Most Creative Gadgets – Invented And Redesigned
Every day we use a wide array of creative gadgets that help us save time, expand our abilities and explore our creative sides. Some of these modern gadgets and devices provide features that allow users to look at their world in a new and refreshing way. These are the gadgets that inspire and empower you to do more in your daily lives.
Read on to explore some of the latest and most creative gadgets that exemplifies creativity in both purpose and design and find out how they can help us live more efficiently:
Mycestro – the Wearable Gesture Based Mouse
Have you ever considered how much efficiency you lose every time you take your hands away from the keyboard? You could be blazing away typing at high wpm, only to suddenly jerk to a stop so you can grope around for your mouse whenever you need to highlight a word or save your document. This is why the most productive typists and performance engineers forgo the use of the mouse entirely, relying on keyboard shortcuts to maintain their zen-like working pace.
Maybe it’s time to let go of the old, fumbly mouse. The Mycestro Wearable Mouse is a comfortable, lightweight and surprisingly poten alternative that works with any gesture or surface – even while standing! Now you no longer need to say “Next slide please” while making a presentation or interrupt the flow of conversation every time you need to refer to something. Not even a wireless mouse can work so well away from the desk!
How does it work? The Mycestro is a fully configurable 3D mouse, allowing not just the directions of right/left and north/south, but also up/down. You can zoom with a gesture, and rotate smoothly with a flick of the thumb. Don’t worry about the mouse pointer going all over the place while typing or pointing with your finger, the Mycestro reads your gestures only while your thumb is resting over the thumbpad. It can perform all the functions of a mouse right out of the box and works seamlessly with multiple-monitor setups.
Any screen becomes a virtual touchscreen. A wearable mouse is an ergonomic design that puts much less strain on your wrist. It is liberating, in a way, the feeling of being able to work in 3D space. All that in a device that weighs less than half an ounce.
Artograph EZ Tracer Art Projector
The EZ Tracer is a simple yet invaluable tool for artists, educators, and creative students of all ages. It can enlarge and project in full color any image onto any flat surface, though most specially suited for walls and canvas. Take any picture, photo or drawing, just place it underneath the EZ Art Tracer, and you’re ready to trace, paint, or just quickly switch images for your presentations.
It is an inexpensive, operates near silently, and very portable device. It’s so easy to use, even a young child can intuitively understand its use. No set up or assembly required!
Buy it with the Projection Art for Kids book to get your children and students started with the fun of painting murals with all the techniques that real artists use.
Artograph Tracer Projector and Enlarger
While the handy EZ Tracer may be all you need for your projects at home or in the classroom, for professional uses you might prefer the more stylish Artograph Projector and Enlarger with a larger image area.
One interesting way to use an EZ Tracer Art projector is to take a larger sheet of paper (or illustration board) than it can normally project, and then move across it section by section projecting informative cartoons and graphics as a much faster and practically no-cost alternative to whiteboard animation. It can even be a team-based effort, done on-site as participants share their insights. This is not something you can easily do with pocket projector, which needs to be hooked up to a computer or any other data source.
Ten Creative Gadgets for the Modern Professional
1) Pogo Connect 2 Stylus
An artist always has a set of tools ready, from different brushes to different types of polymer clays. So why would anyone expect digital artists to behave differently?
The iPad’s capacitive touch screen is an excellent art surface, but you can use real brush and pen/pencil nubs to blend and create the effect you really want. The Pogo Connect 2 stylus uses dynamic pressure sensitive heads and magnetically impregnated bristles for the most authentic painting experience.
2) EasyAcc Super 20000mAh Dual USB Ports Power Bank
Of course, all these nifty devices designed to help you put your thoughts down as the inspiration strikes have a crippling flaw. Without power, all our best stuff become just paperweights. What if you’re in a park, where are you going to plug in your charger? Few restaurants offer courtesy charging, and in school everybody’s trying to crowd around one wall socket.
And that’s why it’s always a good investment to have a powerbank ready. Nothing too bulky or heavy though.
Unfortunately, there’s a lot of mislabeled junk products out there. We continue to warn against buying cheap very high capacity powerbanks on impulse. That 50,000 Ah power bank you’re looking at may be lucky to get 15,000 Ah after testing. A legit high-capacity power bank exemplifies quality all in all aspects of its design, and this one even displays your charge status precisely with its power-saving digital screen. Always look up the manufacturer before buying.
3) Evernote Moleskin Smart Notebook
There’s compelling research that shows that the more we actually have options, the less we get anything done. Writers continually search for distraction-free writing tools, and programmers love the eye-soothing black on green screen for coding. But if we want to focus completely only on our thoughts, nothing beats notebooks – real notebooks made out of paper.
We move from digital to analog every day without even thinking about it, comfortable with both. There is no divide between the analog and digital worlds; we take what’s most useful as the need strikes. However, there’s a way to transform even your handwritten notes into the cloud for retrieval anywhere. In the partnership between Moleskin and Evernote, comes the Moleskin Creative Cloud-connected Smart Notebook.
Handwriting OCR analysis turns your notes into text, but Moleskin’s Smart Notebook is uniquely designed for Evernote’s Page Capture app to get the cleanest digital translations automatically compensating for skewed and angled shots. It’s the best way to save, preserve, and make your notes searchable and shareable.
4) Hemingwrite Digital Typewriter
The Hemingwrite is a cool retro digital typewriter that really forces you to remember that a writer’s first job is always to write. The novelist is not made by sipping lattes, but bit by bit getting those paragraphs done, and stitched together into a chapter. Every bit of distraction away from that essential task – web browsing for research, games to relax, even hitting backspace to erase passages and starting over – all of these merely waste time. Even mistakes can be important later.
Mechanical keys are great for keeping your groove going, the tactile feedback reducing the unconscious worry that you’re not hitting the right keys as you speed-type. The click and clack of typing is the essential background noise to getting work done.
But the problem in the pure distraction-free environment is losing all that hard work to something like power loss, accidents, or damaged storage media. The Hemingwrite looks like a portable typewriter of the old school, but is much lighter and comfortable to carry and automatically saves your progress to linked Google Drive or Evernote account through wifi. That its battery lasts 4-6 weeks on a charge is particularly cool too.
5) Amazon Kindle Voyage
The bright glare of a screen can never replace a good book. E-ink displays are much easier on the eyes than even the best dual-HD tablet screens. Also, by virtue of not needing to pack in as many bells and whistles, an ebook reader is good for weeks of continuous use instead of the days you can expect from a smartphone or tablet’s batteries.
The latest Amazon Kindle Voyage is a device that plugs you into the Amazon ecosystem and the world’s largest online bookstore. Even now with steadily more powerful tablets, there’s a lot to be said for keeping all the books and reference material you need in one device. Distraction-free reading is crucial to memory retention. So does the ability to make topographic mental map of the content you’ve just read.
The Open University in Scotland looked at how students used Kindle readers and print books and the results showed that certain eBook readers promoted deeper reading in which readers get immersed in a text.
If you need to focus on something for long hours, eyestrain becomes a serious problem. A paper white screen and paperback size is a comfort to read at any angle at any time. The closer the reading experience it is to a paper book, the more involved you become in a text and the easier it enters into your long-term memory.
6) Robo3D Printer
3D printing is the next big thing. Would you download a car? Well, for now a toy car.
With 3D printers, you can transform digital model plans into reality; make any manner of custom devices, ornaments, and toys at very low cost. Whether you’re an artist or engineer, this device offers literally limitless potential.
However, as a technology still yet to hit the mainstream, you might start with a small and more affordable 3D printer to learn more about the concept. The Robo3D Printer is sub-$1000 stylish, fully assembled 3D printer that works straight out of the box. It can print up to 9-inch tall and 10-inch wide items with 100 micron resolution that matches machines that cost thousands of dollars. You can print with either petroleum-based PLA (which has high heat resistance and flexibility) or plant-based ABS (which has greater rigidity) thermoplastics.
Anything that you can export as a 3D model, you can make real with a 3D printer. It’s an unparalleled tool for engineering, prototyping and highly customized works of art.
7) Lenovo Ideapad Yoga
Mobile computing is where it’s at. Laptops are great, but then again so are tablets. There used to be a tablet vs netbook competition, but now netbooks have almost vanished from the store shelves. Did tablets win the device wars? In fact, it looks like they just sort of merged into one device known as the ultrabook. It is the result of merging the touchscreen feature and lightness of a tablet with the comfortable keyboard and efficiency of the OS (Windows, OSX, Linux, etc.) in netbooks. The Lenovo Idea Pad’s tagline exemplifies the concept, “laptop when you want it and tablet when you need it.”
I’ve been switching between laptops and netbooks alongside a tablet for years, and the whole experience make me say with confidence that using an ultrabook is a pleasure indeed. It has the power to let me compete as a creative professional, letting me take most of my studio work wherever I go. Software applications remain much more potent than downloadable apps.
8) Wake Up Work Out Alarm Clock
Now here’s a useful device for those who like to stay up late and have to work for long hours at a desk. The Wake Up Work Out alarm clock weights 1.5 pounds and won’t turn off until you perform 30 full bicep curls. And its internal motion sensors make sure that you don’t cheat!
Remember that the mind is also part of your body. If you’re feeling sleepy and stuck in a rut, working out is a good way to refresh your creative powers.
9) iPad Air 2
There are certain exceptions to fully powered applications and high-end laptops, and the Apple loves being that exception. The iPad has captured the artist and amateur market with its excellent built-in camera and powerful art apps. Artists can creates some truly fabulous art using lightweight but fully-featured digital tools for sketching and painting on the iPad.
The iPad Air 2 continues the tradition of excellence with the thinnest, lightest and most graphically powerful tablet in the business.
The perfect size to slip into your bag or backpack, 10 hours of battery power under the most demanding use, no wonder it’s so popular with the college crowd. Now no matter where inspiration strikes, you’re ready.
But if the complexity and expense of the 3D printer turns you off, then look at this cool, intuitive alternative! The 3Doodler, the world’s first 3D printing pen! Fully enabled with different colored plastics, there’s nothing quite like scribbling on the air and turning sketches into sculptures. It is a transformative tool, changing the way we think about art and play.
And priced at less than $100, it’s not difficult at all to enhance whatever writing or artwork you want to do. Great for fun with your kids and in the classroom.
Check out more Creative gadgets – extended list below!
11) Samsung Galaxy Note 4
We’ve discussed the phone/tablet (phablet) hybrid before as the best combination of several different devices into one powerful platform. In this instance however, we’re looking at a smartphone as your main gadget for keeping informed and sharing on social media. So, the best camera and the best browsing experience.
The iPhone 6 Plus is a powerful contender in this category (specially with the best overall camera in a smartphone), but some creative types may require more features and more memory at a lower price.
As usual, Samsung tries to make high-end devices available to the mainstream with its Note 4, a more affordable but feature-rich phone with certain unique tricks. It comes with 32 GB stock memory, expandable to up to 128 GB. Its camera quality is good at 16 MP rear and 3.7 front, with optical stabilization to correct for an unsteady grip.
What we loved most about it is the quick charging and turning the screen to gray scale when at the last dregs of power to get that last call or note in before you’re really cut off.
12) DIWire Bender
Looking for other unique means of expression? Why not try the simple yet alluring art form of wire sculpture? It’s simple and minimalist in the way of tools, but perhaps it may take too much time and elbow strain to build up the vision you have in your head. So here’s the DIWire Bender to help you make even the most complex of shapes quickly and easily.
Perfect if you’re trying to build up the sculptural framework for a larger piece, or personalized ornamentation. Light, sturdy, and transportable, this is something long desired by bycraft workshops, studios and set designers. Until now had to either deal with time in machine shops or even more time trying to bend steel wire into shape with teams of people with pliers.
13) Canon All-In-One-Printer
If you have a home office, there’s little reason to buy a printer, a scanner, and a copier. You only have so much room and USB ports. Inkjet All-In-One printers are cheap, reliable, and good for printing out and duplicating photos. The Canon Pixma MG3250 Black, for example, is a $79.99 device that would serve your needs. No home studio is complete without an all-in-one printer of some kind.
You probably already even have one, so take the time to consider how much of our daily lives are assisted by things we don’t even care to consider as a creative tool.
There’s a lot to consider about a printer though, so you might want to have a look at our Ultimate Guide to Buying an Ideal Laser Printer.
14) KRUPS Super Automatic Espresso Maker
This may merit an eye-roll from a serious coffee drinker, but if you’re looking for that jolt to get through those late nights and get going early in the morning, a home espresso and cappuccino maker can be considered an investment. However, espresso makers are kind of like sports cars of the coffee-drinker’s world – they can run up to thousands of dollars for machines of precision and beauty.
For most of us, a “super automatic” coffee machine that handles everything from grinding the beans to the pull of rich dark liquid into the cup is a dream come true. The KRUPS EA8250 Espresseria is at the cream of the crop, with the price and capacity to serve the whole family. It has an LCD display for recipe selection, a large bean hopper and conical bean grinder, and a 1.8 liter water tank to ensure no one ever goes without a cup.
15) Digital Pen Tablet Monitor
The digital artist and the graphics tablet are inseparable. For someone moving from the use of traditional media, it may be a big hurdle trying to re-train one’s muscle memory in drawing and looking at something else. This editor has tried, and has never really grown comfortable with it, no matter how expensive the graphics tablet.
The best, most natural experience is to draw straight onto the digital surface – and a simple touchscreen monitor just won’t do. And it’s for good reason that the Wacom Cintiq 22HD is the industry standard. If you’re a painter or cartoonist used to working directly on canvas and paper, the switch from physical media to digital is like attaining nirvana.
With 19.5 by 11.5 inches active surface area, and functioning as a 21.5-inch full HD (1920 x 1080) screen, it’s the perfect tool for digital sculptors and animator and great for gaming too!
While it’s true that a great artist and designer can create great things with common tools, and that the best tools don’t help if you don’t have the skill – you do need the best available to be all that you can be. While having limits can force us to become more creative in the use of our talents, only by breaking free can we reach the next level. These gadgets help creative types focus more on what matters most, instead of wasting time and mental energy in day-to-day hassles.
Still, if you’re a student you need something more to your budget as you try to learn. In that case, here are the Top Ten Creative Gadgets for Students.
Let us know your experience with the devices you use to reduce what you feel are pointless tasks that sap your creativity. Please leave a comment below.
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