My last goofy hardware purchase of the week — StickNFind

So I bought a 4-pack of StickNFind BLE stickers. I’m not quite sure why. My hope was I guess that you could use these things for very fine-grained local resolution. Like maybe you could stick them onto game tokens and be able to track game tokens around a board.

Well, not happening. The spatial resolution of these things is pretty gross. At best you can say “hey something is within 5 feet of me”. And there is great variation across stickers. For instance if you line them up at distances of 1, 2, 3, and 4 feet from your phone, you will detect them all, but the apparent ordering of them per the phone will not correlate to their physical distance at all. Not sure why — differences in battery strength, in sticker orientation, in phone orientation, or in manufacturing? Whatever, not happening.

Overall packaging was good, easy to get these started, the app is fine tho they need to take some of the anti-skeumorphic vaccine that is going around. No complaints about quality or ease of use, but these are just very limited devices. I’m honestly not sure what I will do with them. The examples on the box don’t compel me:

  • find your keys, phone, remote. OK the phone one is stupid since i need the phone app to find the phone. The remote, maybe, but this just isn’t that exciting. My keys are always in my pocket.
  • find your wallet, purse, briefcase. The few times I have misplaced my wallet at a store, I have wished that I had some magic solution, but this wouldn’t help, since my problem is not “my wallet is someplace 30 feet around me” but is “my wallet is at one of N distant stores I visited”.
  • find your pets? We are dog people and our dog is overly needy, no problem finding the dog.
  • find your tablets and tools and toys and cameras. Again not a huge problem
  • find your kids. We’ve aged out of that problem. Well we may still have the problem but again it is “where in some distant city is my child”, not “is my child within 100 ft of here”

It would be nice maybe if I could put these on some super valuable things in the house and automatically be alerted if they move. I’m not sure what those things are tho.

Maybe I will put them in my cars and quit worrying about remembering where I park.