Cool Belt Features Clever Design, Great Looks

I’ve never seen a belt like this, and now I wish all belts were made this way. It looks cool, has a substantial and futuristic-looking buckle, and the faux leather is convincing. I was concerned that it might be difficult to set up and use, but it’s not. In fact, as I gradually started to understand how it’s designed, my smile got bigger and bigger.

The best thing about this cool belt is its rachet closure and customizability to its wearer’s exact size. I put it on and noticed that it easily clicks into place. It’s easy to let it out in tiny increments after a big meal, too. That comes in handy when I go off my diet for a day, eating everything in sight. Now I want to get a brown one, too. Good product, clever design!

These Brilliant Little LED Lights Will Improve Your Life

LED lights

Motion activation is my new friend. This trio of brilliant little motion-sensing LED lights does the trick, whenever I need instant light where there is none.

Case in point: I often enter my garage service door in a hurry after a long sunset hike, and it’s dark. Using this product’s included 3M double-sided sticky pads, I strategically positioned all three LED lights to illuminate a quick path to the house’s side entry door. They’re only triggered when it’s dark (duh, the only time I need them), and they reliably light up my way just in time for me to see where I’m going.

Shortcomings? The package doesn’t include batteries — you’ll need nine AAAs to run all three of these LED lights. That ends up costing more than the lights if you’re using lithium batteries. We’ll see how long they last. And they’re not exactly “warm white” (2700K is the beginning of “warm” color, in my opinion).

But I don’t much care about those two things. They’re warm enough — and just bright enough — to be delightfully useful. Bravo. Instant quality-of-life enhancement.

Best Tire Inflator: I’ll Never Pay For Gas-Station Air Again

Best Tire Inflator

This tire inflator is an innovative, impressive achievement. It’s the best tire inflator I’ve ever seen. I had no idea there was a device that would let you dial in a tire pressure number and then pump up your car tire to exactly that pressure — and then turn off automatically. It’s magical, really.

I had a leaky tire for so long, and got tired of PAYING FOR AIR to pump it up. Now? Bye bye, 50-cent gas-station air!

When I looked at the pics of it on Amazon, I thought it was much bigger. That is not the case. This little tire inflator is scarcely larger than a football, so I stow it away in the trunk and always know it’ll be there, ready to go. A quick plug-in of its nice long cable to the car’s cigarette lighter and it springs into action.

Hard to believe a convenience like this costs less than $33. Glad I bought it!

RAVPower Charger Is the Envy of All Power Banks

RAVPower Power Bank
It didn’t take long for me to discover that the RAVPower Power Bank is a premium device. When I plugged my iPhone into it, it began charging automatically. It turns itself off, too.

This 10,000mAh charger is cool. It’s solidly built. Its padded carry case keeps it from banging around against other objects in my bag. Best of all, I got more than two full iPhone charges out of it. I am impressed — strong buy.

How I set up a world-class personal weather station

Davis Instruments Vantage Vue wireless weather station
“Everybody complains about the weather but nobody does anything about it,” said Mark Twain, long before the advent of the personal weather station.

You still can’t really do anything about the weather but you can certainly measure it, report about it, collect live weather data and send it to the Internet and display the results all over your house. That’s been my passion over the past 15 years, and I’ll show you how you can do it with your own personal weather station. Continue reading

Product photography tips for bloggers: It’s not as hard as it looks

Product photography how-to

If you’re a blogger, you also must be a photographer. Where to start? I’ve been taking pictures for 50 years, and I’m here to help.

In this post, I’ll show you 20 examples of product photography I’ve taken over the past year for the blog you’re reading now and on my previous job as senior editor of Mashable. I’ll tell you why I made the choices I did, and why I think these pictures work within the context of a personal blog. Continue reading

Video: We talk with Mr. Media about Bloggers Boot Camp

My writing partner John Biggs (TechCrunch, Gizmodo, The New York Times) and I talked with a cool guy the other day. Bob Andelman, known worldwide as “Mr. Media,” asked us about our newly released second edition of Bloggers Boot Camp. We talked about the book and a lot more for the better part of an hour.


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Bob asked us some great questions about blogging, creating content, and generally being cool on the Internet. Johnny and I talked about our experiences at Gizmodo, NBC Universal, Mashable and TechCrunch, and made each other laugh while we tossed out a plethora of blogging tips.

It was a great treat to be able to hang out with John in our first dual interview. Enjoy!