5) Microbot Push (from US$39)
You probably like the idea of smart homes far more than your wallet does. So if you’re not in the position to upgrade every appliance and accessory in your house, take a look at Microbot Push.
This tiny robotic finger of sorts sticks to an object and then prods it when commanded to by a smartphone. But if you’re feeling a bit flush and are desperate to remotely control every conceivable thing in your home that has a button, the Prota hub adds pushing to your Microbots over Wi-Fi and the web, along with the means to define automation rules.
6) Grasp (from US$99)
We love Touch ID on the iPhone, to the point we get slightly annoyed when we don’t find it elsewhere: on an older iPad; on a Mac; on our front door; on a pack of especially hard to open carrots. But Grasp might even beat iPhone-style goodness, because it’s applying fingerprint scanning and unlocking to the humble bike lock.
Now, rather than reaching over your bike and grappling with keys, you use the power of your thumb to secure and free your two-wheeled pride-and-joy within seconds.
7) Back in Time Symphonic Collection (from £20)
When Chris Abbott unleashed the original Back in Time CD, way back in 1998, little could he have known it would kickstart a wave of increasingly ambitious remakes of C64 music. Doing this kind of thing at all might sound strange — especially to younger gamers — but the musicians who worked on the C64 were in their heads creating orchestral scores and rock tunes on the 8-bit machine’s simple synth.
Back in Time Symphonic Collection is the most ambitious C64-oriented project to date, aiming to rework music by Rob Hubbard, Ben Daglish, Martin Galway, Fred Gray and others into powerful filmic soundtracks. If enough cash is raised, the aim is to even get a live orchestra in to record a couple of those classic tunes.