By Evan Ackerman
It’s a hallmark of designers these days to drastically underestimate the utility of their creations. In this case, their overreaching zealousness has made me actually dislike something which I might otherwise find cool: a cellphone that you dial with holes rather than buttons. If you take a step back from the gimmick of the new interface, you realize that this is pretty silly: you can’t dial it with one hand, and it might even be tough to dial with two lest you stab your finger right through your palm. Now, I’m all for innovation and exploring new concepts. But this description, from the designers, is completely over the top:
“Tarati (in Sanskrit, meaning â€œthroughâ€?) is a step towards rewriting cell phone history. Tarati enables the user to connect with others by passing fingers, in order, through key holes. This action of dialing alone is a more magical experience and, hence, more indicative of whatâ€™s really happening beyond the visible realm. … Tarati beckons the user to â€œtouchâ€? someone without physically touching a single key. Its design reflects human connectivity in a less material/mechanical, more sensual, way. Tarati is a subtle device, but ever-so-powerful in its fearlessness.”
Sanskrit? Rewriting cell phone history? Ever-so-powerful in its fearlessness? Please. It’s a phone with holes. It’s kinda neat, but is it really necessary?