Kaoiro, An Emoticon Stamper With A Retro Design

Kaoiro, the Japanese Kaomoji Stamper allows the user to stamp up to 2,000 different ASCII art facial expressions on school assignments, work memos, divorce papers and more.

If you thought those old-fashioned stationary stampers - you know, the ones that come with an ink pad - had gone the way of the dinosaurs, you're mostly right. The Japanese Kaomoji Stamper may yet survive the Great Stamper Mass Extinction, however, by catering to those who have moved into the computerized age of emoticons and leet-speak.

Kaoiro (which means "facial expression" in Japanese) looks like a classic stationery stamper, the kind formerly used to stamp dates on checks, reports, receipts and other time-sensitive paperwork. Take a closer look and you'll spot some differences.

The stamper's 7 belts each feature around 20 alphanumeric symbols that can be lined up to form roughly 2,000 different emoticon expressions: in Japanese, "kaomoji" as opposed to non-ASCII art graphic "emoji" emoticons.

Props to manufacturer Ginghami for adapting an item of retro-tech that seemed to be on its way out and giving it a new social media lease on life. Kinda makes you feel all \ (^ о ^) /, don't it?

You can order your own Kaomoji stamper from Ginghami beginning on December 12, and they cost 2,700 yen or around $30 each plus tax and shipping. That may seem pricey but consider that every Kaomoji is handmade in Japan from steel and natural rubber. You can email Ginghami at info@ginghami.com (via Asiajin)