Like Da Vinci, Except the Opposite
Greetings loyal readers,
I finished up research for my article on computer accessories last week, and I can't believe all the crazy stuff I found. There are USB watches, Internet phones that are also mice, and MP3 players so complex they make iPods seem like sleekly designed doorjambs.
I'll be straight with you all, I'm a bit of a nerd (if you can't tell by the number of times I've referenced dragons or vampires in my blog), but I've never really encountered tech gear like this until I started working in this industry. I'm used to technology outings being simultaneously enraging and depressing affairs, like when I stand in the Verizon store for three hours wondering why all phones are confusing pieces of brittle plastic now, waiting for a teenager with a fairly bad haircut to up sell me five or six memory cards I won‘t use. If I was a distributor though, I could just pop onto Logomark's Web site and be like, "Oh, rad, a USB air freshener. What a fun and clever product. Having that sure would make me and my client happy." The array of cool tech stuff out there in our industry is just staggering.
After spending about a day looking at neat computer accessories like USB hot plates, I kind of entered this bizarre, blissful dream state. I began wondering what the ultimate computer accessories could be, and thought up some items I would make, if I could create anything besides messy jumbles of words. Transcribed from my notes are a few of the better ideas. Obviously, as a writer who in no way an engineer, computer person or even a responsible adult, these following product ideas are flawless and not at all terrible:
- USB wake-up device: This could also work as an ear bud/headphone attachment. Basically, it would work by monitoring your pulse, and if it felt you getting too sleepy, it would send you a refreshing electric shock. Some would say this is a horrible idea, and the risk of brain or cardiac damage is tremendous. I would counter by saying they've never tried to transcribe interview questions at 4 p.m. on a Monday. Also, who worries about brain damage anymore? Mothers and people who make a living off their minds? I am neither of those things, clearly.
- Fun happiness sound machine: Great name, I know. I'm sure some of you are familiar with those musical cards or big plastic buttons you pound to hear the end theme from Caddyshack. I'd to build a Web site around those products where you could log on and download demographically specific sound packages designed to alleviate depression. For example, I would log on, pick the "Man-child with illogical priorities" setting, then I would be able to hear messages like "Relax man, you've got leftover pizza and unwatched The Wire DVDs at home. Life is still essentially rad." I know these things usually offer custom recordings, but I think that's less fun than being able to pick from a big array of pre-set categories oddly appropriate for your life. Sometimes, isn't it better for a stranger to understand you rather than a friend or yourself?
- Magic Prose Pen: I remember hearing a while back that a spell-checking pen had been designed. I'd like to have a pen that checks the quality of prose, since I start most of my revisions and content-proofing by hand. The pen would have the voice of an old, aristocratic English butler, and after scanning a block of text, would say things like "Really sir, I think you can come up with better modifiers than 'awesome' and 'really awesome.' May I once again recommend consulting a thesaurus?"
Great ideas, I know. Now if I can only find a wild-eyed, Billy Mayes-type to sell them via cost-efficient infomercials ...