Nissan's Goofy Self-Parking Office Chairs Could Save Our Lazy Butts
Putting your office chair in its place is such hard work. You have to push the thing where you want it to go, which involves actually touching it and, well, actually thinking a little.
Who has time for that?
Nissan knows you don’t and feels your Dilbert-like pain. That’s why the carmaker created a creeping fleet of self-parking office chairs to help we lazy worker schlumps deal. Too bad they’re just a concept for now.
The gimmicky “smart chairs,” technically called "Intelligent Parking Chairs," per an announcement this week from Nissan, slowly slink to and fro (without working stiffs in them) using the nerdy tech wizardry of embedded sensors. The sensors communicate with a network of four cameras positioned throughout the room the 360-degree-turning chairs are in. They “generate a bird’s-eye view to wirelessly transmit the chair’s position and its route to destination.” Fancy.
To send the wheeled robo-chairs packing -- and neatly under desks, where they darn well should be after meetings and such -- users simply clap their hands once. Raw power, right in the palm of your delicate white-collar hand.
Pretty neat stuff, we think. Also a little goofy to watch in action. Take a seat in your dumb chair and have a look to see what we mean.
The semi-autonomous chairs were inspired by Nissan’s forthcoming “Intelligent Parking Assist,” a vehicle self-parking feature that the Japanese company recently showed off using a mobile app prototype and a LEAF electric car, minus a driver.
It’s not clear if these sweet seats will ever be available for purchase, though we wouldn’t mind shelling out a bit to park ourselves in one -- and to park one.
We reached out to Nissan for more details, but have yet to hear back. In the meantime, we’ll be daydreaming about commanding a pack of ergonomically correct conference room chairs, one bossy clap at a time.
Kim Lachance Shandrow is the former West Coast editor at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was a commerce columnist at Los Angeles CityBeat, a news producer at MSNBC and KNBC in Los Angeles and a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times. She has also written for Government Technology magazine, LA Yoga magazine, the Lowell Sun newspaper, HealthCentral.com, PsychCentral.com and the former U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Coop. Follow her on Twitter at @Lashandrow. You can also follow her on Facebook here.