The world is filled with a lot of creative people, entrepreneurs, scientists, journalists, and professionals of all fields. Heck, we’ve got thousands of them right here on Cad Crowd! And then there are students, early technology adopters, and general consumers which make the vast majority of the population. Innovations are born when creativity collides with science; combined with entrepreneurship and persistence, innovative ideas become inventions. Before the 2016 ends, we’ve come across a number of notable inventions as follows.
While 2016 may have brought quite a bit of bad news, there’s also been a lot of awesome new invention ideas and products that have come out this year. We may be losing celebrities, but we’re gaining all kinds of fun new things. Like…
1. Rize One 3D Printers
Unless you’ve been living in solitary during the last decade or so, you must have heard about 3D printers and how they are changing the world of manufacturing. While the technology has been around since the 1980’s, people only started to really get to know it around 2007 when they became more accessible price-wise and more commonly used. The first commercially available 3D printer hit the market in 2009.
Fast forward 7 years later, Rize One 3D Printer came to existent. Unlike any of its predecessor, this 3D printer requires zero post-processing. Utilizing a patented technology that the company calls Augmented Polymer Deposition, this industrial-class desktop 3D printer offers almost instant usability of printed object. Previous technologies need up to 3 hours of post-processing before the object is actually ready to use. With this development, 3D printers take another step towards usability and friendliness that will soon see the devices in more homes, offices, and makerspaces around the country and around the world.
2. Optic Helmet
Road safety has been one of the major driving forces of inventions such as anti-lock brakes, traction control, electronic stability control, and navigation systems. Most of those, unfortunately, are only really helpful for drivers and passengers in cars. It’s still a dangerous world out there for bicyclists! Well, British design firm DCA Design International has come up with this brilliant idea to help cyclists improve road safety without using many fancy technologies. Well, unless you count an augmented-reality helmet as fancy.
This futuristic helmet is equipped with front and rear cameras as well as ultrasonic sensors. The drop down visor can overlay live video feed from the rear camera onto wearer’s field of view. Optic Helmet is able to display alerts including proximity warnings and potential collision. GPS navigation and trip statistics can be displayed as well. All that functionality, and the thing looks pretty slick, too. That’s good design, baby!
3. Solar Roof
Everybody is familiar with solar power these days. When the term “solar power” is used, the first thing that comes to mind is an unsightly roof design that often diminishes, let’s say, the architectural themes or aesthetic of a place. But, regardless of how ugly the power panel looks, it actually helps reduce carbon footprints and potentially erases the entire electricity bill from your home. Oh, what a conflict! Not anymore! Tesla and SolarCity have collaborated to help you save the environment in style and without getting your neighborhood association all a fluster.
The absence of big bulky metal boxes on the roof is expected to attract more people into the world of sustainable renewable energy. Harnessing power of the sun does not always mean you need to sacrifice a beautiful roof. The company even gives several design options including Tuscan, Slate, Textured, and Smooth, letting you match your solar system with your architectural vision.
Selfie sticks: you either hate them or love them with a passion usually seen only in the pages of Shakespeare. Some may say that a selfie-stick is the best invention since the rotisserie. Finally, we can take pictures of ourselves standing in front of some thing without the close-up viewpoint necessitated by the puny length of our arms. And you can post the result confidently to the Internet for the whole world to see how good you look in front of that thing. Well, if you think a selfie-stick is good, you certainly haven’t heard about the AirSelfie, a pocket-sized drone equipped with a very capable camera.
The AirSelfie has four rotors and a lens. It can fly up to 20 meters high and take pictures using its 5MP camera. Measuring only at 94.5mm H x 67.4mm W x 10.6mm D, AirSelfie is even smaller than most modern smartphones out there. You have basic control over the drone, but it actually handles a lot of things automatically such as balance, navigation, and altitude. As soon as AirSelfie captures photos (up to 8 consecutive photos are possible), it sends the images directly to your smartphone.
5. Morpher – The Foldable Helmet
If Optic Helmet by DCA Design International makes cycling safer, Morpher by Strategic Sports encourages cyclists to wear helmet in the first place. Invented by an award-winning British inventor Jeffrey Woolf, Morpher is a helmet made from interweaved plastics, allowing it to be foldable into nearly flat design. As it turns out, the main reason cyclists are reluctant to wear a helmet is that it is too bulky and thick to be conveniently stored in backpack or portable container.
Despite its seemingly fragile design, Morpher has been developed to meet and exceed all relevant safety standards. The products are manufactured by Strategic Sports LTD, leading OEM helmet manufacturer based in Hong Kong. Could 2016 be the year of bicycle safety?
6. Medical Vape Pens by hmbldt
Medical marijuana has been a fierce subject of debate for a while, but recently many states have passed the regulation to allow the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes. The hmbldt, a company based in Northern California, offers a range of vaporizer pens mainly used as a cannabis delivery method to induce sleepiness, pain relief, calmness, and blissfulness; all without being intoxicated.