These are descriptions of real objects you can pay real money for. They are written without irony. The objects have no real use case or application; they are effects searching for a clever inventor to create a cause, when there can be none because they are so fucking stupid.
Nobody needs Networked Sensors for the Home. Nobody needs their Instagram feed projected onto their wall whenever their Bluetooth PAN detects they’ve put on their Lilypad-equipped open source shirt. These objects are a waste of innovative potential, money, and natural resources. They are fundamentally void and yet they exist, and people presumably pay money for them. This is Silicon Valley’s silicon pit. It is full of “makers”, “hackers”, and “geeks”: brainwashed, drooling internet zombies who have been convinced they need these things. They are clawing at each other, clawing at the walls, forming piles of living humanity upon piles of downtrodden, dejected corpses, desperately yearning for the escape they can never achieve, trying to reach the blue sky of Change In The World With Connected Devices, and they can never reach it because it is a sham. They had potential once, but it is gone.
Ever wish you could have your Twitter feed appear on an LCD screen on your fridge? Maybe have your closet lights reflect what the day’s weather will be like? The Electric Imp platform makes it incredibly simple for hardware developers to connect devices to, well, pretty much everything. No more low-level tinkering with firmware. Instead, jumpstart your projects and get them cloud-connected quickly with the Electric Imp.
They are trying to create a hellscape of a future, drawing their ideas from the works of Huxley and Orwell.
Whether you’ve got artists, programmers, or nostalgic gamers on your gift list, the PIXEL open-source, interactive wall frame will wow them all. Send animated pixel art to its LED array, or display your own creations.
The media-saturated world will become supersaturated; we will be bombarded with information every moment of our lives, in every possible medium, from the retro-filtered food photos displayed on the side of our refrigerators to the Favstar monitor adjusting the color temperature of the bathroom lights.
Porkfolio is a smart piggy bank that can track your savings and help you organize and maintain financial goals. Use the Porkfolio smartphone app to keep track of your stash and even get notified if anyone tries to steal your dough.
Traditionally human tasks will be offloaded and entrusted to machines. Machines and devices will be created solely in order to convince people that they need the function offered by the product. The mindspace freed up will be crammed full of useless information.
Nimbus is a stylish dashboard that gives you at-a-glance access to your own mix of personal info. It’s part of Quirky + GE’s Wink line—a stable of housewares that can be connected, controlled, calibrated, and automated by one app on your mobile device. Perfect for dad’s office or your brother’s home desk.
Your traditional devices will be replaced with appcessories. Your cell phone is a gateway to the Internet of Things. Your laundry room will send you a notification when the humidity reaches your set comfort level.
The just-launched Lapka is a set of four different environmental sensors. The sensors interact with an app on your phone that educates you about your environment. Made of soft wood and plastic, the sensors are light and beautifully designed. Own one of the very first sets.
The forests will be razed and the earth stripped of ores to feed the all-devouring technlogical maw. The last tree will be cut down and used to educate a young man about his environment.
Lively uses activity sensors to help our aging parents and grandparents live independently, by providing you with peace of mind. LivelyGrams—the snail-mail version of social networking— also include photos and messages to keep loved ones happier, more connected, and healthier.
Our obsolete relatives will be cast away when their perceived usefulness ends, just like everything else. They will be left to fend for themselves, with sensors, devices, and automated smartphone medicaton reminder apps their only company, their only indication that they were people once.
Spotter is a discrete multi purpose sensor that gauges motion, sound, light, temperature, and humidity anywhere in the home. It’s part of Quirky + GE’s Wink line—a stable of housewares that can be connected, controlled, calibrated, and automated by one app on your mobile device.
Genetic algorithms will invent names for devices once the ordinary English semantic space is exhausted. You need to monitor your home’s interior weather with Fruppr. Activate your radiant heaters with X10 when your living room predicts a four degree temperature drop tonight.
Keeping up with your best friend’s activity is now as simple as checking into the dog park. The Whistle canine activity tracker sits unobtrusively around Fido’s collar, syncing data about walks, playtime, exercise, and rest to your smartphone to keep you connected with your pet.
Cats and fish will be equipped with smartphones and accelerometers. Your dog has posted a new Instagram photo of another dog’s ass. Like it for doggy kisses.
KISI lets you open doors with an App on your phone! Upgrade your office/ apartment to smartphone access! If you have a key card, key fob, pinpad or intercom system, KISI upgrades any existing electronic door entry system and makes it accessible via smartphone. No need to copy and hand out keys anymore, with KISI you share and track virtual keys and stay in control all the time.
External tools will be implemented in software. Inventors weep because they cannot figure out how to unscrew their vintage stereo’s cover with their smartphone. Those who lose or break their devices will be executed and mocked on gori, the social media network for death.
Egg Minder is an app-enabled tray that wirelessly monitors the status of eggs in your fridge. “Mind” it or not, the idea at work here - that technology can help you manage the day-to-day minutiae - is super cool. It’s part of Quirky + GE’s Wink line—a stable of housewares that can be connected, controlled, calibrated, and automated by one app on your mobile device. Who wants a glass of smart egg nog?
The devices will be designed to provide 100% reliability, as their users will no longer be able to cope with any disruption to their services.
Take the Cloud out of the data center and into a little box in your home. Space Monkey delivers 1 Full Terabyte for all your data storage, access, and encryption. Works with OS X, iOS, Android, Windows, and the web.
Photo albums and books will be destructively scanned, uploaded to the cloud, and used to create recycled rubber and cardboard casings for broccoli monitors. When a user dies, their cloud content will be destroyed to make room for more information.
Send messages to kids through their toys! The Mailmen are WIFI enabled toys that speak back voice messages sent from the free Toymail app. Think of the Mailmen as toy messengers. They deliver messages anytime, from anywhere, in the toy’s quirky voice, or yours. And kids can reply back right from their toys, too!
Our children will be hooked to Oculus devices from shortly after birth, to allow for web entrainment and Maker education.
This telepresence robot enables you to interact with your colleagues (or friends and family) from anywhere in the world. Talk, listen, and move about with live video of your face displayed on a mounted iPad or iPad Air.
Some will choose to monitor their world from their connected devices instead of emerging from their beds. Blood glucose monitors will automatically have insulin refills delivered to your window with Amazon Fresh.
The Practical Meter is an inline USB-meter that shows you how quickly your USB device is charging. It is compatible with any USB charging port, including portable solar panels, the PowerPot, your home PC or laptop and any charging accessory you have. Plug it in between your charger and your USB device (smartphone, mp3 player) and watch as it provides real-time feedback!
Eventually, we will run out of coal. Our sensors will not tell us it is coming, because the coal miners are all dead. The nuclear power plants will overheat and shut down, the smog will blot out the sun, and the still air will no longer turn the blades of the turbines. A dim, red-lit wasteland, populated by subtly glowing, slowly dying connected sensors and devices, will be all that is left as this world passes away. The last vestige of the human race will be barely-detectable bluetooth transmissions, making their way out into space, as the last twitter printer requests to pair with any other devices, and blinks out.
This is Vernor Vinge’s all-connected, sousveillance future, implemented with the technology and minds of today. You must find it within yourself to do all you can to stop it.