Due to its latest drop, the Internet collective MSCHF is releasing five known startup failures in miniature for $ 40 or $ 160 a series. Dead Startup Toys drop consists of Juicero juicer, One laptop per child (OLPC) durable laptop, Theranos MiniLab, Jibo social robot, and Coolest Cooler, which the MSCHF calls “a poster child for crowdfunding pitfalls.”
“This is not a monument,” MSCHF says, “but perhaps they are a form of necromancy: we celebrate their light shadow without their original context.” Describing toys as equivalent to a “batch line,” MSCHF invites us to “look at these beautiful mutants raised on the firecrackers of their own solid aluminum unibody structure”.
Failures range from being too ambitious and misleading One laptop per child project – who tried to build an open source $ 100 laptop for children in developing countries – a Juicero juicer that coarsely squeezed its own bags of pre-made juice, and a pair of human hands. Then there’s the Coolest Cooler, too much of a cooler that went through chaotically poorly managed crowdfunding campaign. Completing the collection are Jibo social robot (with “little or no practical functionality”, according to MSCHF) and Theranos MiniLab, a printer-sized blood under false pretenses is claimed to diagnose several diseases.
Many of MSCHF’s previous projects have aroused the hatred of parody companies. It recently began its run of “voluntary return” informally modified satanic sneakers in response to a trademark dispute from Nike. It also received a refund from Boston Dynamics after that attached a paintball gun the company to the back of one robot dog and let the audience control it in the art gallery. “We condemn the presentation of our technology in any way that promotes violence, harm, or intimidation,” Boston Dynamics said at the time.
A limited edition toys are now available, directly from the MSCHF.