Dear Santa, I know it’s been awhile since I last wrote. Probably like 40 years or so. Sorry man, I’ve been real busy with growing up and life and stuff. Anyway, this past year has been a pretty good year in which I’ve been more nice than I’ve been naughty. To be completely honest with you, I had every intention of being a bit more naughty this past year but I was too busy doing nice things for other people to follow through on those intentions. It feels a bit strange confessing all of this to someone I’m pretty certain doesn’t exist. If you do exist though and you’re reading this, please don’t take offence and send some of your thug elves to break my kneecaps with their little elf hammers or do a flyover and have your reindeer drop turds on my house.
Anyway, I want to get right down to it with the stuff I want for Christmas. I don’t know how up-to-date you are on the latest commercially available technologies, so I’m just going to provide a run-down of the various technical gadgets I’m interested in. Receiving any (or all!) of these for Christmas would make me very happy and may curb my naughtiness in 2016, assuming you’re into that kind of thing.
Roomba® 980 and Scooba® 450
The Roomba 980 is the latest model of vacuum cleaning robot from iRobot and the Scooba 450 is the companion floor cleaning robot. With these two items, I’ll never have to clean my house again. I tried to train my children to vacuum and scrub the floors but have failed at that. With retail price tags of $900 and $600 respectively, these units are way cheaper than children and will be way more effective at cleaning the house.
I’ll take pretty much anything new from Apple, starting with the Apple Watch because I would never drop $500 on a watch—even one that did more than the watch worn by Dick Tracy. Mostly though, I’m due for an upgrade to my iMac, which is over 5 years old now. The 27” model with 5k retina display would be great.
I already have one of these, but wanted to tell you about it because, well, let’s be honest here, you could stand to lose some pounds. The Fitbit is a band that you wear on your wrist that tracks how many steps you take in a day. It then syncs with an app on your phone that shows you how many steps you took during the day and how many calories you burned. You can also record all the calories you consume from all the food you eat and all the seasonal ale you drink around this time of year. The metrics are pretty cool and help you stay on track. With the Fitbit, you could trade in your traditional Santa suit for spandex by this time next year.
Amazon Kindle Paperwhite
I’ve had a Kindle since the first generation of the product came out in 2007. I upgraded a few years ago. I pretty much only read books on a Kindle now. The new Kindle Paperwhite would be great as it would even closer resemble paper to make my reading experience all that much better. Maybe with the Kindle Paperwhite, I’d finally finish War and Peace.
LG 55EG9100 Flat Panel TV
I have a tube television. Are you kidding me? Tubes! Every time I watch TV it’s like going back to the ’80s. I keep waiting for the television to explode but it just keeps working. I’ve thought about sabotaging it by putting a sledgehammer through the screen then looking at Mrs. Dewing and saying, “Whoa! How on Earth did that happen? Oh well, let’s go to Best Buy and pick up an LG 55eG9100.” I don’t think she’d fall for that though. She has like two master’s degrees. I even have a stand for a new flat panel. It’s littering my office like it’s an IKEA display. It’s just sitting there teasing me. “Hey, you should put a 55-inch flat panel on me stupid!” So irritating.
DJI Phantom 3 Professional
This is a mini-drone with an HD camera attached to it that retails for a mere $1,259. With the remote controller, I could fly it around and take pictures and video from up to 400 feet above the ground. This has all kinds of practical applications such as doing fly-overs of other people’s private property during the summer and taking pics of them sunbathing in the nude. Yeah, yeah, I know, “naughty boy” and all that. But seriously, privacy is dead.
GoPro HERO4 Session
This is the latest camera from the folks at GoPro, whose tagline is “Be a HERO.” Like the Fitbit, this is more for you than it is me because I can’t think of anyone who is more of a hero than you Mr. Santa Claus! You make millions of children happy and deliver all of those presents in just one night. Now, imagine if you had a GoPro HERO4 strapped to your hat while doing all of that and uploaded the video footage to YouTube. That would be freaking awesome!
Well, I hope that provides you with some good options to choose from. I deserve any and all of these tech gadgets because, even with those few lapses of judgement, I’ve been pretty nice this past year. Oh, and BTW, I’ll leave the usual plate of chocolate cookies and a White Russian on the fireplace mantel.
Scott Dewing is a technologist, teacher, and writer. He lives with his family on a low-tech farm in the State of Jefferson.