Create the perfect workspace with this electric height-adjustable desk

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.
Pick your personal comfort zone with this easily adjustable sit/stand desk.
Pick your personal comfort zone with this easily adjustable sit/stand desk.

Image: Flexispot

TL;DR: As of Feb. 20 you’ll save an extra $40 off the Flexispot electric height-adjustable sit/stand desk at Amazon. Normally $299, the price at checkout is $259, plus free shipping.


Do you sit at a desk all day for work or school and dream of being able to stand once in a while to do your thing, instead? Do you think to yourself, “If only this desk were a little taller, I could stretch my legs and be so much more productive“? Give yourself the freedom of movement to find that happy medium with a cool adjustable desk that lets you sit or stand whenever you want. Your health and well-being will thank you for it.

Unfortunately, most adjustable desks are not always budget-friendly, with the average price often well above $300. But you don’t have to take the sticker shock sitting down, because right now Amazon has the Flexispot height-adjustable desk for $40 off the normal price of $299, plus free shipping.

The Flexispot desk is an affordable choice that allows you to easily change up your workspace with a simple 2-button electric lift system that moves the desktop for you. And with a height range of 2.5 to 4 feet, you can find that sweet spot every time. The 48 x 30 work area is also plenty spacious, with room to fit multiple monitors, your laptop setup, all your Funko Pop! figures, or whatever else you need. The frame is also made from industrial-grade steel that handles up to 154 pounds, so go ahead and load up on those action figures… er, collectibles.

Not to freak you out, either, but sitting too much every day is basically proven to be a long-term health risk. But with simple adjustments to your routine, like taking a break from sitting every 30 minutes, you can make sure you are doing your part to improve your general well-being. So really, using the Flexispot height-adjustable desk is as much an investment in yourself as it is a really cool piece of office tech you can play with. No one is saying you can’t sit down, but wouldn’t it be nice to have the option not to? 

This jacket is actually a portable shelter for homeless people

It’s almost 6 p.m. on a Thursday night in February, and Bas Timmer is walking around a park in New York City looking for people who might be homeless. 

He finds a 24-year-old woman sitting on the ground with her two dogs, one constantly licking the other in a nurturing way. Timmer is a 29-year-old fashion designer from the Netherlands who created a warm, water- and windproof jacket for people experiencing homelessness. The jacket, called the Sheltersuit, also doubles as a sleeping bag and comes with a backpack that makes it easy to carry it around. 

It turns out that the woman, who preferred not to give her last name to protect her identity, owned a Sheltersuit previously. But she gave it away to a homeless man whose clothes were wet. Timmer buys a coffee for the woman and leaves another suit with her.  

For the past three weeks, Timmer has been in America in an effort to expand his organization (called Sheltersuit Foundation in the Netherlands) here. He wants the fashion industry to take notice and intentionally handed out suits in New York City to homeless people during New York’s Fashion Week from Feb. 6 to 13. Timmer hopes this will push clothing companies to donate their materials waste to Sheltersuit and other like-minded organizations, given that about 30 percent of clothes are never sold and end up in landfills.

Since Sheltersuit started in 2014, companies have been donating Timmer materials, like sleeping bags and tent fabrics that would have been thrown away because of production mistakes like a misplaced logo. Some companies reached out to Sheltersuit after seeing the organization in the media. The suit is made entirely out of these upcycled materials, from the belts that act as the backpack’s straps to the large hood that can block out glaring lights homeless people often have to contend with while sleeping on the street.  

Timmer has been designing clothes since he was 16, attending a vocational school in the Netherlands to pursue his passion. He even turned his bedroom into a sewing room. 

“I became completely obsessed [with making clothes,]” Timmer says. 

He designed a hoodie with a scarf, which he says became famous in the Netherlands. Then, when he was doing a fashion internship in Copenhagen, Denmark, he started to notice a lot of homeless people.

Bas Timmer with his "scarf hoodie"

Bas Timmer with his “scarf hoodie”

Image: ZLATA IVLEVA / MASHABLE

“I was making these warm hoodies, and I thought, maybe I can give these hoodies away to them,” Timmer says. 

His mother worried that people would stop buying his hoodies if he gave them away for free. He pushed the idea aside, but almost two years later, his friend’s father died of hypothermia while waiting in front of a homeless shelter that was closed for the night. After hearing about the death, Timmer knew he finally had to do something.

Since its founding, Sheltersuit Foundation has given away 10,000 jackets in Europe, says Timmer. Its goal is to produce and distribute 100,000 jackets globally in 2020. Each Sheltersuit has a unique look, since the donated materials come from multiple companies; the sizes range from XXXS to XXXL. The organization currently has one facility in the Netherlands that produces the suits. Sheltersuit hires Syrian refugees to sew the suits and also helps them integrate into the country, such as with Dutch language lessons. 

You wouldn’t know from looking at the Sheltersuit on Timmer’s back that it’s basically a portable shelter for homeless people. It looks like a chic and durable backpack with a coat. 

Bas Timmer models a Sheltersuit.

Bas Timmer models a Sheltersuit.

Image: Zlata Ivleva / Mashable

The organization’s idea to expand to America is recent. Timmer first visited the U.S. in March 2019, when he was invited to the annual South by Southwest conference to demonstrate an urban safety kit (which is like a backpack with solar panels that can charge a phone) he developed. This was the first time he saw what homelessness looks like in America.

“Here, you’re kind of left on your own,” Timmer says. In the Netherlands, he says, people don’t usually walk by homeless people without offering to help. The homeless population among people ages 18 to 64 in the Netherlands more than doubled from 2009 to 2018, increasing from almost 18,000 homeless people to about 39,000. Comparatively, in 2018, almost 92,000 New Yorkers experienced homelessness. (The Netherlands’ population in 2018 was about 17 million, and New York’s was 19.5 million.) 

The suits won’t solve the problem, Sheltersuit acknowledges; its ultimate mission is to end homelessness entirely. By partnering with shelters, which the organization does in the Netherlands and is looking to continue in the U.S., they can give out suits, which is “the first step to creating a solid bond between the social worker and the client,” Noelani Reyes, Sheltersuit’s first full-time project manager in the U.S., said in an email. This way, the company believes, homeless people will feel comfortable returning to get services.

Shelters in the Netherlands and the U.S. have social workers that provide services to help people off the streets, says Reyes. But the organization hopes the jackets will fill in any gaps, helping homeless people protect themselves against dangerous weather conditions. “We want to create something that empowers people so that they don’t have to feel unsafe or unseen anymore. We want to start it here in New York, because there is a lot of opportunity in America in general. We want to be able to turn humanity back on again,” says Reyes.

It costs 300 euros (about $325) to make one suit in the Netherlands. But Timmer thinks they can produce the jackets cheaper in the U.S. They’ll still need companies to donate the needed materials, and have been in talks with some about materials donations. Individuals can help, too: You can make tax-deductible donations to Sheltersuit on their website

Since April 2019, Sheltersuit has given away 200 jackets in America and and 75 in New York City, according to Reyes. Like many people, Timmer initially had misconceptions about people who are homeless. He thought the majority were addicted to substances or alcohol. But Timmer has learned a lot since launching Sheltersuit and engaging in hours of conversations with people he’s given jackets. Hearing their stories has opened his mind, and he’s realized there’s a multitude of reasons why people become homeless.

“…at the end of the day you cannot profile homelessness into one category, which is why a lot of the social programs actually seclude people,” Reyes wrote in an email. “Homelessness has many faces and many journeys.”

Take the woman who’d given her first Sheltersuit to help another homeless person. Her mother died when she was 15, and her father wasn’t around. Her grandmother wasn’t able to adopt her but was successful in adopting her younger sister. She decided against being put in foster care because she didn’t want to be separated from her sister. Today, her days are spent hanging out with her boyfriend, her dogs, and dealing with the sometimes unpredictable New York weather. She seemed happy to have another Sheltersuit and even a little surprised to be given a second one.  

The move isn’t so unexpected, given Timmer’s outlook. There was no question that she would receive another jacket.

“I want to keep all the homeless warm in the world, that would be my end goal,” says Timmer. 

A Sheriff Department’s Attempt To Describe This Boulder Goes Delightfully Awry

It’s a large boulder that also happens to be a small one. 

The San Miguel Sheriff’s Office in Colorado sent a tweet on Monday that was meant to alert motorists about a boulder in the road. But the message went viral far beyond the state because, well… just take a look at how the department described it:   

Twitter users immediately began to question how the large boulder could be the size of a small one. The sheriff’s office never acknowledged the boulder brouhaha even though it tweeted about the massive stone twice more. 

First, the agency noted that the boulder had been removed, which led to more pleas to clarify its size. Later on ― no doubt in response to a landslide of requests ― the description became more specific. 

The boulder that fell onto Highway 145 at Silverpick Rd outside Telluride was approximately 4ftx4ftx4ft (64 cubic ft) and weighed about 10,000lbs,” the agency wrote.

Alas, that still didn’t settle the question about whether it was, in fact, a large boulder or a small one. Rock fans demanded to know more about this large-small boulder. Or was it a small-large boulder?  

Forget foldable phones: Leaked TCL images reveal slide-out screen

We’re still trying to figure out how durable the Galaxy Z Flip and Motorola Razr are but TCL is possibly working on a new style of phone that slides.

The report comes from CNET, which published photos of the phone. It initially looks like a regular-sized smartphone but has a second screen that slides out to make it tablet-sized. 

According to CNET’s source, TCL would have shown off the phone to reporters covering Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, except the event was canceled due to fears over the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus.

The big unknown is whether the two halves of the big screen would be flush or if there would be a ridge given the mechanics of the sliding screen. That said, the advantage of such a system, as CNET’s Jessica Dolcourt notes, is that this system means no worries about creases in a bendable screen or deteriorating hinges

TCL declined to comment to Mashable on the report.

We got a great look at one of TCL’s foldable phone prototypes at CES back in January that folds book-style. 

And TCL made waves in October 2019 with another prototype, this one a tri-fold phone that would unfold into a device with a 10-inch screen.  

Jeff Bezos commits $10 billion to fight climate change

Jeff Bezos is putting his money where his mouth is and donating $10 billion to fight climate change.

Bezos made the stunning announcement in an Instagram post Monday afternoon, saying it’s all part of the new Bezos Earth Fund. 

Unsurprisingly, he doesn’t share many specifics about the Bezos Earth Fund. His Instagram post says it “will fund scientists, activists, NGOs — any effort that offers a real possibility to help preserve and protect the natural world.”

We’ve reached out to Amazon for further comment.

Bezos’ decision follows a recent protest by Amazon employees in which hundreds of workers added their name to a petition calling on the company to do more to fight climate change.

That action followed another climate change protest in September. That, in turn, led to at least three employees being threatened with discipline (including termination of their jobs) by Amazon, which said it was just following company policy

Last September, Amazon made a Climate Pledge “to meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early.”

It’s unclear what association the new fund will have with Amazon. 

Jake Paul wants to charge kids $20 a month to learn ‘financial freedom’

YouTube megastar, Los Angeles neighborhood terrorizer, and definitely fake marriage haver Jake Paul has a new idea to better the lives of his Gen Z fans by teaching them how to be exactly like him.  

Variety reports that Paul launched his new enterprise, the Financial Freedom Movement (FFM)  at a skate park on Saturday after tweeting his desire to educate the younger generation on how to become online entrepreneurs in the vein of Jake and his brother Logan. 

In his tweet, which explains the ethos behind FFM, Paul wrote “the education system is worthless” and that it’s “teaching kids 0 real life skills to secure there [sic] own future.”

Variety‘s report on his launch event also contained a quote from Paul in which he admitted to cheating on the online course he used to complete his high school diploma:

Paul dropped out of school after 11th grade, completing his diploma through an online course.

“I just got the answers from a cheat site and put it in and didn’t have to do any work,” recalled Paul, whose career includes a stint on Disney Channel show, “Bizaardvark.” He suspects other reluctant students are doing the same. 

Subscribers to the Financial Freedom Movement will pay $19.99 a month for online seminars with Paul and other YouTubers who hope to impart lessons on topics such as brand building and how to take business meetings once that brand building inevitably goes well enough to merit such meetings. 

Paul also told Variety what his idea of financial freedom is, which is having enough money to throw big parties and go on two-month vacations. 

“At the end of the day,” Paul said, “it kind of ties back to if I want to throw a party, why not?”

Why not indeed. 

This pigeon snuggling a chihuahua puppy is post-Valentine’s friend goals

Herman the pigeon welcomed a canine newcomer at the animal sanctuary he calls home with more affection than many millennials get in a year, and the adorable pictures are proof that friendship has no species. 

Herman and his chihuahua friend Lundy live at The Mia Foundation, an animal rescue in Rochester, New York that specializes in pets born with birth defects.

Lundy came to The Mia Foundation in mid-January and can’t use his back legs due to potential hydrocephalus. Herman has been at the foundation since Nov. 2018, and has been their resident bird ambassador ever since. 

After The Mia Foundation’s pictures of Herman cuddling little Lundy went viral on Facebook, they followed up with a video of the interspecies pals hanging out together a few days later. Now with extra puppy-nibbling action: