Okay – I have tried so hard to resist writing this post but I just can’t hold out. I….must….talk….about…..Scanbox. Or as I like to call it, Scambox. It is one of those inventions that has you (okay, really me) rolling your eyes and saying, “Seriously??? People are paying for that?” Well, yes they are and I think what irks me most is that I didn’t come up with the “Scambox” first.
In case you haven’t seen it yet, Scanbox is the brainchild of an Australian trio of app creators who figured out that if you create a pop up cardboard box and pitch it as a scanner, people will not just believe you but also send you money. They have essentially created a stage for your paperwork. Your iPhone can then be placed on top in the absolutely perfect position to best scan/photograph your item. It’s that simple.
If you want fancy you can pay a few bucks extra for the battery operated LED lights to enhance your cardboard box experience. Nathan Hurst over at Wired.com sums up the invention in a recent article with this catchy title: “Kickstarter of the Week: A Portable Scanner for Smartphones”
So why you ask is this über simple idea driving me bonkers? Do I have cardboard box issues? Nope, I don’t think so. It’s the sales pitch.
I watched the Scanbox video over at Kickstarter.com, a fantastic website that hosts a grass-roots fundraising bonanza for all things cool, new, and wacky. Nothing says rockin’ Saturday night like a bunch of friends hunched over a laptop watching startup pitches but yes, that is how we pass the time over at my place. Kickstarter is like Shark Tank but for regular folks. We’re in it for the power. But I digress…..
The Scanbox video pitch starts rolling and I immediately realize that I need to slap my companions. They are oohing and ahhing over all the great things that this box can do. Look, it’s a photocopier. Look, you can scan images. Wow! You can do power point presentations with the Scanbox. At this point I found myself shouting (yes, I really was), “IT’S JUST A PIECE OF CARDBOARD!!! THE PHONE DOES THE WORK! THIS IS NOT A SCANNER! IT’S JUST A BOX PEOPLE!”
Alas it was too late. Not even my not so pretty recreation of the Scanbox using a flashlight and beer box (don’t judge) could convince them. It was at that moment that I realized – these Australian’s were brilliant and damn it, I will most likely be finding a Scanbox in my holiday stocking this year.
So, when you find yourself heading over to Kickstarter to watch this video – come on, you know you will in five seconds – and then whipping out some plastic to order one, I beg you to keep this thought in mind: IT’S JUST CARDBOARD – IT IS NOT A SCANNER. Don’t make me slap you too.
If you’re on Facebook then you know the obscene amounts of sayings, photos, and trivial drivel that circulate on a daily basis. Mixed in with that are some really fantastic quotes, photos, and information. It’s not just a melting pot – it’s a cauldron of the immaterial and the wonderful.
I absolutely poached the saying above from a friend’s page because it falls under the” randomly awesome stuff you find on FB” category. Applicable to writing and life in general, it succinctly brings home the point that no one needs to be pigeonholed into just one “thing” in life.
Every day we make choices – what time to get up, what to wear, what to eat, who to talk to, and where to go. Make the choice to be more – to experience new things, to go after the dreams, to expand your world to, to be everything, because you CAN!!!!
I have a pressing issue that can wait no longer to be discussed. Draw Something. Are you familiar with this smart phone app? It’s a slightly addictive game that is basically worldwide Pictionary© on your phone/ipad® and I have a problem.
Am I the only one who gets a little twinge of sadness when someone exits a game? Am I alone in my quest for better words because, let’s face it, how many times can one draw a penguin, an igloo, and that weird cartoon girl with the big yellow bow? And how many uncomfortable times do we have to watch people try to draw something for the word lick? Ick…..
I would like to direct this next portion to the nudgers out there – and you know who you are. Do you think that I spend so many hours crafting carefully drawn depictions of household items for my benefit? Or to avoid writing? No people, it’s all for you. I certainly am not hoarding points so that I can expand my color palette to every hue of the rainbow for my own sake. It is simply because I want your guessing experience to be as rich and enjoyable as possible. That’s right, I do this for YOU!
So please, don’t NUDGE me when I have to step away from the phone to conduct the rest of my life. And don’t JUDGE me when my drawing of the Eiffel tower comes out resembling more like the leaning tower of Pisa.
This game means something to me – it means being there for YOU. You’re welcome.
Be forewarned that this post is riddled with sports metaphors – and that I neither play nor actively watch any competitive sports. I just felt like using them and so you have a 50/50 chance that I have the right sports/life combo. Play ball!
We all have unique and busy lives… okay, some of you might not be that busy, but I’m sure you have some stuff to do. Sometimes things get ratcheted up a notch and life goes from “normal” busy to something akin to standing in a batting cage while the pitching machine hurls 102 mile an hour fast balls at you along with a few curve balls for good measure. There is nowhere to run. That leaves just two choices: stand still and end up looking like a bad piece of tenderized meat or swing hard and fast until that @#$)@9 machine runs out of ammo.
Dead center in the batter’s cage is where life has been for me lately. I’ve spent an obscene amount of time reading self-help books, start up business info, and of course, the all telling daily horoscopes. This trifecta of printed knowledge, along with a couple of shake ups in my personal life, has been the catalyst for some major changes. Time to start knocking them out of the park.
The moments of leisurely strolling the green and waiting for just the right wind speed velocity to take my swing are over. No more meandering! It’s time to be the driving force behind….well, me. And now that I am a self-educated home personal improvement expert I want to share this – you should be the driving force behind….well, you!
We are individual athletes playing our best game in the team sport called life. (Sports metaphor AND cliché – nice touch don’t you think?) Why spend the time on the sidelines watching other players make the scores? If weeks of daily horoscopes and boot strap entrepreneur biographies have taught me anything it’s this – we are our own best chance of success.
I for one would like a good Zamboni – the clean slate maker of the sports world. Nothing says launching point like a three ton ice scraper smoothing over the bumps and rough patches to create a fresh surface for the next game. So saddle up and let’s get this rodeo started. Game on!