CES 2013: The Future’s So Bright, I’m Very Afraid

Views From The Consumer Electronics Show

Hiding behind an iPad and a pair of 3D specs won’t save you. The robots of the future can smell your fear. Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

I’ve just spent the last half an hour browsing photos of the tech innovations on display at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show.

Remember that Friends episode where Chandler expresses his fear of growing old and being alone, apart from his crazy and a large collection of snakes? That’s going to be me, only I’ll be surrounded by a shit load of electronic devices I can’t operate that will gradually learn to communicate with one another, form an alliance and plot my untimely demise.

Don’t believe me? Walk this way.

Polaroid Phone Lens. For Your Phone. 

Views From The Consumer Electronics Show

Image: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

I’m sure this device was intended to provide keen photographers of the future with ample opportunities to capture quality long distance shots with the minimum of fuss. Uh huh. In real life it will invariably be used by pervs on buses to collect upskirt shots.

Still, it’s not like either of those options would be open to me since I would break this little beauty right off my phone within seconds of attaching it.

Part In My Downfall Rating: 5/10. It’s watching me already. I can tell.

Winbot: Robot Window Cleaner

Views From The Consumer Electronics Show

Image: Image: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

Given how inept I am at operating the spray bottle and two cloth combo my mother insists is necessary for crystal clear window panes, you’d imagine that a little guy you attach to the window to do the job would be a wonderful labour saver for me in my dotage.

Then I read the instructions for this ‘easy to use‘ gadget and had a massive panic attack. It scares me now. What happens when I can’t move fast enough to outrun it?

Part In My Downfall Rating: 7/10. At least I now know I prefer being watched to being chased.

Hapilabs Electronic Fork


It looks like a Pot Noodle fork, but you’re far more likely to experience guilt than a good old spray down with nutritionally valueless chicken and mushroom flavour sauce  if you use this incorrectly.

According to the blurb, the fork “collects interesting data, such as how many bites of food you have taken, track[s] the frequency with which you take bites [and] records your eating schedule”.

I have two issues with this.

No.1. One of the few things I’m looking forward to about being of pensionable age is not having to think about maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regime. I intend to eat everything I can afford and a lot of things I can steal.

No.2. My mother (twice in one post, she’ll be honoured) has nagged me about my food intake since she had to cede control of it when I moved away from home. She’ll never allow anyone to take over from her, even if it is a fancy, gender specific piece of cutlery. Ever.

Part In My Downfall Rating: 9/10. Fantastic. So now I’m paranoid, out of breath and my cutlery is trying to tell me I’m fat.

On second thoughts, I think I might forgo the whole tech thing and invest in a vivarium. I’ll feel safer.

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