Forget about Cyber Monday, how about cyber-everyday? With deals plastered across the web at all times—and the holidays quickly approaching—it’s hard not to pull your credit card out every 5 minutes. Well, if you’ve got a cyber-shopping problem, the Proverbial Wallets might be right for you. Designed by a team of researchers at the MIT Media Lab, these high-tech billfolds are digitally programmed to react to your bank account levels by shrinking in size, refusing to open, or vibrating whenever a transaction is processed. No more mindless spending—these guys will keep you in line.
Created by Henry Holtzman, John Kestner, and Daniel Leithinger, the Proverbial Wallets are designed to get us back in touch with our cash. With actual bills and coins, we can physically process how much we’re spending, but the digitization of money has placed a lag between our consumer impulses and their consequences. After all, what’s another purchase when it’s just another swipe of a credit card?
By restoring the tangible consequence of our monetary transactions, the wallets help squash unnecessary spending.
By restoring the tangible consequence of our monetary transactions, the smart wallets help squash unnecessary spending. All three working prototypes connect to a smartphone via Bluetooth, so they can monitor your bank-account activity in real time.
The Proverbial Wallets come in three attractive styles to fit your spending needs: The Mother Bear has a constricting hinge that makes it harder to open the closer you approach your monthly budget, while the Bumblebee buzzes every time a transaction is processed. The Peacock inflates and deflates with the amount of cash in your account, which puts your assets on “display” for potential mates, according to the designers.
Watch the wallets work their thrifty magic in the video below: