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Belkin WeMo

In this modern era of smartphones and connected appliances, home automation shouldn't require a complex, expensive, and closed system — and with Belkin WeMo ($50-$100), it doesn't have to. Combining an app with Wi-Fi-enabled Home Control Switch models and motion sensors, WeMo can give you the power to turn off lights, appliances, and more, or have them operate automatically based on who is — or isn't — in the room.

  • MakerBot Replicator

    The personal printing revolution is upon us. No, not picture printing — 3D printing. The MakerBot Replicator ($1,750) is a home-sized 3D printer with your choice of single or dual MakerBot Stepstruder MK8 extruders, an on-board LCD, control pad, and SD slot for loading your models, and the ability to print objects up to roughly 9" x 6" x 6" in two different colors or materials. All you need now is something to make.

  • Liquipel

    We'll go ahead and let you try it first, but the folks behind Liquipel ($59) claim their clear coating "protects every feature of your device with a revolutionary waterproof shield." The Liquipel permanently bonds on the molecular level to your device, both inside and out, and is said to keep your phone working even if you drop it in water (creek, bath tub, Kool-Aid, etc.). Certain iPhone, HTC, Samsung, and Motorola devices can take the Liquipel treatment and their subsequent plunges now.