Are you a gadget person? I have a friend who loves all things gadget. She has a vest she wore that beeped if her posture wasn’t good. It was a good reminder, but the beeping drove us crazy on our walks, so she sent it back.
That said I recently purchased a gadget, and when I admired it for the second time I didn’t even know that it did something other than look pretty. It’s a Ringly. It’s a ring with a pretty stone and it lets me know if someone is calling, texting or giving me a reminder of a meeting. It vibrates and a little light flashes. It can also track my activity. Thank you, that won’t be necessary.
The charger is a little ring box. All you have to do is get the Ringly app on your iPhone 5 or newer, Android device 4.3 or above. If I can do it, anyone can.
I know there are the Apple watches that do a bunch of stuff, but this is a pretty ring that doesn’t look like something Dick Tracy would wear. You can get a Ringly at Lyndon’s for $200.
You have to wonder what is next. Actually, no you don’t because it seems like every other day there is an article in a magazine or newspaper telling us about the next hot thing that will allow you to connect. Take for example the “Smart Jacket,” a collaborative effort of Google and Levi’s. It will be out this coming fall. This jacket will let you interact with your smartphone by tapping your sleeve. Wait, what?
It’s a tag in the jacket that wirelessly connects your smartphone to the yarns of the fabric that are conductive. I’ll have to wait and see this one before deciding what the real advantage would be. Will it look like a jean jacket? The price will be $350.
Products aside, the whole shopping experience could be very different in the next couple of decades. Will we be waited on by robots? Will we speak into a computer to find out if what we want is at another store. And if it is, will it be dropped by a drone in our backyard by the time we get home? Will we look into a “magic mirror” and test cosmetic products that superimposes different looks on our faces?
All that may seem farfetched, but according to a recent article in the New York Times, all of the above is being tested and some are already in place.
And we wonder why communication between human beings is going down the tubes?
It happens here, but when my husband and I were in New York recently we were amazed at the number of people who walked along texting. Heads down they were on busy streets where they would bump into someone often, but never acknowledge their rudeness. In the Chicago airport ,a woman who worked at a kiosk was nearly run over by a man looking down at his phone. She spoke to him in another language that I didn’t understand but I don’t think she said, “Have a nice day.”
Supposedly the more gadgets we get the more we are connected and “plugged in.” And the less we seem to engage in meaningful conversation face-to-face, or just conversation, meaningful or not.
Smartphones, smart TVs, smart clothing, even smart jewelry. Makes me wonder just how “smart” we need to be.
Reach Bonnie Bing at firstname.lastname@example.org