Friday, August 22, 2008

100 Year Old Gadgets That Never Took Off

Here's some clever inventions (for their age) that never quite took off. You can see the inspiration for some modern inventions we use today (and some that are just completely useless). My favorite piece is the one that looks like somebody printed out Google Maps directions and crammed it into a watch.


A tiny machine complete with its own map that would tell motorists which way to go. The route-finder for the well-equipped 1920s driver was a wristwatch-style device equipped with minuscule maps.


Highwaymen were a real danger in the late 19th century and this cunning design might just have saved your honor, property and even life. A dainty weapon was concealed in a secret compartment of this seemingly normal ladies' purse. The barrel could hold only one bullet - so you had to make your shot count.


Having a bushy moustache has always been something of an obstacle to refined dining - particularly when it came to mulligatawny soup. The answer was to use a moustache protector, spoon or cup - designed with a hole for the mustachioed man to sip through.


The clockwork mechanism on this 1870s burglar alarm was wound up and the upright lever set, before the device was placed at the foot of a door and a spike pushed into the floor. If an intruder tried to enter, the lever would be pushed down and set off the surprisingly loud and effective bell.


This double holder, pictured above right, is thought to have been inspired by a fictional cigarette case belonging to Bulldog Drummond - hero of Sapper's bestselling crime novels of the day - which 'held Turkish on one side and Virginian on the other'.


Invented in the U.S. in the 1930s, these specs were adorned with two small, battery-powered lights, with a long wire trailing beneath. The experience was marred only by the likelihood of electrocution when it rained.


These pre-shrunk 'To Sox' were designed to act as toe protectors. Produced during World War II, it was claimed that they could reduce hosiery costs by up to 80 per cent. They were designed to be worn over the big toes, to protect socks from wear.



YAY said...

I would use that cup if I had a stache. and those look like Lu's glasses without the lights haha

Sean TheROBOT said...

I dop't know if that MOUSTACHE PROTECTOR really worked...but it's kinda funny

Schoolin4TheGoodLife said...

lol! "mustachioed man" that's the funniest thing ever.

as for the road directions would suck if there was a diversion for traffic.