TESTING

BEST BOOK FOR EXTREME CAMPING? SOLARBOOK!

Going off the grid has an allure for many vacationers, but you’d like to be remote, yet still be able to charge your camera, or phone. A lack of an electrical connection can be a challenge. The Bushnell SolarBook 850 gives you a handy portable battery to take along with you.

SolarBook is around the size of a medium hardcover book, which makes it a pretty compact traveling companion. Inside are flexible solar panels which can collect power even on partially cloudy days.

The lithium ion battery charges in about 3.5 hours in full sunlight, or can also be charged from a wall outlet. When fully charged, it provides a camera or GPS with up to five charges, and a smart phone up to two.

The SolarBook boasts two USB outputs for charging two devices plus a micro USB input for charging from a wall outlet. For a long-haul hiker, the five-solar-panel, dual lithium-ion power pack reduces clutter, folding into its own hardshell case, and the four-light display makes tracking of power consumption simple.

HEAD FOR THE HILLS ON THIS GNARLY BOARD

Gnarboard’s Trail Rider electric skateboard offers four-wheel drive, all-terrain tires and a 28mph top speed. It has been likened to a “Ferrari for your feet, boasting a power-to-weight ratio that would put many cars to shame

It is the most powerful electric skateboard in the Gnarboard stable, which includes the Road Warrior and the Commuter.

This sturdy aluminum skate deck gets its power from four electric motors, each delivering 850W of output so that the Trail Rider achieves much better acceleration than most on-road cars. Further, it runs 26 km with a single charge, which only takes around 2-hours to complete from a completely spent full-charged battery.

Using a double-ended, wired hand control, the rider himself harnesses all that raw power. The power is engaged by squeezing the power toggle in one direction. Squeezing in the opposite direction puts on the regenerative brakes. Additionally, the MBS Foot Bindings keep the rider stable on the board while its exclusive all-terrain tires conquer grassy campus knolls and hiking trails with ease.

ROCKETSKATES TAKE YOU WHERE YOU WANT TO GO!

These motorized skates aren’t actually powered by rockets, but they’re quite the improvement over previous efforts at motorized skates. RocketSkates are nearly six pounds lighter than earlier models and have four hub motors instead of two. They are 15 percent smaller and zoom you around at up to 12 miles per hour.

The biggest innovation? The RocketSkates don’t require a remote. Just like regular skates, they let you zip down the sidewalk totally hands-free. And you can wear most regular shoes with the RocketSkate – just strap it on and you’re ready to get started. It comes with a large or small foot plate to better fit your feet. You decide which foot you prefer to be your lead skate, which tells the other skate what to do. To accelerate, you tilt forward. To slow down, you just tilt back on your heels. They’re like mini Segways for your feet. Each skate has an onboard microprocessor and is powered by a lithium-ion battery pack.

The latest feature to set these RocketSkates apart is a companion app for both IOS and Android, that connects via Bluetooth. It can provide a variety of information – including how far you’ve traveled and battery status. It can record your route for you so that you can compare it with others. You can even use the app to wirelessly turn the lead skate into an RC car for of fun.

ENTERPRISING REMOTE FULFILLS YOUR TREKKIE DREAMS!

Are you a Trekkie? Then you really need this in your life! It’s one of the best Star Trek accessory, ever. Painstakingly 3D scanned from the last prop phaser in existence, it is a true work of art! Every geeks dream! Not only is it an amazing replica but also a multi-function remote control. It boasts advanced gesture-based controls, compatible with most home electronics, even your iPod dock. You can “stun” the TV on or off, adjust volume with a flick of the wrist and much more.

Nine gestures in 4 memory banks give you 36 programmable functions. And the coolest part of all, the Phaser remote has authentic special FX sounds from the Star Trek universe! So when you’re home alone you can sneak around the house shooting fantasy Klingons and Jem’Hadar to bits without the need to make the “pew pew pew” noise yourself!

The Phaser remote displays easily on your coffee table with the stand accessory and the presentation box looks like it was just shipped straight from Star Fleet Academy. The attention to detail on every part is downright fanatical.

And if all of the above isn’t enough, the Phaser Remote also features a removable type-! Phaser. The Phaser I functions as a standalone gesture-enabled universal remote control and also slots into the Phaser II pistol-grip base, which supports additional controls. It can store 36 programmable gestures. Enough to control all your Earth-based entertainment devices. The combined unit (Phaser I and Phaser II joined) features a varied range of settings and beam strengths, including the different Phaser firing sounds (including a Phaser Overload sequence) and genuine Starship Enterprise sounds.

ULAELU OUTDOOR KITCHEN WILL FIRE UP YOUR GRILLING EXPERIENCE

There are few leisure activities more enjoyable than cooking in your own yard. The Ulaelu Outdoor Kitchen has everything you need for al fresco cooking, even the kitchen sink. It’s modular and minimalist and extremely durable. You can add on all the parts your heart desires. No worry about it falling apart, succumbing to the elements or junking up your patio. With a handy sink, ample grill, granite work-top, and firewood rack, it is all you need to cook a fabulous meal without setting foot in the house. The perfect thing for when the weather’s warm and the sun is high.

Outdoor cooking is fun. That’s why weekend barbecues feel more special than your nightly chores in the kitchen. That’s exactly why Ulaelu brings the convenience of the kitchen to the backyard – to make all your cooking fun.

The Ulaelu’s basic unit is the aluminum frame with an empty top and lower storage area with thermal treated ash grates at its base. Measuring 850 x 610 x 1520 mm, it is compact enough to fit in anywhere in the backyard. And you can customize the top with a variety of modules to equip it to suit your needs from basic barbecue.

It offers a worktop in two sizes, both made from natural stone, to be weather-resistant and ideal for a base for its gas cooker. A drain can also be added right into the worktop, for quick cleanups while prepping your ingredients. The optional sink comes with a tap that can hook up directly to your garden hose. In addition to the gas unit, there’s a charcoal grill module, complete with a firewood rack, so you can put your woodsman skills to good use.

QUADROFOIL LEAVES OTHER RIDES IN ITS WAKE

With its all-electric outboard motor, unique steering system, and innovative aerodynamic design, this ultra-light, eco-friendly watercraft is unlike anything else on the water. You can glide through the water at a cruising speed of up to 20 knots, and not risk a drop of oil sullying the environment.

The Quadrofoil’s technology utilizes buoyancy force to lift the vessel above the water’s surface and move forward with minimum resistance. It has a range of around 60 miles on a single charge. The cockpit features a touch screen display that has all your battery power, range, speed and consumption details available at a glance.

Quadrofoil takes recreational marine transportation to a new level of fun and environmental friendliness. Its custom outboard motor propulsion uses c-foil technology, enabling it to be several times more efficient than water-vehicles currently on the market.

The electric motor can be fully charged in less than two hours and runs nearly noiselessly so it is suitable for most all waterways, even marine protected areas. Patented stabilizes make the vessel responsive when flying on the water. This airtight hydrodynamic vehicle will begin shipping its limited edition series 2015.

DASH AND DOT MAKE CODING FUN-DAMENTAL

Dash is a diminutive blue robot which can be programmed to play a xylophone, kick a ball, play like a dog and deliver fun messages like the “Happy Birthday” song. Its head spins 360 degrees and has a single, Cyclops-like eye. Dash often emits a cheerful chime to show that it approves of its programmer’s actions.

Saurabh Gupta, one of Dash’s team of creators, says such anthropomorphic qualities make the robot seem more like a friend or a pet than an object, making it more appealing to its programmers – children as young as 5, teenagers, or whimsical adults.

Mr. Gupta, who formerly supervised iPod software teams for Apple is a co-founder and the chief tech officer of Wonder Workshop, one of new field of companies seeking to teach programming to children using robotics. Wonder Workshop was created by parents frustrated by a lack of opportunities for children to learn programming.

Dash and Dot allow children to program the robots using tablets or smartphones with a Bluetooth connection that works with apps on those devices. The Wonder Workshop robots also include more complex capabilities for older kids, teenagers and even adults who want to learn to code or program their own apps for the robot.

Dash and Dot are programmed via a software package called Blockly, a drag-and-drop language which can be used by children as young as 5. They can have as much fun playing with Dash and Dot as with any other toy, while they learn the basics of coding.

CALLING ALL CONTROL FREAKS – THIS ONE’S FOR YOU

Spotter is a puck-shaped device from the Quirky + GE partnership that is packed with cool tech. It has an accelerometer to detect motion, plus sensors to detect light, sound, humidity and temperature. Just download the free Wink app to your iOS or Android device, and you can set up alerts for all of it. If the front door is opened while you’re at work or the wine cellar is getting a few degrees warmer, Spotter will let you know. If you want an alert when the dryer stops or if the baby starts crying just program your phone and Spotter will keep you posted.

It’s an environmental trigger which can work with other Quirky products, including the Pivot Power Genius (a smart power strip) and the new Aros Smart Air Conditioner. The concept might seem overly high-tech at first, but Spotter’s friendly and intuitive. You can choose from more common uses or create new ways for Spotter to assist you. Welcome to the future!

Spotter keeps you informed on what’s happening at home wherever you are. Monitor sound, motion, light, temperature or humidity from your phone or tablet. Spotter is a virtual extension of your senses. The possibilities are as unlimited as your imagination.

Home is where the heart is; it’s nice to have eyes and ears there, too.

PUT SOME ROCK N ROLL INTO YOUR WORKOUT

Bored with your gym? Does your exercise routine seem stale and lacking variety? Maybe you’d like to try something radically different. If you’re nodding in agreement, take a look at the Drift Balance Board. It’s not another piece of exercise equipment to hang clothes on. Drift simulates movements of several action sports, helps to strengthen core muscles, improve your balance, burn more calories and increase lower body strength.

This is all accomplished by the board’s unique rubber sphere and rolling pendulum balancing mechanism which adjusts for a varied array of motions to keeps you on your toes. Drift can simulate skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. Whether you are looking to keep your edge in the off season or want to get the moves without having to leave your bedroom, Drift is your new workout buddy.

Drift’s inventor happened upon the idea by accident while using a homemade balance board. One end of the board slipped to the floor, providing an anchor and he realized that it could replicate the motion of several different sports more accurately with such a setup, and a better balance board was born.

THE LATEST FOR ROAD WARRIORS – THE ROAD SHOWER

If you’re into extreme trekking, climbing, biking or camping, you get dirty. And there’s not always a convenient campground or truck stop where you can shower off the mud and dust. Never fear, the folks at Road Shower have got you covered.

This handy add-on attaches to your vehicle’s rack mount, uses solar power to heat the water inside to over 100 degrees, can easily be pressurized with a bike or tire pump or compressor, has a nozzle which clips to the side for hands-free showering. Its food-grade plastic hose and rugged matte black aluminum housing are eco-friendly and as discreet as a shower on your roof can be.

It’s like having plumbing in your SUV! Using renewable solar energy. you can have hot water anywhere you go. It heats the water as you drive and is ready to give you a comfy hot shower on arrival. Hot or cold, the Road Shower has tons uses: washing dishes, a pressure jet to hose off dirty gear, a warm spray for muddy pets, or even for extra drinking water. There’re no electrical wires or propane hook up. It’s nearly maintenance free and sturdy enough to last many years.

It can hold 5 gallons/19 liters of water, enough for two to three showers, and mounts on Yakima, Thule and most standard rack systems. It just soaks up the sunlight while you drive and the matte black paint job helps to heat the water. If the water get too hot, its radiator-style filler cap has a built-in release valve that allows steam to escape. It boasts seven useful settings, including shower, jet and mist.