April Fools' is a big day for conceptual technology products. Big tech companies get to let their hair down and come up with gadgets that would earn them ridicule and criticism if they were introduced on any day other than April 1.
We have some real doozies for 2013 when it comes to prank tech gear. ThinkGeek, as usual, has an entire lineup of weird and wonderful items. There's a Play-Doh 3D printer that forms figures out of the famous squishy clay-like material. If you enjoyed listening to Bane's garbled and growly speech during "The Dark Knight Rises," you'll want your very own pair of Bane Mask Walkie Talkies. Other fictional products from the geek retailer include an "Aliens" Chestburster-in-a-Can, a Creeper Body Pillow, and an Eye of Sauron desk lamp.… Read more
You probably know this already, but today is April Fools' Day.
And the pranks, they are a-comin'. This year's batch of springtime hijinks from the greater tech community includes the usual onslaught from Google, along with notable entrants from Nokia, Sony, and others. Without further ado, here are some of the highlights.
While it waits for its Lumia smartphones to build up a head of steam, Nokia is showing off a touch-screen microwave oven, the Nokia 5AM-TH1N6 Constellation, which features a Window Phone-like interface ("which can be operated with oven mitts"). Not to be outdone by Samsung … Read more
So your e-reader has e-ink? How about squid ink?
Leading Japanese publisher Kodansha has a tentacled offering for fans of its many manga comic books: the Interactive Kodansha Archives (iKA) e-book reader.
Billed as the first "living" e-book reader in the world, iKA is a silly April Fools' prank that has a lot to do with puns on "ika" (squid) in Japanese. It's said to have 3.5 "ikabytes" of memory, for instance, that can be used to read titles from Kodansha's back catalog.
Japanese aren't really into April Fools' Day. And with it being cherry blossom season when most are out drinking under the petals, it's a nice surprise to see that some companies have taken the time to honor this foreign custom. … Read more
Microsoft and Google have both gotten in some April Fools' Day zingers against each other.
The two competitors often trade insults about each other's respective search engines, online office suites, and other products. But April Fools' Day inspired them to create a couple of full-blown Web pages to make fun of each other.
Microsoft laid its prank at its Bing search engine.
Surf to Bing and type Google in the search field. A Bing page pops up spoofing Google's pure white and stark home page. Hovering over the small boxes that populate the Bing page displays tips that … Read more
Hold your nostrils! And behold the olfactory search engine called Google Nose.
The service lets you type in keywords for smells like "lemon" or "new car." It's being billed as an "Internet sommelier" with an "Aromabase" of over 15 million "scentibytes."
"Street Sense vehicles have inhaled and indexed millions of atmospheric miles," the Google Nose page says.
"Android Ambient Odor Detection collects smells via the world's most sensible mobile operating system."
"Don't ask, don't smell: For when you're wary of your query--SafeSearch included." … Read more
The best April Fools' pranks are absurd but also have a kernel of believability at their core just big enough to reel people in.
While the notion that YouTube has been a 8-year-long contest and Google is finally choosing a winner and shutting the site down tonight is pretty hard to swallow on its face, Google did shock many people by announcing the shutdown of Google Reader recently. Perhaps Larry and Sergey are beginning to go all Howard Hughes on us?
That's how the below video just put out by YouTube operates. The basic premise is that YouTube has … Read more
Here at Crave, we've seen some mighty impressive interior decorating from geeks over the years: offices inspired by "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea," apartments and home theaters that are dead ringers for a "Star Trek" set. Well, if the "Thermosaurus" radiator is for real, it could make for some pretty hot "Jurassic Park"-themed abodes.
Design firm Art. Lebedev Studio posted renderings of the gadget on April 1 -- yes, that date gives us pause -- saying the device is a "heat exchanger" that "installs like your regular central-heating radiator" and "is highly efficient and energy-savvy, thanks to its complex structure that includes a skull, spine, ribs, legs, and tail bones." The studio also posted a nice page of sketches and other ephemera that supposedly went into the design of the Thermosaurus.… Read more
Out of all the silly headlines that squirmed into my Google Reader feed yesterday, "Ashton Kutcher signed on to play Steve Jobs in upcoming biopic" stood out as the most obvious April Fools' prank, but the joke's on us when we find out today that it's true -- the star of such films as "The Butterfly Effect" and "What Happens in Vegas" will portray the Apple luminary in an indie film simply called "Jobs."… Read more
As part of its annual April Fools' pranks, Google came up with Google Racing, an almost plausible partnership with Nascar. In a post on the official Google blog, apparent racing fan Sergey Brin wrote:...today we're moving the project one great leap forward with Google Racing, a groundbreaking partnership with NASCAR to help self-driving vehicles compete in the world of stock car racing. We think the most important thing computers can do in the next decade is to drive cars--and that the most important thing Google Racing can do in the next decade is drive them, if possible, … Read more