Cool Tools Show & Tell Video Podcast 003

Welcome to episode 3 of Cool Tools’ Show and Tell podcast! This time, I had a video hangout with:

Brian Heater, the Director of Media and Senior editor for Engadget, where he writes features, covers news and hosts the show and podcast. He’s written for Spin,, The Onion, The New York Press, The Daily Beast, Entertainment weekly, Boing Boing, and elsewhere. His new podcast is called RIYL — and he says “it’s mostly just an excuse to interview people I think are cool.” He lives in Queens with a rabbit who was once featured on Boing Boing.


Sean Michael Ragan, the technical editor for MAKE magazine and a long time contributor to Make’s online and print outlets. He edits the weekly “Toolsday” column online, as well as the Toolbox section of the print magazine.

Brian and Sean showed and talked about eight different tools they love:

Brian’s picks:

Skooba Cable Stable

Slingshot Organizer

Spinner Racks


Sean’s picks:

Vintage Easydriver Ratcheting screwdriver

Vintage Dymo Tapewriter

Solid Titanium soviet surplus crowbar

Full-page adhesive-backed printable mailing labels, used to print templates for all kinds of projects.

Since this is a show and tell, I recommend that you watch the HD resolution video here so you can see the things we talked about. But it’s also available as an audio podcast subscription, as an iTunes subscription or RSS.

Watch previous episodes here.

-- Mark Frauenfelder  

Cool Tools Show & Tell Video Podcast 002

Welcome to the second episode of Cool Tools’ Show and Tell podcast! Last week, Camille Cloutier-Hartsell and I had a video hangout with Joshua Glenn and Oliver Hulland. We showed each other 18 different things we love, including books, kitchen tools, games, apps, and gadgets.

Since this is a show and tell, I recommend that you watch the HD resolution video here so you can see the things we talked about. But it’s also available as an audio podcast subscription (Here’s the iTunes subscription link). Or, you can listen to or download this episode through Soundcloud.

Here’s what we reviewed this time

Toggl – Time tracking web application.

Small Demons – Find references to people, places, and things from books.

– Tiny air pump for backpackers.

Pencil Extender – Use your pencil down to a stub.

Fuji Instax Mini 8 – Surprisingly useful instant picture camera.

Small light box
– Illuminated backlight for tracing.

F1 Seat Pak – Seatback-friendly travel bag.

Vintage UMCO aluminum tackle box (model P-9) – Multi-compartment, two-sided. No longer being made but sometimes available on eBay.

Coleman CPX6 High-Tech LED Lantern – Runs on 4 D batteries, or can use the interchangeable 6V CPX6 rechargeable battery pack (sold separately). Runs cool!

Risk: Legacy – Great new spin on the classic board game.

Aqua Mira – Water treatment drops for camping.

Edible Wild Plants – Excellent guidebook to foraging your meals.

Foraging Basket – Available at World Market stores

Hotel Tonight – Last minute discount hotel stays.

No-Sew Dungaree Buttons – Easy way to adjust the waist tightness of your blue jeans.

Cheap Rechargeable Battery Case for iPhone – $9 case doubles your phone’s on time between charges.

-- Mark Frauenfelder  


Giveaway! Illuminated Multipower LED Binohead Magnifier

This is an inexpensive an useful head mounted illuminated magnifier. I’ve used it to remove splinters, solder small components, check my kid’s hair for lice, remove gunk from a USB port and lots of other tasks. They are more powerful than reading glasses, and the LED illumination is excellent.

Cool Tools is giving away an Illuminated Multipower LED Binohead Magnifier to one person who submits a cool tool review in the form of a video between now and Thursday, April 18 at 10pm PT.

If you would like to submit a video please watch the above example. We are going to call these videos “Show & Tells.” Here are the guidelines:

  • Announce youself.
  • Show the tool you are recommending.
  • Describe how you use it.
  • Explain why you love it.
  • Include the price and where you got it.
  • Include a brief written review of the tool.
  • Keep the videos short (under 2 minutes).
  • Defy the Wadsworth Constant (“an axiom which states that the first 30% of any video can be skipped because it contains no worthwhile or interesting information.”)

Please use our Submit a Tool form to send us a link to your review. You may upload the video to YouTube and give me the link, or email me ( and I’ll give you a link to a Dropbox folder where you can upload the video.

-- Mark Frauenfelder