Wednesday, May 28, 2008


A Packaging Paradox

Today an iSlice came into our house. This little gizmo uses a ceramic blade to cut stuff safely, but due to some kind of witchcraft, it can't cut your fingers, or so the makers claim.

Amazingly that last bit is true, even I, well known for my ability to injure myself on anything sharp, can't get the iSlice to draw blood. (I spent a December evening in A&E bleeding profusely a couple of years ago after a friend ill-advisedly gave me a multitool for Christmas. I even cut myself on a tape dispenser at work today. Twice.)

One of the selling points is how it can be used to open those troublesome welded clamshell packages, that so many electronic items come into these days. Retailers and manufacturers love them because they show off the product, protect it and make life difficult for shoplifters. Consumers like you and me hate them because they're impossible to get into without a lot of brute force, swearing, and turning the plastic into a series of transparent finger-shredding blades.

So how has the iSlice been prepared for its journey to the shops?
Yup, you guessed it. How am I supposed to open this without cutting my fingers?**Obviously, I asked an adult to help me with the scissors. It's for the best.

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