Tech Curmudgeon: Invent a Problem, Sell a Solution!

Flowbee?It seems like all the good problems have already been fixed.

Need to eat quick?  Microwave.
Need to get there quick?  Car.
Need to look up something?  Computer
…while travelling in your car to buy a new microwave?  Smartphone.

You get the idea — every normal situation has a product that makes it more convenient. Since all the common situations are accounted for, it forces manufacturers to create “new” common situations. Using mystical powers and Jedi mind tricks,  they convince you that you’re going to experience these invented happenings, and before you know it you’re whipping out your credit card. Here’s a few examples I ran across recently.

Mouse Belt Buckle

Etsy is an online vendor of belts, nick-knacks, and such. One day they thought “You know, technical people don’t have any accessories to make them stand out in a crowd.”

Their solution:  Belts made from computer mice.

Computer Mouse Buckles keep your belt tight and your pants around your chest. You never know when you’ll need to grab a pointing device off of your Batman-like utility belt and save the day! I can’t say for sure, but wear this and you’re either going to be the last one asked to dance or the hero of your Dungeon’s and Dragons gaming club. For the PC inclined, they come in a Compaq version as well.  Etsy GettingWeddy — $15 – $22

Fossil Meta Watch

Fossil makes great watches. I own a few myself, but there’s only so much you can do with a watch. One day, a Fossil designer thought “What happens if you can’t get your smartphone out of your pocket fast enough?”

Their solution: Put a mini smartphone screen on a watch.

The Fossil Meta Watch has built-in Bluetooth and links to your smartphone, so you will have yet another screen that shows you how many emails you have waiting, how many people are trying to reach you on Facebook, the weather, and I think they even squeeze the time in there somewhere as well. Do I really want yet another screen that will tell me who’s trying to track me down and if it’s raining while they’re doing it? Probably. I can’t say no to anything that makes me look like Dick Tracy.  Fossil Meta Watch — Expected Price $199

Tactical Grilling Apron

Tactical Grilling knows war is hell. Apparently they also believe blackening meat over hot coals in the backyard is just as bad.

Their solution: Create a grilling apron that will keep you covered.

The Tactical Grilling Apron is available in several versions of camo (just in case a bovine sniper tries to get a bead on you for grilling up her sister). This apron is sure to protect your body from up to .38 caliber BBQ sauce rounds. Prepared to return fire? Lob a grenade of your favorite beverage from its handy front pouches. Want to see who your real friends are? Shake up a can, throw it on the ground, and see which one of your buddies throws his body upon it to save the platoon.  Tactical Grilling Apron — $45.00  

Wavejet wondered why all the fit and muscular people are the only ones having fun skimming around on 30′ waves. The Big-Gulp drinking, Little Debbie eating masses want in on the action too! It’s a lot of work swimming out into the ocean with all that water getting in the way.

Their solution: Create a jet powered surf board.

The Wavejet Jet Powered Surfboard contains a battery powered water jet (hence the name) that will propel your bulk up to 12MPH. I’m sure the fit surfers will appreciate the extra assist when trying to get out to that upcoming barrel, but in my view this is just a continuation of a trend of laziness — people became too lazy to push wagons and invented cars. People became too lazy to pedal bikes and invented motorcycles. People became to lazy to walk and invented the horsey-back ride. You could pre-order one of these boards, but I bet you’re too lazy to do it.  Wavejet — Expected Price $4800 

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