10 tech gadgets I want for Christmas but won't buy

Call it a wish list, a want list or a nice-to-have list but I won't call anything on it an "I have it." Techno gadgetry beckons to me like sweet nectar for hummingbirds but I'll not sample even one of them for myself.
Written by Ken Hess, Contributor

Sure, I'm a technology guy. Sure, I love gadgets. Sure, I have a long wish/want list. But, I also have the restraint not to purchase any of them for myself. Now, that said, I'd certainly accept any of them as gifts but I won't hold my breath waiting for delivery. Every Christmas season rolls around for me and I always feel a bit panicky when anyone in my family asks the much loaded question, "Hey, Ken/Dad, what do you want for Christmas?" I never know what to say. There's nothing I really want so much that I can't go buy for myself and anything that I really want is too expensive to ask for. It's quite a dilemma for me. Really, it is.

But, just in case anyone cares, I do have a few items that I am curious about or outright want for myself. Ten is a nice round number, so I'll go with ten. These are in no particular order.

1. iPhone 5 - Yes, it's true. For as much bitter dialog that I have recently launch at Apple because of its policy to not support my iPad 1 for a new iOS version, I still want an iPhone 5. I have an iPhone 4. The 4S wasn't enough of an upgrade for me to switch but the 5 really is more what I'm looking for in a phone. A little thinner, a little larger display and just a little cooler overall. I want one. I'm sorry but I do.

2. iPad 2 through 4 - The iPad 1 is cool but I'd really like to have one with front and rear facing cameras. That's really the only feature that I can say that I'd use beyond what the iPad 1 has. I also want/need one because of the iOS support. iOS 6 has some features that I like and would like to have on a tablet. I want one. Any one of the three newer versions.

3. Surface - My oldest son is getting one for Christmas and I want one. Now that I've warmed up to Windows 8, I could really use a Surface. Actually, I'd really like to have a Surface Pro. That's the one I really could use. Unfortunately, the price point is going to be out of sight for me. I want one. Someone needs to give me one or I need to win the lottery.

4. MacBook Air or MacBook Pro - Yeah, yeah, I know. For my multimedia aspirations, there's nothing else like one. I need it for podcasting, videocasting and other creative projects. Don't judge me. I want one. Again, I need to buy a lottery ticket and hope for the best.

5. Drobo - I need some fast, local storage for backups and retrieval. Drobo makes some cool devices--the Mini, the 5D, the upcoming 5N, the S and others. All cool. All out of my price range. I want one. O, lottery gods, be with me as I go and take my best shot with you.

6. Servers - I need about four nice rack servers so that I can run and test applications, virtualization, etc. for my many technical writing gigs. My garage data center is needing a boost. I have some servers but they are near their end-of-life and I need new ones. Really cool ones. I'd take just about anything but prefer 1U systems. Something energy efficient would help. Pondering the lottery numbers now.

7. Android tablet - I'd like to have an Android-based tablet for carrying around. Since they don't carry the high price of an Apple tablet or of a Surface, I could use it as a "field" device without reservation. For something under $250, I feel that it would be almost disposable and I wouldn't need to treat it as if it were a Faberge Egg. I want one. No lottery ticket needed.

8. Gaming PC - Preferably an Alienware M18x ultimate gaming machine. If you know what it is, then you know why I want one. If you don't know, then it's hard to explain. OK, it might be impossible to explain but if I win the lottery, I'll have one in every room.

9. Colorfly Pocket HiFi C4 Pro - It's the ultimate audiophile gadget. It's modern, it's elegant, it's retro and it's kinda pricey at $800 buckazoids, it's not the kind of thing you ask for. Even lottery winnings might not justify it. I don't know why I want one, I just do.

10. Home Theater System - OK, if I win the lottery, my new ultra house will have a Theater room complete with soda fountain, kegerator, surround sound, a huge theater style screen, fancy theater seating and fresh popcorn made in one of those cool, retro popcorn makers. Now, that's living. I'll take pictures.

I guess if I had to add something else to the list that's not "high tech" and just on my wish list, I'd probably buy up a bunch of my favorite film cameras--everything from old 4x5s to the latest lomography stuff. I love film photography and old cameras. I also rather like the newer Holgas, Dianas and the whole range of simple Russian cameras such as the Smena and Zenit. There's nothing that makes me smile quicker or larger than using an old school 35mm or 120 camera. It's an obsession.

As far as high tech gadgetry, I think you get a feel for where I am with what I want. Sometimes I feel like a kid again, thumbing through the Christmas Wish Book looking at all the stuff I know I can't have and am afraid to ask for. I can dream can't I?

So, what's on your high tech wish list for Christmas? Talk back and let me know.

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