The Minimally Elegant ‘mui Board’ IoT dashboard gets upgraded at CES 2024 with Matter and ChatGPT support

At first glance, the mui Board Gen 2 appears to be nothing more than a simple wooden plank, designed to be mounted on a wall. However, this unassuming piece of timber transforms into a touch-sensitive interface for controlling various aspects of a smart home. Imagine adjusting your lighting, curtains, thermostat, and even your speakers with a simple tap on this wooden surface.

Now in its second generation after a successful run on Kickstarter back in 2022, the designers behind your smart home’s most minimally elegant accessory are back with round two. The mui Board Gen 2, which made its simultaneous debut at CES 2024 as well as Kickstarter, now comes with a few upgrades which include support for the Matter protocol, as well as integration with ChatGPT for a more innovative and intuitive smart home experience.

Designer: mui Lab

The second-generation Mui Board integrates the new Matter networking protocol, significantly broadening its compatibility with smart devices from tech giants like Apple, Google, and Amazon. This integration promises easy connectivity and enhances the Mui Board’s appeal as a universal smart home control hub​.

Additionally, the Gen 2 also gets ChatGPT integration via APIs, allowing you to interact naturally with your Mui Board to create schedules, task lists, and even ask questions and get answers on the backlit wood interface.

When not in use, the Mui Board slips into sleep mode, reverting to its original wooden plank appearance. This feature underscores the company’s ethos of blending technology seamlessly into the home environment, making it a subtle yet powerful addition to any room. The Gen 2 continues to use real wood veneers to give the mui Board its unique natural appeal. While the company only showcased the mui Board in a single color, it’ll be available in ‘natural’ and ‘dark’ veneer options at the end of its Kickstarter campaign.

What truly sets the mui Board apart is its focus on “calm technology.” Japanese company mui Lab, the creators of the mui Board, aims to reduce distractions and information overload in our daily lives. By minimizing the presence of glaring screens and providing a more discreet way to interact with smart devices, they hope to maintain a balance between connectivity and tranquility at home.

World’s First Laser Engraver with Midjourney support lets you create and engrave AI artwork

We’re witnessing an age of creative explosion. Whether it’s the accessibility of fabrication tools like 3D printers and laser engravers over the past decade, or the rather recent barrage of AI-based tools that allow anyone to be an artist, never has the time been MORE perfect for the independent creator. For just a few hundred dollars, creators can get their hands on consumer-ready high-end prototyping tools, allowing them to build their creations whether they’re hobbyists, small businesses, or artisans. I’d like to think that 3D printers have gotten their time in the sun, but laser engravers still deserve their moment to shine (pun intended). Arguably more easy to use than 3D printers and CNC machines (since you don’t need to deal with CAD software), laser engravers allow creators to build and customize products like no other tool. You can cut through materials like paper, veneer, vinyl, cardboard, and even thin plastic sheets… but more importantly, a good laser engraver also lets you etch onto a vast variety of materials, like metal, wood, glass, and even ceramics.

Enter the LumiTool F20, a compact powerhouse that embodies this new era of creation. Designed to be a tabletop engraver that can also double as a handheld tool, the LumiTool F20 relies on a powerful industrial-grade 20W laser to effectively etch/carve through materials 10x faster than most standard laser engravers. Created for the home user in mind, the LumiTool is powerful but also intuitive, with a user-friendly experience that prioritizes safety while also offering the ability to work on a variety of materials and even surfaces (horizontal, vertical, and even tilted). When paired with the AI features built into LumiTool’s app, it forms an unstoppable combination, offering precision and speed that’s accessible to all.

Designer: Simon Lin

Click Here to Buy Now: $1599 $2599 ($1000 off). Hurry, only 46/50 left! Raised over $284,000.

The LumiTool F20 looks fairly different from any other laser engraver on the market, and a lot of that boils down to what it’s designed for. It comes with a vertical form factor, allowing you to place objects on its bed below and have the laser hover above, etching designs onto it… however, a handle on the LumiTool F20 also allows you to lift it and point it at other surfaces like door nameplates, mirrors, or larger immovable objects. The laser sits on a hinge too, allowing you to tilt it to engrave on tilted surfaces (to avoid warping and parallax during the job).

The heart of the LumiTool F20’s superiority lies in its fiber laser source, a feature that sets it apart from diode, CO2, and infrared lasers. The fiber laser delivers exceptional results on as many as 100+ materials, ranging from the run-of-the-mill wood, paper and plastic to even metals, glass, and ceramic. The sheer power output of the 20W laser allows it to engrave up to 1.5mm in metal, and a staggering 3mm in stone, giving you the ability to deeply carve into surfaces for high-contrast design work. It can cut into sheet materials too, helping make paper cutouts, acrylic profiles, and even sheet-metal stamps with the simple press of a button.

Equipped with LaserDrive Beam Control technology, the LumiTool F20 boasts engraving speeds up to 7000mm/s. That’s 10 times faster than typical hobbyist engravers, ensuring that your ideas don’t just stay ideas for long. Combine this with a high resolution of 8K (sharper engravings without jagged edges) and a fine granularity of 0.001mm, and you have a tool that captures every detail, ensuring crisp, clear, and precise designs every time. In fact, the F20 possesses the unique ability to engrave in color too, relying on laser wavelengths to bring out colors in metals while running a job.

With a remarkable 8K resolution and a fine granularity of 0.001mm, it achieves a striking level of engraving accuracy.

The LumiTool F20 boasts a work area of up to 150mm x 150mm (6 x 6 inches), and has a height-adjustable head that lets you move the laser module up or down, depending on how big or small the product you want to engrave on is. The laser engraver’s user interface is fairly simple to navigate, making it perfect for first-timers or even seasoned engravers. A dual-light positioning system lets you set the engraver’s focus in mere seconds, and single button lets you start or emergency-stop a job. The engraver comes with a removable tinted shield to protect your hands and eyes from the laser’s sparks, along with a pair of safety goggles to enhance protection.

The F20 pairs with a rather intuitive (and innovative) smartphone app that allows you to upload, adjust, and engrave designs. Sure, you can share jobs via a laptop/desktop too, and the folks at LumiTool are working on Lightburn integration too, but the app really helps break beyond the barrier of wires and complicated software. You can share DXF files for precise pathways for cutting jobs, or directly upload images if you want to engrave/etch something like a wooden frame, a mug, hip-flask, name-plate, or any other object. The app lets you share images directly from your mobile, but it also boasts Midjourney integration, letting you create AI-generated images right within the app itself. These novel AI images can then directly be etched onto objects in mere minutes, taking an otherwise week-long workflow and condensing it down to a 5-minute job.

The LumiTool F20 comes as a standalone device, but you can upgrade your kit with accessories like the safety shield as well as modules like a rotary attachment that lets the device etch on curved surfaces, a chuck rotary for more precise curved jobs like engraving on rings, and a slide extension for working on larger canvasses. The regular lens gives the F20 a 110mm x 110mm work surface, but a field lens upgrade unlocks the F20’s 150mm x 150mm potential. The LumiTool F20 starts at $1599 (that’s as affordable as you’ll ever get for industrial-grade engraving equipment), although the bundle with all the accessories will cost you $2299. The app remains free to use, barring the AI features which cost $99 a year. However, early bird backers get the first year free.

Click Here to Buy Now: $1599 $2599 ($1000 off). Hurry, only 46/50 left! Raised over $284,000.

This exoskeleton-like back support lets you lift heavy objects while keeping your back safe

If your work involves regularly carrying heavy things around, then your back is most likely one of your body parts that suffers. I don’t have a job that does that (does carrying a heavy bag every day count?) and yet I constantly feel all sorts of back aches. Well, maybe I’m just old. In any case, those who work in construction, warehouse production, and other industries where they have to carry heavy objects need to have literal support to help them manage their bones and joints.

Designer: Bebop Design

A Korean studio designed one such product for their client WIRobotics. WIBS is a wearable back support that’s created specifically for those who are involved in labor intensive industries which workers can wear while they’re doing their task or when they’re on a break. The brace was designed to not look so much like a brace but more to look like it’s part of your outfit and will not get in the way of doing your usual tasks. It also looks comfortable enough to regularly wear or at least when you need to have better support for your body.


WIBS is able to provide mechanical support to the user’s posterior, including the back and waist, two of the parts that are affected when you regularly lift heavy objects. While the materials are durable and designed to withstand pressure, they were able to use a soft design to it for the user’s comfort. There is also no need for electricity to use it so you can go around without needing to charge or change any battery. It uses tensioned flexible rubber composite as well as mechanical gears. You can adjust the strength level through an analog controller in the chest area.

This back support device can be adjusted to various sizes depending on the wearer as it has adjustable straps for the perfect fit. Think of it as a posterior brace that will not hinder movements but provide much needed support as you go about your regular tasks that involve lifting and moving heavy objects for a long period of time.

This exoskeleton-like back support lets you lift heavy objects while keeping your back safe

If your work involves regularly carrying heavy things around, then your back is most likely one of your body parts that suffers. I don’t have a job that does that (does carrying a heavy bag every day count?) and yet I constantly feel all sorts of back aches. Well, maybe I’m just old. In any case, those who work in construction, warehouse production, and other industries where they have to carry heavy objects need to have literal support to help them manage their bones and joints.

Designer: Bebop Design

A Korean studio designed one such product for their client WIRobotics. WIBS is a wearable back support that’s created specifically for those who are involved in labor intensive industries which workers can wear while they’re doing their task or when they’re on a break. The brace was designed to not look so much like a brace but more to look like it’s part of your outfit and will not get in the way of doing your usual tasks. It also looks comfortable enough to regularly wear or at least when you need to have better support for your body.


WIBS is able to provide mechanical support to the user’s posterior, including the back and waist, two of the parts that are affected when you regularly lift heavy objects. While the materials are durable and designed to withstand pressure, they were able to use a soft design to it for the user’s comfort. There is also no need for electricity to use it so you can go around without needing to charge or change any battery. It uses tensioned flexible rubber composite as well as mechanical gears. You can adjust the strength level through an analog controller in the chest area.

This back support device can be adjusted to various sizes depending on the wearer as it has adjustable straps for the perfect fit. Think of it as a posterior brace that will not hinder movements but provide much needed support as you go about your regular tasks that involve lifting and moving heavy objects for a long period of time.

Top 10 Eco-Friendly Designs To Incorporate In Your Home To Support A Green Lifestyle

Our unhealthy practices and way of living are truly harmful to the environment and have been slowly leading to its deterioration. And the world has been changing (for the worse) because of this. Hence, it is extremely important to live sustainably and consciously and to take care of the environment in 2023! Integrating sustainability into our day-to-day lives has become crucial. And we can do this in various ways. Designers and creators are coming up with sustainable alternatives for almost everything. Every product that is necessary and utilized by us in our everyday routine has an eco-friendly alternative to it. Replacing our usual mass-produced designs with these greener options will make a huge difference to the environment and Mother Earth. From a Saturn-inspired sustainable lamp to a bicycle seat made from cork– we’ve curated a whole collection of sustainable product designs to help you go green.

1. Kreis Cup

Say hello to the Kreis Cup – a coffee cup that is sustainable, durable, and intended to enhance and improve your coffee-drinking experience. It is available in a cup and travel-mug style!

Why is it noteworthy?

It is heat resistant and designed to keep your coffee hot longer. That being said, the Kreis Cup is still ultimately biodegradable, unlike the plastic-based to-go mugs you get at your local cafe or the breakable ceramic mugs you use at home.

What we like

  • Made from spent coffee grounds
  • You can smell the faint unmistakable scent of coffee from it!

What we dislike

  • There is currently no scope for personalization

2. PLANETCARE 2.0

Did you know that 35% of the ocean’s microplastic problem comes from washing machines? Since the clothes we wear today are mostly a blend of synthetic fibers, these fibers mix with the water and make their way to the ocean. But this is where PLANETCARE 2.0 comes in with a microfiber filter attachment for your washing machine!

Click Here to Buy Now: $62 $95 (35% off)

Why is it noteworthy?

The PLANETCARE 2.0 is a nifty filter that can be snapped onto the side of your washing machine. It filters all the water the machine drains out after a cycle! It is the water equivalent of you sorting out your trash.

What we like

  • Can be easily attached to your washing machine
  • Catches all the microplastics from your washing machine’s drain water

What we dislike

  • You may need to change/adjust the position of the filter to ensure adequate water pressure.

3. Wasteware Collection

Viennese designer Barbara Gollackner collaborated with Australian chef and restaurant owner Martin Kilga to create the ‘Wasteware’ collection, a range of tableware made using leftover food! The duo created a collection of bowls, plates, and cutlery using industrial and personal food waste.

Why is it noteworthy?

To bring the interesting tableware items to life, the studio utilized food waste such as pork skin, and old bread – from personal and industrial waste.  The waste collected was dried out or cooked and then blended into a smooth paste which was held together using mycelium. Water or breadcrumbs were added to the mix if needed.

What we like

  • Combats the issue of food wastage
  • Colorful and vibrant aesthetics. They will add a spark of life to your dinner table

What we dislike

  • Not sure how durable the products are, and what is their lifespan

4. Grovemade’s Hardwood Cups and Planters

Made the hard old school way in Grovemade’s Portland OR factory, the cups, planters, and dishes are carved from solid maple or walnut.

Why is it noteworthy?

The detailed pieces are hand-sanded and finished with a clear vegetable-based oil which highlights the natural warmth, elegance, and sheer beauty of the wood.

What we like

  • Come in various metal and material options, so you can pick and choose

What we dislike

  • Aesthetics are a bit unassuming and boring

5. SATURNO Lamp

This unique spherical lamp is heavily inspired by the planet Saturn and its beautiful rings. It borrows ideas from the planet’s morphology to build something fun, unique, and sustainable.

Why is it noteworthy?

The SATURNO lamp is actually made of three disc-shaped parts that connect without the use of any glue or screws. There are cutouts instead that allow the parts to be inserted into each other at perpendicular angles. Two are made from walnut wood, while the third is made from resin, which could be any sustainable kind.

What we like

  • The LEDs can be controlled to showcase different colors and intensities
  • A versatile lighting fixture that gives a glimpse of the heavens right inside your home

What we dislike

  • The lamp won’t stand with its horizontal light mimicking the light scattered by Saturn’s rings unless it is provided with some support

6. Kara

Kara is a modular coffee machine that is designed to last forever, even when the manufacturer has stopped producing replacement parts!

Why is it noteworthy?

The secret is that these parts can be 3D printed if access to the original is no longer possible. The more technical components can be replaced or substituted with other electronics, presuming those are still in production.

What we like

  • Unlike most designs that promote repairability, Kara doesn’t require advanced knowledge or skills to make that possible
  • Sustainable design

What we dislike

  • Bulky design that will occupy a lot of real estate in your kitchen

7. Earthmade Aromacup

The Earthmade Aromacup is a portable coffee cup made using Bamboo-O, an eco-friendly material that is made from bamboo fiber and plant starch.

Why is it noteworthy?

These travel coffee cups offer a significantly more sustainable option than typical silicone or thermal tumblers. More than just the materials and processes, however, the drinkware’s life continues even after it is no longer usable, at least not by humans.

What we like

  • Portable and sustainable design

What we dislike

  • There is no feature to allow for temperature retention of the coffee for those who like to keep their brew hot for long.

8. Oakwood MagSafe Collection

The Oakwood MagSafe collection utilizes the Apple MagSafe chargers to provide actual charging function and good-looking aesthetics as well. What they offer, instead, are solid and multi-functional bases that not only keep your iPhone or Apple Watch in place but also add some life to your desk.

Why is it noteworthy?

With a mix of wood and matte aluminum materials, these stands and mounts look handsome on any motif you might have going for your desk, providing eye-catching ornaments without being distracting.

What we like

  • The MagSafe charger they hold can be removed and used as normal
  • Prevents more e-waste in the long run

What we dislike

  • None of the accessories come with an Apple MagSafe charger

9. FR-1 Bike Saddle

This Scottish brand is one such company that wants to bring more sustainable solutions for the bikes and bike parts that they manufacture. Their first product is called FR-1 Bike Saddle and it is made from cork

Why is it noteworthy?

At first, you would think this is not a sturdy and comfortable material for something that you will be sitting on probably for a long period. But cork is actually pretty durable and lightweight so it should be something that can last a long time and not hurt your tushy that much. It is also water-resistant and can offer better cushioning compared to other materials.

What we like

  • Stronger but also more lightweight compared to the more common steel that a lot of bike seats use
  • Sustainable + supports historic local cork farming

What we dislike

10. Packioli

A Turkish designer was able to come up with soap packaging called Packioli that is both hygienic and non-plastic and therefore more eco-friendly. One thing missing from most similar products is convenience and she was able to add it to this as well.

Why is it noteworthy?

She used artichoke leaves and combined them with peapod bioplastics in order to create packaging that commercial soap brands can actually use if they really want to be more eco-conscious in creating their products.

What we like

  • It not only solves getting rid of plastic for soaps but also helps get rid of artichoke waste, which is around 80% of the actual vegetable

What we dislike

  • The look of the packaging is not similar to what we’re used to, with the labels and other colorful decorations, so may not be preferred by everyone

Ultra-sleek USB-C Hub has 100W Fast Charging, SSD Storage, and Support for 8K External Displays

In a way, the birth of the hub can be credited to the birth of the laptop. Laptops have basically strived to condense the functionality of a desktop into a portable form, but in the process, have also surrendered a few key features like key ports and the ability to upgrade storage. Multiport hubs were designed to compensate for those shortcomings, but as laptops grow more and more powerful, the demand for powerful hubs have gone up too. Meet DockNova, a 10-in-1 hub that packs all the features most power-users need, from support for 8K displays, 2.5G ethernet, 100W power delivery, and the ability to mount SSDs up to 4 terabytes. All this fits in the size of a hub no larger than a Snickers bar, with a gorgeous aluminum body and a clear plastic front facade, and a nifty button that lets you remotely black-out your external display to protect parents and managers from catching you browsing the web instead of working or studying.

Designer: DockNova

Click Here to Buy Now: $109 $159 (30% Off) Hurry! Only 60 hours left!

The DockNova opts for the ‘transparent’ design trend that’s been gaining popularity rather slowly and steadily in the past year. It sports an aluminum chassis, but comes with a clear facade that lets you see the PCB underneath, making it an instant tech-nerd favorite. The clear plastic cover lets you admire the ports, modules, chips, and other elements of the DockNova, while the base of the hub has screws that let you open it up to mount an SSD on the inside.

The transparent design pretty much reveals all of DockNova’s key ports. From the regular USB-A ports and SD card readers to more powerful ports like the ethernet port, the 8K-compliant HDMI port, and a whopping 100W power delivery USB-C port for charging your laptop. The DockNova packs two USB 3.2 Gen2 ports for thumb drives and charging regular devices via USB cable, but for higher-speed data transfer or faster charging, it houses one full-featured USB-C port and another power-delivery port capable of lifting weights up to 100W. That means you can directly hook the DockNova into your laptop and connect your charger into the DockNova itself, transferring power through the hub without blocking an extra port on your laptop.

Aside from charging your laptop, the DockNova also helps connect it directly to the internet through a 2.5G Ethernet port that gets high-speed internet to your machine. Card readers allow you to collect data dumps from DSLRs, drones, and other devices that store information on SD cards, and the DockNova’s rear has space to mount an M.2 (NVMe or SATA) SSD up to 4 terabytes in capacity, turning the hub into a data transfer behemoth aside from a charging beast!

However, the DockNova’s most interesting feature is connected to its HDMI port. The hub’s HDMI has support for displays up to 8K in resolution (albeit with a 30Hz refresh rate), or even 4K@120Hz, making it perfect for hooking up external displays for gaming, video editing, graphic design, or media consumption. Speaking of media consumption, the DockNova also packs its own display killswitch that lets you black out the display from the hub itself. This is especially useful when you’re watching Twitch or YouTube and your parents or manager sneaks up on you to see what you’re doing. You could have work running on the main display and entertainment on the secondary display, and DockNova lets you black out the latter on demand. Perfect for when you don’t want to share private projects with your colleagues, don’t want bosses and parents finding you chilling instead of working, and no, we’re not going to recommend anything to do with adult websites. We’re not. Nope.

Being USB-C, the DockNova works with more than just your laptops. It supports Windows and Mac devices, but also works with Android phones, iPads with USB-C ports (perfect for the Pro range), and even the latest iPhone 15 Pro. Additionally, it also works with Linux devices, ChromeOS devices, PlayStations, Xboxes, and handheld controllers like the Steam Deck and Nintendo Switch, allowing you to transfer data across devices with ease, connect bigger displays or wired ethernet ports, or even upgrade your device’s storage thanks to the add-on SSD slot. The DockNova is available at a discounted $109 and ships globally starting December 2023.

Click Here to Buy Now: $109 $159 (30% Off) Hurry! Only 60 hours left!

Click Here to Buy Now: $109 $159 (30% Off) Hurry! Only 60 hours left!