So some dude built a phaser. Like, a real one. From bits of a Blu-ray player, an old Playmates phaser toy, and some other stuff. I don’t think it could kill anyone, but it would certainly stun them if you shot them in the eyes with it — since they’d be painfully blinded, possibly for life. However, it can certainly kill the fuck out of some balloons, as this demonstrative video shows. You can read about how he made it here if you want to murder some balloons yourself. and if we ever find a planet inhabited entirely by balloon people, we are fucking set. (Via Gamma Squad)
Robert Bricken is one of the original co-founders of the site formerly known as Topless Robot, and its first editor-in-chief, serving from 2008-12. He brought the site to prominence with “nerd news, humor and self-loathing” as its motto, raising it from total internet obscurity to a readership in the millions, with help from his savage “FAQ” movie reviews and Fan Fiction Fridays. Under his tenure Topless Robot was covered by Gawker, Wired, Defamer, New York magazine, ABC News, and others, and his articles have been praised by Roger Ebert, Avengers actor Clark Gregg, comedian and The Daily Show correspondent John Hodgman, the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Rifftrax, and others. He is currently the managing editor of io9.com. Despite decades as both an amateur and professional nerd, he continues to be completely unprepared for either the zombie apocalypse or the robot uprising.