September 26, 2007

Need power while out on the go? Forget about specialized adapters for each device; get the Belkin 2-Outlet Portable AC/DC Inverter. It plugs into a standard vehicle cigarette lighter socket, converts DC power to AC power and in turn provides two 110V outlets. In addition to providing 300W of continuous power, the AC Anywhere has short circuit protection, automatic overheat shut-off and a low-battery alarm so you don’t overdue it and drain your car battery dry. This is a perfect solution of laptops, cell phone chargers, camping equipment and other portable devices you want running on the go. is serving up the Belkin AC Anywhere for $44, minus two $15 rebates for the rock bottom price of $14.99 with free shipping!
Can you imagine having the ability to carry around a BBQ grill anywhere you go? That’s the idea behind the new Grilliput. It is a fully functional stainless steel grill that fits neatly into a tube that measures only 11″ x .86″. All parts are stored inside and assembly is a snap. When set up, the Grilliput creates a grill area 10.5″ x 9″. Not exactly colossal, but considering that it can be thrown into a backpack, it doesn’t seem so bad. In addition, it includes a handy built-in groove for cleaning the grill bars and an optional collapsible fire basket to hold your coals. The best part? It’ll run you under $30 at any number of sites, including REI and Amazon! That’s a lot of functionality for under $30. Despite having such a great product, the web site is really bad. I can only imagine they spent all of their creative energy on the product.
I’m not sure why, but I must admit I have a bit of a fetish when it comes to espresso machines. There is something about the combination of science and great design that sometimes results in a small work of art. The new You&Me from Ariete certainly fits that bill. The You&Me is a micro-sized machine that Ariete claims is the smallest in the world. It has just a one-fifth liter boiler capacity. However, don’t let its size fool you. Despite its Lilliputian proportions, Ariete claims it can still produce high quality coffee and cappuccino because of an exclusive technology patented by Ariete. In addition, it also features a coffee packer, a Maxi-Cappuccino device for some foamy goodness, high pressure safety valve, removable drip trays and a filter holder with the Thermocream System for production of some nice crema. Okay, so it’s not exactly a La Pavoni, but hey, if you are low on kitchen space and appreciate great design, the You&Me might just be the ticket. It comes in Shiny Red, Anthracite and Satin Grey and retails for $138.
Cats have enough to worry about with all those rocking chairs threatening their tails and those dogs bullying them around. Why not treat them to a little eco friendly high design? Marmalade Pet Care is a company that is trying to deliver on that promise. They’ve designed some fantastic beds for cats that look great, are good for the environment and are very functional. The design is clean and modern, constructed from corrugated cardboard that cats just love to scratch, hopefully keeping them from going to town on your furniture and rugs. In addition to their beauty and functionality, they are made from 35% minimum recycled content, use adhesives that are non-toxic (complies with ASTM-D 4236) and are constructed by hand. Marmalade is currently offering up two models, the Cheeky Chaise and the Sweet Lounge.
I thought I would give you a break from the iPhone for at least one week with a nice simple photo. This photo gives you an idea just how far technology has progressed in these past two decades. The photo depicts 1GB of storage both today and 20 years ago. Absolutely amazing. 20 years ago it weighed 170lbs and looks to be about 2′ wide and today we have a miniscule, postage stamp size card that would probably not give you a reading on a scale. Moreover, look at all the parts on that monstrosity! A maintenance hell for sure. It would have been nice if they included some sort of price comparison. Today you can pick up a 1GB card on for about $10! I’m willing to bet that 20 year old drive probably cost a bit more than that.