Open Me and I Will Wish You Merry Christmas

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Well not quite, because we still have a few days left to find those special gifts eluding us. A talking greeting card may be a little corny, but perhaps we should include a few ‘jest for fun’. Did you ever wonder how these wish you Merry Christmas when you open them up?

The Bits and Bobs that Wish You Happiness

If we cut open a talking greeting card, we find an unruly mix. This includes state-of-art microelectronics, basic mechanics, and good old-fashioned economics. The quality is cheap because the product is a throwaway. The switch itself is distinctly rural. However the lithium battery, chip, and speaker all have noble pedigrees.

Advanced Technology in a Talking Card

wish you Merry Christmas

Card Store: Raysonho: CC 1.0

The battery shares the same technology that drives electric cars, and powers satellites high up in the sky. The speaker waiting to wish you Merry Christmas works just like the one in your phone.

It makes sounds by vibrating the air with an electromagnet or small crystal. The voice is tinny because it is too small to make low frequencies.

The sound chip traces its DNA back to telephone answering machines. It records in analog and plays back in analog. This saves the cost (and bulk) of analog-to-digital, and digital-back-to-analog converters. The system is now ready to wish you Merry Christmas. It just needs a trigger, or if you like, human intervention.

Draw Back the Curtains and Open the Card

wish you Merry Christmas

Christmas Cats: Tuija2005: CC 2.0

When we open a talking greetings card, a paper tab slides away from between two contacts.

This then sends an electrical signal from the battery telling the audio to start. After that, the chip plays the message from the beginning to the end, and resets.

That is all there is to talking greetings cards, and singing ones for that matter too. We are off to dream of a White Christmas tucked up in bed.


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About Author


I tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will not deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time. My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast. I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned. Richard Farrell

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