Every once in a while, I come across something at a grocery store or a department store, and I am blown away by how innovative this gadget is, and how obviously useful it can be — and I'm baffled at why it took so long to be invented, or why I didn't think of it myself! 

Often, it turns out that I am just behind the times, but I gotta say that these inventions are next-level genius.  


1. These traffic lights are brilliant and kind of beautiful, I've got to say.

The whole structure lights up so that drivers can see whose turn it is to enter the intersection.

Reddit |  kfinny99

2. At first, I thought that this was a little ridiculous — why was the button so far away from the elevators? 

But, then I realized it was so that after you press the button, the elevator will be waiting for you, instead of you waiting for it.

Reddit |  lukealllen1

3. This doorknob to the custodian closet has grooves on it so that if someone tries to open it with rubber gloves on, they will be able to have enough grip to open the door.

Reddit |  kozman7

4. This is genius! A coat closet with two racks, one for people who smoke and one for people who do not.

This way, no one will smell like smoke who doesn't want to, and people who smoke will have an easier time finding their jacket.

Reddit |  eastofliberty

5. This sign lets travelers know how full each car of the train is before the train arrives.

That way they know where on the platform to stand and where to avoid!

Reddit |  bezzleford

6. Okay, this might be one of my favorite ones on the list. You can open this bathroom door with your foot so that you don't have to dirty your freshly washed hands. 

Reddit |  happysunbear

7. This firetruck has a smaller truck inside of it to get to smaller spaces and down narrow passageways.

That's brilliant! I'm sure that it has made some aspects of the jobs much easier for these firefighters. 

Reddit |  sixpigeons

8. This toilet has a small lip that will help someone lift the seat.

Now no one is going to get their hands dirty whether they are cleaning the toilet or lifting the seat to do their business.

Reddit |  Kriptokid

9. I love this! These rails on the bridge fold into seats so that people can sit down to rest.

Plus, they're super neat-looking and kind of artsy, and who doesn't love that?

Reddit |  LLCenter

10. This USB lets you know how much space is left on it even before you plug it into the computer.

Where was this my whole educational career? It was so frustrating having a million USBs. 

Reddit |  thefifthgiant

11. I think that this is actually super smart and should be everywhere. 

This traffic light has a green light for U-turns as well! How often are you stuck some place you don't want to be and you don't know if you can take a U-turn? Problem solved.

Reddit |  Qwizibo3493

12. This parking garage has lights in the aisles that let drivers know where there are available parking spots.

Parking garages can be disorienting as it is, so this is pretty brilliant. 

Reddit |  KoolKat55

13. Alright, I have to admit, I'm not sure that this was the intended purpose of this space in the car, but nevertheless, I'm glad I know it's a thing. 

Snacking in the car is the best! 

Reddit |  jtraf

14. Doing laundry takes forever, and it can often be very lame and boring.

But this laundromat has a gym inside, that way you can be twice as productive in one night!

Reddit |  IgiveSmallTips

15. This is so cute, plus it's nice that there are places in this park that are actually set aside for our furry friends.

You never know who is going to get angry about dogs doing their business. 

Reddit |  penguinswithagun

16. One of my greatest life struggles is trying not to get my spatula or counters dirty while cooking. 

This person is making a fool of us! This should just be standard spatula hardware. 

Reddit |  Alentheflannel

17. These ramps have little sections of stairs so that people pushing strollers or wheelchairs can do so with ease.

And also so that the area is accessible to everyone. That is so important.

Reddit |  AFCartoonist

18. Instead of cardboard in the center of this toilet paper roll, there's a travel-sized roll. 

How incredible is that? How often do you use a public washroom and the toilet paper is terrible? Problem solved.

Reddit |  xHardleyQuinnx

19. This urinal has a shield to keep everyone and their outfits safe.

Why isn't this just a thing everywhere? It makes so much sense. I probably couldn't use one of these and then be OK with regular urinals. 

Reddit |  canon87

20. I didn't realize how often I throw perfectly good packets of sauces and condiments away because I didn't know what else to do with them.

This is a great idea! I think everywhere should do this! 

Reddit |  Afreakintech

21. This shop in Finland has an umbrella stand where you can borrow an umbrella if the weather gets terrible.

How often have you ended up stuck somewhere because the weather was too bad for you to run to the car or bus stop? 

Reddit |  Jannilat

22. This dry-erase marker lets you know how much ink is left before it needs to be replaced. 

I wish every pen was like this. They always seem to run out of ink at the worst moments. 


23. This banana ripeness guide is AMAZING.

I would know exactly which bananas to pick if I wanted to bake, eat them with yogurt, or just have them around in case I wanted one. Brilliant. 

Reddit |  IamSylarCisco

24. What exactly do you think that the "chaos defrost" setting entails?

What on earth would need that level of insanity to be heated through? Doesn't matter, I want that setting anyway because you never know.