In chapter two of Yesterday’s Demons, Fritz describes the ludicrous amount of technology planet Verde once had before the cataclysmic Blackout tossed the world into the Dark Ages:
Well having chips inside everything was great for when you just had to turn on the toaster with your mobile, which I guess people must have needed to do back then. … [But the] excessiveness of it all is really a bit embarrassing.
Pre-Blackout Verde is not too far from where we are today. We have smartphones, smart homes, and smart appliances. When I wrote the lines above, I tried to think of the most absurd “smart device” I could imagine. To succinctly describe a complete technological overdose, what’s something that, at least in our world, would almost certainly never be “smart”?
I thought toasters were a pretty safe bet, because how is your phone ever going to put a piece of bread into one? But it turns out I was oh so wrong.
A “smart” toaster, complete with an app for your phone that communicates with the toaster over Bluetooth, is on its way. It is a nifty solution to the problem of burning your bread to a crisp because you toasted it without realizing the previous hungry person to use the device had set it to 11. But… it’s a toaster! Are we really so lazy we now have a toasting app?
The point: I clearly stink at trying to dream up the ridiculous.