The original smart speaker and still the reigning king (or queen) of the market, the Amazon Echo invented a new category and has been dominating it ever since. The Echo’s virtual assistant, Alexa, is kind of like Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey, except she’ll never kill your friends and lock you out of the house to die.
If they are not living out their childhood sandbox dreams of operating a bulldozer or a backhoe at this age, chances are it’s not going to happen. Tough luck, kid. At least you can let them live that dream for a day by buying them a trip to Extreme Sandbox.
It’s amazing to think that the idea giving someone a kit to take a sample of their own DNA, that will then be sent off and analyzed, resulting in a detailed personalized genetic analysis, would have seemed like total science fiction just a few decades ago. But here we are.
Polaroids may be dead, but the people who like to use them aren’t. Not all of them anyway. There’s something especially gratifying about holding a tangible photograph, especially in a world dominated by virtual commodities where everything is becoming digital. Having an instant printer on hand means they don’t have to wait for a photo printing company to print their photos from the cloud and mail them by horseback or whatever. And we all know that nobody has time to wait for a horse these days. Oh, and we should also mention: these look way better than Polaroids.
We’re not saying you should buy someone a South African Gold Krugerrand for 1300 bucks or whatever it is - though that would be an incredible 30th birthday gift, holy crap - just that precious metal coins are fun to have. You can get an American Silver Eagle for like $20, and it’s almost as cool.
Here’s a birthday gift that will make them appreciate how easy it is to just go to the store and buy a bottle of wine. But before that appreciation has been fully cultivated, they’ll spend countless hours trying to perfect their own special blend with this wine making kit. It’s a pretty simple process at its core (after all, prisoners make wine in the toilet) but a tough one to master. At the very least, we’re positive that they will not make the worst wine on Earth with this thing, but we would taste with caution.
We love this gift idea for the person turning 30 who has put down some roots and is planning to stay put for a while. Fill it with anything - pictures, words, a bottle of something, whatever - and bury it together in a place they’ll be in 30 more years. It will be an even better gift the year you dig it back up together.
We think the word is out on how great an Amazon Prime membership is. The free shipping on millions of products? That giant video library? Sign us up! No, seriously, sign us up. Please? And you should sign someone you love up as a 30th birthday gift too while you’re at it.
Does your friend still seem to think they’re invincible even as their 30th birthday approaches? Give them the gift of a creeping sense of their own mortality with this book that can trigger existential crisis and gales of laughter in equal measure.