11 Clearly Awesome Things
By Amanda Green
Transparent gear? We see right through that gimmick ... and we like it.
1. Public restrooms
This glass-walled w.c. in Lausanne, Switzerland makes for a very public restroom. When visitors want privacy, all they have to do is press a button to activate the liquid crystal smart glass. Electricity switches the glazing of the glass from transparent to opaque and back again once they've taken care of business. (Watch it in action.) It's not the only see-through toilet: Back in 2004, artist Monica Bonvicini built a public restroom called "Don't Miss a Sec" out of one-way mirrors for Switzerland's Art Basel. The loo with a view has since been exhibited/used in London.
What's even better than vacationing in a place with clear blue water? Seeing it all from your very expensive clear canoe! A transparent kayak is also available for a cool $6750.
3. Pinball machine
It's hard enough finding a pinball machine, much less one that's completely naked. Pinball enthusiast and arcade owner Michael Schiess stripped this machine for the 2007 Pacific Pinball Expo and scored big.
4. Glass shells
Artist Robert DuGrenier's hermit crab shells are just like the real thing, only made of decorative hand-blown glass. Your pet crab will eventually outgrow the gorgeous palace. In the meantime, you're privy to its every move.
The musical term that best fits this clear piano: capriccioso—in a whimsical or fanciful style.
The Transparent Toaster is only a concept, but it might be the most beautiful hypothetical appliance we've ever seen.
Turn off this Loewe Invisio clear TV, and people might mistake it for a very large Transparent Toaster.
Clear goes the distance with the Clarity Bike. The transparent frame is made of Trivex, an alternative to polycarbonate.
But if that's too subtle, you can try DIY artist Jimmy Kuenle's invisible bike with Lexan panels. It'll certainly get you noticed, even without the matching outfit.
Or you could just drive to work. This Nissan hybrid prototype is appropriately called the Panorama. Meanwhile, these other clear concept cars are racing to the finish.
Get ready. If this Polytron prototype becomes a reality, your cellphone will be even easier to lose.
11. Glass-bottom plane
What if every aisle seat were also a window seat? On April 1, Virgin Atlantic announced the debut of the world's first glass-bottomed plane. Alas, it was just an April Fool's joke. For now.