31 Fascinating Inventions That Are Surprisingly Useful

Mar 12, 2015

Remember when we were promised a future with flying cars and hoverboards for all? Well, we're still stuck on the road with our modern frustrations, but with any luck, the future will at least solve some of our cushiest problems. Sometimes it only takes a tiny change to go from ho-hum to holy smokes.  For example...

This movie theater bathroom with screens in the floor so you don't have to miss a crucial plot point.


Ayoye

The future gets a blast from the oh-so-comfy past with these cuddly beanbag seats.


The Atlantic

Take a breath, road ragers. These traffic lights have a countdown built in.


Core77

This chameleon pen has a color sensor to pick up whatever palette you choose in up to 16 million unique colors.


Architizer

This bike helmet folds up to be super portable.


uUlule

Eliminate the bulky middle man with these USB charger outlets.


AppAdvice

These outlets come with built-in night lights as well.

Universal Design Style

And the ultimate outlet would also have extension cords built into the wall.


WIRED

These little tiles could be clipped to anything - your wallet, keys, your car in a huge parking lot - and located with an app on your smartphone.


Laughing Squid

Pizza vending machine. Dreams can come true.


Reddit

Forget wet butts: The slats on these benches rotate from a hand crank so you've always got a dry seat, even after a rainy day.


Biet Thu

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Not only are they pretty, but these power strips are super flexible. You can expand or shrink them to fit your needs and the outlets rotate.


Yanko Design

Keep the coffee ring off your work with this mug that catches its own dribbles.


Gizmodo

These parking garages have sensors in the parking spaces, so you can glance down a row and look for green (open) parking spaces.


Reddit

Why not have slides on your steps? 


Reddit

Variety is the spice of life. Or at least the fizz of life with these build-your-own 6-pack soda vendors.


JPEGY

Score major planet points.


Reddit

Backpacks with hoods make homework cozy and cool. (Well, almost.)


Cool Things

This sensor picks up energy from hot or cold drinks and converts it to energy to charge devices. Say goodbye to fighting over outlets in cafes.


CNET

If you have a window seat, harness some solar power to charge your device.


Design & Geschenke Shop

This water fountain that's happy to give you a bottle for the road.


2 or 3 lines

Subway fare machines that will take a barter of your recycling for fare.


Freakin’ Facts

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This brilliantly simple Pringles elevator.


Reddit

You can't tell me you wouldn't want to ride around on this.


We Know Memes

This easy-to-clean hairbrush is so simple.


Random Pic Dumps

These earbuds have a simple solution for remaining tangle free.


Dynamic Inventions

These batteries recharge wherever you've got a USB port.


IGreenSpot

When you send packages, send the gift of hassle-free opening with this easy-open tape.


The Green Head

Bike racks when you need them, sidewalk space when you don't.


The Photomag

These quirky caution signs are cute and attention grabbing.


Incredible Things

Pizza carriers for all.


My face when

Credit: Distractify

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