Toilet Technology

Coffee as Viagra, car crushing, Tokyo in high-def and more in our weekly look at the web

Japanese company Lixil wanted their new luxury Satis toilet to be a high-tech, “interactive” experience by having an Android app remotely control all functions of the toilet, from automatic flushing to deodorizing to even playing music on the toilet’s speakers (for those who are prone to stage-fright). The company noticed one security flaw, however—every toilet was hardwired with the same Bluetooth PIN code (0000), meaning …

Demystifying Art on Amazon

Coffee as Viagra, car crushing, Tokyo in high-def and more in our weekly look at the web

This week, Amazon launched a high-end art marketplace that grants access to over 40,000 pieces of fine art, culled from over 150 dealers and galleries. This is no Etsy—the price point spans a more manageable $200 to an exorbitant $2.5 million. In true Amazon fashion, users can search by subject, color, size and price, and each work is shown alongside information about the artist, provenance …

Solid Rain

Coffee as Viagra, car crushing, Tokyo in high-def and more in our weekly look at the web

Mexican chemical engineer Sergio Jesus Vaelasco has created instant water. Using a highly absorbent polymer scientifically known as potassium polyacrylate, the tiny crystals absorb about 500 times their size and begin to look like much large, water-filled salt crystals. Originally intended to make diapers more absorbent, Vaelasco’s blend for Solid Rain has shown dramatic benefits when planted among crop fields and dry climate gardens. Watch …