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I have a soft spot for technology, so it’s no surprise that I work in IT.  However, it doesn’t mean I am a fan of every technology or gadgets that have ever invented been in the space. There are some brilliant inventions, and there are some that give you pause and wonder, “What were they thinking?”

Tech Products I’m not a huge fan of

  • For example, I’m bewildered by the  Chin-Rest Arm that holds your face in place while you work.  If I am that tired, I’d rather take time off than to be seen with a Chin-Rest Arm at work.  Or at home.  Or anywhere, really.
  • I’m not a huge fan of the Lily drone, a drone that follows you for selfie and adventure shots.  There is probably a market for it as seen by the sales numbers, but it isn’t a product I need for myself unless I’m doing some sort of self-documentary.  Then again, I’m not a big fan of taking selfies, either.
  • Sorry Apple, as much as I love your phones, I can’t see myself buying an Apple Watch.  It’s more of a personal choice, but I don’t like wearing watches, period.  I don’t think that will change anytime soon.
  • Most people have probably heard of a beta product called Google Glass. The technology was great, though I am uncomfortable with the idea that people wearing the Google Glass could record your interactions whether you’re aware of it or not. I’ve only interacted with the Google glass once, when an enthusiast wore it to an IT conference.  He offered his Google Glass for me to try on, and walked me through how to capture a recording and do a playback.  It was both cool and weird — weird in that I was wearing someone’s glasses.  I know there are useful applications for the product, but I  don’t think that the general market is ready for it until some of the privacy concerns are addressed.

Tech Products that I like

So, what do I like?

  • I love products like the iRobot Roomba Robotic Vacuum Cleaner.  I got one of those, and it’s still going strong after a couple of years.  Cleaning is made so much easier when you can just turn on Roomba and let it do its job.  The days of vacuuming with a clunky vacuum cleaner are long gone.
  • I like the “idea” of robotic information assistant. We came across a life-like one at a mall in Japan.  Obviously, they can’t replace the personal human interaction, but they are fun to have around if they are more responsive.
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Lifelike robotic mall assistant in Odaiba, Japan.

  • I also like the ordering system that’s available in some places in Japan.  Language barrier?  No problem.  Pick the item you want from the list and make a payment, and someone will come out with your food order in no time.  Simple but highly efficient!
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A food order machine in Kyoto, Japan

 

  • Lastly, there is the toto toilet that is incredibly common in Japan.  Someone asked me about my trip in Japan, and wanted to find out about any cool technologies there.  It turned out that a friend once mentioned to her that Japan has the best toilets.  Once I realized that was the real question, I completely agreed — perhaps a little too enthusiastically.   Sadly, I don’t think the toto toilets are going to catch on in the states anytime soon, as people can’t miss out on what they don’t know.  But perhaps in due time, who knows?

What smart products have you come across that you’re using on a regular basis?  What not-so-smart products have you come across? Let me know and it may get featured in the next roundup!