I'm by no means a gadget guru (seriously, I still listen to CDs and take notes with pen and paper—now, where's my Ovaltine?), but I'm all about cool products that solve real problems. Here are a few gizmos that may just change your life. Man, technology these days. You know, when I was your age . . .
A Purse That Charges Your iPhone
You guys. You guys, you guys, YOU GUYS. It's a purse that charges your iPhone.Everpurse, invented by Chicago social worker Liz Salcedo, is a zip-up pouch with a built-in charging pocket for power on the go. Never again will your screen turn black in the middle of an important call or game of Words With Friends. (And yes, it even works with the new iPhone 5.) The project recently reached its goal on Kickstarter (www.kickstarter.com/profile/everpurse). With a pledge of $129 or more, you can still order one by Oct. 13.
A Plant That Waters Itself
Indoor plants are so lovely. But then you forget about them, so they die. And then you feel like a terrible adult. It happens. Enter the Click and Grow Smartpot, a self-contained, battery-operated planter that does all the maintenance work for you, dosing out the exact amount of water, fertilizer and air your plant needs. Just sit back and watch your herbs or decorative greenling grow, you savvy gardener, you. At www.clickandgrow.com; $59.
An Alarm Clock That Rolls Off Your Nightstand (NPR Edition!)
Clocky is the famed alarm clock on wheels that rolls off nightstands so groggy users have to physically get up and catch it each morning. (Technology can be a bitch sometimes, huh?) Now, its creators have made Tocky:Wait, Wait . . . Don't Tell Me!Edition. It's a tinier version of the original wonder clock and comes preloaded with special wake-up commands from Carl Kasell and Peter Sagal, hosts of the popular NPR show. ["When do you need to wake up? A) Now, B) Right Now, or C) Right Away."] You can also record your own messages and upload MP3s. The only thing it's missing is a snooze button. At www.shop.npr.org; $69.99.