Optimus Prime that transforms on its own

Someone has created an Optimus Prime action figure / toy / collectible that transforms on its own. It even responds to voice commands and you can drive it around via an app. If this interests you in the least, here’s a video showing it off:

I have to admit, that is really cool. It’s great that they used the original transforming sound effect and that they got Peter Cullen to voice the dialogue. So props to the maker of this for doing it right.

It contains over 5000 components, 60 microchips, and 27 servo motors, with more details at the official site. As you might expect, technology this awesome is not cheap. $700 is out of my budget for such things, so I won’t be able to provide a hands-on review. Hopefully in the future it’ll get a lot cheaper, because it would be a great addition to my desk.

The reviewer in the video declares this the coolest toy ever. Of course that’s debatable, but I’m not going to argue with that. It is indeed awesome. Do you know of a toy or toy-like collectible that is more awesome?

how to make Google Translate beatbox

Some people with a lot of free time have figured out how to make Google Translate make beatboxing sounds, among other sound effects.  (If you aren’t sure what beatboxing is, it’s what some rappers used to do to make beats with their mouth, especially in the ’80s.)  Here’s the first one I came across:

1) Go to Google Translate
2) Set the translator to translate German to German
3) Copy + paste the following into the translate box: pv zk pv pv zk pv zk kz zk pv pv pv zk pv zk zk pzk pzk pvzkpkzvpvzk kkkkkk bsch
4) Click “Listen”.  (If you don’t have Flash installed, you may not see it.)
5) Be amazed  🙂

If that’s too much work, here’s a shortcut that does it for you (except for #4 and #5).  Beatboxing with Google Translate.

Of course this has spurred competition in certain corners of the Internet.  Here’s some other attempts at beatboxing with it: another beatbox and another.

People have also figured out how to make it produce a helicopter sound, and something which I have no idea about (in Latin, even), and one that illustrates a major loss in translation (listen to the one on the left, then the one on the right).

I’m sure there’s lots of possibilities for this, but it requires someone who has a lot of free time on their hands…

proof that pickles are not for eating

We discussed here before that pickles are evil and shouldn’t be eaten.  Science has confirmed this, by showing that pickles can be used to create TV screens.  That’s a much better use for pickles than consumption (and it doesn’t involve the risk of you becoming a zombie).  That shows that even something as evil as a pickle can be used for good.

However, it’ll be essential that the TV screen doesn’t smell like pickles, or I’ll have nothing to do with it.

Also, other organic materials can be used to create OLED screens, so I still think it would be a good idea to shoot all pickles into the sun.

new alarm clock technology

There’s a new clock radio called Ambient Mist that can also get news and data feeds like weather that are transmitted over a nation-wide wireless network.  But what’s even cooler is that the device has its own e-mail address, so friends can send you messages that appear on-screen.

clock radio - Ambient Mist

Imagine the fun you could have with sending messages to people’s alarm clock!  Things like:

“Get up, you lazy bum!”
“Are you gonna be late AGAIN?”
“I pity the fool!”
“The weather forecast is chili today and hot tamale.”
“I’ve got gas!”