Paris with a Flexible Phone and a Sweet Tooth

by Bruce Kasanoff on December 7, 2011

Sorry we’re not sorry (désolées que nous ne sommes pas désolées), but life has been too fun to stop and write blog posts.

Julie and Jane (that’s us!) have been running around Paris with our hot-off-the-presses Flexible Phones.

Imagine a stiff piece of Saran Wrap about as big as a paperback book, but as thin as its cover, and you get the idea. You can bend FP, when appropriate look clear through it, and use it as a Frisbee – but we don’t endorse the latter owing to its steep $399 price tag.

Whip this thing out of your pocket and you have a magic window onto the world around you. Jane confidently walked into La Cure Gourmande and had a blissfully intelligent conversation with a lovely Dutch woman who didn’t speak a word of French or English; FP instantly translated their words.

(Note to calorie counters… FP can display a calorie estimate for any baked good you hover it over, but we disabled that function.)

Later in the day, we were writing postcards down by the Seine – a cliche, we know – and inspiration struck: what if we just held FP up between us and – gasp! – talked. Would the magic glass record our words? Could we preserve a record for future generations of our delightful repartee? Winner in the back, yes! Watch for our Conversations with Two French Doves post, just as soon as we figure out how to download content from a piece of Saran Wrap.

In the Louvre, we were suddenly wise and insightful. FP had something to say about every masterpiece, and at one point we were even able to explain to a Chinese family (instant translation strikes again) how Peter Paul Rubens spent his youth copying woodcuts by Hans Holbein the Younger and eating bon bons. We may have taken a few liberties with the supplied text.

Dinner was a delight. No more accidental orders by Julie of blood sausages or essence of brains, thanks to FP’s ability to translate the menu. Talk about magic (and we shall, in a later post)… FP doesn’t just translate the menu, it replaces each word, but preserves the look and feel of the menu. Suddenly France is America, and vice versa, if you happen to be a French person in America.

It gets better… FP is like the perfect gentleman, always rushing to the defense of little ol’ defenseless us. We can summon a taxi just by tapping FP, and then it turns brilliant red to help the taxi driver spot us. It tells us how long until the next train pulls in, how many steps to the top of the castle, and – most importantly – where can we find a restroom without a line?

We enthusiastically give the Flexible Phone five hot chocolates, our highest possible rating.

(Author’s Note: this story was inspired by the videos below and the real deal, the blog Sheets of Egyptian Cotton.)

Subscribe to Now Possible stories in a reader (it doesn’t have to be flexible)

Previous post:

Next post: