I give in. Everyone is asking me for recommendations on wearables and presence gifts for presents. Tis the season. So here they are, some of my favorites holiday shopping tips for the geek girl who wants to stay connected without losing her head. Oh yes, and all of them can be ordered online so you can avoid the holiday craziness and keep your holiday spirit alive.
Purse in Boots is such a brilliant idea, I am so glad someone finally acted on it, and with style. I haven’t gotten mine yet, but I am hoping Santa will deliver. I gave up on the “one for you, one for me” holiday shopping. So I guess I will have to wait. They come in several different styles. Looks like they are selling out quickly. So if your girl needs her phone on hand and hates pockets, I would order them soon.
Tile, a tracking device to attach to all the things you don’t want to lose. Ok, so this may not be what they meant to track (much as we would like it too sometimes). But these great little trackers use crowd sourcing to find your favorite items from bikes to keys. Buy them in multipacks and you can keep track of all the good stuff you care about and even have some left over to put in your kids backpacks. Come to think of it, this might be the new wine charm I have been looking for.
Shine Bloom takes an already well designed beautiful fitness and sleep wearable device and makes it into a fashion statement. I love the approach behind Sunny Vu’s work to make wearables wearable. It should be something that will be worn even when its discharged. Not that this is a major issue with Shine, as the charge should last a year, rather than ever several days.
Ring.ly caught my eye early last year. They are just now sending out their early orders, but I have seen them in person and I can’t wait for mine to arrive. Being one who often misses calls and notifications from turning the ringer off, this will be a blessing. I never liked having the phone on the table. Unlike men,we girls tend not to have pockets big enough to accommodate a phone that will be close to the body (and feel the vibration). Founder, Christina Merkando, has done a beautiful job designing wearable functional art.
I love these little containers. When I travel I use one for each of my medicinal necessities (sleep, pain, allergies) in color coding. They are sturdy and well sealed. The moment Aldo, the founder and friend, turned me onto these little Jyars I couldn’t get enough of them. I love giving them as the unexpected gift too. Any geek girl who is into homeopathic remedies will thank you for this one. OK, I admit it is not wearable (although they fit in an old film canister sling). But when I can find my meds to keep me from being tired, in pain or sneezing, I am definitely more present.
For those of us to who consume too much caffeine or sugar and not enough water, here’s an interesting new one. Dehydration or over stimulation on caffeine can be major presence inhibitors. So keep your geek girl hydrated. Vessyl is supposed to evaluate and track your intake coming from your beverages. Unless you have a built in cup holder on your hip, this one is not wearable. I have to admit, I haven’t tried it yet, so not sure of the accuracy. I am waiting for mine and look forward to seeing how it works. If it just gets me to increase my daily hydration, I will be happy enough.
Does your geek girl like to cook? If she is like me, the iPad is the source of the best recipes quickly. Keep the tech clean and easy to access by giving her the cooking spoon stylus. They can be found at loads of places, including Bed, Bath and Beyond. A great stocking stuffer or hostess gift for the geek girl cook (or her partner/kids who dangerously messes with her tech with gooey fingers).
All these devices and their chargers can be both hard to keep track of and batteries loaded. I love having a docking/charging station for them when I get home. (If your geek girl has kids, you might want two.) This keeps them at the ready for my next adventure, but keeps me present for my family. There are many different styles, so rather than take my recommendation, look for one that matches hers. I like this combo dock and charger to minimize cables. Wearable tech is great, but most of them still need to be charged fairly regularly. Until the battery life issue is fixed, at least you know will know where the chargers and devices are in the house.
Another beautiful and functional wearable that is starting to ship now is the Spire. It is all about balance, and tracks breathing as well. For us ladies, we can wear it most discretely in the cleavage part of the bra. But it can also be clipped at the hip. I recently met with the founder, Neema Moraveji, who is part of the Stanford Calming Technology Lab and got to see the device first hand. I have high hopes for this one. There is great science behind it, which takes it beyond the gadget factor. Keep an eye out for it. If your geek girl is patient enough, she might be happy with getting on the pre-order list.
To give the ultimate gift of presence, let’s go low tech. One of my favorites are the chat packs created by Bret Nicholaus and Paul Lowrie. You can find them in loads of local bookstores and gift shops (and of course on Amazon.com). They come in different themes. Great for sparking a little conversation while devices are docked during dinner. My kids even are willing to partake and even enjoy it. I particularly like the Chat Pack Extreme.
So there you have it, my ten recommendations for wearables and presence for presents this holiday season. I will be spending my holiday crunching data and preparing for my dissertation on wearables and presence of mind. I will make a point of checking out to be present as a present with my family during the holidays. I will think of you all bringing presence as presents this year. Feel free to share any ideas that you have for great devices and tips on wearables and presence. I think we all could use them. Warmest of wishes!