Terrible Digital Trinkets

We did a status check on the current state of novelty USB drives so you don’t have to. (Not that we would expect you’d want to.)

By Ernie Smith

Not too long ago, I acquired a pretty useful USB drive that is a combination of large and small. It’s large because it has 128 gigabytes of storage, which comes in handy for my experiences testing Chromium OS and Ubuntu on my MacBook Pro. It’s small because it’s designed to recede in my laptop. It’s about the size of the tip of my finger. It’s, of course, incredibly easy to lose.

It makes me wonder if I might be better off with a thumb drive that’s incredibly tacky, one that stands out because it looks really stupid and impractical.

Fortunately, there are a lot of thumb drives like these, though not many of them hit 128 gigabytes. Here are just a few of my least favorites:


High-Concept Novelty USB Drives

  • USB wrench drive It’s Not Adjustable This pen drive is designed to look like an adjustable wrench, but you’re going to be greatly disappointed when you’re in a bind and need to tighten a nut.
  • USB chess piece Checkmate For the chess fan in your crew, here’s a wooden king piece that features a 16-gig pen drive built in. The Russian government uses these devices to store the dirt they have on Garry Kasparov.
  • realistic USB thumb Give ‘Em the Finger Remember when Wendy’s had to deal with the finger-in-the-chili incident? This literal thumb drive is a fun way to relive that memory—well minus the whole dipping-it-in-chili thing.


And if these ideas aren’t dumb enough, the message-in-a-bottle approach is an old standby.

Ernie Smith

Your time was just wasted by Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the editor of Tedium, and an active internet snarker. Between his many internet side projects, he finds time to hang out with his wife Cat, who's funnier than he is.

Find me on: Website Twitter