Every year, creative minds from around the globe come up with great new innovations — ideas that may make you exclaim "Why didn't I think of that?" This is a list of a few great ideas that have debuted so far in 2014. They are attention-grabbing because they are either eco-friendly or just super cool. Enjoy.
Originally the idea of military veterans who saw the need for such an innovation first-hand and engineers at a Portland-based startup company called RevMedx, this simple pocket-sized invention has the potential to save lives on the battlefield as well as many other situations. The XStat is a syringe filled with sponges that are covered in chitosan. Chitosan is a substance that fights infection and clots blood to stop bleeding more effectively. When someone is in need of the XStat, medics are instructed to insert the syringe deep into the wound and inject the sponges to quickly stop the bleeding. It is estimated that between 2001 and 2009, up to 80 percent of deaths on the battlefield were caused by excessive blood loss. The XStat could drastically decrease that percentage.
The GravityLight is a cool little invention that produces light with no outside energy source. The original idea was driven by a slightly different need: Solar Aid was looking for an alternative to kerosene. However GravityLight was created by a company called Deciwatt and designed by Jim Reeves. While the GravityLight is great for camping, it's other applications are more far-reaching. In third world countries, kerosene is often used to produce light but it isn't a clean fuel. GravityLight is an energy-efficient way to produce light, and it also can be used to charge other things, such as batteries. It works by attaching a weight to a pulley system that generates power through a set of gears. Once the light is set, it lasts for up to 25 minutes before it needs to be reset.
The Soccket is no normal soccer ball; in fact it is quite un-ordinary. This new invention creates energy through soccer. It works by harnessing the kinetic energy exerted when the ball gets kicked it around. Thirty minutes of play equates to three hours of power that is fed to an attachable LED light. The idea for the Soccket came from two young entrepreneurs, Jessica O. Matthews and Julia Silverman, who realized that soccer is the most popular sport in the world and that there must be a way to harness that kinetic energy and store it for those who live in less industrialized countries. Soccket is a product of Uncharted Play.
The Dearman Engine is a remarkable new invention. It is an engine that runs off air ... liquid air, that is. This is an eco-friendly alternative to fossil fuels, and because the liquid air is kept at a temperature of about minus 200 degrees Celsius, it provides free air conditioning. The Dearman Engine was born in a garden shed in the United Kingdom, created by Peter Dearman. His idea has since attracted a lot of attention from sponsors who are interested in seeing these kinds of engines on the road. The engine is expected to be ready for testing this summer.
Imagine not worrying about losing the charge on your phone, and being able to go anywhere without a charger. Well with Solepower tech's new invention, the Solepower, that's possible. The Solepower is a small device that fits into your shoe and gets its energy from you as you walk. Solepower charges a small battery, and you can use that energy to charge your phone. Solepower is perfect for many purposes including hiking, traveling, and for people in less advantaged countries who may not have consistent access to electricity.
The Morpher bike helmet is a new invention that makes it a whole lot easier for anyone who rides a bike but has trouble storing their helmet. Bike helmets can be bulky and take up space, that’s what the Morpher helmet seeks to change. These helmets meet the safety standards of any conventional helmet; the difference is that this one-of-a-kind helmet collapses into the size of a small textbook for easy storage; it can easily fit in a backpack, large purse or briefcase.
Jeffrey Woolf OBE, an English inventor, journalist and businessman invented the Morpher helmet. He noticed a need for the Morpher when he asked people in the city who rent bikes regularly why they didn't wear helmets. They all knew that they were risking the safety of their heads, but said that helmets were too inconvenient to carry around all day. Jeffrey saw an opportunity to save a few brain cells, and the Morpher was born.
Another cool eco-friendly invention this year is Corky. Corky, created by Adele Peters, is a computer mouse that is made of 100-percent recycled materials. On top of that, it produces all of its own energy by harnessing the kinetic energy that is exerted on it during its normal functions: clicking, scrolling and moving around.
Logbar Inc's Ring isn't just cool by 2014 standards; it's one of the coolest inventions ever. It’s an actual ring that you wear on your index finger that can recognize the motions of your finger and send texts, make payments, control the TV, lights, even curtains — basically anything that is compatible with its technology. You can even program your own symbols into this new gadget. There seems to be a lot you can do with it and not much you can’t, not to mention it’s a boss-looking ring.
Dror Sharon and Damian Goldring, co-founders of Consumer Physics, Inc., created a device that fits in the palm of your hand and let's you know the molecular composition of anything in front of you at a moment's notice. They call this device Scio. With Scio you can tell which fruit is ripest, which is sweeter, and how many calories are in your favorite beverage. It's made for scanning food, medicines, plants, and many other things, and there is more to come as the team behind Scio advances this technology.
Related on MNN: