We had no idea when we published the “100 Greatest Gadgets of All Time” in March that people would have such strong opinions about it. Immediately after the issue hit newsstands, a delicious blend of loving praise and good, old-fashioned psychosis began to flow into our inbox.
More than 1,000 letters later, we figured we were duty-bound to compile the best reader suggestions. Here they are: the 100 best gadgets we missed in our original list.
As a reminder, these are the rules we set defining what was counted as a gadget:
1.) It has to have electronic and/or moving parts.
2.) It has to be smaller than the proverbial bread box.
3.) It has to be a self-contained apparatus that can be used on its own, not a subset of another device. This rule tripped up a lot of people who said that thumbdrives and TV remote controls (both in the original list) shouldn’t count. What we meant was that it can’t be a device that’s contained inside a larger device: Notebooks count, but motherboards, hard drives, and RAM don’t.
Note that we’ve also credited the reader who provided the best argument for why his or her favorite gadget ought to be included on the list. (Many gadgets were nominated by dozens of people, so don’t be offended if your name doesn’t appear next to your suggestion.)
Can’t find your suggestion on the list? Check out “Rejected!” on page 61 to see if your nomination was tragically sent to the circular file.
Meanwhile, enjoy this reloaded Top 100. And remember: If you don’t like the list, you’ve got no one to blame but yourself.