TECH VS. CAT

The eter­nal bat­tleat­tle be­tween gad­gets & fe­lines. nes.

HWM (Singapore) - - Think - BY GER­MAINE ONG

at­tracted to things that they can press (like switches and but­tons) or pull (like power cords).

From my lit­tle poll, I’ve also been able take some small com­fort in the knowl­edge that my losses are mi­nor rel­a­tive to those suf­fered by other cat own­ers. Dig­i­tal strate­gist and car­toon­ist Keith Naka­mura es­ti­mates that his cats have, over the years, sent the fol­low­ing to the great dig­i­tal grave­yard in the sky: “Net­work adapters, VGA ca­bles, power sock­ets, 3 iPhones, 2 tablets, 1 MacBook Air, 1 ex­ter­nal drive, count­less thumb-drives…” Granted, his cats also have a taste for pot­ted plants and toi­let pa­per - but those are def­i­nitely cheaper to re­place.

Be­sides the ob­vi­ous ma­te­rial cost when your cats de­velop a lit­eral taste for tech­nol­ogy, there's also the sad pos­si­bil­ity that a cat may one day elec­tro­cute it­self when chew­ing into the wrong cord. Which, as­sum­ing that you're a big­ger an­i­mal lover than you are a geek, is much more tragic than a ru­ined lap­top.

Some say the best way to pre­vent harm to your gad­gets and your cats is to keep them sep­a­rated. How­ever, re­al­ists know that this just isn't pos­si­ble in a world where ev­ery­one in each house­hold owns at least one mo­bile phone and its charger.

A pop­u­lar so­lu­tion is to make use of scents that re­pel cats with­out caus­ing them any harm. Many cats dis­like cit­rus smells, so I've tried ap­ply­ing orange es­sen­tial oil to my ca­bles. It an­noys both cats and seems to work bet­ter on Sam than on Bob, but Sam isn't the usual trou­ble­maker so I'm call­ing it a par­tial suc­cess at best. Men­thol-based rubs, like the kind your mum used to ap­ply to your chest when you had a cold, are also known to be ef­fec­tive. As for whether you can tol­er­ate the smell enough to spread it onto your lap­top, tablet, phone and their as­sorted pe­riph­er­als... let's just say your mileage may vary.

"A sur­vey con­ducted in the USA in June this year es­ti­mates that Amer­i­can cats and dogs de­stroy 8 mil­lion per­sonal elec­tronic de­vices ev­ery year, at a cost

of US$3 bil­lion."

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Singapore

© PressReader. All rights reserved.