Throughout time, humans have had their share of monumental inventions— fire, the wheel, satellite TV, mobile app services and so on. But what about the many inventions, conveniently swept under the rug in embarrassment? There are those ones too.
1. Rainy Day Cigarette Holder
In 1957, Robert L. Stern, the President of Zeus Corp., designed a rainy day cigarette holder. Looks like it could protect against a single drop— maybe. No wonder it never caught on; it's the design flop of '54.
2.iNuke Boom (No longer sold)
At first glance, the iNuke Boom, looks like a big practical joke; unfortunately, it's not. Meet the largest iPhone/iPod dock ever created. Made by Behringer, the iNuke Boom is a whopping four feet tall, by 8 feet wide $30,000, car-sized contraption measures 4-feet tall and 8-feet wide system.
Weighing in at 700 pounds, it's no wonder that they now only seem to sell the iNuke Boom Junior. It was either that, or rent a U-Haul to bring the system home.
3. Phone Fingers
Phone Fingers were developed in 2007 to prevent finger prints and smudges. But who would honestly want to wear them? Must be for latex lovers or secret spies who use stealth iPhone spy software.
If you dirty your screen, just wipe it off— there's no need to be uber lame.
4. Heely’s Shoes with Built-In Wheels (Banned in many public areas)
There are shoes and there are skates. And yet, Heelys, Inc. has created a hybrid of the two. Who would have thought that a roller shoe is a great idea for kids to wear—precisely why it's best to keep skating separate from walking.
Let's be honest, we've all almost got run over by some kid wearing these. Now most schools, stores and amusement parks forbid "heeling" in public areas.
5. The Better Marriage Blanket (Out of business)
Being in a relationship has its consequences—including random and not so random flatulence.
The Better Marriage Blanket absorbs flatulence molecules (aka farts) with an absorbent blanket, made with carbon fabric.
It sounds good on paper; but in reality, is just plain bizarre. Before going out of business, you could get one of these bad boys for $29.95-$59.95.
6. Your Shake Down
Your Shake Down ($399.99) shakes the remaining contents from containers in seconds. While it's good to use the most of every bottle of Ketchup, Mustard, Mayonnaise, etc., it's just not for nearly $400!
A quick run to the store, and a few dollars later seems to be a better time and monetary investment than Your Shake Down.
Your Shake Down deserves a head shake, a rub on the chin, and a deep pondering over humanity's future.
7. Pic Nic Pants
Want a nice little area for a personal picnic? Done. Acquacalda, an Italian design company, created Pic Nic pants for individual wining and dining.
Nice Pic Nic Pants, said no one ever.
8. AutoExec Wheelmate Steering Wheel Desk
Steering wheels are traditionally for driving—imagine that! But now, with the AutoExec Wheelmate ($20.40), drivers can use their steering wheels as either a work surface or a table top for meals.
It's like an airplane tray, except you are the one behind the wheel. If you want to be really productive, may as well get software to help you learn how monitor employees for optimal productivity.
9. USB Typewriter
Combine vintage and modern technology and you get a piece of art. The USB Typewriter looks amazing and it works, but the main thing here is that it's not practical.
Anyone who has ever used a typewriter knows that the keys are not as responsive as a mouse. If you want to be vintage, stick with a typewriter.
These start at $499, so they aren't cheap. What's a gadget really worth that has no purpose.
10. The FLIZ
The FLIZ, a German invention, is a bicycle without a seat. So how does it ride? Hunch yourself over, strap yourself in the harness and start running.
It's basically running with the infrequent moments where you can coast. Boost it up a notch and just consider limo rentals or something.
The MusucBag (€119) is a sleeping bag, complete with arms and legs. It is supposed to offer more mobility during the night, but it's more complicated to get out of.
12. USB Pet Rock
The USB Pet Rock, which retails for $7.99, doesn't have a single purpose; not a one. It doesn't eat, sleep, move, drain batteries, etc.
It's supposed to be a cute little gift or office decoration, but it's just a replica of the most common solid substance. Go outside and you'll find a free paperweight in 2.5 seconds.
The world is a little bit more interesting with these invention flops. And just think of what'll come next as technology and mobility continues to come together.
Andrea Fisher is an online marketer and content specialist in North Carolina. She has been published in a variety of publications, including the Chicago Tribune and Business Insider. You can follow her daily posts on Twitter @andreafisher007.