Flesh-eating clock has a taste for flies

Carniverous clock
Fortunately the flesh-eating clock has yet to develop a taste for humans…

Two UK-based designers have created a flesh-eating clock. Yep, really.

The unique prototype fuels itself by feasting on household pests such as flies and insects, and heralds a bizarre new tack for timepiece tech.

Armed with a roll of flypaper, the device works by trapping insects and depositing them into a microbial fuel cell for "digestion". The ensuing chemical reaction is what powers the clock, letting the rollers roll and the LCD do its thing.

The carnivorous clock isn't the only offering from inventors James Auger and Jimmy Loizeau. The pair also boast an alternative range of time-telling designs with which to adorn your kitchen, involving robotic arms, spider webs and mice.

Hummingbird-style helicopter?

If you thought that was weird, this week also saw the arrival of the miniature electric drill. Smaller than your thumbnail, it's powered by a button cell battery: the inventor reportedly has plans to make the drill commercially available, although what practical use it would have remains unclear.

Minature drill

[Image courtesy of Engadget]

In other news, the first ever flight of an air vehicle system that "flies and hovers using flapping wings like a hummingbird" has been announced. Maker Aerovironment says its Nano Air Vehicle, which is intended for clandestine "urban mission operations", is the only aircraft in the world that carries its own energy source and operates in this manner.

Underage iPhone porn

Apple has had to mop its brow repeatedly in recent days, attracting allegations of child porn after a photo showing a nude 15-year-old girl turned up in an iPhone app. The company was forced to pull the BeautyMeter application on Thursday, following a media frenzy over the image. Last week, it allowed the Hottest Girls app onto the store, which it also later pulled.

Dell Taiwan fared little better yesterday, with the Taiwanese Government forcing the company to honour the sale of 140,000 19-inch monitors, which were accidentally priced at $15 instead of $150. Oops.

Gadget mash-ups

What do you get when you mix a brand new Polaris RZR two-seater quad bike (ATV) with a 40-year-old jet turbine? A deafeningly loud, joystick-driven vehicle with a max speed of 60mph, apparently. Not to mention a 1,300°F exhaust that spews out inches behind the driver's head. Check out the video to see it in action.

By no means was this the only strange creation we saw this week. These Michael Jackson Thriller headphones have taken on a disturbing new double meaning since their launch back in March. Too soon? Probably.

Thriller headphones

[Image courtesy of Gizmodo]

And what about the wireless NES-controller doorbell? While the inventor failed to take advantage of the eight different buttons, the scope for chimes does lend (albeit limited) novelty value.

And finally…

When 13-year-old Scott Campbell swapped his iPod for a Walkman, it took the British teenager a whopping three days to figure out there was another side to the tape. He did, however, manage to create an "impromptu shuffle feature" by holding down the rewind button and releasing it randomly, reports the BBC.

As the folks at Engadget point out, is this how the elderly first felt when confronted with a VCR timer?

Julia Sagar
Content director, special projects

Julia specialises in ecommerce at Future. For the last four years, she’s split her time between leading TechRadar’s crack team of deal editors - covering all the biggest sales of the year including Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Amazon Prime Day - and helping the audiences of Future’s consumer tech and lifestyle brands (TechRadar, Tom's Guide, T3, Marie Claire, Woman & Home and more) find the best products and services for their needs and budget.

A former editor of global design website Creative Bloq, she has over 15 years’ experience in online and print journalism, and was part of the team that launched TechRadar way back in the day. When she isn't reviewing mattresses (she’s tested more than she cares to remember), or sharing tips on how to save money in the latest sales, she can usually be found writing about anything from green energy to graphic design.