gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

James Dyson Award – Just over one week left to enter!

The James Dyson Award is having one last call for entries, if you’re a university level students of product design, industrial design or engineering and have a cracking good idea then you have precious little time to get your submission together and shoot for that £10,000 top prize.

Collate video, images, sketches, stories and details of your design process and inspiration and join the fray of innovative or outright barmy inventions.

Folks on my side of the pond might remember the James Dyson awards for the folding plug, which I’ve yet to see at retail but has to be the invention I’d presently most like to see come to fruition- next to the personal site-to-site quantum teleportation wrist-band… of course! If you’ve ever stood on the traditional non-folding version of this plug, then you’ll probably agree.

My favourites from this years entries so far include HUGO, an anti-fire robot which looks suspiciously Portal 2 inspired and aims to seek and destroy possible arson threats before they get out of control. Okay, it doesn’t shoot grenades (that would defeat its purpose) but it’s still extremely cool- in the way that only an insect-like, fire-fighting, robot gecko could be.

And then there’s the grow-your-own Ajiro. Okay, so it’s unlikely you’re going to get this as a pack of seeds, but the idea of forming growing bamboo plants over a ridged, re-usable mould to achieve their shape before even harvesting them is pretty inspired.

Entries from the UK are a little thin on the ground, but I’d love to get my hands on these “Know your limits” weighted, alcohol-unit measured glases… just so I could buck the trend by drinking bourbon out of the wine glass and laughing at its resulting inaccuracy. Yeah… I’m English, my whole country has a drinking problem- which is probably why these are a good idea.

So, what are you still reading this for? If you’ve got an idea, submit it. You’ve got nothing to lose and a whole lot of exposure to gain. Just don’t invent hair-design wax strips… I’ve already thought of those, and good god they’d be painful.

Monday, July 25th, 2011, News.