This one enormous chair sounds loverly for at-home workers

Working late one night, I fell asleep and dreamed that Oracle Corp. announced it would
merge with the leading recliner chair company, in a bold move to launch the "work at
home" revolution.


I immediately realized this could eliminate the office as we know it and erase the line
between workaholics and couch potatoes.


In my dream, Oracle chairman and CEO Larry Ellison made a speech calling the $500
Internet Recliner "the next logical extension to the networked computer" and
promising that Oracle would dominate the recliner market.


Then I remembered how Microsoft Corp. chairman Bill Gates once was shown jumping over a
recliner on television. Gates promotes the idea of a computer in every home, but even he
never envisioned anything as ambitious as a $500 Internet Recliner in every home.


In my dream, I saw a special two-seater, his-and-hers "Presidential" model
for 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., with on-demand dual controls and direct access to a McDonald's
electronic fast food delivery system.


The more technically inclined among you are probably wondering what other features
would make the Internet Recliner a must-have purchase, aside from its low $500 price tag.


First and foremost, there is top-of-the-line "Veg and Yawn" comfort, plus a
RISC CPU, a few megabytes of memory, network and I/O interfaces, and a way to boot from
the network. The Recliner plugs into a power source and an Integrated Digital Services
Network home connection. Dropping a quarter into the built-in thermomassage system brings
five minutes of relaxation while you answer the boss's e-mail.


Options include built-in Dolby Surround Sound, refrigerator and minibar, 52-inch video
screen and storage devices holding up to 1 terabyte for your own personal data warehouse.
I dreamed the $500 Internet Recliner's built-in network computer would have two-way paging
for e-mail, a wireless personal digital assistant and a Web browsing terminal.


There is a built-in ISDN videophone option for making video calls and recording and
retrieving video messages and clips, and of course a set-top box option for interactive
fun with your television set.


But don't expect to run down to your favorite federal reseller to buy the $500 Internet
Recliner. The way I dreamed it, you have to special-order it on line. I remember asking
about the availability date and being assured that it was imminent.


Yeah, right.


Charles S. Kelly is a computer systems analyst at the National Science Foundation.
This column expresses his personal views, not the official views of NSF.



inside gcn

  • Phishing

    Phishing is still a big problem, but users can help shrink it

Reader Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above