Top 10 real-life spy gadgets

SIS badgeThe Times Online has an interesting, and entertaining, column by Free Agent spy novelist Jeremy Duns, counting down his ten favorite real espionage inventions.

Ranging from the standard KGB crudities (poison-tipped umbrellas), to clever Q-Branch wizardry (magnetized trouser buttons that could be converted into a compass), to the wackily bizarre (exploding rats!), the list is bound to fire your imagination, and maybe even learn you a thing or two.

Top 10 Real-Life Spy Gadgets can be found in the “Books” section of the Times. Most of the devices listed to have links to earlier articles, so you can have quite a bit of fun rooting around in that venerable organ’s attic.