If you have ever tried to install (or re-install) an OS from a thumb-drive on a netbook, small laptop, or other computer without a built-in optical drive, you may have learned the frustrating lesson, as I did, that they are not always hardware equivalent. Many laptops and netbooks will cheerfully boot from an optical drive attached to a USB port, but gronk at the exact same files, or ISO image, on a thumb drive attached to the same port. It’s enough to make you want to throw things. Who wants to buy and keep track of a USB optical drive just for that one purpose?

Which is why this Kickstarter for the IsoStick—a thumbdrive that will fool any machine into thinking it’s an optical drive—is the first Kickstarter I’ve ever pitched in for, and the first one that I’ve ever plugged here. Good luck, folks! [via Hack a Day]