Every year we come across different brands launching tons of products that amaze us with their creativity, some impress us with new innovations, and some, unfortunately, fail to satisfy our likings. If you look at the gadgets that were introduced in the early 2000s, they were obviously not high-end in terms of technology, but still, it was the best that we could have had then. Human beings can never be content with one thing and as rightly said by Heraclitus, “Change is the only constant in this world.” This quote by Heraclitus has always made sense. We strive to be better every day, and yet we have room for improvement in whatever we do. Manufacturers these days are in a constant dilemma with one question that what could be the next big thing that would make a difference in the world. There can never be a perfect gizmo, we agree with that! So, we came up with our set of ideas and if they were to be implemented some day in the near future, we feel our day to day gadgets would then be almost perfect.
A perfect car for me would be a mixture of three different generations namely, Past, Present, and Future. I would like the design of my ideal car to be from the past, one of my all-time favourite cars, the Nissan Skyline R34 GTR. Yes, I choose the Skyline over the GTR only because of its aggressive front fascia. Its design is just outright killer with the huge wing at the back, which just completes the look for me. Under the hood, I’m ready to compromise only a little bit, with a refined hybrid petrol engine that sounds like the good old R34. And an option to quiet it down with just a flick of a switch when I’m driving around the neighbourhood. The interiors should have a future touch to it right from having electronically adjustable comfortable bucket seats, a touchscreen navigation system, voice control, and an ejection seat? Ejection seat will be overkill unless I’m planning to go on undercover missions. Projector LED headlamps setup with two colour options, white and yellow; on a foggy rainy day, the yellow LEDs would offer a clear vision, also I’d like to retain its legendary taillights, a view for the cars to ponder upon when I’m passing them on the expressway, and not forgetting the panoramic sunroof, a feature that is simply appropriate for long drives in the night with your date. I don’t mind if it is not as practical as a four-door saloon car, but this fits the bill for a tempting drive on a race track or a sedentary drive in the city. That’s all the car I would ever need in my life, my daily driver hybrid petrol engine Nissan Skyline R34 GTR with touches from the past, present, and the future. Nissan, are you listening?
Two wheelers play a crucial part in our lives, my idea of a perfect scooter or motorcycle is that it should be environment-friendly and laden with tech. Considering global warming we already have some example of electric scooters that have taken the Indian market by storm. Names like Ather 450, Mahindra GenZe, Hero Duet E among others are creating quite a stir for short term commutes and the kind of features that they have on offer. However, considering the four-wheeler segment, two-wheelers still have a lot to cover. There are connected services like navigation, but GPS enabled scooters are still far away from reality unless fitted with aftermarket devices. I would, therefore, prefer if manufacturers could retrofit their products with GPS that allows the user to locate the ideal spot where he or she parked their vehicle. In addition to that, helmets play a crucial role in rider’s safety and they need to come equipped with a heads-up display in their visor that informs them about oncoming vehicles. Regenerative braking is another avenue that needs to be explored as this will help recharge the battery on board and thus help elongate the overall mileage of a scooter. In the case of motorcycles, Emflux Model 1 makes for a brilliant case study. Showcased as Make In India, during Delhi Auto Expo 2018 this electric superbike boosts of decent performance with features like 7-inch TFT display, GPS navigation, real-time vehicle diagnostics, mobile app among many others. What it does need to have for my personal preference is lane detection, oncoming traffic warning and blind spot covering (especially while riding the bike on hills).
House Keys are one of the most common and understated objects of possession with any individual. My idea for a perfect gadget would be my house keys. It is important in terms of practicality and safety. Rather than just housing a different set of keys, the bunch should offer a screen that provides a live feed of my in-house security system. This would help me keep a track of the moment in and around my place of residence. Like smartphones, the key bunch should offer a built-in sim that allows me to connect with
emergency services like the police, ambulance and fire service. It could also double up as a talking device that wishes me the moment I held it in my hands. In addition to that, I’d want the keys to inform me about the outside temperature, pollution levels and the day’s top headlines of the hour. It should also have the option to sync with the smartphone that would give me direct access to personal and work calendar allowing important information to follow instantly without having to go anywhere else.
After a long day at work, if I feel like laying on the bed and sending a text to a friend or even calling a friend over and ordering Pizza just by giving instructions to my smartphone which can easily do the job for me, acting as my personal assistant. An IP68 rating certified smartphone so that I can send an SOS message for help if I’m drowning in the swimming pool. A full HD bezel-less screen with a hole punch type camera setup as seen in the Honor View 20 and the Huawei Nova 4. Adding some old school touch to it by retaining the headphone jack, I prefer the headphone jack option even though I would prefer using a wireless headphone. The display screen should be capable of portraying a hologram of a 3D object or a place. Wireless fast charging option and a battery life lasting two days even after heavy usage. Talking about heavy usage, playing games for hours on the phone can only happen with a good GPU and a decent RAM to support apps running in the background. A customizable camera software that provides quality pictures just like Google Pixel 3. A hardcore security patch which would ensure that the data in my phone is not accessed by a stranger. In-built fingerprint scanners, an iris scanner, and a face scanner all of them will only serve its purpose if the sensor’s quality is top notch. The features that I have mentioned above would easily take at least a decade to come out.
An ideal laptop for me would be something which is extremely light to carry around when I’m travelling. When it comes to travelling, charging also becomes an obstacle that can be conquered by fitting the laptop with a battery which will last for a day with moderate usage. A wireless charging feature that saves me from getting entangled in the long charging wire. And for those long multiplayer gaming sessions and movie marathons, the 4K Ultra HD 17 inches display screen would just be apt. The audio output quality of the laptop should be such that the people seated in the last row in a room of 50 should be able to hear the audio played out from the laptop clearly. Now, one ambitious feature that I’d love to have if it ever gets introduced in the future, would be a 3D model projection of a structure or a design which I can control. Well, to be honest, that feature would help a lot of designers and architectures.
It all boils down to the TV now, the most neglected device at my place except that one time when I sit down with my family and friends to watch the World Cup Finals, Movies, or occasional console Gaming. My idea for an ideal TV would be a 65 inches 8K Display TV which does not require it to be mounted on the wall. This year’s CES had showcased LG’s rollable TV which honestly did look really cool and innovation like these will only encourage manufacturers to come out with amazing features. One more thing I’d like to have in the TV would be the gesture control feature to control various aspects of the TV, like by increasing or decreasing the volume without the use of remote and to switch between channels. A TV which is easy to carry whenever you’re moving out or changing places along with the above feature will surely be at the top of my TV buying list.
I absolutely love green foliage, and the idea of having a balcony or terrace garden is hugely fascinating. But with the packed work schedule and being an amateur in gardening, my dream of having a garden space remains a dream. I would like the idea of adding some smartness in the gardens as well that makes it easier to maintain them through the concept is somewhere close to being a reality but is yet to be out there and make our gardening experience more enjoyable and less stressful. I anticipate having a garden gadget that could water the plants as and when required or maybe connect to my smartphone so that I could command it to water the plants. Also, additions like keeping a close check on the soil quality and the need for adding fertilisers would be a great idea. It would be like a smart gardener that can also suggest some plants which I should have and the ones I should avoid as per the weather conditions. Another thing that my smart garden should do is inform me prior to any extreme weather conditions might that just be harmful to the plants so that I can prepare my garden beforehand and save it from being spoilt. For years we have been blaming technology for harming the environment and cutting trees, but this can be a change for repaying to nature in a small way. This concept will also encourage people to plant more trees or maybe have a small organic garden in their homes. After all, ecology and going green is what will ensure a healthy future ahead of us!
We, women, have a surreal relationship with getting dressed up and we may or may not follow fashion trends but always enjoy dressing up. But for me (in fact for 80% women) the biggest struggle starts just at the beginning of the day when I am running late for work and can’t decide what to wear, in fact, if it is a bad day, what I want to wear is either in the laundry or not ironed. So, for me, the idea of a perfect home appliance is what I would like to call the “Smart Closet”. Imagine how great would it be if the closet itself could keep a record of what all clothes you have and which ones need laundry or a dry cleaner. It would be even better if it could iron the clothes that need to be ironed so that we don’t need to do it last minute. Though some closets do have this feature of ironing your clothes already, my list doesn’t end with this. Obviously, the closet is smart, so there should be some functionality that is in sync with my smartphone, right? The closet should be able to suggest me looks as per given occasions like a personal digital stylist and maybe create a “what to wear today” calendar so that I don’t have to stress about it every day. In fact, it should also have a display that could show the latest trends and looks that would suit my body type. Whoa, that would seriously make dressing up so much fun without worrying unnecessarily about what, when and how to wear. Whichever tech company makes this device, will be extremely popular amongst girls.
The electronics, kitchen devices and other home appliances have already become too smart, but human needs are insatiable especially when we know that AI will definitely disrupt our homes in the near future. Despite refrigerators been way more than their utility, my idea for a perfect refrigerator demands more! I would still look forward to a refrigerator that would get smart enough to make my life easier even more. Can you relate to the struggle of realising that you are short of vegetables or items just when you start to cook? Wouldn’t it be great if there could be a refrigerator with an in-built internet system that could keep track of the inventory and alert me when I am running out of the items? In fact, you know the times when you want to cook but can’t decide what to cook? Since the world is getting smarter and digital at the same time, can I also get a little greedy and wish for a display screen where the refrigerator could suggest what can be cooked with the items available and maybe the recipes too? The basic idea of smart homes, gadgets and appliances is to make things extremely convenient for us. And if refrigerators come with an AI feature in them, they can do much more than this like maybe interacting with other smart electronics of the kitchen and suggest some great healthy recipes. Seems like a dream but hey, that’s the age of technology and gadgets, and nothing is impossible anymore, is it? You never know in a couple of years, it might just be available in the market to use!
TO THE MUSIC OF MY MIND
The very idea of a perfect gadget is an epitome of pure logical fallacy. But then again, one can only be human once in a lifetime but a slave to the desire for eternity. So be it. In an age, where chaos and anarchy rule the roost, misery and hatred walk prominent among men, peace and solace are extremely desirous. But wherefore lay the path to escape? Cause there must be one to calm baffled minds and aching hearts. To this, I stop to ponder, what is that one thing that has always been there and never grew old? Music, says my lurking heart and I rejoice to the idea. To quote Daniel Levitin, “Whenever humans come together for any reason, music is there, ….weddings, funerals, graduation from college, men marching off to war, stadium sporting events, a night on the town, prayer, a romantic dinner, mothers rocking their infants to sleep and college students studying with music as a background ….music is and was [always] part of the fabric of everyday life. Only relatively recently in our own culture, five hundred years or so ago did a distinction arise that cut society in two, forming separate classes of music performers and music listeners. Throughout most of the world and for most of human history, music-making was as natural an activity as breathing and walking, and everyone participated. Concert halls, dedicated to the performance of music, arose only in the last several centuries. Understanding why we like music and what draws us to it is, therefore, a window on the essence of human nature….” And that my friend brings us back to our equation with technology. I was 13 when I was introduced to a Music System for the very first time. It was a Wind-Up Gramophone player and originally belonged to my great grandfather. With time, things took a solemn turn. By the time I finished school, tape recorders and cassettes went moribund owing to the advent of new-age music systems running CDs and DVDs. Today, a 5.1 surround system is no more a cherished vanity, but music systems still continue to rule my fascination.
That is exactly my idea of a perfect gadget–A Music System that can read my mind and play to match my emotions, my current state of mind. The idea is as daunting as it sounds but I am willing to bet on it. Back in 2015, Bang & Olufsen’s BeoSound Moment offered a fair taste of emotion-based music. However, it required human fingers to land on a set of colours to try and match their mood and play a track accordingly. With Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning making a strong foray into almost everything, unrealistic dreams are slowly becoming a part of daily life. I would love to see a music system carrying the soul of AI and peeping into my mind to gauge my moments of joy or displeasure surrendered to music. I would lay my fingers o rest and let the music system unravel my inner self to soulful tunes. And, to spice up things a bit, let’s have the speakers self-control noise levels to match room size, surroundings and individual privacy in tandem. Now, that voice recognition is slowly picking up let mind recognition for a music system be in vogue. That would be something to look forward to!