The New Scientist offers its patent sleuth’s most interesting, surprising and sometimes alarming, discoveries of 2006. My favorite is:
An even less lethal alternative might be to coat an adversary with slippery slime. US researchers developed a super-slippery material that could be sprayed from the back of a truck or tank. It could be an ideal solution, they suggest, for police or military forces trying to break up riots without causing anyone serious harm.
The full write-up is here.