Let’s face it, only 1% of Dad’s really enjoy getting another necktie for Father’s Day.  Let’s get creative and select something he’d never expect.  Here are seven that could do the trick.

Get Abstract Subscription

No one has time to read all the best business books available today, but often you just need the highlights to be efficient. Why take the time to read the whole book when there’s a “Cliff’s Notes” version available? GetAbstract is the adult version made for busy people who want the best 80% of the book’s contents in just 2% of the time.


GetAbstract summarizes about 50+ of the best new titles each month and prepares them in five-page PDF, Kindle, ePub, Blackberry formats. Many are also available as MP3 audio files.

According to GetAbstract “We publish 50 new summaries every month, more than other providers produce in an entire year. This allows us to offer the world’s largest library of business book summaries. And why is such a large library so important? Because only with a comprehensive selection can you find the books that are relevant to your needs and interests. So be it in the realms of Leadership, Innovation, Productivity, Strategy, Marketing & Sales, Finance or Personal Development, we have the books you need to know about.”

Depending on the subscription selected, you can give Dad access to 30 books over 12 months for $89 or unlimited access for $179/6-months or $299/12-months.  For all the details go to http://www.getabstract.com.

FamilyTree DNA

Ever wonder where your family’s roots really came from?  Ever wonder if you’ve got distant relatives living across the street or in your corporation?  The answers are available thanks to the science of DNA, and thanks to firms like FamilyTree, you don’t need to be with the FBI to get those answers.


Now, it’s a cinch to send in a DNA sample and sit back and wait for results. You’ll get more scientific information than you ever thought possible about DNA and an evergrowing list of relatives from around the world.

Is everyone in their database?  Hardly, but as more and more people do the test, they are added to the list of those whom you might be related to.  After participating for almost six months, I’d say we get information on a new relative about every two weeks. Your relatives and family tree may be different obviously.  We have a pretty happening tree.

So before you or your dad plan to go off in search of family roots, double check your destination through FamilyTree at http://www.familytreedna.com/.


Ever feel like you are wasting energy or paying too much on your electric bill?  Many of us do, but where do you look for energy savings?  That’s just the point of Neurio – a new way to measure and eventually reduce your electric bill.

Neurio home energy monitoring

Different than many of the do-everything home automation systems, Neurio is focused on energy usage and it’s possible the derived savings could pay for itself.  As an open platform, hopefully more developers will be encouraged to contribute their ideas.

The potential of Neurio hasn’t been realized yet, but developers are hard at work creating new functionality for the system.

To install the system, you need to snap a couple CT’s around your main electrical feeds and tap into a circuit or two.  This can be done by anyone with a basic safety knowledge of working in electrical panels. I had an electrician install mine as there was almost no vacant space in my main electrical panel.

After installation, Neurio connects to your home’s WiFi service and starts providing detailed reports of your electrical consumption. It’s fun to watch in real time as you turn off devices and get immediate results of electrical savings on your smartphone.

Get more details and start saving at http://neur.io/

Evoz Baby Monitor

If there’s a new little bambino in the house, chances are both mom and dad would love a little more sleep. Evoz Baby Monitor claims to be able to deliver just that with a first in intelligent baby monitoring.

Evoz Baby Monitor

Evoz is more than just a monitor. With the “premium parenting toolbox,” it can sense the difference between a crying baby and a baby playing contently in his/her crib. No sense getting up just because baby is talking to himself. You

Also, taking things to the next logical step, if baby would be satisfied by just hearing some soothing music or seeing a night light turn on, well, Evoz can be programmed to provide either without waking you.

But, if those simple measures don’t work in a prescribed amount of time (set by you) you’ll get an alert on your smartphone and you’ll be visually and audibly connected into baby’s room so you, instead of an algorithm, make the decision of what to do next.

Away from home, you’ll be able to make sure the baby sitter didn’t fall asleep and that all is being attended to properly.  Anywhere in the world you have a cell signal, you can be tapped into baby’s room. Most monitors have limited range (30’ is typical for Bluetooth), but if you’ve got a cell signal, you can be anywhere.

You’ll can also capture those happy moments when baby is supposed to be taking a nap, but is playing instead.  A camera onboard the Evoz takes high res photos that can then be shared with family or social media. Scrapbooking is also a premium feature.

As a bonus component of the premium system, you’ll get access to Kim West, the Sleep Lady’s guide for parents. When you brought baby home, did you notice there was no user’s guide? No FAQ either?  What the heck. Kim’s guide will help to fill in that void.

The Evoz also tracks baby’s data and lets you or your health care professional make judgements about amounts of sleep, crying, etc.

Help a traveling Dad stay connected with the new little one with an Evoz Smart Parenting Monitor. If you choose, you can also enable grandparents or aunts and uncles to have access as well.

Thinkware Dashcam

There are many reasons to own a dashcam, and Thinkware X500 is a great one to consider. It would be the perfect Father’s Day gift for anyone who enjoys driving and does it a lot.

Thinkware X500 dash cam mounted on my windshield

When someone crosses the line, crashes a stop sign or heaven forbid, intentionally backs into you at a red light, dash cam video is invaluable. The Thinkware X500 that I’ve been using even senses the impact and makes a secure recording for you to save for the police and insurance company.

One of the amazing features of the X500 is the warning systems you can activate to protect yourself. The Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS) alerts you when your vehicle strays out of the present lane without using your blinker. The Front Collision Warning System (FCWS) alerts you if you are approaching the car in front you too closely. Ever driven when you are tired?  This could save your bacon.

For more reasons, check out this article.

Check out Thinkware X500 and their other models here.

Kingston Camera Memory and USB 3 reader

If dad is a serious photographer or videographer, the one thing he can never have too much of is memory. I’m referring here to photographic storage memory for his camera or video camcorder.

Many of the best DSLR’s and serious prosumer cameras still use compact flash memory, and Kingston has come out with a series of Ultimate 600x cards that work great in these devices. They are available in 32 GB and 64GB capacities. (CF/32GB-U3) (CF/64GB-U3)

Kingston Ultimate 600X compact flash card

If you’ve shot video and you can’t get it to play back without stuttering, chances are you need a faster card…like the 600X Ultimate. Recording true high def video requires writing a lot of information very quickly and if your storage card can’t keep up, it’s probably your card, not your camera.

600x refers to the increased speed with which they read and write information to the card. Up to 90MB/sec of data is transferred so you can keep shooting without missing a shot or having stuttery video. Each Ultimate Card comes with a lifetime warranty and free technical support.

To maximize the data transfer, Kingston now offers a sweet USB 3.0 reader (FCR-HS4) that supports:

– CompactFlash: CF Type I & II (UDMA 0-7)
– Secure Digital: SD/SDHC UHS I-II/SDXC UHS I-II
– microSD: microSD/microSDHC UHS-I/microSDXC UHS-I
– Memory Stick: Memory Stick PRO/Duo/PRO Duo/ PRO-HG Duo

Kingston USB3 reader

Using a real USB 3.0 port on your computer and the Kingston 3.0 High-Speed Media Reader, data literally screams onto your machine – up to 5Gb/s. It is also backwards compatible with USB 2.0 so you can use it on your older machines as well.

Got more ideas?

If you’ve got more great ideas for dear ole dad, please share by leaving them in the comments below.

Disclaimer:  The above manufacturers provided samples for testing for this article.