"Leech Plug" Spits Out Power-Wasting Adapters

Before I get to explaining the startling name of this product, a quick primer: most electronics run on direct current (DC) power, but homes are wired with alternating current (AC) power. So almost every electronic device has an AC-to-DC adapter - a "power brick" or "wall wart," those little black boxes that plug into the wall sockets. The problem is that these adapters waste electricity, even when the electronic device isn't on. So, here we come to the "Leech Plug," a functional project by Conor Klein. As he explains, it mimics the behavior of a leech, which lets go of its host when it's full - and sure enough, this plug physically ejects its cord after a set amount of time! The engineer in me wants to say that he could just use a relay to completely disconnect the circuit instead of dramatically ejecting the cord - but the designer in me knows that this kind of visceral, abundantly clear technique will gain the fullest understanding of the user. Good one, Conor - you've given electric sockets a way to fight back!
[via CrunchGear, thanks to Pete Kazanjy!]

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