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Paul Hogan, Eat Your Heart Out

August 24, 2006

Feature bloat.  It is a term used frequently in the auto industry (and others, I am assuming) to describe the ever-expanding list of features, of technology for technology’s sake, ever-thickening user manuals, and ever bigger and heftier cars.  There was a time, not that long ago, when power windows were a premium option.  Now, even econoboxes are sporting auto-down windows, xenon headlights, nav systems, satellite radio, bluetooth integration, iPod adapters, you name it.  Among the luxury brands it seems like an arms race to cataclysmic feature-driven armaggeddon.  The oneupsmanship is staggering, and as much as I love technology and cool gizmos, even I find myself hoping for a car that embraces simplicity and purity of function over the kitchen-sink approach to doodads.

Where were we?  Ah yes, feature bloat.  Well, after infecting cars and power tools and kitchen appliances, feature bloat appears to have found its way into the niche market of folding multi-tool knife things.  Behold the Wenger Giant Knife.


Weighing in at two pounds, this nine-inch long knife features a whopping 85 different tools – from a cigar cutter to a flashlight, laser pointer, seven different knife blades and, of course, a toothpick.  Great and all, but, after spending fifteen minutes looking for the can opener, how exactly are you supposed to use it?  I somehow don’t seeing the Giant Knife fitting the hand all too well.

Whatever the case, you know somebody will buy it, and that somebody will probably happen to own a Hummer H2 or something.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 24, 2006 10:58 am

    Who needs to find the can opener, just use it to bash the can open!

  2. August 27, 2006 8:53 pm

    You haven’t seen feature bloat until you’ve seen a Vauxhall Omega. That car collapses under the weight of its own add ons.

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