Although I’m not sure if this will ever pan out beyond the conceptual stage — and I certainly wouldn’t recommend it to those who are easily startled, have seen “Paranormal Activity” and its sequels too many times, or pairing it with the Ace Plug— the idea behind Seong Soyeon, Kim Seonmi, Lee Jeongjae, Park Jihye and Lee Yeontaek’s Red Dot Design Concept Award-winning PumPing Tap is certainly a conversation starter. It’s a spring-loaded electrical socket that aims to put an end to vampire power, juice that’s drawn from plugged-in appliances and devices when they’re not being used but remain in standby mode.

Here’s how the PumPing Tap works: If, for example, you’ve just used the microwave oven but failed to unplug it when you’re done, a lighted ring on the socket turns from blue to red. After 10 minutes if you still haven’t used the microwave or unplugged it, the grand finale occurs: a spring mechanism ejects the plug right out of the socket. Pop!

As pointed out by the folks at DVICE, you’d have to be quite selective as to what exactly you ultimately decided to plug into a PumPing Tap. I’d definitely say no to things like refrigerators, wireless routers, or anything you have to reset every time that they’re unplugged. The same goes for appliances and fixtures plugged into sockets hidden behind furniture or other hard-to-access areas. But for certain things — think small kitchen appliances like coffee makers along with items like phone chargers, televisions, hairdryers and anything with a transformer — I see some potential. But what about that OLED ring, the senors and the eject function? Wouldn’t the PumPing Tap itself draw just as much electricity as the not-being-used appliances that are plugged into it?

What do you think? I’m going to say potentially irritating and somewhat unnecessary but kind of nifty nevertheless. I think I'll stick to my smart surge protectors for now.

Via [DVICE], [Yanko Design]

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

An energy-saving socket concept that's not for the easily startled
The PumPing Tap is a spring-loaded electrical socket that physically ejects plugs belonging to appliances and electronics that are not being used but still draw