3D printing technology is all the rage these days, but has anyone been able to explain to you what the point of it all really is? Well wonder no more! The point, as is so often the case with hi-tech gadgets, is pancakes. Design and print pancakes in shapes never thought possible before. What a time to be alive and hungry for breakfast.
Are you being watched as you read this? Is your every move being documented for later use against you in the form of blackmail or worse? Probably. And that paranoid friend who’s always going on and on about being watched? They’re most likely right too. But now there’s something they can do about it. With a hidden camera detector, they can foil the plans of even the most ingenious spies, rapscallions, government agents, and other invaders of privacy. A necessary weapon in the modern digital jungle.
When you were a kid, your mom probably told you not to sit so close to the TV — at least, if you were born way back before parents gave up on that sort of thing. Well, here is the Oculus Go, designed to be the ultimate in sticking it to your parents. It’s also the perfect gift for someone who loves big screen movies but hates sitting next to other people. Pretty much the most immersive personal entertainment system available, designed for people who want to be in the movie, not just watch it.
The DJI Osmo Pocket takes handheld personal videos to a whole new level. Sure, smartphones have always included video capabilities. But in case you haven’t noticed, the videos are so terrible as to be basically unusable. The Osmo Pocket’s main feature is its revolutionary stabilizing system, which allows even the clumsiest, shakiest, or drunkest person to create professional-quality videos. The only drawback? Whoever you buy this for is definitely going to think they’re Steven Freaking Spielberg, so get ready.
A long time ago, in the distant past, kids used to put baseball cards in the spokes of their wheels to turn their bikes into motorcycles. We’ve come a long way since then. Now, we modify our bikes to actually make them self-powered, not just sound like it. The GeoOrbital Wheel is super easy to install - just remove the front wheel of your bike and hook this thing up in its place, and the next thing you know, you’re leaving the other bikes in your dust.
The Echo Look turns Alexa into their very own personal style assistant. The desktop camera connects with a smartphone and takes full body shots (and even short videos), allowing them to see what they look like from all angles. The Echo Look also uses machine learning to provide feedback based on body type and the recommendations of top designers. It’s like kidnapping a top fashion expert and tying them up in their bedroom, but way more ethical.
With professional quality drones now becoming affordable, the average schlub can make cinema-quality videos for the first time in history. Those epic sky shots that used to be exclusively available to Hollywood-level film crews are attainable for anybody. All it takes is a simple drone copter like this one armed with a professional quality video camera. And this thing brings all kinds of mischief within the user’s reach, even the kind that might land them on the news. What more inspiration could a bored tech nerd need?
Ever since the introduction of the first 3d printer, the prevailing question on the minds of many has been, “I wonder if I could eat that.” The answer, as some found out the hard way, is almost always no. Now that’s all changing, as the technology has evolved to be edible, as all important technology eventually does. Because really, if you can’t ingest something, what’s the point of having it? After all, isn’t that why they call it “consumer technology?” Makes perfect sense to us.
Just give it to them. Don’t make a big deal about it, or give them diet books or a lecture or anything like that. They know. They have figured out for themselves that their body is not quite the well-tuned machine that it once was. Just give the Fitbit, and leave the rest to them.
Everyone, from Elon Musk to your next door neighbor, is straight-up terrified of the robot takeover, envisioning all kinds of post-apocalyptic horrors being visited upon us by our own creations. But then one of them offers to mow the lawn and everyone’s like, “Well, they can’t be that bad.” And it’s true - there might be a few bad apples coming down the assembly line, but you won’t find any in the lawn mower category. Just helpful, friendly, sort-of-intelligent mini landscapers who just want you to give them a place to lay low and recharge in between jobs. Nothing to be scared of here.
The Echo Spot might look like the Echo’s little cousin, but that doesn’t mean that it lacks in features. This is the all-in-one smart speaker with video screen for the space-conscious person on your gift list. It makes a great bedside alarm/smart home companion, and does virtually everything the full size echo can do, plus it makes video calls. So they can basically run their whole life without ever getting out of bed.
A desktop laser cutter is vying to become the modern power tool of choice for arts and crafts folk, along with anyone else who just likes making stuff. Download or create patterns to make all kinds of useful and decorative objects from a variety of materials, including metal, cardboard, plastic, wood, leather, and even food. And unlike traditional power tools, there’s absolutely no danger of hurting yourself with a desktop laser cutter, so it’s suitable for anyone, even ultra-clumsy people and adults who still haven’t learned to stop running with scissors.
At a certain point, when you have too much stuff, more things just don’t do it for you anymore. At that point, if you’re smart, you start investing in superpowers. And trust us on this: every single man on the planet was a kid once, and every one of those kids wanted the power to see in the dark. To go where other humans cannot, to walk among the wild nocturnal animals as an equal, and to hide from their parents. They may not need to hide from their parents anymore, but that doesn’t make night vision any less awesome.
If you're having a hard time figuring out what to get them, why not just let them create what they want themselves? These hand held 3D printers have advanced a lot since they were introduced and the prices have come down. Fair warning, you may end up getting some less than beautiful plastic gifts from them in return at your next holiday or birthday party.
Drawing on a computer has its advantages but will never have the feel of drawing with pencil and paper. This thingamajig bridges the gap between the physical and virtual worlds and enables artists to digitally edit and enhance their traditionally hand-drawn artwork. The “smartpad” captures drawings from actual paper, converts them to data, and sends them by bluetooth to any computer. The pad also works well with iOS and Android tablets or mobile devices.
It’s a little surprising that dash cams don’t come standard with all cars, because they’re quite useful. With one of these, they can record accidents, prevent insurance fraud, report weirdos, and publicly ridicule people’s vanity plates. And last but not least, they can even record every last inch of their road trip and mine the footage for Instagram posts. Because above all, the world must see where they’ve been.
Phones actually have more germs on them than a typical public restroom. This smart cleansing machine might not eliminate the dirty content sucking up the data on their phone, but it will be sure to return sterile swiping to their wired existence. Personal device hygiene should not be overlooked by today’s touch-screen fanatics. A high-tech disinfectant, this ingenuous accessory will decontaminate wireless communication and restore cleanliness to the digital age. Oh, and it also charges while it cleans!
New cars come loaded with all kinds of cool features like backup cameras, but what about the rest of us who are still cruising around in our 1998 Cavalier? We have to turn our heads around like some sort of caveman. No need to get left behind as the world races forward, this handy device attaches to any car with fairly minimal effort.
Make sure that they’re never caught short (of battery, at least) with this pocket-sized power pack that is perfect for their portable devices. This charger harnesses the power of the biggest battery in our solar system so they should never have an excuse for not returning your call.
The idea that your home appliances are now studying and learning your habits might sound a little creepy. But this thing is really only trying to save you money. And no matter what you heard, it can’t read your thoughts. Unless you want it to.
Some people are old school - they like to do things they way they’ve always done them - with pen and paper. For those who have yet to embrace to advantages of the digital world, an electronic notepad will at least eliminate the paper. They can still use the stylus to scribble notes that no one else can read, but at least there’s an electronic copy now.
The Ring Video Doorbell is an invaluable tool for anyone looking to avoid unnecessary human contact. Because whether it’s a door-to-door salesman, that weird kleptomaniac kid from next door, or your Mother-in-Law, answering the front door in person can lead to all kinds of awkward encounters and sometimes even property damage. This is the electronic doorman you’ve always dreamed of.
Knowledge is the lifeblood of commerce, and sharing knowledge is how the human race continues its noble march toward destruction. But these days, people would just as soon carry a stone tablet as a paperback. An Amazon Kindle is the best way to look smart in public without seeming like a relic.
The original smart speaker and still the reigning king (or queen) of the market, the Amazon Echo invented a new category and has been dominating it ever since. The Echo’s virtual assistant, Alexa, is kind of like Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey, except she’ll never kill your friends and lock you out of the house to die.
In our computer-crazy culture, one of the most overworked parts of many people’s bodies is their eyes. It’s enough of a problem that some people would probably consider hiring a full-time eye massager if they could afford it, and if those people actually existed. But once again, here comes technology to save us from the damage created by other technology. This may look like a virtual reality headset, but there’s nothing virtual about it. Real heat, real massage, and real soothing music make it an invaluable tool for recovering from a hard day of sitting there and staring at the abyssal depths of the internet.
If they're the type that's always scribbling notes, then they're the type that has a pile of them forgotten on their desk. Help get things organized with this bluetooth pen that saves a digital copy of everything they write.
For centuries artisans have toiled away, diligently refining their skills until becoming masters, so that they can create exquisitely detailed work of the highest craftsmanship. Well, there’s a much easier way now. 3d printing technology has rapidly advanced over the past few years, to the point that they’ve begun printing just about anything. Even houses. The kind people live in. We’re not suggesting that you need to invest in a home-building 3d printer, as those are rather large and might be out of your budget. But 3d printing can be used for all kinds of smaller things as well, from artistic models to home furnishings. And 3d printers are really fun to play with. If you know someone who needs a new hobby to keep them out of trouble, this could be just the thing. And if they’re lucky enough to get this as a gift from you, you will in turn be the recipient of printed thingamajigs for the rest of your time on Earth.
It’s finally happening. The robot revolution has begun. And they’re starting with our floors. Making them all clean and spotless, so we feel inferior at our own vacuuming ability, perhaps we even slip on their shininess. And oh, how they’ll laugh. Resistance is futile, you might as well embrace it, and start gifting them to all your friends.
These days, you can’t really say you have a cutting-edge anything if it doesn’t have the words “smartphone charging” in the title. Which is bound to lead to some strange home furnishings, like the smartphone charging toilet plunger, or the i-crowave. But considering that we now live through our smartphones more than we live through our brains, maybe we’ll soon welcome those things into our lives as well. For now, let’s just start with a wireless smartphone charging mouse pad, which isn’t weird at all.
This color sensor scans any surface and translates real world colors into digital color data (RGB, CMYK, XYZ) which can be imported into Photoshop and Illustrator, or matched with paints at Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, and Behr. This handy device has a million possible uses from capturing colors in the real world for digital artwork, to redecorating a home.
The Fire TV Stick is an ultra-portable, ultra-affordable alternative to the full Amazon Fire TV setup. It may not deliver 4k UHD and it might not handle all of the video games that the big kahuna does, but you get all of the same TV shows and movies in full 1080p HD, at a price that makes it hard to beat.
Until we learn to harness our psychic powers, we’ll have to slog through life using technology to communicate our thoughts to each other over long distances. But this is most certainly one of the sweetest ways to slog. Touching one lamp makes the other turn on instantly, so you can let whoever has the matching twin lamp know you’re thinking of them, no matter where they are or how far away. In the age of social media, where mass personal advertisements pass themselves off as “connection”, show someone important that they’re worth a direct line of their own.
This high-tech notebook combines the best of cutting-edge technology and old fashioned pen and paper. Send notes directly to the cloud using the Rocketbook smartphone app, and erase the notebook for reuse up to five times using a microwave. For real. Now if you could only microwave away your long history of embarrassing Instagram posts.
This one’s a subtle yet completely in-their-face way of saying, “I want to drink with you, but you make terrible cocktails.” They might get offended at first, but give them a cocktail or three and they’ll change their mind—you might even get an “I love you, man” in the mix.
Back in the day, carrying power with you meant having a pocket full of batteries. But sometimes 9-volt batteries would get short-circuited by your pocket change and heat up or explode on your leg, so you had to add potential medical bills to the cost of ownership. Or maybe that was just an urban legend. Either way, a mobile power bank will charge all your electronic devices, and you definitely don’t have to worry about meltdowns. Just way better all around.
The tactile satisfaction of writing on real paper is still valuable, and many people take notes and capture ideas better when using a pen than when typing in a digital device. The problem is that paper gets lost in desktop jumbles, thrown away accidentally, or eaten by one’s dog. That’s where digital synchronization and storage come in. The cloud never gets accidentally thrown out, and as far as we know, dogs still can’t eat digital information (though they would if they could figure out how).
Amazon’s indoor security camera includes night vision for around-the-clock surveillance and links up with Alexa right out of the box, so you can pull up your video feed with the sound of your voice anytime you want. Cloud cam subscription allows expanded clip storage and more sophisticated alert features. Two-way audio allows you to startle the crap out of unsuspecting guests.
Let your feet guide you, and never get lost. These removable insoles link up with a smartphone app and use GPS to guide you to your destination through subtle vibrations. Lead the way without having to stare at your phone or wait for Google Maps to load. Like the pied freakin’ piper, without the annoying pan flute.
Silent but deadly takes on a different meaning when you walk in the room, but in your defense, you haven’t actually left a trail of bodies in your wake. In fact, nobody has dared step in your wake for years. Here’s a smart appliance that will protect your family from a couple of other silent killers.
A great piece of meat is only good if you cook it right. And unless you’re going to crawl in the oven with it, it’s going to be hard to monitor it second-by-second so that you know the right instant to take it out. The meater uses wireless communication to signal that dinner is ready. Just like your primitive ancestors.
If they do any 3D modeling or already have a 3D printer, then a 3D scanner is the obvious gift they need. Any small object can be scanned and rendered as a digital 3D textured mesh in full color, ready to be printed. This is the closest thing we’ve got to the Replicator technology we’ve all seen on Star Trek, so in a sense you'll be preparing them for the future for the future, when we’ll be able to print the entire world and everything in it, like real living friends, pets, and loved ones that act exactly as we’d like them to.
Just because someone wants to have a smartwatch doesn’t mean it has to ruin their sophisticated wardrobe. Conversely, just because someone wants a classy watch doesn’t mean it has to be as dumb as…an old watch. The Armani Touchscreen Smartwatch bridges that gap elegantly, with a classic analog-style watch face as well as Android and iOS compatibility. The Armani touchscreen allows them to text, track their activities, monitor their sleep, control the music on their smartphone, and tell the time (as if anyone does that with a watch anymore).
You didn’t think Amazon was going to stay out of the streaming game, did you? The main reason to buy an Amazon Fire TV over the competitors? It integrates with Alexa, Amazon’s virtual assistant. So if she’s been running your house for a while, keep her happy by making sure this is your streaming device.
For fending off a mugger, they’ll thank you. For fending off annoying dogs, children, co-workers, and sometimes even you – they’ll really thank you. While it’s a high price to pay, take comfort that it’s worth it for their protection. And for the film you’ll catch of them inevitably testing it on themselves.
Since the dawn of time, chaos, terror, and death have periodically rained down from the sky. Only the lucky were spared. But now we have weather radios, so you can go inside instead of dying. This one also conveniently charges your phone so the next hurricane doesn’t have to interrupt your game of angry birds.
Roku was an early innovator in streaming devices, offering consumers a way to stream their Netflix account to their TVs way back in the barely-real year of 2008, and it’s still the most popular option because it’s affordable, easy to use, and it offers every channel you could ever need to scroll through before you decide there’s nothing on.
The Roku Streaming Stick may be the Roku Ultra’s little brother, but it definitely punches above its weight. It features all the same channels, a voice activated remote, and a sleek design that remains hidden out of sight so no one has to look at your dongle while they watch TV.
The perfect gift for the person who’s always getting lost in the dark, tripping down the stairs on their way back from the bathroom, or struggling to summon The Batman, the light from this flashlight is visible from five nautical miles away. They’ll never need to fear the Joker again!
Their toothbrush cleans their mouth, but then what cleans their toothbrush? How have you not been thinking about this? If you don’t have one of these, your mouth and your toothbrush are just playing volleyball with all that crap that comes off your teeth. Life is gross enough without walking around with a bacteria factory in your face.
Nobody wants to be forced to act responsibly at a barbecue. That defeats the purpose. Yet the grilltender holds everyone’s happiness hostage to his attention span. After five or six beers that doesn’t work so well. This wireless grill thermometer will send an alert to your phone that the steak you’re ignoring is ready for your mouth.
At first glance, you might think this is how Salvador Dalí would have typed if he had lived to see the modern laptop. But this is something even the great surrealist never would have dreamed up. This soft silicone keyboard rolls into an ultra compact, portable size, so it’s a perfect gift for people who are on the go.
You’ve heard the old saying, “Measure twice, cut once.” Let’s be honest, the real reason you measure twice is because you forgot the first measurement. This digital tape measure lets you save multiple measurements for easy recall, so you can stop playing games and get the work done.
Few things are cooler to the retro-obsessed than an old-time typewriter. And few things are more annoying to listen to from the next cubicle. Bridge the gap with this typewriter-inspired mechanical keyboard from Azio. The look and feel of this classic Smith-Corona inspired keyboard will transport its owner to the distant past (sorry, we only mean that figuratively. This isn’t a time machine). Feel free to complete the ensemble with a cheap plastic visor, cigar, and scotch tumbler.
Nothing creates a sense of urgency like counting the seconds until the time when you can’t count the seconds anymore. The surest way to beat procrastination, this watch doesn’t let you off the hook. Strap it on someone’s wrist, give them a hearty slap on the rear, and tell them to get to work.
Nobody wants to touch your feet, so stop asking. And we know you don’t want to touch anybody else’s either, so if you want someone’s feet to feel better this is the only ethical choice. And with switchable heat and nonstop movement, this is way better than any human could do anyway. All without the complaining or the feeling of obligation to reciprocate in some way.
It’s nice to have the option to get an endless massage from somebody whose hands never get tired. And you don’t have to worry about being a captive audience to some godawful boring story or suffer through ten minutes of vomit-inducing garlic breath. Machines do it better.
When he needed to find out where a pipe was, your uncle Len used to punch through the wall and feel around with his hand. No, that wasn’t a dream, he really did that. The man was a neanderthal. These days even neanderthals have smart phones, and this android app lets them find out where pipes, studs, and wires are with no brute force at all. Huzzah.
The outdoors have their own set of unique charms, but they could use some help in the tunes department. Life today is ultra-portable, and music should be too, but sometimes - like when you’re chilling with friends - headphones are just weird. Help them bring the party outside so everyone can get down.
Why bother with messy paints and long drying times when there’s a perfectly good computer to paint on? The digital paintbrush mimics the flexibility and feel of the real thing, and even leaves brush stokes. It can simulate painting in oil, acrylic, watercolor or charcoal and is compatible with most touchscreen devices.
One day soon, artificial intelligence is going to be a reality, and the machines are going to take everything. Until then, you might as well get as much out of these bastards as you can. Here’s a robot who will make fully-customizable drinks until he knows better.
You’ve always taken for granted that your ceramic mug was the best way to keep your coffee hot. So let us ask, What other 12,000 year old technologies are you still relying on? It just goes to show that we haven’t really come as far from our caveman ancestors as we like to think, especially when it comes to eating and drinking. Show them how much more evolved you are by gifting them this space-age, temperature control ceramic mug.
Personalized gifts are always the best. A picture frame is one thing; it’s something else entirely to show them that you know exactly what they want to look at by loading it with pictures that will make them happy. Just make sure you get it right. Otherwise it comes across as a weird attempt at mind control.
Think of what the coolest cooler would be like. It would keep drinks cold, obviously, but it would also do other stuff too, right? Like play music on a splash-proof Bluetooth speaker, have a built-in blender that can crush ice, and even be able to charge your phone. That’s why this cooler is called the Coolest, and it is just that.
When you were a kid, you thought we would all have jetpacks by now. Somewhere along the line they dropped the ball on that one, but this is a nice consolation prize. Help them harness the cosmic rays that maintain all life on Earth for what they really care about: keeping up with their Facebook news feed.
Night-blindness is that thing that happens when you turn on the bathroom light in the middle of the night. The shock of going from darkness to light is abruptly harsh, and after the light goes off you’re blind for several minutes until your eyes readjust to the darkness. The combination of night blindness and urgent midnight runs to the bathroom can result in any number of minor disasters like stubbed toes and stray streams of... you get the idea. With the subtle glow of a toilet night light all these problems are a thing of the past. Also creates a nice atmosphere for impromptu bathroom disco parties.
There aren’t many aspects of a public restroom that you would like to bring inside your home. In fact, this is probably the only one. The toilet is going to be the dirtiest thing in any house (we hope), so why would anyone want to be putting their hands all over it? A motion sensor activated flushing unit takes care of this problem.
If you can’t afford to splurge on a Tiffany tennis bracelet, spoil her with some modern technology that will rejuvenate her finest gems and jewels. Leave the polishing to the guys at the car wash. This sensible system makes jewelry care effortless and fun, easily lifting years of tarnish and returning finishes to their original luster.
This is the perfect compromise if you’ve got a bit of a digital dinosaur who wants to let their inner techno-geek take flight. Paper airplanes were a childhood favorite for most people and they can glide into the 21st century with this smartphone controlled version. Essentially a paper drone, they’ll be positively loop-the-loopy with excitement about this modern update on an old school toy.
If you’re looking for a simple techie gadget that will really blow their hair back, this might be just the thing. A single led-studded fan blade creates a hologram-like clock face as it twirls through the air - cooling your room, telling the time, and blowing everyone’s mind all at once. Is it a physical metaphor playing on the idea that time is an illusion? A piece of alien technology? No, it’s really just a cool little gadget, even if it seems like it’s specially designed to freak out cats.
Time to get rid of human error when it comes to food. After all, food is the only thing you buy that literally becomes you. We’re not sure if this robot chef will throw things around the kitchen and speak condescendingly of the people eating its food, but it can probably be programmed that way if it makes the owner more comfortable.
Well, they’ve spent their entire life in this reality, they’ve probably had enough – we didn’t invent a whole new one for no reason. Give them a virtual reality headset and allow them to come face to face with dinosaurs, dance on the moon, meet their idol… you’ll probably never see them in the real world again.
Since nobody seems to be interested enough to invent an ever-lasting battery, it looks like we’re all stuck charging our phones every day for the foreseeable future. But before you throw you hands up in disgust and ask how it could possibly get worse, there is some good news. The same lazy, inconsiderate tech “geniuses” who refuse to make forever batteries have at least found the decency to create a little pad that charges smartphones without having to plug them in. And really, it’s the least they could do.