Chindogu aka Unuseless Japanese Inventions

Ever come across an utterly bizarre invention and snapped your fingers looking for the right word to describe the oddity? Have no fear, an enterprising Japanese gentlemen called Kenji Kawakami has coined an official term … Chindōgu.  Literal translation: unuseless invention.  Because if anyone actually attmpted to use one of these seeminly useful inventions, he or she would find that it causes so many new problems, or such significant social embarrassment, that effectively it has no utility whatsoever.

portable office tie

The term Chindōgu encompasses any invention which is so mind-bogglingly, ridiculously absurd that you forget about its actual practicality.  So many inventions fit into this category (especially in Japan) that Kawakami actually founded an organization dedicated to these creations.  He named it the international Chindōgu society.  Simple enough.

noodle cooler

Defining a particular gadget as Chindōgu-worthy is more difficult than you would think. Believe it or not, the Chindogu society dictates several tenets which must apply to the said invention …

1. The invention must be useless

2. The invention must be real, and more than a concept.

3. The invention must be created for daily use

Pretty strict.  Here are some of the amazing inventions that have already made the cut!

hair ego booster

solar lighter

daddy nurser

the baby mop

hay fever hat

360 degree panoramic camera

cockroach swatting slippers

Backscratcher's Shirt

personal rain saver

For more amazing Chindogu check out the Big Bento Box of Unuseless Japanese Inventions by Kenji Kawakami. I promise you will be entertained.  What would your useless invention be?!