Solid Gold Death Star Coins: That’s No Beskar

Released by the New Zealand Mint, these 1-ounce Death Star Coins are engraved with an image of the Empire’s moon-sized superweapon on one side and Queen Elizabeth on the opposite. A nice combo. Personally, I would have gone with an Ewok on the other side to commemorate the Battle of Endor, but I wasn’t asked. I’m never asked.

Limited to an edition of 500, the 0.9999% gold coins are available for $2,900 apiece. And, with the current price of gold hovering around $1,900, you’re paying roughly a thousand extra bucks for that Death Star engraving. Should you just buy an ounce of gold, mint a coin shape, and engrave your own? I’m not here to tell you what to do, but you absolutely should, and make me one while you’re at it.

If I had the money, I would buy all five hundred of them, then slowly release them on eBay for an even steeper profit. Or end up selling them for less than I paid for them – it’s happened before. I’m not really a great investor. Take, for instance, the time I invested in a complete set of original mint-in-package Kenner Star Wars action figures from 1977, then tore them all out of their packaging and played with them in the bathtub. I… have regrets.

[via DudeIWantThat]

Star Trek TNG Character Cosplay Cups: Tea, Earl Grey, Hot

Created in the likeness of the iconic characters from Star Trek: The Next Generation, Numskull is releasing this set of Star Trek CosCups, drinking cups cosplaying as Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Worf, Deanna Troi, and Geordi La Forge. I can already close my eyes and imagine myself sipping a morning protein shake out of Picard’s head while he wishes I wasn’t.

CosCups hold 14-ounces of your favorite beverage and are available for $22 apiece from JustGeek. They’re constructed of high-quality ceramic with a molded silicone grip (the lower body portion) to ensure your beverage stays hot or cold, but your hand stays at a regular temperature. That’s a nice feature.

Will they also be releasing Data and Commander Riker CosCups in the future? One can only hope. Or start one of those petitions. That’s what I did when I wanted a set of fine Star Trek tableware, and look how that turned out. You know, maybe one person really can make a difference.

Star Trek: The Next Generation Cats Windshield Sunshade

Are you a Trekkie AND a cat person? Well then look no further than this Star Trek: The Next Generation cat sunshade created by Surreal Entertainment and available on Amazon (affiliate link). The sun blocker features the cast of the show in cat form, ready to navigate the USS Enterprise to where no man – or feline – has gone before.

The visor measures 64″ x 32″ and is a universal fit to accommodate the windshields of most cars, trucks, and vans. However it will probably not fit the windshields of most spaceships, so keep that in mind before buying one for your Klingon Bird-of-Prey or Borg Cube and then complaining it doesn’t fit snuggly.

I mean it’s hard not to purchase one, right? Because I actually bought one of these not too long ago and use it all the time. Sure it makes it hard to see while I’m driving, but hey – at least my seat and steering wheel aren’t blistering hot.

[via GeeksAreSexy]

These R2-D2 Leggings Are a Good Motivator

It’s been a few months since I’ve seen R2-D2 rolling around, but the last thing I remember, he was still shaped like a garbage can on wheels. Well, I guess our little Astromech droid has been hitting the gym because he’s looking quite slim and leggy these days.

Oh, what’s that, you say? That’s not the real R2-D2, but a model showing off her stylish R2-D2 leggings? I guess that makes more sense.

I found these leggings among Etsy shop FringeGeek’s many fun and fanciful wearables, including Wesley Crusher sweater shorts, Ace Ventura’s striped pants, and a Sexy Candy Corn Dress. But I digress. We’re here to talk about this R2 unit. I must have been distracted by some kind of Jedi mind trick.

The stretchy R2-D2 leggings are made from 82% polyester and 18% spandex, which is what all droids are made of. Though I have it on good authority that they’re actually 81.98% polyester and 18.02% spandex because C-3PO had to correct me. That’s what he does. Also, a hologram might shoot out of your butt if you wear these. If these are the leggings you’re looking for, you can grab a pair over on Etsy for $44.99.

AT-AT Aquarium Looks Like Hoth After Global Warming

When you think of AT-ATs, you think of these giant mechanical beasts stomping along the snowy surface of Hoth. But what would happen if the Empire’s war machines ran on fossil fuels and their CO2 emissions, resulting in a greenhouse effect? It might end up looking something like this aquarium scene created by Carly Thompson.

After receiving a model AT-AT as a Christmas gift, she decided to incorporate the Imperial Walker into a small fish tank. She says the scene was inspired by the Kashyyk level of Jedi Fallen Order, and Endor from Return of the Jedi. But to me, it looks like Hoth after the polar ice caps have melted, raising the sea levels, and flooding the land as surface temperatures increased above freezing. The AT-AT has definitely seen better days, now that it has moss growing out of it, but it sure makes a nice home for the red cherry shrimp and Ramshorn snails who have taken up residence here.

[via Reddit via MyModernMet and GeekNative]

This Bed Lets Kids Sleep Under an Imperial Walker

Can you imagine waking up every morning and looking up to see an Imperial Walker towering over your head? Well, if you’ve got $8500 lying around, your kid could experience that thanks to the guys at Tiny Town Studios. These guys create all kinds of amazing custom builds, from pirate ships to giant alligators you can walk through.

This awesome handmade bed lets kids sleep between the legs of an AT-AT while imagining they’re flying along the snowy surface of Hoth in a T-47 Rebel Airspeeder. Of course, you wouldn’t your kid to be lying beneath this thing when it came crashing down, so it’s best not to try wrapping its legs with a tow cable.

The bed appears to be twin-size, but I’m sure with deep enough pockets, you could convince Tiny Town to build you a version with a bigger bed underneath. I want a California King with enough room for me to roll around on it my AT-AT pilot costume. Or better yet, can I get a version with a ladder, and the bed is inside the AT-AT? And rig it up so the legs move and I can stomp around my neighborhood this winter when there’s snow on the ground.

Playmobil Releasing Giant 39-Inch USS Enterprise Playset: Beam Me Up, Scotty

Hot on the heels of their successful Back to the Future DeLorean and Marty McFly’s truck playsets, Playmobil is releasing another set aimed at adults with this giant Star Trek: The Original Series USS Enterprise NCC-1701. I’ve already added it to both my birthday and Christmas lists.

The 148-piece USS Enterprise measures 39-inches long and features numerous light and sound effects, as well as dialog from the original show. Playable areas include the ship’s bridge (with a place to put your smartphone in landscape mode to act as the bridge’s monitor, seen above) and engineering room (with dilithium core that powers the ship on and sounds an alarm when removed, seen below).

The set includes seven figures (Captain Kirk, Spock, Lt. Uhura, Doctor McCoy, Hikaru Sulu, Scotty, and Chekov), some tribbles, phasers, and other accessories as well as hardware to hang the ship, and a display stand. It will be available on September 21st with a retail price of $500. That’s a lot of space bucks!

I was just about ready for Scotty to beam me up until I heard the price. I can’t even remember the last time I spent $500 on a toy and got away with it, but you can rest assured it’s only because my wife hasn’t found out about it yet.

[via Gizmodo]

Hallmark’s Keepsake 2021 Millennium Falcon Christmas Ornament

Because nothing quite says Christmas like Star Wars (back me up, 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special!), Hallmark is releasing this 2021 Keepsake Ornament of the Millennium Falcon (affiliate link). The metal ship measures 3.78″ wide, 1.4″ tall, 5.22″ long, and features a shiny silver finish. And with all the Mandalorian ornaments I’ve already purchased this year, I could probably decorate an entire Christmas tree with a Star Wars theme.

The ornament was designed by Hallmark artist Robert Hurlburt. However, I’m fairly certain the Corellian Engineering Corporation deserves most of the credit for building the YT-1300f light freighter the Millennium Falcon was modded from in the first place. Star Wars joke!

My wife and I have an entire box of Hallmark Keepsake ornaments commemorating different special occasions and anniversaries throughout the years. Or, I should say, we had an entire box of Hallmark Keepsake ornaments before I accidentally donated them all to Goodwill after mistaking the box for our old dinnerware. Obviously, I sadly expect my Christmas list to go largely unanswered this year.

[via Mental Floss]

Bow TIE Fighters: For Dark Side Black Tie Affairs

Because what else would you wear to the Galactic Federation’s next fundraising ball, these are the Bow TIE Fighters made and sold by Etsy shop Kilted Katana. I can already close my eyes and hear my wife asking me to please pick a different tie and put my lightsaber replica away before leaving for her cousin’s wedding.

Available in three different TIE fighters (classic, TIE Interceptor, TIE Advanced) and three different tie options (neck band, clip-on, or hair tie), Bow Tie Fighters cost $20 apiece and are sure to let people know you’re as classy as James Bond, but can also quote the majority of the original Star Wars trilogy.

Nice, but where’s the X-wing bow tie to match? I mean how are a friend and I supposed to run around pretending we’re locked in space battle if we’re both wearing TIE fighters? We’re on the same side! Also, ten dollars says my bow TIE fighter magically disappears from the closet prior to my wife’s company Christmas party this year.

[via TheGreenHead]

These non-humanoid robots express emotion by reacting to physical touch, just like plants do!

Most often, we only see plants moving and growing when they’re filmed in slow-motion for nature documentaries. But even in those slow scenes, watching plants bloom and grow into themselves feels emotional. It’s like watching a baby tiger wake up from a cat nap on the big screen, except it doesn’t have a face and it’s green, not furry. Inspired by the growth cycle and emotive movement of plant life, student designer Keunwook Kim designed Post-Plant, a collection of non-humanoid robots that respond to and move through non-verbal, physical interaction.

Following a period of researching how humans can read emotion from non-verbal cues, Kim gathered that arousal (dynamic energy), valence (intrinsic attractiveness), and stance (visual disposition) can each be interpreted as signs for emotional analysis. Applying this information to Post-Plant, Kim’s non-humanoid robots do not express emotion through facial expression, but through movement and changing forms. Built into each one of his Post-Plant robots, Kim incorporated a motor interface that combines an input and output system, registering when the robot is touched and responding with movement.

For example, when the top of Kim’s green robot, which could also be an interpretation of Maypole dancing from Midsommar, is turned, the robot responds with arousal, by spinning its ‘leaves.’ Signaling when its valence is turning negative, the Post-Plant robot binds its leaves tightly together. Once those leaves are touched by a human, the robot spins its leaves out once more, indicating a changed, positive valence. Similarly, Post-Plant’s white robot spins its propeller-like leaves in response to being touched but shivers to express unhappiness, indicating a need to be touched once more. By studying how humans read emotion, Kim hopes to cultivate the emotional relationship we have with robots and the potential to express a robot’s emotion through non-humanoid, kinetic gestures.

Designer: Keunwook Kim

Keunwook Kim built three different non-humanoid robots resembling various forms of plant life.

Taking cues from nature, Keunwook Kim researched the different ways humans can read emotion through non-human gestures.

When expressing happiness, this robot spins out its leaves, binding them together to express a negative valence.

This robot spins its propeller-like leaves to express happiness, shivering to express the opposite.

To express happiness, the single electrical string that flows through this robot stands erect.

When unhappy, the string falls limp.

A built-in motor translates input and output information acquired via touch to respond with movement.

To express positive valence, this Post-Plant robot rotates freely.

Spinning its propeller, this robot expresses general contentedness.

Inspired by everyday objects familiar to humans, Kim conceived the form of his non-humanoid robots.

Following multiple iterations, Kim felt inspired by plant life to build the bodies of his robots.

The leaves of this robot seem to be constructed from leather bands.