Today’s must-read links from around the Internet…
And now for some wise words of advice from Kempt’s resident phone etiquette expert and certified lady-person, Michelle Ong.
Let’s get one thing straight: nothing ruins romance faster than a bad sext.
Even a perfect date can be spoiled if your best-intentioned goodnight message turns into a slightly vulgar description of your “peepee”—or worse, a deluge of winking emoticons and a picture. Ugh. Sure, the standards of courting a lady online aren’t much different from doing it in real life these days, but sexting comes with its own nuanced set of rules.
We’re of the mind that if you’re going camping, you’ve committed to roughing it—you’re leaving the creature comforts of the indoors for a reason. But here’s one shortcut we’ll endorse: the BioLite.
Esquire tipped us off to the packable stove burner that runs on just about anything you can scrounge up from the woods (sticks, pinecones, etc.), and we’re mostly impressed by its ability to charge your USB device on the go. That means you’ve got extended range on your GPS or smartphone, should you feel like spending more time in the wild than one charge can handle.
As long as you’re using the phone only for emergencies and/or finding the nearest water source—not retweeting @Justin_Buber.
You know what they say about guys with small hands: they buy Lamborghini smartphones. The phone part of the newly released Lamborghini TL700 is a bit of a yawner, with middle-of-the-road specs via Android and Qualcomm. The rest is a bit of a gagger, with gold casings and a back plate made from crocodile skin. To our comrades in Russia (where the phone will go on sale this summer): spend the $2,750 domesticating this golden crocodile instead of overcompensating for the one in your pants.
It’s no mystery why telephone booths went the way of the hitching post: 90% of Americans now use mobile devices of some sort. (The other 10% use rotary phones to order more hitching posts, apparently.) Yes, the pay phone is obsolete—but we’re not dusting off the pay phone.
Last week, information leaked about Google’s plans to release a chunky pair of glasses that will basically act as a smartphone. But earlier this month, something much more impressive flew a little further under the radar—augmented-reality contacts.
They’re being developed by a company called Innovega with help from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, who helped give us a little thing called the Internet. They’ll project full 3D and HD images onto what will look like a 20-foot panoramic screen in your field of vision—and you’ll be putting them in by 2014.
Things like this tend to set our minds racing. And the more we learn, the more we get… a little ahead of ourselves. That’s why, to make sense of it all, we like to break down what they said (cold, scientific, occasionally downerish) versus what we heard (majestic, full of hope, in a word: awesome).
We conclude Kempt’s Cell Phone Etiquette Month with what we hope will also conclude the once-delightful, now-grating fascination with “shit people say.” To that (merciful) end, we respectfully present you with: Shit Cell Phone Users (Shouldn’t) Say.
We’ve gotten a big response to our humble promotion of the phone stack, and it’s led us to two inescapable conclusions. First, this is an idea whose time has come. Second, some stragglers just aren’t ready for it. For every few supporters on Facebook, there was at least one holdout, bitterly clinging to the right to text and tweet while you’re sitting right there. So to speed the glorious chariot of progress, we’d like to piece through the objections one at a time…
We usually take a pretty hard line against phones at dinner, but a new trick just popped up that gives us hope for the future.
It’s called a phone stack, and it’s a buzzing, flashing reminder of every phone-etiquette rule the world seems to have forgotten.
It’s been a busy few days, so you might have been distracted from some of the recent news—like the newly discovered spy software in your phone, the Russian elections and the enormous WWII-era bomb being dug out of a river in Germany. Luckily, we’re here to catch you up…
We don’t like playing etiquette police, but lately we’ve been seeing a lot of confusion around the proper role of cell phones at dinner. In particular, a certain tech blogger seems to be on his way to defining this as the new normal.
But it isn’t. And it’s not going to be.
Turning your phone off is a pretty strong signal in the modern age—especially if you make a point of it. But if your innate chivalry keeps you from being too obvious…we may have a handkerchief for you.
This one comes from myphoneisoff.com (hat tip), with a special lining to blog cell signals and a clear, silent declaration of your newly unwired state stitched on the outside. The idea is to leave it on the table as you sit down to eat, but we don’t see any reason why it should stop there. Sure it’s a bit aggressive, but desperate times call for desperate accessories. Consider us onboard.
We’re not much for the high-profile gadget hustle, which is why we’ve given the iPad circus a pretty wide berth this week. But we will say that, as men of style, we’re glad its’ not pocket-sized.
The past couple years have seen a flood of slightly-too-large plastic bricks arrive on the market, each indispensable enough to pose a serious threat the shape of the American pocket. In case you’ve forgotten, we’ll say it again: the less you have in your pants, the better they look. You’re running a risk with anything larger than a RAZR. (Remember those?) But that kind of logic doesn’t do very well against the draw of an iPhone.
Which is why we were happy to see this year’s gamechanger is too large to fit into anything other than a bag. Surely this time around, we could have a gadget that didn’t deform the world’s pant legs or violate any unspoken laws of decorum.
Then, of course, we saw this…
When we ran across this hand-powered charger, we were foolish enough to think it was actually the first of its kind, but it turns out there’s a slightly chunkier emergency charger that’s already shipping.
The Yogen (hat tip) charges up with a string-pull mechanism that might be a little bit easier than finger spinning, and if you’ve got $40 handy, you can get one before the month is out. We’re not wild about the see-through case…but if it’s staying in your glove compartment, we doubt it’ll be a problem.
The next time you run out of juice just as you’re calling for directions—or in the middle of any declarations of undying affection you may have coming your way—you can spin this doohickey around your finger and get a few minutes of power to finish things off in a suitable manner. Keep it in a desk drawer or a glove compartment, and you may never go flat again. So far it’s still a concept, but with a little luck we’ll have it in our pockets before too long.
While everyone else is thinking about the latest, greatest smartphone (excuse us, superphone), we’re more concerned about all the gadgetry we’ve left in the backs of cabs over the years. Fortunately, it looks like there’s a gadget for that.
The ZOMM is a silicon-packed keychain that sounds an alarm whenever you move an unhealthy distance from your brand new phone. The wireless leash works via Bluetooth, so you can also use it as a speakerphone, but the real point is to get a priceless wakeup call just as you’re leaving the coffee shop—or, depending on your luck, just as the cab pulls away.
The iPhone’s been ruling the gadget world for upwards of two years now, but it’s finally got a worthy competitor. As of today, it’ll be splitting the gadget-obsessed market share with the Motorola Droid, a Google-powered, open source contender for the title of Best Phone Ever.
The big additions are a Blackberry-style physical keyboard for those tired of touchscreen tapping, along with a supercharged navigation system courtesy of Google Maps, but the real pull is a chance to get a little techier. Unlike the iPhone, the Droid lets you customize just about everything about the interface, with the help of third-party apps, downloadable skins and old-fashioned tinkering. If you feel like making the gadget your own, it’s easy to do—unlike the iPhone, which will always belong to the folks at Cupertino.
If you’re looking for a more thorough blow-by-blow, we recommend this one…but at this point, you might as well just see it for yourself.
We warned you before, and now it’s happening. Google is taking over your voicemail, and even though resistance isn’t exactly futile, we’re not sure why you’d bother.
As of Monday, you can import Google Voice to your current phone number, which means that, among other things, you’ll never have to listen through your voicemails again. Once you’re plugged into the Google Voice network, you can convert all your voicemails to text and sort through them like emails, which means you won’t have to skip through Aunt Gladys’s dictation of her travel arrangements before you hear from your Thursday night date. It’s simple, easy, and it’s the first step in a long road that most likely leads to the end of the phone bill.
But for now, let’s take it one step at a time.
LinksUrbanDaddy DRIVEN A Continuous Lean A Headlong Dive A Suitable Wardrobe Archival Clothing Art of Manliness Blackbird Blog BULLETT The Choosy Beggar Coolhunting Cool Material DETAILS Die, Workwear! FashionBeans Four Pins GQ Hypebeast The Impossible Cool Jake Davis The Midwestyle Mister Mort The Moment Put This On Racked The Sartorialist The Selby Selectism Valet Vanity Fair Daily Vulture Wax Wane What I Saw Today Well Spent