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Really Useful Gadgets


We live in a rapidly changing world where we are continually subjected to the latest  fads in gadgetry. At work and at home we suffer from the constant change in technology. For instance it's only a few months ago when we were sent reeling with the release of mobile 3G. Now talks of telecoms giant o2 developing an even faster Internet connectivity service for their upcoming wonder mobile phone are already circulating the 'net! Often we feel as if our life is incomplete unless we have the very latest innovation in computer, television, mobile phones, scooters – yet all of these devices are totally useless adding nothing to the quality of our lives. Thankfully there have been some worthwhile inventions which are able to make life so much more enjoyable. Here are the best of these inventions.


The ‘Please Don’t Smoke’ Ashtray

Patent : GB2251542   Date : 1992

Inventor:  Chung Wan Ping 


This ingenious ashtray senses when you are about to light-up and gently reminds you  with a pleasant message that ‘smoking can damage your health.’ The inventor claims that ‘No-Smoking warning signs yield little result. Because these static warning signs have been regarded as empty words by those people who are addicted to tobaccos.’ He does, however, expect his talking ashtray to be taken seriously by even the hardened chain smokers. Unfortunately it is not clear from the patent whether the ashtray is tough enough to survive being smashed with a hammer by an irate addict.




The Incy-Wincy Spider Liberator

Patent : GB2272154   Date : 1994

Inventor:  Doughney Edward Thomas Patrick  



We all know that feeling of great sadness when we find a dead spider floating beside the rubber duck in our bathwater. We would, of course, much rather it hadn’t meet it’s gruesome end in the bath and was roaming free, enjoying the good life and sharing our cosy bed. Well, now we can do something to stop these lovable little creatures from becoming trapped in our baths by installing the ‘Spider Ladder. With this device installed any spider that happens to fall into the bath it will look around, see the ladder and climb safely to freedom. The spiders of the world will love you for fitting this one.






The Male Chastity Belt

Patent : 875845   Date : 1907

Inventor:           E. E. Perkins 


Every married woman worries when she has to away for a few days and leave her husband to cope, alone, at home. Will he sleep in and miss an important meeting? Will he get enough to eat? Will he shag that brazen hussy next door? Now with the ‘Male Chastity Belt’ her worries are over. As an added bonus she can delight in the knowledge that the belt is actually beneficial to her husband for this is much more than a chastity belt. In the words of the inventor it’s a ‘Device to prevent insanity, imbecility and feeblemindedness.’ Who’s sanity?







The Gravity Powered Shoe Air-Conditioner

Patent : US5375430   Date : 1993

Inventor:  Israel Siegel


Do your feet sweat so badly that even your dog avoids you? With the ‘Gravity Powered Shoe Air-Conditioner’ this can be a thing of the past for it will keep your feet at an ideal temperature. Incorporated inside the heel is a compressor-expander which is powered by ’gravity pressures’ placed upon the shoe when you walk. A network of heat exchangers, containing a low boiling point liquid, transfer this energy to the soles of the shoes and, depending on you’re mood, you can heat or cool your feet. Just be                                                                careful you don’t walk so fast that you get frostbite.



Santa Claus Detector

Patent : US5523741   Date : 1996

Inventor:  Thomas Cane


With this wonderful gadget your children need never miss Santa Claus again. Hang the stockings over the fireplace and it will detect Santa the moment he emerges from the chimney. When the chubby chap is detected lights on the stocking will flash heralding his arrival. For the more cynical minded the lights can be replaced by a double-barrelled shotgun.


Combined Bird Trap and Cat Feeder


Patent : US4150505   Date : 1979

Inventor:  ;; Leo O. Voelker


Too lazy to feed the cat? Here is the perfect solution which will provide your cat with all the food it needs and at the same time depopulate your whole neighbourhood of those pesky robins, wrens and sparrows. The device works by enticing little song birds into a welcoming, homely, birdhouse. Once inside they step onto the pivoted stand and are ejected down the shoot into the lower section where they remain trapped until puss is ready for his lunch. You will  never need to open a can of cat food again in your life.







Figure 1.

Object-Dispensing Wearing Apparel

Patent : US 4,120,053   Date : 1978

Inventor:   Frank Nemirofsky


Be a big hit with all your friends and make a fortune in the process. This simple device protrudes discretely from your t-shirt and can dispense chewing gum, cigarettes or even condoms. A slit at the top of the device is provided to collect coins in payment for the goods. The inventor sees it as a way fostering the entrepreneurial spirit in youngsters – he suggests  ‘Children can use the garment to obtain a sense of business-like appreciation for                                                                                                selling items and the value put on the sales.’

Before long no self respecting school kid will leave the house without one.



The Ultimate Weight Lose Program

Patent : US 4,133,315  Date : 1979

Inventor:   Edward J. Berman et al.


Do you  have a problem with obesity and just don’t have the willpower to stick to a diet. Do so called diet pills just cause you to put on even more weight. This METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR REDUCING OBESITY’ will make you slim and trim in no time. Aimed at reducing the desire for food the device is an inflatable  elastomeric bag which partially fills the stomach so as to produce the sensation of being "filled- up." Figure 3 shows the bag in position within the stomach. Figure 6 shows how the bag is filled with air, water or other liquid via a tube inserted through the nasal cavity.



Figure 3.




Figure 6.














Figure 1.Brining the Dead Back to Life  


Patent : US465,548      Date 1891

Inventor:  ; William H. White


With this wonderful invention you need never again lie awake at night in fear of being buried alive. All too frequently perfectly healthy people are buried alive just because they overslept for a day or two. Now, if this should happen to you, you don’t have to die a lonely, confused death six foot under. In the words of the inventor, ‘The object of my invention is to provide a means whereby the supposed cadaver (buried before life is extinct) on regaining animation may sound an alarm through the annunciator located at the superintendent's office or other suitable place, by which a signal of life may be imparted and also immediate rescue rendered to the recuperating body by means of fresh air until the said body is disinterred and medical aid summoned.’




Figure 1.

Pat On The Back Apparatus


Patent : US4,608,967      Date 1986

Inventor:  ; Ralph R. Piro


This invention is useful for providing a self-administered pat-on-the-back or a congratulatory gesture providing, in the words of the inventor ‘ a needed psychological lift.’  He suggests, ‘ . . . the device of the present invention may also be utilized to impart significant psychological benefits to the user. In this connection, it is well known in the art and practice of self-administered positive reinforcement activity that various techniques can be successfully employed to extol the virtues of one's actions and thoughts. For example, it has been reported that many wealthy and successful individuals engage in conversations with themselves, that is, they talk to themselves. Such an activity is understandable in view of the often small populace of self-motivated individuals and in view of the large volume of self-defeatist conversation known to emanate from those of low self esteem’ So, go on, you owe it to yourself – buy one and give yourself a pat on the back for doing so.



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