Actually there's a few different manufactuers of this type of thermometer. They are used in the A/C and Refrigeration industries. That point on the end is to stick in food to check it's storage temperature by inspectors or refrigeration men such as myself.

I was just thinking today it would be great to have a remote bulb digital thermometer with backlighting for those of us who develop in open tanks and trays and have need of water bath temp maintenance for long development times.