Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sucky Tech # 4 – CellSocket

Not sure why I’d want one of these. WHP Wireless has a device called the Cell Socket which is basically a cordless handset that you connect to your cellular phone. You can make and receive calls over your cellular line using this handset rather than on your cellular.

The company states, “No more searching your house for your cell phone ... no more missed calls”. Must be a generational thing but I am away from my cell phone when I’m in the shower or swimming. If anyone ever rolls out a waterproof smartphone I’d be interested.

The 4 cordless phones in my house on the other hand; are usually not in their cradles. My other half tends to bring it with her while yaking and leaves it wherever she stops yaking. This used to bother me except that now I don’t bother answering the home line at all. Anyone who needs to contact me, that I would actually want to talk to, will call my cellular.

It’s a big sucker compared to my HTC Diamond. Why would I rather carry around this bulky handset when my Diamond is about the size of a candy bar and fits in a pocket? And it has less features, it’s just a phone handset. It makes and receives calls. Thats all.

And it’s giving other people access to my mobile line. Why would you want to do that? I once lent my Mom my phone for a day when she had a lot of errands to run and Dad took his to work. Over the next month or so I kept getting calls from her friends asking, “Is your Mom there?” No, call her at home. This is my cell and I’m at work. There’s no take your mother to work day.

If they had a device to let me pick up calls from the land line on my cell I might be interested but hands off my cellular.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Do it yourself Breathalyser Tests

Your drive home ever been interrupted for one of these? This iPod accessory I found on Slippery Brick has a fold out tube you can breathe into to test your blood alcohol content. Sure, it sounds s like a reasonable concept.

There have been numerous breath tests on the market but I don’t really think that someone dead set on driving home after a few beers with the boys is going to let blowing a little bit over on a not very accurate (can you save the test results and show it to a cop if you’re stopped?) test stop him. And the guy so far gone he can barely walk would probably have trouble using the test at all; assuming he remembers to stop and take it.

Doesn’t it make more sense to plan ahead and not drink unless you have a way of getting home? I love beer, but I have no trouble making arrangements prior to getting blasted. Are there really that many of us out there that will go out, have a few drinks, walk to the car, cross our fingers and hope we don’t blow over? I think that most of us can tell after getting up whether or not we should be driving, just by the number of drinks or the numbness in our head from standing. Those that still want to drive home, unfortunately, probably will.

You know what this device will really be used for? Bar bets. Who can blow the highest without not throwing up and such. Wish I had one when I was twenty something. Probably a lot more fun than who can drink the most shooters. My math abilities tend to decline with each drink and most establishments frown upon carving hash marks in their tables.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sucky Tech # 05 – USB Barbecue

How many dumb USB gadgets do you own? I have some and coveted even many more. But nothing says WTF like a USB powered barbecue. Not sure I can or need to explain the tech here. Take power from USB to make heat and cook something with it. Sure, it can be done, but what inspires someone to build it and where the frack do they plan to use it?

So you were thinking before that you didn’t like the smell of another co-worker microwaving popcorn in the kitchen. Now it’s, “Hey Bob, what’s cookin? No you can’t have my last Johnsonville Brat.”

Why not add a USB beer cooler to the ensamble? Or how about a tiny ethanol gel fire-pit for making smores after? Where’s my USB powered Margaritaville mixer?

And from the looks of the photo, you need thirty USB cables to power it. Guess this won’t be available for a Mac. When they roll out the USB 3 spec how many cables would you need? Hopefully then they can get this down to requiring only one USB hub to power it.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sucky Tech # 4 – Han Solo In Carbonite USB Drive

Han Solo Frozen in Carbonite USB jump drive. When I saw the headline for this item my Geek side went into overdrive. I was clicking the link with my mouse hand and reaching for my Visa with the other (difficult since I’m right handed, mouse with my right hand and keep my wallet on my right back pocket). Ecstasy quickly changed to utter disappointment when the page finally loaded.

First of all, it looks nothing like a young Harrison Ford. Second, the pose is way off. Legs are spread, what the hell? The hands aren’t even in the outstretched position you expect to see a person in when they are frozen in carbonite.

All you get is a cheesy knockoff piece of plastic where I would have to explain to people what it is. I want people to, when they see it, either say “Cool I want one?” or “You’re such a geek, I can’t believe you paid money for that”. When someone looks at this piece of crap I feel like I have to explain that it’s supposed to be Han Solo frozen in carbonite.

Third and last, it’s a one gigabyte jump drive. What the heck am I supposed to do with a 1 GB drive? Why do they make 1 GB anything these days? I wouldn’t even think of punishing my 5 year old with a 1 GB anything. I’d probably be ridiculed to death by him for how out of touch I am. I have lots of that coming when he’s a teenager. No reason to start now.

There should be a law against tech items that are due for the garbage before you get them home from the store. Just in time for Christmas though. If anybody buying something for me sees this item ... please get me anything else.