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Hurry to Check Out Friday's Best Amazon Deals

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amazon / istock

As a recurring feature, our team combs the Web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, April 21.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

GADGETS, TOYS, AND MEDIA

Nest Cam Indoor security camera for $174.62 (list price $199.00)

Cambridge SoundWorks OontZ Angle 3 Next Generation Ultra Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker : Louder Volume 10W+, More Bass, Water Resistant (Black) for $27.99 (list price $99.99)

Breaking Bad: The Complete Series [Blu-ray + UltraViolet] for $34.99 (list price $96.12)

Wireless Laser Presenter, Restar 2.4GHz Wireless USB PowerPoint Presentation Remote Control Pointer Clicker Presenter Laser Flip Pen with Clip for $13.87 (list price $39.99)

Symphonized NRG 3.0 Earbuds | Wood In-ear Noise-isolating Headphones with Mic & Volume Control (Black Night & Hazy Gray) for $25.49 (list price $49.99)

Security Metal Detectors, GoerTek Hand Held Adjustable Sensitivity Super Wand Scanner with 16 LED Lights for $25.59 (list price $39.99)

Anlo Bluetooth Headphones Wireless In Ear Earbuds V4.1 Stereo Noise Isolating Sports Sweatproof Headset with Mic, Premium Bass Sound - Black for $27.99 (list price $49.90)

DOSS Touch Wireless Bluetooth V4.0 Portable Speaker with HD Sound and Bass (Black) for $32.99 (list price $89.99)

Energizer MAX AAA Batteries, Designed to Prevent Damaging Leaks (24-Count) for $12.99 (list price $14.99)

7" Plasma Ball for $29.08 (list price $34.99)

Samsung 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive Fit (MUF-32BB/AM) for $12.95 (list price $29.99)

Mpow V4.1 Wearable Bluetooth Headphones Wireless Sport Earbuds, Nano-coating Sweatproof, w/ Custom-fit Moldable Earhook, Noise Isolation, Aluminum Shell for $15.99 (list price $27.99)

AUKEY 30000mAh Portable Charger with Quick Charge 3.0, Lightning & Micro-USB Input, 2 USB Outputs for Nintendo Switch 2017, iPhone 7/7 Plus, iPad Pro/Air 2 and More for $59.99 (list price $77.99)

Suaoki 220Wh/20,000mAh Portable Generator Power Source Power Supply with 100V/110V/50Hz, Max 200W AC Power Inverters, 12V/5A DC & USB Ports, Charged by DC Input/Solar Panels for $209.99 (list price $358.99)

AUKEY Car Charger with Dual-Port & Quick Charge 3.0 Technology for Samsung LG and More|Qualcomm Certified for $14.99 (list price $19.99)

iXCC Element II Lightning Cable 3.3ft, iPhone charger, for iPhone 6s 6 Plus, SE 5s 5c 5, iPad Air 2 Pro, iPad mini 2 3 4, iPad 4th Gen [Apple MFi Certified](White) for $7.99 (list price $19.99)

Jumbo Size Magnifying Glass Wide Horizontal Lens(3x Magnification)- Shockproof & Scratch Resistant Design W/Large Viewing Area Ideal for Reading Small Prints & Low Vision for $13.95 (list price $29.99)

Aukey USB Wall Charger with Dual Quick Charge 3.0 Ports for Smartphones for $19.99 (list price $24.99)

Melissa & Doug Stack & Count Parking Garage for $14.67 (list price $19.99)

SmartLab Toys Extreme Secret Formula Lab for $16.99 (list price $19.99)

WWE Basic The Rock Figure for $9.99 (list price $21.99)

Estes 806 Firestreak SST Flying Model Rocket Kit for $7.79 (list price $9.99)

LEGO City Great Vehicles Stunt Truck 60146 Building Kit for $7.99 (list price $9.99)

LEGO City Great Vehicles Pizza Van 60150 Building Kit for $15.99 (list price $19.99)

KITCHEN

BLACK+DECKER GD2011B Family Sized Electric Griddle, 20 x 11-Inch, Black for $15.02 (list price $39.99)

Cuisinart Chef's Classic Stainless 16-Inch Rectangular Roaster with Rack, 7117-16UR for $46.62 (list price $110.00)

Watermelon Slicer Corer & Server, Cutter Tongs for Melons & More, Stainless Steel Knife Peeler by Chuzy Chef for $6.79 (list price $19.99)

Vremi 3 Piece Baking Sheets Nonstick Set - Professional Non Stick Sheet Pan Set for Baking - Carbon Steel Baking Pans Cookie Sheets with Red Silicone Handles - has Quarter and Half Sheet Pans for $27.99 (list price $39.99)

Contigo AUTOSEAL Transit Stainless Steel Travel Mug, 16 oz, Polar White with Grayed Jade Lid Accent for $19.01 (list price $24.99)

Nordic Ware Leakproof Springform Pan, 10 Cup, 9 Inch for $12.85 (list price $17.45)

27PCS Cake Decoration Tips Set - 24PCS W-Plus Professional Stainless Steel Piping/Dispenser Nozzle Kit, a Reusable Silicone Pastry Bag and 2 Reusable Couplers for $9.99 (list price $19.99)

George Foreman GRP4842RB Multi-Plate Evolve Grill (Panini Press, Grilling, and Waffle Plates Included),Red for $83.36 (list price $119.99)

J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL Kitchen Elements 3-pc Paring Knife Set, Black for $11.95 (list price $20.00)

Kikkerland Rockin Wooden Spoons, Set of 2 for $9.54 (list price $16.00)

Vesper’s Kitchen Stackable Mixing Bowl Set | Nesting Bowls w/ Measuring Cups | Compact, Durable, & Lightweight for $23.98 (list price $32.99)

Wilton 409-7716 Angled Icing Spatula, 13-Inch, Black for $5.39 (list price $8.00)

Top Rated Bellemain Stainless Steel Non-Slip Mixing Bowls with Lids, 4 Piece Set Includes 1 Qt., 1.5 Qt., 3 Qt. & 5 Qt. for $27.95 (list price $59.95)

Orblue Pastry Cutter Stainless Steel - Professional Baking Dough Blender with Blades for $10.87 (list price $18.77)

Large Donut Pan – Non-stick Silicone Donut Mold Made Of Heavy Duty, Heat Resistant Material To Bake 9 Full Size Donuts/Bagels/Muffins & Other Delicacies –Professional Grade Doughnut Pan(Turquoise) for $16.99 (list price $29.99)

BELLA Hand Immersion Blender with Whisk Attachment, 250 Watt RED 14460 for $16.92 (list price $28.87)

Long Bottle Brush Cleaner Set (3-in-1) and Straw Brushes or Dish Brush | Thick and Thin Brush with Straw Cleaners for $14.97 (list price $18.99)

Lodge L8DD3 Cast Iron Double Dutch Oven, 5-Quart for $38.96 (list price $52.72)

Imperia Pasta Maker Machine (150) By Cucina Pro - Heavy Duty Steel Construction with Easy Lock Dial and Wood Grip Handle for $47.85 (list price $89.99)

SipWell Stainless Steel Drinking Straws, Set of 4, Free Cleaning Brush Included for $6.95 (list price $19.95)

Presto 01370 8-Quart Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker for $58.31 (list price $119.00)

UEndure Tea Infuser & Cold Brew Coffee Maker - Tea Cup with Removable Strainer, 14 Ounce Tumbler for $62.95 (list price $34.99)

LauKingdom Cast Iron Cleaner - XXL 8x8 More Efficient Stainless Steel Chainmail Scrubber for $15.99 (list price $39.99)

Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet, 12 Inch for $22.54 (list price $25.09)

Zester, Raniaco Stainless Steel Grater, Cheese, Lemon, Ginger & Potato Zester with Plastic Cover, Long Ergonomic Handle with Rubber Base for $9.49 (list price $39.99)

refresh2go 22oz Sleek Filtered Water Bottle - Teal for $5.99 (list price $7.99)

Komax Ice Cube Tray with No-spill Cover (Set of 4) BPA Free for $18.99 (list price $29.99)

Cuisinart WAF-150 4-Slice Belgian Waffle Maker, Stainless Steel for $49.99 (list price $110.00)

Bormioli Rocco Dublino Collection 2-Ounce Shot Glasses, Set of 6 for $7.99 (list price $17.22)

Hamilton Beach Deep Fryer with Cool Touch, 2-Liter Oil Capacity (35021) for $25.19 (list price $49.99)

CreativeWare 2.5-Gallon Bark Beverage Dispenser for $27.95 (list price $39.99)

Picnic Time 'Potluck' Insulated Casserole Tote Bag, Anthology Collection for $26.98 (list price $33.95)

Cuisinart WAF-150 4-Slice Belgian Waffle Maker, Stainless Steel for $49.99 (list price $110.00)

HOME

Pregnancy Pillow, Full Body Maternity Pillow with Contoured U-Shape by Lavish Home, Hypoallergenic Body Pillow with Full Back Support and Pain Relief for $33.49 (list price $99.99)

Tide PODS Free & Gentle HE Turbo Laundry Detergent Pacs 81-load Tub for $15.99 after on-screen coupon (list price $25.75)

Tide Smart Pouch Free & Gentle HE Liquid Laundry Detergent, Pack of three 48 oz. pouches, 93 loads for $14.99 after on-screen coupon (list price $19.98)

Berry Ave Broom Holder and Garden Tool Organizer for Rake or Mop Handles Up To 1.25-Inches for $13.97 (list price $34.99)

Bounty Select-a-Size Paper Towels, White, Huge Roll, 12 Count for $23.99 (list price $28.99)

Winix PlasmaWave 5300 Air Cleaner Model for $132.89 (list price $199.99)

Oreck Ultimate Handheld Bagged Canister Vacuum, CC1600 - Corded for $131.65 (list price $149.99)

Ziploc Freezer Bag, Gallon Size-28 ct for $4.59 (list price $5.95)

Zenna Home 7653SS, Toilet Paper Reserve, Chrome for $12.47 (list price $14.85)

AmazonBasics Shower Curtain with Hooks (Treated to Resist Deterioration by Mildew) - 72 x 72 inches, White for $6.29 (list price $8.99)

1400 Series 300 Thread Count 100% Cotton Sateen Dobby Stripe Sheet Set- 4 Sizes- 9 Colors (King, Sage) for $15.99 (list price $99.99)

Simple Deluxe Anti-Slip Anti-Bacterial Simple Deluxe Slip-Resistant Bath Mat, 39" L X 16" W, Extra Long, Clear for $29.99 (list price $29.99)

Finish Powerball All In 1 Automatic Dishwasher Detergent Tabs Fresh Scent , 85 Count for $13.38 (list price $17.99)

Dyna-Glo RMC-55R7B Indoor Kerosene Radiant Heater, 10000 BTU, Black for $111.97 (list price $129.99)

Libman Tornado Mop for $20.10 (list price $26.64)

EcoDefy Automatic Touchless Hand Soap and Sanitizer Countertop Dispenser for Kitchen Sink and Bathroom for $21.95 (list price $69.99)

Flameless Candles, Battery Operated Candles Set 4" 5" 6" 7" 8" 9" Battery Candles Dancing Flame With Remote Timer By Comenzar (Ivory ) for $38.99 (list price $128.59)

Martex Super Soft Fleece Blanket for $16.84 (list price $20.00)

Pandpal One Size Fits All Tissue Box Cover Fit Rectangular Paper Boxes, Adjustable Bamboo Wooden Holder Dispenser for $21.99 (list price $29.99)

Classic Brands Defend-A-Bed Premium Hypoallergenic Waterproof Mattress Protector, Vinyl Free, Twin Extra-Long for $13.95 (list price $29.00)

AmazonBasics 5-Shelf Shelving Unit on Wheels - Chrome for $41.67 (list price $54.99)

Dritz Silicone Iron Rest for $7.65 (list price $9.99)

MRS MEYERS Clean Day Scented Soy Candle Basil, Small, 4.9 Ounce for $5.94 (list price $6.99)

Charmin Ultra Soft Toilet Paper, Bath Tissue, Mega Roll, 24 Count for $19.81 (list price $26.99)

Better Life Glass Cleaner, 32 Ounces (Pack of 2) for $10.98 (list price $13.65)

Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day 2x HE Liquid Laundry Detergent, Lemon Verbena, 64 Oz for $12.77 (list price $22.53)

HEALTH AND BEAUTY

KINGDOMCARES Hair Straightener Brush Hot Pink for $22.49 (list price $99.99)

Pharmafreak GH Freak - Growth Hybrid Sleep Supplement - 120 Capsules - Top Rated Bodybuilding Recovery Supplement - Build Muscle and Recover Faster w/ Healthy Sleeping Patterns. for $49.99 (list price $72.99)

stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara, Black for $20.70 (list price $23.00)

NIVEA Men Original Moisturizing Face Wash 5 Fluid Ounce for $4.94 (list price $6.49)

Anthony Algae Facial Cleanser, 8 fl. oz. for $32.40 (list price $36.00)

Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer With Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Spf 15, 4 Oz for $12.29 (list price $13.47)

Antifungal Soap Body & Foot Wash - 12 oz with Tea Tree Oil 100% Natural Fungal Defense Care Kills Bacteria Athletes Foot Ringworm Jock Itch - Antibacterial Soap Premium Nature for $11.99 (list price $19.99)

Banana Boat Sunscreen Ultra Mist Sport Performance Broad Spectrum Sun Care Sunscreen Spray - SPF 50, 6 Ounce for $6.24 (list price $11.99)

L'Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Body Towelettes, 6 Count for $9.00 (list price $10.99)

Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Spf 60+, 3 Fl. Oz. for $8.99 (list price $9.99)

Pure Body Naturals Beauty Dead Sea Mud Mask for Facial Treatment, 250g / 8.8 fl.oz for $17.95 (list price $39.98)

Philips Sonicare Essence Sonic Electric Rechargeable Toothbrush, White for $24.97 (list price $49.99)

Crest 3D White Luxe Whitestrip Teeth Whitening Kit, Glamorous White, 14 Treatments - Packaging May Vary for $25.58 with on-screen coupon (list price $44.99)

Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Whitening Toothpaste, 4 Ounce Tubes (pack of 3) for $15.72 (list price $25.47)

Tom's of Maine Anticavity Fluoride Children's Toothpaste, Silly Strawberry, 4.2 Ounce, 3 Count for $9.24 (list price $11.97)

Professional Dental Guard -Pack Of 4- Stops Teeth Grinding, Bruxism, Tmj, & Eliminates Teeth Clenching . Includes Fitting Instructions & Anti-Bacterial Case. Satisfaction Is Guaranteed! for $19.99 (list price $29.99)

RADIUS Totz Toothbrush for 18 Months +, Extra Soft Bristles, Assorted Colors, Colors May Vary, 3 Count for $10.45 (list price $11.97)

TheraBreath Dentist Recommended Fresh Breath Oral Rinse - Icy Mint Flavor, 16 Ounce (Pack of 2) for $15.34 (list price $25.19)

All Natural Teeth Whitening Powder - Made in USA with Coconut Activated Charcoal - Safe Effective Tooth Whitener Solution. Better than Strips, Kit, Gel & Whitening Toothpaste. for $22.89 (list price $34.99)

Dentist Prepared Tools Kit | Dental Pick Dental Floss Gum Floss Threaders Toothpicks Dental Hygiene Kit Set Dental Instruments High Grade Stainless Steel Tartar Scraper Tartar Remover for $13.97 (list price $40.00)

Listerine Total Care Zero Anticavity Mouthwash, Fresh Mint, 1 L (Pack of 2) for $11.94 (list price $18.45)

TheraBreath Dentist Recommended Dry Mouth Lozenges, Sugar Free, Mandarin Mint Flavor, 100 Count for $7.99 (list price $12.06)

OFFICE, SCHOOL, AND CRAFTS

Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus Graphing Calculator, Black for $99.99 (list price $106.72)

RIF6 Silicone Electronics Case for Cube Mobile Projector or Mini Wireless Speaker … (Black) for $8.99 (list price $20.00)

Derwent Art Supplies, Waterbrush, 3 Pack (2301975) for $7.02 (list price $20.99)

Derwent Colored Pencils, Drawing, Watercolor, Art, Inktense Ink Pencils, 24-Pack (0700929) for $29.68 (list price $46.46)

Derwent Colored Pencils, 72 Studio, 3.4mm Core, Wooden Box, 72 Count (32199) for $68.51 (list price $82.26)

Sharpie Accent Retractable Highlighters, Chisel Tip, Assorted Colors, 8-Count for $7.12 (list price $8.38)

Paper Mate Profile Retractable Ballpoint Pens, Bold (1.4mm), Black, 12 Count for $7.19 (list price $8.47)

EXPO Low-Odor Dry Erase Markers, Ultra Fine Tip, Assorted Colors, 8-Count for $7.00 (list price $8.24)

Two High Quality Gold Plated Stainless Steel Stork Bird Scissors for Embroidery for $12.95 (list price $14.95)

Courise - 108 Unique Colors Gel Pen Set for $15.99 (list price $69.99)

Tombow Mono Permanent Adhesive Refills, 3 Pack (62207) for $5.86 (list price $7.99)

Liquid Chalk Markers With Labels ~ 10 Pack Washable Ultra Bright Neon Colors + Free Labels (Safe For Kids, & Non Toxic) for $11.93 (list price $24.99)

Brother ST371HD Strong and Tough Sewing Machine with 37 Stitches for $179.95 (list price $199.95)

Little Treasures Kitty Clay Modeling and Sculpting DIY Play-Set - Create Your 3D Cat Theme Favorite Cartoon Characters with Molding Play-Dough Kit for $4.49 (list price $6.99)

BIC BU3 Retractable Ball Pen, Medium Point (1.0 mm), Assorted Colors, 18-Count for $6.77 (list price $10.08)

Scotch Precision Ultra Edge Scissors, 8 Inch, 3-Pack (1458-3AMZ) for $19.04 (list price $25.62)

Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens, Fine Point, Assorted Colors, 12 Count for $13.34 (list price $15.70)

VicTsing Electric Pencil Sharpener with Replacement Sharpener Core, Automatic Smart Sharpening Sensor,Heavy Duty Battery Operated Pencil Sharpener for Classroom, Office and High Volume Use for $18.99 (list price $39.99)

VicTsing Mouse Pad with Gel Wrist Support , Non-Slip PU Base Wrist Rest Pad for Gaming Typist Office, Black for $12.99 (list price $16.99)

Incline Desk Sorter, 6 Compartment, 8 x 7-3/4 x 6-1/2 Inches, Black for $7.68 (list price $10.45)

OUTDOORS, GARDEN, AND SPORTS

Greenco Giant Inflatable Swan Pool Float Lounger, 75" for $24.89 (list price $35.99)

INTEY Folding Picnic Table, Portable Ultralight Roll Up Camping Table with Storage Bag for Outdoors for $32.99 (list price $59.99)

AUTOSPOUT Straw Striker Chill, 10oz, Sapphire for $13.50 (list price $15.99)

Winterial Double Self Inflating Sleeping Pad With Pillows / Camping / Backpacking / Travel / 2 person for $69.99 (list price $94.99)

Tensun Swimming Goggles Anti Fog Leak-free UV Protection Clear Lens Adjustable Straps Triathlon Swim Goggles Glasses - Black for $8.99 (list price $22.99)

Corona BP 3160 ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Pruner, 3/4" Cut for $13.00 (list price $25.56)

Garden Hose Nozzle Hand Sprayer Heavy Duty Metal Construction , High Pressure Pistol Grip for $8.49 (list price $9.99)

Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower for $499.99 (list price $606.57)

Mountain House Chicken Teriyaki with Rice Premium Case Pack for $34.12 (list price $41.99)

Klean Kanteen Classic 27-Ounce Stainless Steel Bottle With Loop Cap for $16.79 (list price $20.95)

Wilson Titanium Ball (18 Ball Pack) for $9.97 (list price $19.99)

Coleman 24-Hour 30-Can Cooler for $19.97 (list price $27.54)

Suncast BMS6500 98-Cubic Foot Vertical Blowmolded Shed for $369.64 (list price $514.10)

Coleman Oak Point Cool Weather Sleeping Bag for $33.49 (list price $38.68)

Keter Corfu Love Seat All Weather Outdoor Patio Garden Furniture w/ Cushions, Brown for $119.00 (list price $199.99)

Eachway Professional 10 in 1 Emergency Survival Gear Kit Outdoor Survival Tool with Fire Starter for $23.98 (list price $36.98)

Char Broil Performance 475 4-Burner Cart Gas Grill for $193.03 (list price $229.99)

Victorinox Swiss Army Spartan II Folding Camping Knives, Red, 91mm for $19.24 (list price $30.00)

PackTowl Personal Packtowl for $19.99 (list price $24.95)

Wenzel Klondike Tent - 8 Person for $138.64 after on-screen coupon (list price $249.99)

Coleman Mosquito Head Net for $2.97 (list price $3.99)

WloveTravel Inverted Double Layer Waterproof Reverse Folding Umbrella, Self-Standing Upside-Down Travel Umbrella (Green) for $19.99 (list price $57.99)

American Outback Glacier Internal Frame Hiking Backpack, Orange, 60 L for $52.42 (list price $69.90)

ELECTRONICS

(With Backlit) iPazzPort Bluetooth Mini Wireless Keyboard and Touchpad Mouse Combo for Raspberry Pi 3 and Android Smart TV / XBMC KP-810-21SBL (Black) for $16.99 (list price $19.99)

D-Link AC3200 Ultra Tri-Band Wi-Fi Router With 6 High Performance Beamforming Antennas (DIR-890L/R) for $199.99 (list price $249.95)

VicTsing Gold Plated Thunderbolt Mini DisplayPort to VGA Male to Female Adapter in White for Apple MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro. for $7.49 (list price $11.99)

1byone Superspeed Aluminum 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub with 1 Ethernet Port, 5 Gbps Transfer Rate & Built-in 15 Inches Cable, for iMac, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Mac Mini, PC and Laptop for $14.99 (list price $18.99)

VicTsing USB 3.0 CD Drive Portable External CD DVD RW DVD ROM Drive Writer Burner for Mac Macbook Pro Air iMAC Laptops Desktops Notebooks, Black for $28.99 (list price $38.99)

SanDisk 128GB Connect Wireless Flash Drive for $68.39 (list price $99.99)

Silicon Power 2TB Rugged Armor A85 2.5" USB 3.0 Portable External Hard Drive, Silver (SP020TBPHDA85S3SBT) for $89.99 (list price $102.99)

Adjustable Tablet Stand, KitBest iPad Stand, Multi-Angle Aluminum Desktop Stand Holder Cradle for Smartphones and Android Tablets, Compatible with iPad Air 2 3 4 Pro mini, Nexus, Samsung Tab-Black for $15.99 (list price $20.99)

NETGEAR N300 Wi-Fi Range Extender, Essentials Edition (EX2700) for $24.99 (list price $39.99)

AUKEY USB-C Hub with HDMI, SD & microSD Card Reader, Dual USB 3.0 Ports, USB 2.0 Port and USB-C Power Delivery Charging Throughput for New MacBook Pro for $89.99 (list price $89.99)

Cyber Acoustics 2.1 Computer Speaker with Subwoofer - Best for Music, Movies, Multimedia PC and Gaming Systems (CA-3602 FFP) for $35.99 (list price $39.99)

D-Link Wi-Fi AC750 Dual Band Range Extender (DAP-1520) for $19.99 (list price $45.25)

Mini DisplayPort to HDMI Cable (15 FT), Fosmon Mini DP [Thunderbolt Port Compatible] to HDMI Cable Adapter For Surface Pro, MacBook Pro, iMac, Mac Mini - Gold Plated (White) for $8.49 (list price $19.99)

Tonor TN12326 Professional Condenser Sound Podcast Studio Microphone For PC Laptop Computer for $11.04 (list price $39.99)

D-Link 16-Port Gigabit Switch (DGS-1016A) for $59.99 (list price $69.99)

Tonor USB Professional Condenser Sound Podcast Studio Microphone for PC Laptop Computer Apple Mac Upgraded Version - Plug and play, Black for $13.59 (list price $39.99)

UtechSmart USB 2.0 to 10/100 Fast Ethernet LAN Wired Network Adapter for MacBook, Chromebook, Windows, Linux, Wii, Wii U & Switch Game Console for $9.99 (list price $19.99)

TOOLS

AUKEY Jump Starter with 400A Peak Current & 12000mAh Portable Charger for Car Battery, Boat, Motorcycles, Lawnmowers and More for $49.99 (list price $62.99)

Stanley 66-358 Stanley Stubby Ratcheting MultiBit Screwdriver for $4.79 (list price $8.67)

Wet Dry Sandpaper 120 to 3000 Grit Assortment 9 * 3.6 Inches Abrasive Paper Sheets for Automotive Sanding, Wood Furniture Finishing, Wood Turning Finishing for $10.99 (list price $34.99)

SKIL 1817 120V 1-3/4 HP Fixed Base Router for $76.98 (list price $136.00)

3M Random Orbital Sander 20317, 5 in Non-vacuum 3/16 in Orbit, 1 Per Case for $162.38 (list price $235.00)

Detailer's Choice 4B369 Flow-Thru Vehicle Wash Brush with 60-Inch Telescoping Handle - 1-Each for $7.46 (list price $12.46)

LED Tactical Flashlight,Liwin Ultra Bright LED Handheld Portable Water Resistant Torch with Adjustable Focus and 5 Modes Light, Includes Rechargeable 18650 Lithium Ion Battery and Charger for $14.99 (list price $24.99)

AquaDance Premium-Plus High Pressure 6-inch Rainfall Shower Head for the Ultimate Shower Spa Experience for $21.89 (list price $44.99)

Solar Light, 10 LED Waterproof Outdoor Wireless Motion Sensor Lights with 3 Modes, 2-Pack for $13.99 (list price $29.99)

Master Lock 1535DWD Vertical Resettable Word Combo Lock, Assorted Colors (Pack of 1) for $7.96 (list price $10.40)

Goodes 60M/196Ft Distance Laser Meter Measure Handheld Digital Measuring Tape Devices with High Contrast VTN Backlit LCD Screen and 99 Memory Storage for Angle Distance Area Volume Measurement for $29.99 (list price $99.99)

Stanley Tr110 Heavy Duty Steel Stapler for $10.58 (list price $22.90)

Etekcity 2 Pack Portable Outdoor LED Camping Lantern with 6 AA Batteries (Black, Collapsible) for $14.88 (list price $39.99)

Wells Lamont Full Leather Work Gloves with Ball and Tape Wrist Closure, Grain Cowhide, Medium (1132M) for $12.59 (list price $16.99)

Crescent CTK170CMP2 Mechanics Tool Set, 170-Piece for $84.99 (list price $206.13)

Keter New Masterloader Plastic Portable Rolling Organizer Tool Box Storage Solution for $53.22 (list price $64.61)

Stanley 84-114 3 Piece Basic 6-Inch Slip Joint, 6-Inch Long Nose, and 6-Inch Diagonal Plier Set for $8.89 (list price $18.99)

Original image
iStock // Ekaterina Minaeva
technology
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Man Buys Two Metric Tons of LEGO Bricks; Sorts Them Via Machine Learning
May 21, 2017
Original image
iStock // Ekaterina Minaeva

Jacques Mattheij made a small, but awesome, mistake. He went on eBay one evening and bid on a bunch of bulk LEGO brick auctions, then went to sleep. Upon waking, he discovered that he was the high bidder on many, and was now the proud owner of two tons of LEGO bricks. (This is about 4400 pounds.) He wrote, "[L]esson 1: if you win almost all bids you are bidding too high."

Mattheij had noticed that bulk, unsorted bricks sell for something like €10/kilogram, whereas sets are roughly €40/kg and rare parts go for up to €100/kg. Much of the value of the bricks is in their sorting. If he could reduce the entropy of these bins of unsorted bricks, he could make a tidy profit. While many people do this work by hand, the problem is enormous—just the kind of challenge for a computer. Mattheij writes:

There are 38000+ shapes and there are 100+ possible shades of color (you can roughly tell how old someone is by asking them what lego colors they remember from their youth).

In the following months, Mattheij built a proof-of-concept sorting system using, of course, LEGO. He broke the problem down into a series of sub-problems (including "feeding LEGO reliably from a hopper is surprisingly hard," one of those facts of nature that will stymie even the best system design). After tinkering with the prototype at length, he expanded the system to a surprisingly complex system of conveyer belts (powered by a home treadmill), various pieces of cabinetry, and "copious quantities of crazy glue."

Here's a video showing the current system running at low speed:

The key part of the system was running the bricks past a camera paired with a computer running a neural net-based image classifier. That allows the computer (when sufficiently trained on brick images) to recognize bricks and thus categorize them by color, shape, or other parameters. Remember that as bricks pass by, they can be in any orientation, can be dirty, can even be stuck to other pieces. So having a flexible software system is key to recognizing—in a fraction of a second—what a given brick is, in order to sort it out. When a match is found, a jet of compressed air pops the piece off the conveyer belt and into a waiting bin.

After much experimentation, Mattheij rewrote the software (several times in fact) to accomplish a variety of basic tasks. At its core, the system takes images from a webcam and feeds them to a neural network to do the classification. Of course, the neural net needs to be "trained" by showing it lots of images, and telling it what those images represent. Mattheij's breakthrough was allowing the machine to effectively train itself, with guidance: Running pieces through allows the system to take its own photos, make a guess, and build on that guess. As long as Mattheij corrects the incorrect guesses, he ends up with a decent (and self-reinforcing) corpus of training data. As the machine continues running, it can rack up more training, allowing it to recognize a broad variety of pieces on the fly.

Here's another video, focusing on how the pieces move on conveyer belts (running at slow speed so puny humans can follow). You can also see the air jets in action:

In an email interview, Mattheij told Mental Floss that the system currently sorts LEGO bricks into more than 50 categories. It can also be run in a color-sorting mode to bin the parts across 12 color groups. (Thus at present you'd likely do a two-pass sort on the bricks: once for shape, then a separate pass for color.) He continues to refine the system, with a focus on making its recognition abilities faster. At some point down the line, he plans to make the software portion open source. You're on your own as far as building conveyer belts, bins, and so forth.

Check out Mattheij's writeup in two parts for more information. It starts with an overview of the story, followed up with a deep dive on the software. He's also tweeting about the project (among other things). And if you look around a bit, you'll find bulk LEGO brick auctions online—it's definitely a thing!

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Nick Briggs/Comic Relief
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What Happened to Jamie and Aurelia From Love Actually?
May 26, 2017
Original image
Nick Briggs/Comic Relief

Fans of the romantic-comedy Love Actually recently got a bonus reunion in the form of Red Nose Day Actually, a short charity special that gave audiences a peek at where their favorite characters ended up almost 15 years later.

One of the most improbable pairings from the original film was between Jamie (Colin Firth) and Aurelia (Lúcia Moniz), who fell in love despite almost no shared vocabulary. Jamie is English, and Aurelia is Portuguese, and they know just enough of each other’s native tongues for Jamie to propose and Aurelia to accept.

A decade and a half on, they have both improved their knowledge of each other’s languages—if not perfectly, in Jamie’s case. But apparently, their love is much stronger than his grasp on Portuguese grammar, because they’ve got three bilingual kids and another on the way. (And still enjoy having important romantic moments in the car.)

In 2015, Love Actually script editor Emma Freud revealed via Twitter what happened between Karen and Harry (Emma Thompson and Alan Rickman, who passed away last year). Most of the other couples get happy endings in the short—even if Hugh Grant's character hasn't gotten any better at dancing.

[h/t TV Guide]

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