Imaging Robots/Drones

The Jimble surveillance bot is a pregnant hoverboard that patrols your home

Much to the chagrin of the most ardent futurists, the world is still a long way off from robots being a commonplace fixture in everyday life. Still, that’s not stopping companies from trying their hardest to jumpstart the trend, especially when it comes to home security.

Despite its claim of being the “first”. the Jimble smart moving surveillance robot is another entry in a long line of vaguely similar products offering the protective benefits of a wheeled robot in the hom,  (A quick search on Backerjack immediately pokes a hole in that claim.) Looking a bit like a sawed-off Segway, Jimble doesn’t do anything spectacularly different from other surveillance robots. Like others, it has an HD camera that users can peer into their homes with supplemented by a mic to talk to whoever may be around using Wi-Fi to facilitate a first person view for users on their smart devices.

Home Safety

Saver could be a lifesaver if a fire starts in your home

editors-choiceMany consumers classify the smoke detector as a must-have product for their homes. But just because a smoke detector goes off and everybody hears it doesn’t necessarily mean that they will be able to get out of their homes before inhaling smoke, which is the cause of death in many home fires.

patent-claimedThe Saver Emergency Breath System is a small, personal device that enables users to breathe clean air in the event of a fire. The device can be activated in less than five seconds, according to its Indiegogo campaign. It was designed with a triple filter system that its maker says removes toxic gases for up to five minutes.

Each Saver costs $69. For another $30, consumers can opt for a version that includes a flashlight to help see through smoke and a built-in alarm for others to know where the person wearing it is. Each will ship in July. Saver’s maker is hoping to raise $50,000 by June 26.

It’s hard to tell from the campaign video exactly how simple it is to operate a Saver. It could be too hard for some people, especially young kids, to operate it, especially when they are frightened as a fire is raging near them. In that case, the airline rule of having adults put on their own device before equipping others would likely prevail. But certainly such a device will come in handy for many consumers and could indeed be a lifesaver for at least some of those people if it indeed works as effectively as its maker claims.



Air Mentor shows the lighted sides of contaminated environs

The carbon monoxide detector is a must-have device. But there are many potential toxins in the air other than carbon monoxide that can be dangerous to people also — especially the very young and elderly and those with compromised immune systems and respiratory ailments.

Air Mentor is a Bluetooth Smart device with built-in industrial grade sensors that measure home air quality and can detect pollutants including carbon dioxide, particulate matters and volatile organic compounds such as carbon monoxide, aromatic hydrocarbons and organic acids. The triangular device can be placed on any flat surface in the home or office, and is used in conjunction with an Android or iOS app. Cloud computing software automatically analyzes indoor air patterns.

One of five colors lights up on the device to signal the air’s quality: green for good air quality, yellow for moderate, orange meaning the air is unhealthy for sensitive people such as those with asthma, red meaning the air is unhealthy for everybody, and purple signaling very unhealthy air. The device costs $249 and ships in May. Its maker is hoping to raise $15,500 by May 8.

Air Mentor holds promise, especially for consumers with compromised immune systems and those with chronic respiratory conditions including asthma. But consumers looking for a more portable device that performs some of the same functions might opt for something like the Scarab wearable air pollutant detector.



McChi lock slips over deadbolt for more security

Feeling safe while at home and traveling are important for experiencing an enjoyable quality of life. For those times when there is doubt about whether one’s present deadbolt is enough for keeping out intruders, there is McChi. No tools are needed to install it, and it takes about five seconds to attach it to the door. So not only can it be easily used at home, but it can also be used when traveling and staying in a hotel. There are apparently very few compatibility issues here given the fact that it is supposed to fit 90-95% of most household deadbolt locks. While this may not scare off an intruder attempting to come through the door, it at least gives enough time to safely make a 911 call and find a place to hide if necessary. This campaign seeks to raise $7,500 by December 2, 2014. For $35, backers get one product with an expected delivery of December 2014.


SensorJet is a smart system for putting out fires

Kitchen safety is important given the fact that about half of house fires start in the kitchen. Having working smoke detectors, the right tools at hand, knowing how to use them, and remaining calm usually keeps a bad situation from turning into a disaster. But what if the fire starts when no one is in the room or when no one is home?

SensorJet is an alternative to a sprinkler system that hooks directly into a person’s existing kitchen water supply. The product has a ceiling heat sensor that works to alert the water jet to send out a fine mist of water to put out a fire, significantly reducing water damage. It can be installed by a plumber, whereas a sprinkler system installation can be more complex. In the event of a fire, it uses far more water when it goes off, causing far more water damage and flooding.

Another thing to consider about kitchen fires is that most of them are grease fires. That being said, water makes grease fires worse rather than putting them out. The best thing for a grease fire is to turn off the heat source if possible, and smother the flames. Baking soda does the job, but it requires a ton to properly put out a fire. A kitchen fire extinguisher is also a good option. SensorJet could possibly be useful in other rooms with existing water supplies, such as a basement laundry room or a master bathroom connected to a bedroom. This campaign is seeking to raise $150,000 by November 23, 2014, and early bird backers can get one system for $230, which includes shipping. Expected delivery is June 2015.


Hydroguard barrier seeks to foil the flood

SONY DSCLiving in a flood prone area can make a simple thunderstorm a pretty stressful experience. While sandbags are one option for protecting one’s home or business, Hydroguard is a mechanism that seems far easier to use and potentially more effective. The sliding barrier includes a unique sealing technology that is supposed to allow the flood water damage preventer to fit any doorframe within minutes, and it’s reusable. It’s not clear how many feet or meters the flood blocking gadget can keep out, but for £199 GBP, early bird backers get one product, with an expected delivery of March 2015. The expected retail is £249.

Furniture Safety

Taichiman Bulletproof Bedside Table supports alarm clocks, stops gunfire

Taichiman Bulletproof Bedside TableFunctionality, storage and bulet stoppage is a tall order for a nightstand. But one product is out to deliver. The Taichiman Bulletproof Bedside Table is a nightstand in ordinary circumstances, but becomes a shield and weapon storage unit during times of trouble. The tabletop design is customizable for visual appeal, but is made of the same type of material as police anti-riot shields, It’s also IIIA bulletproof, and is nearly 6 millimeters thick. If a higher bulletproof level is desired, customization is available. The product appears to be easy to assemble, and is available to early bird backers for $185, or $245 includes a torch light and door / window alarm system. Expected delivery is October 2014.