As its qualities are determined by the cutting edge of engineering rather than fashion or component cost, technology defines a competing system of value to traditional luxury. That hasn't stopped Bentley aiming for the old-school appeal with its curious clutch-style $20,000 laptop. Though about as powerful as a late-1990s toilet seat iBook, it even scooped the prestigious Microsoft Fashion PC Award.
You could even say that technology is a problem for makers of luxury goods. Compared to an iPhone, for example, a calculator-display $30,000 cellphone from Vertu has a serious credibility problem. One step removed from a Tomy Teletubbies Telephone sprayed with glue and rolled in diamonds, such designs tread a delicate balance between fashion and ridicule. By thoroughly concealing its functionality with creative design and ostentatious materials, however, Suissa computers' luxury desktop PCs aim to distract buyers from the spec sheet.
Makers of luxury computers have a choice to make: specs or sparkly stuff. The former invests in the diminishing returns of the aforementioned 'alternative' value system, which means maximal engineering at ostenstatious cost, doomed to rapid obsolescence. Boutique gaming PCs, where spending money on hardware is part and parcel of the enthusiast scene, are ground zero for this class of luxury item. What better example than the pure luxury PC above, which is named the Pure Luxury PC. Prices start about just shy of ten grand.
The other option is tradition; the luxuries of gold, mahogany and other artistic and material extravagances that even the most tech-illiterate consumer can appreciate. Here is the beautiful Moneual gold computer, jam-packed with features such as a Core 2 Duo processor, 6" display, and Windows Vista.
Neil Thapen’s Pink Trombone is a voice simulator: instead of telling it what to say, you individually move the soft and fleshy parts of the mouth, tongue and throat. There’s a lot of fun to be had moving around the circular purple tongue control and the bottom lip and hearing the machine sing. Presenting 🎶Pink […]
Microsoft gives away (ie forces) upgrades to Windows 10, and the price (ie reason) is that it is now “infested” with advertising, writes Tom Warren. Ads in the file explorer. Ads in core apps. Ads for Microsoft’s browser that pop up as system notifications when he uses Chrome. Microsoft added a notification center to Windows […]
We’ve all seen the uncanny, not-quite-there art produced by new AIs. Why Matt Reynolds reports on an area computers might be expected to excel at creatively: programming themselves. And this one’s doing it the same way humans do, by stealing and remixing. DeepCoder uses a technique called program synthesis: creating new programs by piecing together […]
All the filters in the world won’t save your smartphone pics from a shaky hand. To really step up your mobile photography game, you’ll need some kind of mount to hold it steady. You could buy a smartphone attachment for a conventional camera tripod, but who wants to carry that kind of gear everywhere they […]
The forced transition from analog to digital TV signals was probably met with relative indifference from people with Netflix subscriptions and the “I don’t even own a TV” snoots. But anyone living in the vast swaths of the country that don’t have guaranteed high-speed internet, broadcast TV is a perfectly valid (and 100% free) way […]
When Apple revealed the new MacBook in 2016, one of the biggest issues raised with the notebook’s new design (aside from ire over the slew of new adapters you’d inevitably have to buy) was the removal of one of its most beloved proprietary features, the magnetic charging cable. Thankfully, third-party peripheral makers have taken up […]