The New Yorker reports on this year’s Gadgetoff event:

When asked what he planned to do with his three and a half minutes, he said, “I’m going to demonstrate how you can transfer data faster with snails than with broadband.”

Then he showed a slide of a snail hitched to a tiny chariot with DVDs for wheels. If each disk contains 4.7 gigabytes of data, and if the snail (chasing a scrap of lettuce) travels at 0.000023 metres per second, the snail-system performance rate is over thirty-seven megabits per second. That blows ADSL out of the water.

Also: robot soccer, magic lock-picking keys, and an “enormous vibrating-balls organ.”