Getting to Mars has been an longtime dream of mankind, and every day, we get closer to achieving it.
But we need a little more experience before we do.
Why? Well, we're pretty good at running quick trips back and forth between the International Space Station. We've also run six manned missions to the moon--but only for a few days at a time. If we're going to run missions to Mars lasting 18+ months on the Orion spacecraft (prototype pictured below), we're gonna need a little more practice.
It's Saturday, and you know what that means--four more awesome products I found on the Internet that I love, and I think you will, too. Here goes!
Death Star Levitating Speaker
If you actually find this product on Amazon, you'll find that it's called the "Arc Star" speaker (I'm guessing because the creator didn't want to bother doing a licensing agreement with Lucasfilm?), but c'mon, it's the Death Star. The speaker, which is the actual orb part, can be used separately as a portable speaker, or you can use it with the magnetic base to make a Death Star that actually flies. The laser is not (yet) fully operational. Get your own for $150 on Amazon.
Spinneroo Fidget Spinner
Because why not? In an endeavor to continue the fad that just won't die, Spinneroo adds a slew of unnecessary and ridiculous features. It's made from aerospace aluminum and features LEDs that can be programmed to do everything under the sun using the companion app for iOS and Android. It also has built in speakers--yep, you read right--so you can play your favorite tunes while you spin your boredom away. As excessive as this product is, I have to say that I could totally imagine myself spinning this to the beat of some deadmau5 songs. Spinneroo isn't available just yet, but if you back them on Kickstarter for about $43, they've promised to get it in your hands before Christmas.
In the sky lives two brothers--one is named Gloom and the other, Sunny.
Their tale goes as follows: in the beginning, to the Sun was born two children. They were much the same, but as they grew, their differences became very deep. One was dark and brooding. He was deeply troubled inside, so he grumbled and wept to alleviate his grief. When his anger was too much to bear, he pounded the earth with his fists. When he curled up in solitude, he blocked out the Sun's rays. The Sun bestowed the name Gloom upon him, for he could imagine no other word to describe him.
But the Sun loved the second child greatly, for he did not obstruct the Sun's rays. In fact, he entreated him, "Father, let your golden light illuminate the earth: let the peoples of the earth relish your soothing rays." This child loved the birds, letting them soar freely and fearlessly through the open air. He painted shapes in the clouds for humans to wonder at and guess what picture they might form. This greatly pleased the Sun, so he named the child after himself: Sunny.
Alas, the time has come when the Sun must sleep, but the children do not. As the Sun lays down below the horizon, a feud between Gloom and Sunny begins. Gloom musters his black, swirling clouds and advances upon the clear, Sunny sky. Defenseless, Sunny flees, banished for a time by his vicious brother.
July has been a pretty busy month! Last week, I covered all the important stuff from Disney's D23 conference, from Star Wars to The Incredibles. This week, I'll be showing you all the most important and exciting trailers from Comic-Con 2017. Let's get started:
Marvel's panel at Comic-Con was apparently pretty good--with some exciting new Black Panther footage and all--but of course, us non-attendees of Comic-Con won't be able to see it. At any rate, we did get a few new trailers from Marvel, including for the upcoming film Thor: Ragnarok. Take a look:
There's definitely a Guardians of the Galaxy vibe to the film, and despite the serious plot, it manages to remain upbeat. We see Loki seems to be fighting alongside Thor (again), but of course his mischief is never done. More scenes of Hela's (Cate Blanchett) devastating power are revealed, but I can't neglect to mention that awesome end clip where Thor's eyes are glowing blue as he summons thunder from the sky. You can catch Thor: Ragnarok in theaters on November 3, 2017.
You might not be able to count on a lot of things, but you can bet that every Saturday, I'll have a new set of awesome products from across the interwebs that you'll love. And this week is no different! Let's get into it, shall we?
Brixo Electric Construction Toys
LEGOs are fun by themselves, and with a little imagination, even better--but imagination can only take you so far. Instead of building a stationary LEGO car, why not make one that actually moves on its own? Enter Brixo, the Bluetooth-enabled bricks that you can control with your smartphone. Combine your ordinary LEGO bricks with one of Brixo's electric ones (including magnet, light, sensor, and motor blocks) to create anything your heart desires. Brixo is a fantastic way to introduce your kids to STEM or for the tinkering, kid-at-heart adult. It's only available for pre-order right now, but you can purchase a kit for $200 from their Kickstarter page.
R2-D2 Shower Head
One of the things my "4 Most Awesome Products" blog series should do is help you find things you never knew you needed. With this R2-D2 shower head, I think I did just that. Far from just a chintzy gimmick from some touristy gift shop on Tatooine, this shower head has three spray settings and is designed to save you on your water bill without sacrificing pressure. You can get one on Amazon, where it has acquired a 4.5 star rating. As the droid himself would say, wow!
When a mist sneaks along the ground or brushes the tips of the towering trees, an eeriness hangs suspended in the air. The fog seems to quietly forebode of a nebulous evil. It shrouds the distance in blurriness, and it cloaks the tree trunks in shadow. Like a snake, it slithers along the ground, seeking what victim it might next envelop in darkness. Though we may try to clear it away, its frightening chill lingers in the pale morning light. We try to escape it, but cannot--alas! it has consumed everything.
Then, with a great fury, the orange rays of the blazing sun come leaping from over the hills. "Be gone!" it bellows. "No longer shall you block out my glorious light." Like a mouse, it scurries silently away in great fear of the sun's scourging. Every dark corner in which it dwelt is filled with pure sunlight. But as the sweltering fires of the sun slowly heat the earth, we ponder: perhaps what we mistook for evil was mere illusion--that it was simply a mysterious dance of the fog that we did not understand.
And again we long for the coolness of the morning mist.
Disney owns essentially every franchise on the face of the planet--like it or not--and as such, there's always news from their annual D23 conference that stirs fandoms of every stripe. Whether you're excited about this December's release of The Last Jedi or some of Disney's farther-out releases, D23 brought plenty to get excited about.
More tantalizing TLJ material
I'll start with the film I'm personally most excited about, and that is Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. And boy, did D23 get me even more pumped than I already was. First off, you can't miss the behind-the-scenes video that was released. Take a look:
You might have picked out a couple things that dropped some hints about the upcoming movie (such as that short clip where Rey is fighting several people at once...Knights of Ren, perhaps?), however, there aren't any major spoilers, so far as I can tell, in this video. We still have no mention of Snoke, which is clearly intentional. What is becoming obvious, though, is that this is shaping up to be one of the most riveting Star Wars tales yet. Will it be just a clone of The Empire Strikes Back? I'm starting to think no. In fact, I'm getting kind of a bad feeling about what's going to happen in The Last Jedi.
Regardless, I must commend Lucasfilm on the promotional materials so far for this movie. It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of the teaser poster released a few months ago, but I'm tempted to say that the new posters released at D23 are just as good. You can flip through the slideshow below to see them all:
What a lonely life we would lead without friends! For they are so often what we need when we need it. Sometimes, they are a laugh when we have fallen into a pit of sadness, and when we can't laugh, they give us their shoulder to cry on. When the frustrations and worries of life pull us down, they pull us back up and give an attentive ear while we vent on our soapbox. They pray for us, encourage us, and tell us to keep on fighting--even if through only a twinkle in their eyes. We may disagree, argue, or even fight, but as the sun sets on the horizon, we recall how much we care for one another.
When a friend is nearby, we forget the tiresome comings and goings of life. Though the comings and goings remain, they dance, as if to say, "The world was made for us! Let's enjoy it." Though hopelessness seems to swallow us, their smiles lift our hearts. Our humanity urges us at times to devour each other over petty things: but lest we fall into misery, let us not allow the good times we have shared to fade from memory.
Being a sidekick has always kind of had a stigma about it. Yeah, we always knew they were there, but the hero was the main attraction.
But in Star Wars, sidekicks get celebrity status.
From Ahsoka to Chewbacca, we love a kickbutt sidekick, and Star Wars has time and time again given us just that. So today, I wanna hear from you: which Star Wars character would you want at your side? Small disclaimer--I realize that some of these characters aren't sidekicks proper, but they might still be someone that you'd like as your right-hand man.
Would you rather have independent, strong-willed (possibly still alive) Ahsoka? Or a clever, loyal Captain Rex? How about a strong, faithful walking carpet--I mean--Chewbacca? Or a ruthless apprentice like Ventress? Or maybe you just prefer a reliable, versatile droid. Pick your favorite below!
I don't know about you, but I just love looking at cool products that make me inwardly scream even if I'm not going to buy them. Hopefully, I found some products this week that make you do the same--though, you might wanna buy it (I'm just a tightwad). Let's get started.
Star Wars Snack Bowls
These Star Wars Snack Bowls received mixed reactions from the Internet, including positive marks from Popular Science and disgust from Gizmodo. I can understand both viewpoints--but in general I give a thumbs up to them. Eat directly from the ceramic mouths of Jabba, the Wampa, or Chewie (and thinking about that is actually pretty gross) for only $17 apiece from ThinkGeek.
Faces of Groot Tee
In case you haven't noticed, I have a mild obsession with Groot from Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy. Take, for example, the cutting board I featured a few blog posts back, or the limited edition Groot POP! Figure I have sitting on my dresser right now, or the Groot mask I sitting on my bookshelf. Okay, maybe I have more than a mild obsession. Regardless, I love this "Faces of Groot" t-shirt. Despite the fact that there are several similar t-shirts out there, well, I am Groot. Need I say more? You can pick up this shirt for $19-$25 based on your shirt size from Amazon.
I'm a sci-fi/fantasy lover & writer who especially likes talking about Star Wars and futuristic tech. I like finding new things & finding the beauty in old things, especially in my "Everyday Snippets" series. I hope you'll join me on my blog and unleash your imagination!