Either as a culprit or a witness, we've all been there. Your niece's piano recital, your sister's wedding, your best friend's funeral. Wherever it's been, it never fails to happen: someone forgets to turn off their phone and, at the most inopportune time, a ringer detonates with as much tact as an air horn in a cathedral.
Thankfully, Victor Johansson has come up with a solution that could put an end to all that red-faced scrambling in pockets and purses. The UK-based designer has designed what he calls the Escape Jacket, a jacket that features a Faraday cage in its inside pocket. Simply slip your phone inside the pocket and all radio waves are blocked.
While today's 24/7-connected culture has no problem turning on and tuning in, they do have a problem with dropping out. Here's what the dreadlocked Johansson had to say about that:
During the research phase of this project the idea of "time as a luxury" came to be a main theme. After trying to find ways to give people more time I finally ended up with the idea of removing (connected) time instead since luxury is often more about the things you remove than the things you add. The idea is that as soon as you leave work, or just want a break you put your phone in the inner pocket of the jacket and you terminate all connectivity. By using the pocket as an off switch you make mobile communication a bit more tangible, there is something very satisfactory about being angry and throwing your phone in your pocket to end a call.
Amen, brother. There's even an NFC chip embedded in the fabric that turns your phone's antenna off to save battery life.
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I'm assuming Neil Young would endorse the Escape Jacket, albeit figuratively. Shakey's never been one for commercials. So in honor of the great Canadian bard and David Carr's great piece in the New York Times Magazine, I'm going to turn off my phone and drop out to "Cortez the Killer."
Credit: Victor Johansson