April 5, 2014

This week on Top 5 Coolness Countdown, we separate the coolness from the lukewarm with a new streaming video player from Amazon, the return of the Windows Start menu and a robotic kangaroo.

If you’d like to hear us talking about this week’s countdown, listen to our Top 5 Coolness Countdown podcast:

5. Spiroo is a Life Saver

A small device called My Spiroo could save lives. Spiroo is a peak flow meter, a small tube that measures your exhaled breath. Asthma sufferers can use it to send data to their doctors about potential problems and because it connects to a smartphone you can see your peak flow right on the screen.

via TechCrunch

4. USB Relief

USB 3.1 Type C Cable

Do you find USB cables annoying, plugging them in the wrong way half the time? So do I. There’s help on the way — a new USB 3.1 Type C cable that you can’t plug in wrong no matter what — it works like Apple’s reversible Lightning cables. Type C cables will be available later this year, eventually replacing all those clunky USB cables we struggle with now.

via Gizmag

3. Festo’s Robot Kangaroo

Robotics company Festo has created a small robotic kangaroo that mimics the movements of an actual kangaroo. Why? Because it’s cool and because it allows researchers to understand how to model real-life behavior using electronics.

via Daily Mail

2. Amazon Fire TV Debuts

Amazon launched its Fire TV streaming and gaming box, a thin black square with a quad-core processor inside. In addition to Amazon’s own Prime Instant Video, the $99 box streams Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora Radio and many others, and can be controlled by speaking into its remote control. It’s available now in the U.S. for $99.

via Amazon

1. Stopped Windows Start Menu Returns


The Start menu is back! Microsoft announced that in the next Windows 8.1 update users will have access to the Start menu, a move that will give diehard XP fans a reason to upgrade. It’s about time!

via ExtremeTech