gadgetsGadgets are not limited to those that are considered high- technology. They have been around since time immemorial. Man has always endeavored to make life easier eventually leading to their birth.

Human race have always created tools with specific applications that were initially considered as novelties. We say initially because it is something unfamiliar. Other times, man’s hesitation to accept anything new, as with technology, has hampered development. Currently, industries are dedicated to the advancement of technology—creating new tools to make living that much easier. Other industries, however, such as Brookstone and Richard Thalheimer’s website, are committed to popularizing them.

Without foresight, gadgets are lost

We are all familiar with these names: Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, and Leonardo da Vinci. We know them to be inventors but take away one thing, and they might as well have died in obscurity. That one thing? FORESIGHT. They understood that anything we might consider as toys todays can eventually be regarded as indispensable tools.

Without their foresight, that one elusive and rare quality, we could be living in the dark ages now. Without it, there would be no electricity, film, a means of communication, and flight. Those gadgets, though we may not notice it all the time because we have become desensitized, possess more value than mere novelty.

The wheel and the iPhone

Ride your car. Take the public transportation. Bike through the woods. We take it now for granted but the wheel is probably one of the earliest gadgets ever invented. We take for granted how truly revolutionary it is. And yet, we rely on it every single day to get from one point to another.

A more recent technological advancement is the iPhone. It’s now slowly becoming something similar to the wheel. It’s become a necessity. It wouldn’t be surprising if the iPhone becomes one of those gadgets that will reshape how we communicate.

Richard Thalheimer, President and founder of, an online gadget vendor, and founder and former CEO of The Sharper Image, is quoted as saying that the iPhone may one day be regarded as a device that ignited a second revolution in computing. The first revolution being desktop computing. Hand- held computing, which the iPhone started, would be in the forefront of this second revolution.

Gadgets are not created equal

Gadgets are not borne out of nothing. Most of them nowadays, or any invention for that matter, are built on existing technologies. The gadget world is layered. They fall under any of these four categories: mechanical, application, electronic, and programmable.

The wheel is a type of mechanical gadget upon which the pulley, bicycle, and sailboat was based. After the discovery of electricity, new gadgets were invented to make use of this newly harnessed energy. Electronics such as the television, radio, and quartz watch utilize this new discovery.

Electronics were borne out of inventors playing around with the idea of electronic information through microprocessors. Microprocessors in turn gave rise to programmable devices such as computers, tablets, MP3 players, and of course, smartphones like the iPhone. To augment these programmable devices, application gadgets were developed. This will include Microsoft Office, iTunes, Adobe Photoshop, and other computer programs that are useful for specific tasks.

Richard Thalheimer knows that there really is more than just mere novelty. He says that most people patronize a gadget because it presents something new, something to make life easier. The thing is though, people forget that these gadgets exist not merely for entertainment purposes, but are actually functional necessities. Indeed, Thalheimer says that he relies on his iPhone, his nose hair trimmer, his garage door opener, his electric toothbrush—all gadgets that were once considered as novelties.

His companies, both old and current sell quirky, functional, and entertaining whether mechanical or programmable or even applications. He has seen all kinds of gadgets that either sell like hotcakes or are simply left on the shelves to collect dust. The Sharper Image and are specialty stores that allow the Franklins and Edisons of the world to be recognized.

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