Waiting for 'Don't Walk' Signs Is More Fun When the Stick Figure Dances

At first glance it seems like just another fun art project, but this dancing traffic light can actually vastly improve safety wherever it's installed. Because people waiting for a 'don't walk' sign to change to 'walk' are far more likely to stick it out when they're distracted and entertained, rather than just try and… » 9/16/14 5:10pm Tuesday 5:10pm

A Ballistic Sleeping Bag That Promises Protection From a Tornado

They seem like a smart idea, but how many people do you really know with a safe room in their house? Probably none, because they're expensive, and that includes those living in areas where storms can generate deadly tornados. So a Missouri-based inventor has come up with a cheaper way to stay safe during a twister—an … » 9/09/14 6:02pm 9/09/14 6:02pm

These Alien Skyscrapers Will Rest on the Site of an Old Uranium Plant

The Pritzker Prize-winning starchitect Zaha Hadid just released images of her latest design—three matching towers for Brisbane's waterfront—and they look nothing short of alien. Which feels oddly appropriate, since the skyscrapers are also supposed to sit on potentially radioactive land. » 9/08/14 12:00pm 9/08/14 12:00pm

Carbon Fiber-Reinforced Clothing Will Protect Cyclists From Road Rash

Donning a full suit of motorcycle leathers for your morning bike ride to work is probably overkill, but cyclists can still be subjected to road rash should they fall while wearing less-than-protective gear. So athletic gear manufacturer Scott is developing shorts and jerseys strategically reinforced in key areas using… » 8/28/14 4:14pm 8/28/14 4:14pm

Virtually no one starts smoking after age 26

There's a reason the government has had to severely restrict cigarette advertising (and smoking in general) to minors: they're the only ones still gullible enough to think smoking is a good idea. According to the Surgeon General's office, anyone over the age of 26 has a better chance of being mugged by a great white… » 8/20/14 4:44pm 8/20/14 4:44pm

An Airbag Belt Could Help Protect Seniors' Hips From Nasty Falls

It doesn't matter how much milk you drink, at a certain age your bones start to lose their strength, eventually putting you at risk for broken limbs and even worse: a broken hip that hinders your mobility. So similar to the airbags in your car, this safety belt instantly inflates when it detects the wearer is falling,… » 8/15/14 3:07pm 8/15/14 3:07pm

A Plush-Disguised Camera Lets Drivers Keep an Eye On Back-Seat Infants

There are plenty of distractions you should be ignoring while driving, like your smartphone. But others, like your infant in a car seat behind you, you simply can't ignore. So instead of taking your eyes off the road to turn around and check on them, or futzing with your rear-view mirror, the Always in View straps a… » 8/14/14 12:20pm 8/14/14 12:20pm

A Farmer's Terrifying DIY Guard-Bot Scares Off Bears with 25,000 Volts

Turkish farmer and amateur inventor Mustafa Karasungur cares more about protecting his crops from bears than basic safety. So using parts he could scrounge around his local town, he built a robotic sentry for his farm that terrifies bears and even shocks them with 25,000 volts of electricity. From this day on his… » 8/11/14 9:07am 8/11/14 9:07am

Keep Dangerous Animals At Bay With This 950,000V Hiking Stick Stun Gun

If you're on a hike and come across a predator that's determined to protect its young or its turf, you're not going to have much luck scaring it off with whistles or loud noises. You need a deterrent that's a little more convincing, like a 950,000-volt stun gun on the end of a 56-inch hiking pole that helps you keep a… » 8/07/14 2:16pm 8/07/14 2:16pm

This Fanny Pack Could Save You From Drowning

Fanny packs fell out of fashion sometime in the mid-1990s, but would you still wear one if it could possibly help save your life? Or, if it meant that when boating or kayaking you didn't have to wear an awkward and uncomfortable vest-style life jacket? Dakine is betting you will with its new unobtrusive waist pack… » 8/05/14 7:54pm 8/05/14 7:54pm

Heart Rate Monitoring Car Seats Keep You From Drifting Off

Instead of finding ways to help reduce stress, long hours at work, and other contributing factors to our increasing levels of fatigue, researchers have just accepted the fact that we're all perpetually tired, and are instead focusing their efforts on ensuring we don't fall asleep at the wheel. And the latest… » 7/15/14 9:21am 7/15/14 9:21am

Conductive Paint Reveals the Faults in Our Concrete Structures

They say an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, but in this case it's more like tons and tons of the latter. Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed a sort of "sensing skin" that can make it easier to detect faults and damage in concrete structures before they fail and need serious… » 7/09/14 10:20am 7/09/14 10:20am

DIY Fireworks Instructions From the 1920s Were Ridiculously Unsafe

Americans love things that sparkle, things that glow, and especially things that blow up. So it makes sense that on America's birthday, we take great pride in our various spectacles of light and noise. Today, there are countless YouTube videos and how-to websites showing how to create your own firecrackers and… » 7/04/14 1:32pm 7/04/14 1:32pm

Radar For Your Bike Gives You Long-Range Eyes on the Back of Your Head

When you're riding a bike, the world is an endless barrage of obstacles, hazards, and other vehicles sharing the road you need to avoid. Mirrors let you keep an eye on what's going on behind your cycle, but the Backtracker promises to spot vehicles up to 450 feet away using radar, and warn you to get out of the way… » 7/02/14 1:20pm 7/02/14 1:20pm