Inventions are one of the most wonderful products of humanity’s life on the planet. Seeking solutions to pressing problems, showing creativity and courage, dreamers all over the world bring their fantasies to life, sometimes provoking real revolutions in the lifestyle of millions of earthlings, and sometimes causing a smile and surprise. A mass shaving machine, a radio hat, an ostrich pillow, or a face glove – we present the weirdest inventions of this year.
Uniform with a built-in fan
Reon Pocket is a top hit of the hot 2023 summer in Japan, an innovative development that saves from overheating. Basically, it is a portable air conditioner that is fastened around the neck and placed under clothing. The first prototype of the “individual cooling device” was developed back in 2019 as part of the Sony startup incubator and was created with funds raised through crowdfunding. The improved Reon Pocket 4 model appeared in stores this year.
With its “smart cooling mode,” the device’s sensors detect physical activity, such as walking or running, and then automatically adjust the cooling level to ensure user comfort and extend battery life.
This innovation wouldn’t have been possible if a former Sony engineer hadn’t suffered from the heat on his vacation 35 years ago.
In 1988, while traveling through Southeast Asia, Hiroshi Ichigaya noticed how fast cities were developing and realized that soon the air conditioning systems being installed in all new buildings would lead to a huge increase in energy consumption, in turn accelerating global warming.
It was then that Ichigaya came up with a solution: individual cooling systems in the form of fan jackets.
In 2004, the company Kuchofuku, which means “air-conditioned clothing,” launched the first samples on the market. The jackets were not very comfortable, the batteries ran out quickly, and there were frequent malfunctions.
This year, the renewed “fan jacket” in Japan has gained a new impetus of popularity among representatives of outdoor blue-collar workers e.g., farmers, builders, and loaders. A digitally controlled jacket with two electric fans mounted around the lower back promises to make work on “hot summer days” less “unbearable.”
By stimulating air flow under the jacket, the fans create a “personal micro-environment” with a gentle breeze to keep wearers cool.
The extreme temperatures of the past few years have undoubtedly contributed to the demand for innovation. Now there are numerous fan jackets on the market and full bodysuits with fans in the pants, special batteries that can keep the fans running for more than 60 hours on the most energy-efficient settings.
Smart makeup stabilizer
This year, the cosmetics giant L’Oréal has developed the world’s first smart makeup applicator. The ultra-precise computerized applicator, called HAPTA, helps you applying lipstick or mascara, no matter how precise your movements are.
According to rough estimates, there are more than 50 million people on the planet with limited arm mobility. For these people, some daily rituals, such as applying cosmetics, are beyond their ability to perform. Scientists and engineers at L’Oréal, in collaboration with Alphabet’s Verily, have developed a portable smart applicator. Thanks to a system of ultra-sensitive sensors, Hapta stabilizes unintentional movements by maintaining the level of the device and constantly adjusting to the position of the user’s hands. This allows you to apply makeup flawlessly and precisely.
The innovative device is designed for those with hand-motion disorders, arthritis, Huntington’s disease, and stroke-related motion problems. The applicator is useful for people with limited wrist mobility, who may find it difficult to get a comfortable angle when applying lipstick or mascara, as well as those experiencing tremors and difficulty holding an object, finger sensitivity or bending their hands.
Tractor for demining
A farmer from Kharkiv, Ukraine, has developed a unique demining device. The region where the farmer’s land is located was unprecedentedly mined by the Russian military (according to preliminary estimates, it will take decades to demine). In spring 2023, when it was time to cultivate the fields, the Ukrainian farmer decided to try to tackle the problem on his own. He kitted out his ordinary tractor with protective panels stripped from Russian tanks left by the Russian military during the retreat and developed a remote control system. Now, sitting in the digger’s bucket suspended in a specially equipped place nearby, the farmer guides the “armored tractor” meter by meter, checking the field for mines.
The vehicle can withstand explosions and is already being used for mine clearance.
The invention has created a niche for numerous innovations. For example, a Ukrainian startup, еfarm.pro, has now developed an unmanned complex for demining fields.
The system includes a drone, a robot deminer, an autopilot, and a tractor-mounted system that can withstand an explosion. Human involvement is minimized as much as possible, as the mechanism works autonomously.
First, the field is scanned by a drone equipped with appropriate sensors and the function of transmitting the exact coordinates of the location of explosive devices with geo-referencing. Then, a remote-controlled tractor with a trailed protection system passes through the top layer of soil, and a robot deminer defuses the explosives.
The Ampere Traction Timer
Nothing stimulates productivity like not having a gadget with a fascinating social media feed in your hands, the inventors thought and released the Ampere Traction Timer. The idea is simple: you put your phone in a special box, and it blocks access to the gadget. You can choose and set the time during which you “abstain from the phone” yourself.
When the time is up, you can regain access to your device. According to the developers, this smart timer is designed to help users concentrate better, and will be the perfect gift for a family member or friend who has absolutely no control over their phone, and will encourage users to achieve “deep concentration as part of their daily routine.”
Ashirase navigation tool
Sneakers-navigators are designed as an alternative to the classic voice navigation app. Instead of constantly looking at the gadget or trying to navigate the map, smart sneakers will show you the way by vibrating. You set the desired point and the sneakers determine the best route to it. It’s a great way to avoid getting lost while hiking and quickly navigate a new place. The tool will also be useful for the visually impaired and other people with disabilities.
Right now, thousands of aspiring dreamers around the world are inventing and testing their own inventions. Some will fail, while others will be lucky enough to save humanity from another tragedy. And, if you haven’t invented your own time machine yet, you can easily make history by donating to one of the countless crazy and not-so-crazy ideas that are raising funds on crowdfunding.
Source: The Gaze