Gift Guide

Coin, One Card To Rule Them All – All Your Credit Cards In One

Coin - One Card To Rule Them All

Coin – One Card To Rule Them All

Coin is the wallet minimalist’s dream come true.  ”Coin is a connected device that can hold and behave like the cards you already carry. Coin works with your debit cards, credit cards, gift cards, loyalty cards and membership cards. Instead of carrying several cards you carry one Coin. Multiple accounts and information all in one place.”

Using a smartphone app and a card reader (provided), you load all your different cards on to your Coin and voila the only other thing you need to carry is your ID.

When I first saw this thing I started salivating.  It’s so smart and slick and the $50 pre-order price vs $100 retail price is super tempting (If you want the details on how it works check out the website,  I almost jumped on it right away, but the more I’ve thought about it, the more I’ve realized it probably isn’t for me.  That being said, according to my Facebook feed, at least 5 of my friends have already ordered.

I’m not worried about the security… In fact, the electronic tether that notifies you if you get separated from your Coin is an interesting feature and it deactivates itself if you manage to lose it.

I am worried that at $100 it has only an estimated 2 year battery life (needs to be thrown away and replaced once it dies) and that I don’t need another device I can break, lose, get wet, etc.  Right now my wallet is the only thing I can accidentally drop in water or fall on hard without rendering it useless.  I get that this isn’t a problem for most people, but I know, for me, it is.

Beyond that, I see Coin as a cool technology to bridge the gap until we’re all paying for everything via our smartphones (NFC, bar codes, etc).  As Google Wallet expands and Paypal is being accepted at restaurants we’re headed towards not needing anything more than our phones and an ID (and, if you’re me, 3 extra batteries).

In the meanwhile, check out this top 10 list of minimalist wallets to go along with your Coin.


Holiday Gift Guide Round-up

Hanukkah might have just ended, but Christmas is just around the corner.   If you’re like me, you haven’t done nearly as much shopping as you were supposed to and now you’re starting to panic.  Have no fear! There is still time (click here for a list of retailers and the drop dead dates for pre-xmas delivery) to get your presents under the tree in time for that bleary eyed wonder we call Christmas morning.

To help you sort through all the options we here at TechtoLiveBy have compiled a list of our favorite holiday gift guides.  In no particular order…

Engadget’s Holiday Gift Guide 2009

Engadgets gift guide is always a personal favorite for gadget shopping.  It’s rarely the most creative gift list, but it’s suggestions are solid, main stream (so generally well received), and expansive.  You can’t go wrong starting with this list.

Favorite Suggestion: iPod Touch – See, it’s not creative, but it’s a damn good present.

Make: Holiday Gift Guide 2009

Like any good gift guide Make offers categories for boys, girls, cheap and expensive…But they’ve also got guides for DIY everything, ‘Mischief Makers’, Retrotech, Robots, Dangerous Giving, and much more.  These gifts are not for everyone, but the people that like them will LOVE them and they might even learn something.

Favorite Suggestion: Absinthe and Flamethrower – A fantastic title and it’s described as “…a sure-fire hit for people who want to get in touch with their inner MacGyver and for fans of television shows like MythBusters. (The book’s projects …) often involve building things that shoot or explode.”  Yup, not for kids…

Craft: Holiday Gift Guide 2009

Make’s sister site Craft offers just as much DIY goodness but with less of the hardcore geekiness.  Lists include ‘For the foodie’, green gifts, wearable tech, for gardners, and much more (including for the beekeeper).

Favorite Suggestion: Ventilated Bee Suit with Astronaut Hood – Because, really, who doesn’t need a bee proof suit!


Cheating a little bit with this one.  They don’t seem to have posted a gift guide, but just scroll down the first page of articles.  Every tool there would seriously entertain the handyman in your life.

Favorite Suggestion: Home Automation - They cover Insteon and X10 products for getting started with home automation.  Have no fear, this will be covered extensively here on TechtoLiveBy.

GLOSS Holiday Gift Guide 2009

This one is for the ladies… Mygloss is a mommyblogger site and offers a more feminine take then some of the sites above.  The lists are short, but the suggestions are good ones.

Favorite Suggestion: Mindflex – The wow factor of these new ‘brain controlled’ toys is pretty high.

Gawker Luxury Gift Guide 2009

Saved the most expensive for last.  Gawker has put together this list of high end gifts that most people would want, but probably wont be receiving this year.  Highlights include, golf clubs, a corset, wirless speakers and the Aston Martin Vantage.

Favorite Suggestion: Icon Light Sports Craft – Is it a Jet? Is it a Jet Ski? I have no idea, but it definitely IS $250,000.  But hey, it only requires an LSA Pilots Liscense and a small truck to tow it to your garage.

Happy Holidays from!