Wednesday 9 January 2013


Recently there was a consumer electronics show, or to those in the know, CES, held in Las Vegas, Nevada highlighting all the latest advancements in, well consumer electronics. You know that all-important, prodigious list of things that apparently we can no longer live without: televisions, computers, handheld devices, smartphones and so on. Apparently, joining this ever growing list, we should all ready ourselves for the next wave of electronics vying to take over our lives, which is wearable technology. Yes, we are one step closer to becoming a Stanley Kubrick film. God help us.

First up to bat, Google lit up the Internet of late (an easy feat when you are the juggernaut Google I’m presuming) with their soon to be released ‘Project Glass headset.’ This headset is pretty much designed to not only make the Facebook generation look like freaks as they walk around with headsets on like a bunch of tech addicted coal-miners, but it also ensures that our narcissism will hit the roof in no time at all (then again, I think we crashed through that ceiling long ago) as we will be able to document our lives from every solitary angle.

Anyway, I shall put my jaded sensibilities aside and tell you how this fancy little gadget is (apparently) going to improve your life. In short, you put on this tiny little headset on and a tiny widescreen color monitor hovers over your field of vision (can't you just see our sidewalks/pavements now – oh the amount of idiots running into one another will be sheer amusement!) and it enables you to stream and record video. You know, to capture EVERY single moment of your waking (and I’m sure soon to be dreaming) life to bore your friends and colleagues with. The company assures us however that the technology does not stop there. Soon enough you will be able to say to your trusty little headset, ‘I need a pint of ale (vodka, tequila etc), where can I find one?’ And presto, the app kicks in, the camera does whatever it does and an arrow appears showing you which way to walk. (I’m anticipating the usual malfunctions in line with those rife in sat-nav devices that will have people walking into walls). Or, if you find yourself in France and can’t read the menu, apparently this little headset will translate the menu for you. Can’t you just imagine the sheer enjoyment of the French as they watch tourists wearing their fashionable little headsets slaughtering their beloved language?

Other gadgets from CES soon to hit our markets are visors for athletes which will have in built displays that show (for example) a runner’s speed, heart rate, lap time, distance traveled etc.; as well as ‘smart watches’ that will essentially provide alerts, messages and reminders that one can wear on their wrist. Why one needs a watch on their wrist and a phone in their pocket/hand that does the exact same thing, is beyond me, but for the tech junkies out there, I’m sure the more devices they can hold or stick on their bodies the better.

The other bit of technology that I will admit does hold a bit of my interest is a lost and found device the size of a coin that one can stick on their pet, kid, husband. This device contains a Bluetooth chip, temperature sensor and battery and in conjunction with your smartphone app, one can then look at a radar image covering a 200ft radius to find the lost item/person/toddler/animal. As the King often likes to take off running in public places and hide under things, not to mention the husband is ALWAYS losing things this one may come in handy. In fact, I could just stick stickers all over his things so he can play ‘Minority Report lost and found’ and locate anything he wants without having to ask me. Now there is an advancement I can get behind!

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