By Maxx Hartunian
Sometimes low-tech can be just as cool as high-tech. Did you ever have the experience to scoop ice cream when it is frozen so solid, it’s like a rock to get out? I found this Ice scream scoop that is designed to be pushed into hard ice cream using the large muscles in your arm and not your wrist. Ergonomic-friendly and comfortable, this is also ideal for anyone who that may need assistance scooping cookie dough and other batters more easily.
RCA Counter Top Ice Maker
I like water. And I like it COLD. Surely you can get ice cubes from your freezer or if your refrigerator makes ice for you, maybe you don’t like the way it tastes? This ice maker gives you the option to use whatever kind of water you like (spring, purified, distilled, sparkling) to create your own ice cubes. Fresh ice is made in 13 minutes and the unit features 2 different settings. I’ve hear that “ice chewing” is a thing. Probably not some-thing your dentist wants to know but if you prefer those small little ice cubes, this machine does not make that. It does however have the capacity to make 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours. That comes in handy when you have a few friends over on a weekend testing tech products with you!
ZeeQ Smart Pillow
Pillows are usually a personal preference but this pillow streams music and analyzes your sleep. I found it to be a bit on the firm side, but the upside is that I could listen to music through this pillow. Wireless speakers stream music and you can choose the ZeeQ app for sleep tracks. Motion sensors detect when to wake you as it monitors your personal sleep cycle. You can set a sleep timer through the app so the music will automatically turn off. It also has a remote control and a removable pillowcase made of wood fibers to prevent bacteria.
“TECH” YOUR “SELFIE”
The Life Printer
When you want a quick print-out of a great photo, the Life Printer is a portable and easy to use, on-the-go printer that fits in a pocket. Installation is simple- download the app and then print photos off your camera roll. There are bluetooth capabilities that allow you to connect the device to your phone and editing options allow for better quality photos. The quality is quite amazing for a mini printer and it is money well spent if you do not like going to print pictures at a store. This is ideal for travel and to print quick photos to send to relatives. in a holiday card.
A drone that takes a selfie? I was so excited to test this drone. Once I downloaded the Air Selfie App, I had trouble connecting it. I found myself restarting the drone multiple times before it would successfully pair to the WIFI network on my IOS device. (It can also connect to an Android device). After the drone was paired, it took flight and I calibrated it to be more stabilized. Everything was going smooth and I looked down at my phone to check the quality of the camera. The drone is equipped with a 5 megapixel camera and correct lighting is essential. Instead of selfie stick or tripod, the concept to fly a drone that is just over 2 ounces, is the size of a smartphone and flies over 60 feet that you can personally control and adjust the flying height, angle and movement is a fun way to take a picture.
PRODUCT OF THE SEASON
3D printing and “maker” learning is becoming more popular among middle school and high school students. Some public libraries offer 3D printer use but if you are interested in purchasing a 3D printer for your own use at home, this is an investment that should be researched thoroughly. There are many kinds of 3D printers on the market and what you should be looking for is ease of use, pre-made model or personal design options and filament refills.
Depending on the kinds of items you are interested to “make”, it is important to do a little research first on how plan the design.
On the Dremel website, there is an online editing software that is great for beginners but I highly recommend downloading other 3D software (some are free) so you have more options to choose from when planning your design pieces.
The touchscreen at the bottom of the printer to control settings making it very user-accessible.
If you stumble across a problem like I did, the Dremel customer telephone support is very friendly and assisted me until the problem was solved.
Filament is a type of plastic used for 3D printing. It comes in multiple colors and I found with this printer, it is easy to change the spools as I needed to often with my projects. The various colors of plastic add to the design process.
When I tested this printer, I made a dinosaur head, vortex vase, dog tag, a chess piece, earbud holder and a phone case. All were products I could use and were quite easy to create. Each item can take some time to make depending on the size and design of the product My creations took 20 minutes to 8 hours and I was very pleased with the quality of the objects.
Schools that are interested in STEM learning and incorporating 3D printing into curriculum would find this ideal for classroom use. It is quite easy to understand and while the actual printing is time consuming, groups of students can easily work together to plan model creations.