueprints without tracking down a room-sized industrial printer or whip up a contract in a coffee shop? This little droid from ZUtA Labs will work his way across a page of any size and get your docs run up no matter where you are. Having just successfully completed its Kickstarter pitch, the first model of Pocket Printer should be getting sped up and shrunk down before its commercial release, meaning its only going to get quicker and cuter from here on out.