How do you stop a charging wall wart?
Still wondering when you'll get to make toast on a mountain top? Well, keep right on wondering, because "wireless electricity" still only exists in the realm of wishful thinking. But if your collection of little electronic gadgets - particularly of the Blackberry/iPhone/iPod variety - would benefit from a central charging device as an alternative to a power strip jammed with numerous proprietary power bricks, you may want to check out the WildCharge.
The WildCharge homepage tempts you with the slogan, "Life Unplugged!" but you have to take the "unplugged" part with a pinch of salt. That's because the device itself has to be plugged into a wall outlet. On the upside, it does free up other wall outlets, and makes a convenient central location for all your chargeable gadgetry.
At roughly 15 x 20 cm, the pad has room to hold three or four devices at once depending on their size. Only recently, WildCharge has expanded its charging technology to include a universal adapter, augmenting its compatibility to include Nokia, Sony Ericsson, and mini-USB devices. Compatibility is achieved by the inclusion of interchangeable tips that plug into your device's charging port. Extending from the tip is a small swing-arm with an adhesive backing that sticks on the back of the device. On the non-adhesive side of the swing arm is a collection of electrical contacts that securely attach the device to the charging pad regardless of how cavalierly you toss your device on it.
The idea is that you can charge all your electronic doohickeys at once by tossing them onto the metal charging pad. This can be a real space saver for the frequent traveller who doesn't want to carry an armload of "wall wart" chargers for an array of electronics. As a home device, it could be a good way for the absent-minded to make sure that their electronics are 1) charged and 2) easy to locate when it's time to go to work.
Keep in mind that the charging pad itself must be plugged into the wall, so you're not completely liberated from the electrical plug. WildCharge claims that you can place your laptop on the charging pad and work all day as if it is plugged in to the wall directly. Why having your laptop on a pad that's plugged into the wall is better than simply having your laptop plugged into the wall is not quite clear, however.
So, the net result is that WildCharge will reduce, but not eliminate the need for plugging something into a wall in order to charge up something else. Which is definitely progress... right?