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Friday, August 29, 2008

The Ultimate Wallet

Once in a while a new product comes along, so well-designed, so cool, that I just have to get one. When I visited Yahoo earlier this month, two separate researchers had independently bought one and I instantly fell in love. I dropped some not so subtle hints to my family who got me one for my birthday and I am now a happy man. I'm talking of the All-Ett, a wallet replacement designed to remain thin even holding my many cards. My back pocket has never been more excited.

The All-Ett solves a problem I shouldn't have. I count 16 plastic cards currently in my wallet and that's only because I make a strong effort to keep the number down. We have the technology for me to hold a single card that can be loaded with the information of all of the other cards. Many universities, including Chicago and Northwestern, now have a single card that serve as ID, libary card, food service and other purposes. But there we have a centralized authority. It would drive the privacy advocates mad, but I'd love a national ID with both a smart chip and RFID and a mechanism that would let any other organization embed needed data on the card.

Why stop there? I shouldn't need a wallet at all. Every piece of plastic or paper in my wallet, including business cards, pictures of my kids and cash, could be handled by my all-purpose cell phone. It wouldn't be difficult to even have it open doors and allow me to start my car so I wouldn't need to carry keys either.

But, alas, those days are far away and I'll need to live with my many cards for a while. At least I have a decent place to store them now.

13 comments:

  1. Do you americans carry no money around anymore? I ask because the ultimate wallet has no place for change.

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  2. Do you non-Americans carry change in your wallet? Mostly I think we just use our pockets.

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  3. > ... cash, could be handled by my all-purpose cell phone.

    That is common in Japan.
    http://www.nttdocomo.co.jp/english/service/osaifu/index.html
    # "osaifu"=wallet, "keitai"=cell phone

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  4. Lance: Does the wallet include a pocket for change? Which version of the wallet do you have?

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  5. I too am an all-ett owner of 2+ years. A coworker also bought one after seeing mine.

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  6. With no coins worth more than $0.25, they aren't much of a priority.

    Lance: Now that you have a solution to the wallet problem, what do you do about the key problem? Aren't they more likely to tear your pockets out? or do you wear them tied to your waist?

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  7. From the All-Ett website:

    Q: Is there a place for change?

    No. Because change is bulky, the ALL-ETT® Billfold was not designed to carry change.

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  8. It is made of leather :-(

    One made of some synthetic material would be just fine, without contributing for the demand for animal skins.

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  9. Animal skin is renewable resources, while today's synthetic materials are made from mideast oil.

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  10. It is made of leather :-(

    One made of some synthetic material would be just fine, without contributing for the demand for animal skins.


    I guess you didn't pay attention: The Original is made of nylon.
    http://www.all-ett.com/products.asp#allett

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  11. Americans use credit cards and bills. Much easier to carry than change.

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  12. I ordered one of these and was charged 3 weeks ago, but it still hasn't showed up and customer service hasn't been responding to my emails. Pretty disappointed in the service so far; I'll update when (if?) it arrives.

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  13. The typical sizing on the greeting
    Plastic card could be picked but somewhat distinctive from the normal sizing can make the actual greeting card for you to standout from all of the frequent type of cards.

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