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Purify your water with a bamboo box and a UV-A light via LaVie

When it comes to getting clean, purified water, we’re a lot better equipped for the task in our 21st century kitchen than when we’re 21 miles into the backwoods. After all, you can’t exactly carry around that bulky water filter, nor can you pick up your whole sink and take it with you wherever you go. But here to provide a more elegant solution is LaVie, a new Kickstarter project that promises to provide unlimited, pure mineral water with nothing more than a small wooden box.

Meant for folks in developing countries to have easy access to clean drinking water, the LaVie leverages UV-A light treatment to ensure that the water that comes out of the box is cleaner than the water that went into it. With no filter to speak of and no complex gadgets or gizmos to install, the LaVie may just be the simplest appliance in your home. But that doesn’t mean it’s any less effective than the rest of your smart home.

To use the purifying bamboo box, users need only to place a bottle filled with normal tap water into the device, which is outfitted with a special LED light. The purifying process is said to start automatically, and within 15 minutes, the LaVie will alert you that your water is ready to be drunk. The secret is the LaVie’s patented UV-A light technology that purports to break down chlorine, “releasing powerful free radicals that will destroy bacteria and viruses, pesticides and traces of drugs, tastes, and odors,” as per the team’s Kickstarter page.

What’s unclear is how well the LaVie works with truly non-potable water — while it’s one thing to be able to purify the water that comes out of most American home taps, it’s entirely different to address the water needs of the developing countries LaVie is said to benefit. That said, if you’re looking for a cost effective and environmentally friendly way to purify your drinking water, LaVie may be able to do the trick. After all, you no longer have to buy bottle after bottle of mineral water — just fill up LaVie’s included glass bottle with the water you already have on hand and let the UV-A light go to work.

Of course, you should always exercise caution when it comes to backing crowdfunding campaigns.

However, if you are interested in showing your support for LaVie, the team is offering early bird pricing of £180 for the full system, which includes the LaVie bamboo box (with the UV-A LED light), a 220V power supply, and a tempered-glass bottle.

Editors’ Recommendations

If you need a jacket with 25 features, look no further than the BauBax 2.0

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It’s been nearly three years since the BauBax Travel Jackets set a record as the most successful apparel crowdfunding campaign in Kickstarter history, and now, the team behind the outerwear is back to prove itself once again. After raising £9.2 million in its first go-around, the BauBax team is launching the 2.0 version of its jacket on the crowdfunding site. Meet the BauBax 2.0 Travel Jacket, created “by travelers for travelers” and meant to address “common travel problems and make every journey easier.”

The jacket includes a number of bells and whistles that you probably didn’t know you wanted.

For example, there’s a pen (or stylus) attached to the main zipper, earbud holders, multiple tech gadget pockets, a secret RFID safe pocket, a drink pocket, and of course, built-in gloves. The BauBax 2.0 also features specially sized storage pockets for your passport, wallet, tablet, smartphone, sunglasses, portable battery charger, and water bottle.

In essence, if you want to turn yourself into a walking suitcase, this is the way to do it. Oh, and by the way, the jacket comes with a carabiner, because why not?

And now that Apple products are more popular than ever, BauBax has added some iEmpire-specific features, including an Apple Pencil pocket, an Apple AirPods pocket, and built-in AirPod straps to hold your earphones in place. While this may seem like a whole lot to carry on your person, the BauBax team notes that it’s actually perfect for traveling, particularly through airports. “Instead of unloading all your pockets before stepping into the full body scanner, you can simply keep everything in your BauBax Jacket, take it off and send it through the scanner,” Hiral Sanghavi, Co-founder and CEO of BauBax said. The original BauBax has sold more than 150,000 jackets since its Kickstarter debut, and the team seems to have even bigger plans yet for its older sibling.

“I’ve always found traveling cumbersome and harder than it should be, from fumbling around at security, to looking for a pen for customs forms, or trying to hold a drink when my tray table is occupied by a laptop,” Sanghavi noted. “With BauBax 2.0 Travel Jackets, travelers will find they have everything they need to enjoy their trip and get the sleep they crave.”

In addition to all the aforementioned features, the BauBax 2.0 also comes with a built-in neck pillow, eye mask, blanket, and inflatable footrest. Seriously, don’t ask. The BauBax 2.0 jackets are available in both men and women’s sizing in four styles: vest, bomber jacket, sweatshirt, and windbreaker.

Of course, you should always exercise caution when backing a crowdfunded project, but if you’re interested, the BauBax is offering early bird pricing of £109 for its sweatshirt, windbreaker, or vest, and £129 for the bomber.

Delivery is expected for August 2018.

Editors’ Recommendations

Here to revolutionize your commute is Bird, a new escooter sharing company

The bikes of the future are looking more and more like the bikes of your past. We’re talking, of course, about the renaissance of the scooter, which seems to have hit a new stride now that it’s found electricity. Escooters seem to be popping up all over the country these days and have become so popular that a number of companies are now looking to offer escooter sharing systems.

The latest to enter the scene is Bird, a company founded by a man who knows a little something about mobility solutions. His name is Travis VanderZanden, who was previously the vice president of growth at Uber, and previous to that, the chief operating officer of Lyft. But now, he is on his own, and launching a new company that doesn’t offer car services, but rather scooter services.

Bird is based in Santa Monica, California, and over the course of the last six months, VanderZanden has launched around 1,000 of these escooters around the city. So far, he tells TechCrunch, 50,000 people have taken around 250,000 rides. Getting started on Bird ought to be pretty easy.

New riders need a driver’s license and a credit card number (which they enter into the Bird app). Once that is done, you are charged £1 to unlock the scooter and an additional 15 cents for each minute. You will be able to go as far as the scooter can take you and at speeds of up to 15 miles per hour.

Apparently, some folks have made Birds take them all the way to Los Angeles International Airport, while others have ridden from Santa Monica into downtown L.A. (about a 15.5-mile commute). For the time being, the dockless escooters are only available from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Once that timeframe is up, Bird employees collect the scooters to clear them off the streets, and then replace them in front of coffee houses and other small businesses, as requested, beginning early the next morning.

So far, Bird seems to be doing quite well. The company managed to close a £15 million Series A funding round. “People are taking notice of how quickly Bird is growing,” VanderZanden said, noting that a number of copycat companies have already popped up. “Preventing car ownership is the goal of all these companies.

I think if all of us are successful, that’s fine.”

Editors’ Recommendations

The Lucnt SRL1 is a smart bike light that works like a car brake

When it comes to determining how easy to use a product really is, it’s always good to consider whether or not good ol’ mom and dad could figure it out. After all, an excellent design should transcend generations, right? Promising to pass the test is the Lucnt SRL1, a smart bike light that works just like a car brake light, making your bike ride safer for all involved.

Designed and made in California, the Lucnt SRL1 makes use of multiple sensors and smart algorithms to determine when you’re slowing down or speeding up. In response, the light will illuminate or return to its normal pattern, all without any additional input from you. Rather than fiddling with a power switch or remembering to turn your blinkers on when you want to turn or make a stop, the Lucnt SRL1 does all the work for you.

Just because you’re riding a bike doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have at least some of the benefits of a car. Automatically activated by the magnets in its bike mount, the smart bike light ought to turn on once you’re in motion, and turn off once it’s detected that you’ve stopped. When you’re just cruising around in traffic, the Lucnt has a proprietary blink pattern to keep drivers and pedestrians aware of your presence.

And then when you brake, it will turn solid. Promising a tough all-weather design, the Lucnt should stay charged over the course of multiple rides — it’s said to deliver 20 hours of use on just a single hour of charge. From a design perspective, the Lucnt looks quite nice.

Not only is it hand-made, but it’s actually made from a single piece of solid aluminum. You can place it just about anywhere on your seat post, making it appropriate for just about any sized rider. Of course, you should always exercise caution when backing a crowdfunding campaign, and as we haven’t seen the Lucnt in action, we can’t verify any of the company’s claims.

That said, if the smart light does everything it says it can do, it’s a pretty sweet piece of equipment for making your eco-friendly commute safer.

The team is hoping to raise £50,000 and is looking to ship product in July.

An early bird model will set you back £100.

Editors’ Recommendations

The Orbit B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer makes watering smarter

Outdoor watering can be a messy but necessary task for both amateur and professional gardening aficionados. Do you give your plants too much water? Too little?

When do you find time to take care of all your little green dependents? In addition, more than three-quarters of American households don’t have in-ground sprinklers in their yards, which necessitates manual watering of lawns, gardens or container plants with a hose. There are smarter ways to tackle this task.

Now, the worldwide irrigation manufacturer Orbit is aiming to take the guesswork out of hosing down the garden with a new product, the B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer. The company announced the new product at this year’s CES 2018, along with HomeKit integration for its consumer line of irrigation products. This nifty new device enables consumers to automate, manage, and optimize the entire watering process.

The accompanying app allows the timer to program watering down to the second, which can be important for complex tasks like self-sustaining hydroponics projects or simple ones like filling a bird bath. The device is also controllable by voice with Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri and HomeKit platforms. It also has Wi-Fi connectivity, available through a dedicated Wi-Fi hub, as well as Bluetooth connectivity.

Previously, the B-hyve’s earlier iteration offered smart home functionality through Alexa. Basically, the timer attaches to any standard outdoor faucet, fitting on before the hose is attached. Small or simple garden watering needs can be met by the timer functions on the app.

For more complex gardening projects, users can implement an interesting innovation on the timer. The B-hyve device can use weather data to automatically alter watering times or produce an EPA WaterSense certified schedule; users simply plug in location conditions such as plant types, soil type, sprinkler version, et cetera. This “fully smart” automation can also be applied to multiple B-hyve timers that can then be daisy-chained together for maximum efficiency.

In addition, the app offers real-time monitoring and updates, captures a user’s personal watering history, and enables remote connectivity so weekend gardeners can change their watering preferences on the fly. “This is a revolutionary product that lets consumers easily manage their watering systems from anywhere, at any time,” Orbit President Stuart Eyring said in a statement. “The B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer is poised to change the way we water and marks yet another important milestone for Orbit as we continue down our path to bring smart yard technology to the masses — all while delivering significant water savings.” The B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer and Wi-Fi hub are available for £70 via home-improvement retailers throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Those with a green thumb and more ambitious plans can also purchase additional B-hyve timers separately for £40.

Editors’ Recommendations