Category Archives: Gadgets

Arachnophobia? Then this is not for you.

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Gadget of the week: Casio AL190WD-1AV

Forget the model number – it’s impossible to memorize. What Casio resurrected from the dead is a battery-less retro watch that’s powered by the sun, artificial light or other sources of natural light. Its large solar panel collects enough light to power such useful functions as a stopwatch, countdown timer and 5 alarms. Silver stainless steel band digital watch with a neutral face.

  • casio-solarSolar Powered
  • 1/100-second stopwatch
  • Countdown timer
  • 5 alarms
  • 50-meter water resistance

While the bracelet is metal, the case is made of resin and painted to resemble metal. This finish will probably wear off quickly, but who cares: the watch is dirt cheap. A little bit of shopping will land this model in your shopping basket for about $20.

I must say: so far the watch works as advertised. It takes a while to charge the built-in capacitor, but once fully charged the watch can run up to 14 days without having to expose it to light. A solar icon warns you when it’s time to get out of your man cave.

Stricter gun laws? Try a light saber.

Most of Star Trek and  Star Wars technology might seem far fetched, but you will be surprised how many modern gadgets resemble something we once only knew from SciFi movies. We have communicators (cell phones), spaceships, plasma drives, lasers and we even start to understand the principles behind transporters.


For many Star Wars fans the coolest gadget is a light saber. Yes, you can buy them, including a Darth Vader outfit, but the stuff can’t even harm a fly. If you really want to slice a burglar in two halves, you have to build your own version. All you need to do is salvage a 3 Watt laser from a DLP projector and put it into something resembling a light saber.

May The Force be with you.