Things I Want to Invent #3



The Inspiration

Words can hurt. Especially when they are broadcast across the interwebs. Recently, cyberbullying has a become a very real and serious threat in our society, leading to many lawsuits and, unfortunately, suicides. Many people have tried to curb this trend through legislation (and attempted censorship). While I’m not exactly sure how I feel about the politics of the issue, I definitely think that part of the solution lies with training at home.

The Invention

Everyone is pretty familiar with the autocorrect feature on mobile phones. It’s ability to come up with the least likely words you’d ever want to use is uncanny and has led to the “autocorrect fail” phenomenon. Aside from its inherent flaws, the feature could be used to promote good – and curb cyber-bullying.

Enter my invention, “Autocompliment”. Autocompliment will recognize any negative word you type and automatically change it into a positive one.


Without Autocompliment: “You are such a slut.”

With Autocompliment: “You are such a good person.”

The app could be downloaded to your or your child’s smart phone and connect with your phone’s keyboard similar to how the (irritatingly) popular emoji apps do it. And,  just like autocorrect, you can choose whether to accept or reject the change. However, the key to Autocompliment, is that you receive points for choosing positive words over  negative ones. Users can redeem those points for swag like iTunes downloads or movie tickets.

The app could either be used as a preventative measure to merely increase awareness of the amount of negativity users emote or as an instructive tool for those guilty of cyberbullying.

It’s small and it’s simple. But I think it could do a lot of good. Or at least help spread the word about online bullying.

Things I Want to Invent #2


“Grow A Pair”

This invention of mine isn’t the solution to a common problem, but more of a brilliant (if I may say so myself) gag gift or party favor idea.

The Set-Up

I have often seen the ever popular “Grow A Boyfriend” tchotchke at stores like Whole Earth Provision and Spencer’s Gifts (I know we all often walk around these stores aimlessly looking for anti-boredom material. Am I right? Maybe not…). Anyway, for those who don’t know what “Grow A Boyfriend” is, it is a tiny man-shaped sponge trinket that expands when you put it in water. Thus, you can provide your desperate gal pal or lonely neighborhood cat lady with their very own significant other with merely a glass of H2O. This gag gift idea has been expanded to numerous other products including the “Grow a Girlfriend” and “Grow a Therapist”,

which got me thinking…

The Invention

We’ve all had a friend (or possibly an enemy) who needed to get over their anxiety, fear, or pride so badly that we often shouted at them (or imagined doing so) the phrase, “why don’t you just grow a pair!” Well, what if they could?

[Prepare for an assortment of euphemisms.]

Imagine gleefully providing said friend with a tiny man-part-shaped sponge that, after being soaked in water for an hour or so, actually grew. That way instead of demanding your coward best-friend or the local agoraphobe to grow their own male genitalia, you could literally give them some to grow. Will it help them overcome their issues and become better people? Will it make the world a better place? Probably not. But it would be an awesome gift to bring to a game of Dirty Santa.

Interested in investing? Just let me know if you figure out a way to make shrunken bollocks not be completely gross looking.