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Dick DeBartolo, MAD's Maddest Writer, and co-host of The Giz Wiz at GizWiz.TV, The Giz Wiz on ABC's World News Now, Tech Guy Labs on TWiT and on Computer America. But wait, there's More »

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    Welcome! This is the home of

    The Giz Wiz & Gizneyland Studio

    + World News Now, MAD Magazine, TWiT, Computer America & more!

    The weekly "Giz Wiz Show" with OMGchad & me  

    is on our video channel: http://www.gizwiz.tv/

    Gadgets I showed on ABC's World News Now are here:

    http://gizwizbiz.squarespace.com/world-news-now-abc/

    Navigation Bars in the center column of this website will take to other pages you're looking for.

    The Giz Wiz® and Giz Wiz Biz® Are Reg. U.S. Pat. & Tm. Off.

    Entries from January 1, 2018 - January 31, 2018

    Saturday
    Jan062018

    Once you get the ZipSnip out of its clam shell package, you'll then have a great tool to open other clam shell packages!

    MAGIC TRACKS!

    This is the gadget I thought would be crappy, but it turned out to be so much fun, I put on this year's best list! Watch the video though. The only thing it really doesn't do is glow brightly in the dark, the way it does in their "As Seen On TV" ad. Otherwise, I think kids -- and adults will have great fun with it! I did. Oh, and one other thing. If you roll it up the way they do in the ad, it will never fit back into the box. (Just a minor point.)

    Giz Wiz Video: https://youtu.be/itRvjSuSody

    Amazon choices: http://amzn.to/2CquSle

     

    Chad had a toy too, that he liked!

    His first crappy for his 'toys for the desk' theme turned out not be so crappy. It was a plastic set of trains, complete with track. It came from Five Below and sold for $4.99. Since Five Below is a close out place, it's no longer there, but I found a mini train set w/ locomotive, 2 cars and caboose, and about the same amount of track on Amazon. It was $9.32 on 1/12/18 & comes in a tin box as opposed to the plastic case (which was already broken) that Chad's set came in.

    http://amzn.to/2CVhype

    Once you get the ZipSnip out of its clam shell package, you'll then have a great tool to open other clam shell packages!

    When scissors can't cut it, these can. The multi-purpose 4V cordless ZipSnip cuts cardboard, rubber, plastic and more. I tried it on a clamshell package and it works great, keeping hands and fingers out of harm’s way. The blade operates at 260 rpm (no load) and its maximum cutting thickness is ¼ in. The ergonomically designed cutter is constructed of high-impact nylon resin with a comfortable mold grip. The tool’s trigger is an integrated part of the handle with a top-mounted lock-out switch for added safety. The cutter has a built-in charging port that brings the tool to a full charge in five hours. An LED indicator on the tool’s body lights when the battery is fully charged. The lithium-ion battery can maintain a charge for several months. The self-sharpening blades are replaceable. 

    Giz Wiz Video: https://youtu.be/yiS4uW1xxaU

    Amazon Link:  http://amzn.to/2ktLC70 -- WARNING!

    As of 1/12/18 it was about $80 on Amazon ---- but this looks like it does the same thing and it's only $36 - I haven't bought or used this:  http://amzn.to/2C6PjDw  

    Or get it at Home Depot Under $35. https://www.homedepot.com/p/Worx-1-1-2-in-3-6-Lithium-Ion-ZipSnip-WX081L/206300122  

    Company link: http://www.worx.com/

     

    The Easy-Clean Auto-Fill Water Bowl with (5-Foot - or 10-Foot) Long Stainless Steel Hose

     

    Here's what Amazon says about it: The Easy-Clean Water Bowl is an automatic filling water bowl for all sized animals featuring several cost and time saving features. It has no corners, pockets or inaccessible areas for Easy-Cleaning ability. It provides an easy do-it-yourself way to have automatic water for pets. It is automatic filling, with a fast-fill float valve that can replenish the water even faster than a horse can drink. It's compact, and reduces the water capacity and surface area to a minimum. It provides a better quality, protected float valve that easily hinges open for cleaning. There is no spraying water or noise when filling that could startle animals. $39.99.

     

    And Chad's take? Chad liked this so much he made it one of his 'best gadgets of 2017 pick'. And so does his dog, Charlie. Chad was afraid Charlie might treat like a dog toy and chew on it, but Charlie uses it for its intended purpose, to have fresh, clean water to drink. Chad thought it was well fine and was impressed by all the accessories available, like a heater if you live in a cold climate. (But you hopefully won't be leaving your dog outside in very cold weather.) All-in-all, this was not a cheap, crappy gadget, but a reasonable priced, useful one.

     

    Here's the Amazon link. You can order it with a 5' or 10' hose for the same price $39.99 as of 1/6/18. http://amzn.to/2qzVsH1 

     

    (Giz Wiz Link. Pay the same as everyone else, but Giz Wiz Biz gets a small credit to buy more stuff more on Amazon.)

     

    See or hear this show: www.gizwiz.tv/episode/1657  (Goes live late 1/12/18)

    Saturday
    Jan062018

    Two devices that can be a useful aid to folks who take any kind of pills.

    If you take pills, or even vitamins, you probably can't remember if and when you took your last pill. Here's an innovative way to help you keep track of when you last took your medications and vitamins. Called Timer Caps, they have a built-in stopwatch that keeps track of exactly how much time passed since it was last opened. The company says it boosts medication adherence by more than 33%. Instead of wondering if you took your pills or not, you'll know just by looking at the cap. It’s easy to use, with NO alarms to program or buttons to press. The patented timer works like an automatic stopwatch, every time you open the cap, the timer resets to zero. When you close the cap, the timer starts counting UP again displaying exactly how many hours and minutes have passed. Some Timer Caps convert between child resistant and non-child resistant. There is a wide variety of Timer Caps and prices. You can get them as low as about $4+ in quantities. The link below takes to the Amazon page that shows many choices. 

    Amazon link: http://amzn.to/2muVSfp

     

    Company website: https://timercap.com/

     

    This neat little gadget is called Port O Pill. And the company boasts: Pills + Water / Anytime, Anywhere! Never get caught without water or medication again. Leak-resistant, refillable container. Now the company says “Holds up to 10 pills” but that will surely depend the kind of pills, but I don't think that's important. Changes are you'll carry this with just the pills you need for one day. Carrying only 1.5 ounces of water, it meets FAA plane rules for carry-on liquids. It's small enough for backpack, purse, glove box, and maybe a pocket if you're wearing cargo pants. BPA Free and top rack dishwasher safe. There are only 14 reviews on Amazon, but it got 3.7 stars out of 5. It's $8.20 and Amazon Prime as of 1/6/17.

    Giz Wiz Video Demo: https://youtu.be/9BUUDmspty0 

     

    Amazon Linkhttp://amzn.to/2D6tKaa

     

    UPDATE: 1/11/18 - I used mine for the 8th time on a trip to CES2018 & a few drops did leak out of the bottle and ruined two of the ten pills in the cap. I carry it in a little baggie, so there was no other damage. Since this is the 1st time that happened, I threw that one out and will try the back-up I bought. If that leaks too, I'll report it back here. But for many trips it worked fine.

     

    See or hear this show: www.gizwiz.tv/episode/1657  (Goes live late 1/12/18)

    Saturday
    Jan062018

    An inexpensive, but very useful backpack!

    Here's a backpack with a couple of unique features, that is also incredibly inexpensive. That's why it's on the "Best of the year" show. We received many emails from people who bought it, and found it very useful. It's the Inateck Laptop Backpack. It's good-looking and the company says it's made from waterproof, scratch-resistant, anti-tear special nylon fabric. It's also the first backpack I've seen with slip-on waterproof cover. It's like a elastic slip-on raincoat for your backpack and it's included in the price. Also unique is an external USB Port; slide your power bank into the backpack and plug it in; now you can charge devices with the backpack closed. A luggage belt at the back lets your backpack slip over the extending handle on your rolling luggage. Side pockets hold personal belongings like a water bottle or umbrella. And a padded compartment holds up to 15.6 inch laptop. UPDATE! 1/12/18 Amazon says this backpack is now only available from a 3rd party seller. It's $86! It's $59.95 on the company website. 

    Here's a similar one for 39.99. I HAVEN'T BOUGHT OR USED THIS, BUT IT DOES HAVE SOME GOOD REVIEWS FOR YOU TO CHECK OUT: http://amzn.to/2D4oHHc 

    Here's the company's direct link to the product. It's $59.99 on their website: (It might also be on ebay.)

     

    https://www.inateck.com/protection/backpack/inateck-cb1001-black.html

     

    The ExcelMark is an inked roller stamp for those who don't have, or don't want to buy a shredder, but still need to get rid of sensitive papers. This device has a special pattern on a convenient rolling design which quickly hides addresses, social security numbers, account numbers, ID numbers, etc. And it can do a few things a shredder can't do, like cover private info on prescription bottle labels. The 1.5” wide roller holds the ink inside, so there's no need for a separate, often messy ink pad. I've used it several times and found that the ink quickly dries as you roll it. It works well on all regular paper, envelopes and package addresses. The company says the ink inside has a total length of stamp coverage that can reach 100 meters, which is about 328 feet. You get the ExcelMark with 3 refills for $12.99 on Amazon as of 1/7/17. (Remember that Amazon prices can change at any moment.) 

    Here's a video of The Giz Wiz demostrating the ExcelMark:

    Giz Wiz Video Link: https://youtu.be/zVhaS3HDsQQ

    Amazon link: http://amzn.to/2CYZWJf

    For a Halloween gadget Chad found something clever from the Hyde and Eek! Boutique. (Clever name, that!) It's the Halloween Spooky Voice Microphone from Hyde and Eek! Boutique™. This microphone has a great antique look and you don't expect to find that it's a voice recording and voice changer. 

    Chad liked this gadget a lot. (I bought one after I saw Chad's.) Chad said the electronic voice changer works very well. But as Chad points out, it's not instantaneous. You say something short – about 15 seconds - and then the built-in voice changer says it back with a scary voice. (A red recording light lets you know you're recording.) It's battery operated and the only weird thing about it is that the “Try Me” demo button is actually built into the unit and cannot be removed! Chad's thinks this a great gadget for just $15 at Target. The bad news is it's no longer available. It must have been a one-time Halloween device. Maybe this October it will come back.

    See or hear this show: www.gizwiz.tv/episode/1657 (Goes live late 1/12/18)

    Friday
    Jan052018

    A charging cable with a big difference & three more Chad/Dick favorites of the year.

    MEEM is a fresh new take on smartphone back up. It's a phone charger cable that automatically backs up personal data on a smartphone to the cable. And it does that every time the phone is charged. With people using phones more and more for high quality photos and video and quick text communications, a phone’s storage fills up quickly with precious content and the more personal information stored, the higher the anxiety of losing or having that data stolen is. With MEEM, backing up your smartphone is a simple solution that fits into a daily routine. Just plug in your MEEM (either for an Android or iPhone device) choose and confirm a four-digit PIN and back up of your personal data starts immediately. MEEM keeps personal data safe in your hands, under your physical control, and inaccessible to anyone else. MEEM is available to purchase in the UK, Europe and North America direct through the manufacturer or on Amazon. Prices start at $49.99 (on Amazon as of 6/29/17) and will depend on if it's for iOS or Android and the amount of memory inside.

    MEEM Prices start at $49.99 on Amazon as of 1/9/17) The upper end of the price range will depend if it's for iOS or Android and the amount of memory inside.

    UPDATE: PC APP NOW AVAILABLE SO YOUR PC CAN READ YOUR MEEM DEVICE.

    Giz Wiz Video: https://youtu.be/cKRgpnxY4LM

     

    Amazon link: http://amzn.to/2FwuIdZ

      

    Company website: http://www.meemmemory.com/

     

    I like having a security camera facing the street from my Gizneyland studio. It's mainly to watch for deliveries, or the Post Office truck when I have packages to send out. I tried a Dropcam, but the lag is too long. I had another wireless camera that broadcasted on 2.4 Ghz, but that finally gave up the ghost. So I decided a hard wired camera would show me action outside my studio 'live'. But I never guessed I could buy one so cheap! The one I bought was the “Ansice 3.6mm Lens Wide Angle Mini Case Camera 540TVL CMOS With Filter CCTV Pinhole Camera. It is a bare-bones indoor camera with no infrared, no night vision and no sound. But hey, it's under $14! Power Required:12V DC 500mA or above and it's sold without power supply. The power supply added about $7 or so, and I bought a 25' extension for $7.50. So the whole camera security system was under $30. I already had an 7” monitor with RCA video in, so I used that for viewing. You can see how the camera does on my video.

    Giz Wiz Video: https://youtu.be/8kxn7GO-XS0

     

    Camera (w/o power) Under $14 http://amzn.to/2CVHHo4

    Power Supply (this one should work) http://amzn.to/2kjvu85  Same price $7.99

    All-in-One BNC Video and Power Cable Wire Cord with Connector for CCTV Security Camera 25Ft - with BNC connectors - $7.50 http://amzn.to/2qROFrx

     

    See or hear this show: www.gizwiz.tv/episode/1657  (Goes live late 1/12/18)  

    Friday
    Jan052018

    Chad is a big fan of this fan!

    It's The Brookstone Message Fan with Floating LED Display. Here's what Brookstone says about it:

     

    Our Message Fan with Floating LED Display is simply the coolest way to send a message. Its wide, triple-blade design blows big air for such a compact fan, and the large, easy-to-read LED text seems to float in air. Customize your messages (up to 20 characters) and colors using the included software for PC. The fan tilts to direct airflow, so it's just the way you want it. Use at your desk, office or any other personal space where you need to stay cool. $39.99, plus $7.99 shipping. On 1/12/18 the fan was on sale for $29.99.

     

    http://www.brookstone.com/pd/message-fan-with-floating-led-display/939770p.html

     

    And Chad's take? Chad like this fan and so did the chat room, so did I! You'll have to view the video to watch Chad demonstrate all the functions of this fan. On your computer you can create up to 20 messages consisting of 20 characters and/or symbols each. Then you can set the color for them using a limited color scheme. Then you pick the way you want them to display, like fade in, unfurl top to bottom, etc. When you're done you send them to the fan via a USB cable. The results are pretty impressive. But Chad pointed out a serious downside. The software is very limiting, and it only comes on a CD. You can download it online from Brookstone, but Chad says the download is missing an important file you need to use the software. That limits who will be use this fan. In the reviews online, people really HATE the software and say it's okay, but only if you're computer literate.

     

    NOTE! Someone in the chatroom found this on eBay...it seems to be the exact same fan for under $25.00 with free shipping. (As of 1/12/18)

     

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/322351959037?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

     

    See or hear this show: www.gizwiz.tv/episode/1657  (Goes live late 1/12/18)