Editorial: New Year's Resolutions.
Travel: Travis translator.
Technology: PITTA - Transformative Autonomous 4K Selfie Drone.
Stationery: Postalco Oyster Writing Set.
Gadgets and Gear: Carpe Diem EDC.
Books and writing: PD Commentary.
Project of the week: Catapult Kits.

Contact Prowling Dog at

EDITORIAL: New Year's Resolutions

[Photo: Prakhar]

People get caught up in the mood and excitement of New Year's celebrations and pronounce their resolutions, and then nothing happens. Resolutions end up as fleeting thoughts. Why? The most common reasons are that they are not thought out, they are too big and there is no plan to follow through with them.

If you are serious about making changes, you should use a goal planner of some kind, even a do-it-yourself one in a notebook such as a Field Notes Brand notebook. Writing down goals increases your chance of success.

Write down your goals. Make sure that they are achievable, specific and measurable. "I will get fit" is too vague. "I will run in the local race on June 1st" is better. Then work out a plan to make it happen. Start with small steps. That way you will be able to find the time for it. As you progress it will get easier and easier.

If possible get an "accountability partner" who will help you to stay on track. Better still, find someone who wants to achieve the same thing and work together.

Contact Prowling Dog at

TRAVEL: Travis translator

The only option that travellers used to have was the phrase book. Once you found the phrase, trying to pronounce it was a problem. PD has been road testing Travis, the real time translator.

Once set up, this device is easy to use. Just say the phrase and it will automatically repeat it in the other language. Setting up was no problem. Selecting languages is easy using the scrolling buttons. Two languages are displayed. Press the side that you want to talk in and the gadget does the rest.

For updates and using on-line, the gadget has Bluetooth, WiFi and a spot for a sim card, giving you a choice on how you get on-line.

PD has tested it on English and some European languages. The translation is accurate and clear. Just a caution: the microphone is of high quality and will even pick up whispers, so be careful with what you say because it will be instantly and loudly translated!

The first unit that PD received was faulty, as can happen with anything, however Travis immediately sent out a new replacement unit. This is the type of service that all companies should give.

PD rating: 5 paws out of 5.

Contact Prowling Dog at

TECHNOLOGY: PITTA - Transformative Autonomous 4K Selfie Drone.

There are action cams, such as the excellent ones from Hero, and there are drones for taking aerial shots. PITTA combines the two in a clever package.

PITTA is a high quality ball-shaped camera that can be used by hand or mounted onto a handle, bicycle or anything else.

Its specs include 13MP stills, 4K/30fps video, 100+ minutes of run time and a removable battery.

If you need to take aerial pictures or video, simple twist on the propellers and you have a drone camera with a flying time of 15 minutes. Very clever.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: When flying drones adhere to your country's regulations regarding drones and also be mindful of the safety and privacy of others. Do not use drones for any illegal activity.

Contact Prowling Dog at

STATIONERY: Postalco Oyster Writing Set

PD is a fan of the written word. Instead of an instant message why not add a bit of mystery to your next personal note or dinner invitation? Send a note on nice paper, anticipating the recipient receiving it, holding the envelope in his or her hand, wondering at its contents while carefully opening it and then savouring the moment when unfolding and reading it while feeling its warmth.

Do it with the Postalco Oyster Writing Set, with the copper plate etching of an oyster. Why an oyster? In Postalco's own words, "A letter is like an oyster: protected [on the] outside while it conceals something special inside".

Contact Prowling Dog at


Literally "seize the day", this common Latin saying may have different meanings, as outlined in Roman Krznaric's excellent book "Carpe Diem Regained" which was featured in PD issue 140.

Jim Wirth has added two Latin sayings that fit in nicely with this one, "Tempus fugit" and "Memento mori", which mean "Time flies" and "Remember death". Together the three sayings tell us to take all opportunities to achieve things because life is short and will slip away if we are not careful.

[Photograph: Aewolf]

To help remind you and prompt you to stay focused on the important things in life, Jim Wirth has created the Cape Diem EDC collection in a variety of metals and finishes, including steel, bronze and silver.

He also intends to make leather pouches available for these.


Contact Prowling Dog at


A while back PD hinted at a secret new project, which he can now announce. PD commentary is a sister blog of PD: Cool things. This micro blog is for the serious side of life.

Check it out here:

Contact Prowling Dog at


Catapults were the heavy artillery in ancient times, particularly used in sieges. The Ancient Greeks and Romans had them, and were still in service in medieval times.

Now you too can build one, albeit in 1:24 scale, and start a desktop war in your office.

These are beautifully designed working models with enough firepower to attack the next desk.

The attention to detail is great. The machine is held together with brass pins - no glue required.

For your war requisites visit the project here:

Contact Prowling Dog at

Contact Prowling Dog at

Important disclaimer: Remember that crowdfunding sites are not stores. You may decide to back this project and provide funds, however there is no guarantee that any project will be delivered - the rate of failure is about 10%. PD is in no way accountable for the success or otherwise of any project and writes in this column purely for entertainment purposes, and will in no way be held liable for any failure or money lost by anyone. It is a case of "buyer beware". It is a sad reflection on the era we live in that PD must resort to this type of disclaimer.

Note: Photographs and illustrations are from the relevant websites and are the copyright of the respective owners.

© 2017 Prowling Dog