iKea and iPhones

I’m always amused by the drawer-testing robot in Ikea.  For those not aware of its work, it’s located in the kitchen area, is protected from the general public (or the general public from it—I’m not sure which) by a box made of heavily-scratched, once-clear acetate, and is made up of a ready-made Ikea drawer unit along with a robot that opens and shuts the drawer throughout the history, and indeed the future (collectively known as the fullness), of time.  Its purpose is to prove the robustness of Ikea drawers.

I’m amused because it’s rubbish.  Drawers don’t break because they’re opened and closed smoothly time and time again.  They break because you come home drunk, slip in the kitchen grabbing one of the drawer handles to soften the impact of your ass on the tiled floor.  (Note to wife: this is a fictitious scenario being used by way of example.)  They break because you try to open them with your foot while straining your vegetables (not a euphemism) to avoid your sticky hands daubing the handles.  (Note to wife: see above.)

Today, I thought of the Ikea robot while operating the top-left switch on my iPhone 3GS—the one that switches sounds on and off.  Of all of the beauty that is the devilishly handsome device, this appears as though it may be the weak link.  Don’t get me wrong—mine hasn’t broken or anything.  It’s just that switching it is quite a delicate operation, delicate yet physically pleasing.  I have a feeling that over time, that delicateness could compromise its operation.  Yet I reckon Apple has proven its worth by switching it perfectly a million times without any problems, likely using a modified drawer-opener on loan from Ikea.

But it’s when you reach in your pocket and switch the switch blind, probably pushing it at an unseemly angle, that problems are likely to occur, unbeknownst to Apple.

That’s why I thought of the Ikea robot today.  And that’s the bit of the iPhone 3GS that I think is most likely to break.  You have been warned.


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