Will Smith, CEO at FOO VR


Cool Tools Show 080: Will Smith

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Our guest this week is Will Smith. Will is a journalist turned entrepreneur. He was the editor-in-chief of Maximum PC magazine, founder of Tested.com, and is currently working on VR software. He has stood atop a running nuclear reactor, eaten unreconstituted freeze-dried shrimp, and once played astronaut in the Space Shuttle simulator at Johnson Space Center. (Photo credit: Eric Cheng)

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Show notes:

Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug ($25)
“Basically this is the best thermos-type bottle I’ve ever owned. It’s designed to be used as a mug, it holds your hot drink hot for much longer than you’ll ever need, keeps a cold drink cold on the hottest day, and the lid has never leaked. I trust it to the point that I regularly put a full bottle in a bag with 5-10k worth of computer gear.”

AirStick Microsuction Tape by Sewell ($16)
“This stuff is amazing, it’s better than velcro for sticking small to medium sized objects to things. It looks like tape but it has loads of tiny micro suction cups on one side. Basically you can use it to stick any flat(ish) smooth(ish) surface to anything you don’t mind sticking adhesive to. The suction cup side holds without leaving any residue behind, and can be used in vertical or even inverted instances, if your materials are smooth enough and the object is pretty light. If you want to stick a tablet on your kitchen cabinet or tiles, this is a great way to do it. You can buy it in tiny quantities on Amazon too, but Inventables has the best bulk pricing I’ve seen from a reputable vendor.”


Gerber Shard Keychain Tool ($7)
“It’s ridiculously useful and is probably interesting enough on its own. I stopped carrying a multi-tool after donating several to the TSA, and got the Shard because I broke the electronics in my car key by using it as a pry bar once. The Shard is $7, lives on all my keychains, and does almost everything I used to use a multitool for (pliers are really the only thing I miss). It can go through airport security, and while it isn’t great or even very good at anything, it’s good enough in a pinch. It has a pair of terrible screwdriver heads (that have saved me a couple of times), a wire stripper, a pry bar, and a bottle opener. I’ve used the wire stripper to pry up nails a couple of times, but a few minutes with a file made it sharp enough that it’s great for cutting tape on packages.”

Field Notes
Field Notes
” I used to be a moleskin guy, but they got too expensive and almost always broke apart before I could fill a notebook. Now I just get these Field Notes books and devote one to each project I’m working on. They’re cheap enough ($4 each in a 3 pack, less if you subscribe) that I don’t feel bad if they get banged up, wet, or if I need to tear out a page for someone else. And, they fit in jeans pockets, shirt pockets, jacket pockets; pretty much any pocket except for that tiny pocket in the front of your jeans.”