Personally I hate the remorse that comes every few months when I go through a drawer and discover a barely used iPod touch or other device that I once thought might improve my life, but didn't.
And I would wait til October for the new Paperwhite and probably the new Kobo Arc.
Also I would want to put about 10-20% away into some sort of investment fund unless there were some items that offered a serious short-term productivity increase the money could rather go to. Just a general rule.
And this is 80% of the actual amount :)
Find whatever makes you free, and do that. Gadgets are a small set of the tools that can make that possible. Knowledge is even better.
I see that bgar's already asked you what you have.
What do you want to do?
(For me, if constrained to gadgets, perhaps a DAQ card can open a lot of doors. Arduinos are cheap, LabJacks and fancier can get a lot more done with greater sensitivity. Got only $10 and an I2C interface? You can have an unreasonable quantity of fun with an AD7746. Seriously.)
I mean real tools - Maybe a repair kit that includes all those fancy security screws and stuff to fix your iPhone, or some portable muilti-use power tool, so when you need em and have em (it's a good feeling). Best to get the stuff you know you will actually use.
Supplies - got a color laser printer? stock up on those pricy extra toner packs, buy that bulk pack of ink, get extra paper.
Ergo stuff, how about your workspace, need a better chair or desk (I got myself an adjustable standing/sitting desk, it was a good investment) Maybe dual LCDs?
Organization stuff - example - If you have a ton of DVDs filling up bookcases may I suggest Disc Sox - http://www.amazon.com/DISCSOX-DVD-POLY-SLEEVES--25Pack/dp/B0... Put your cover and DVDs in these things and you can cut your DVD shelf space by 75%, also you and your friends will know its your DVD because of the cool flexy case.
Safari Library Subscription - get on-line any time access to thousands of O'Reilly books and manuals - http://www.safaribooksonline.com/
1. Dell Ultrasharp
3. SteelSeries QcK
4. Logitech G500
5. Etymotic ER4
6. Herman Miller Aeron
For those of us that work with or use technology a lot during our days, I think there's something to be said about spending a little extra on the part that connects the human to the technology. Connecting these two very different things in a pleasing, comfortable, exciting way is not easy.
Wool & Prince dress shirt that supposedly doesn't need to be washed
Yamaha Digital Piano
Brompton folding bike
Taga Bike that transforms into a stroller (if you have young children)
The (all) is not needed, "what should I buy?" already covers the plural case. I have noticed this a lot in Indian English.
If you must spend the money, though, I'd recommend a high end ergonomic chair or a treadmill desk.
could be really uncomfortable or the best chair ever, nerds are
picky about chairs and unreliable at furniture advice
3. a phat screen, 25" lcd or 50 tv - 400 bucks at frys
4. oculus vr dev kit (VR) - 300$
VR half life, tf2, portal... cool. also really stoked to try a really scarey game.
We have had posts about helping Syrian developers get jobs outside of Syria, people hit hard by economic crisis, people dying. But you don't care, you want to waste $1200 on crap you don't need. http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/fight_club/quotes/#quote_386...
This is an international place to share news about technology and how it can help us better our lives. These kinds of posts belong on Facebook, if anywhere. But to be honest, I think your 'friends' will not appreciate this type of bragging.
HN is not the zero-sum, channel of communication-most-important that you think it is. This is not a zero-sum game.
HN is not a place where you badger other people for talking about a topic just because you think another topic is more "important." You don't yell at your friends for talking about startups instead of Syria. At least I hope you don't.
You're just being mean.
I hope you're not an example of their alumni.
Are you upset because the wheels of capitalism continue rolling for the people that aren't under direct distress due to a bad situation happening elsewhere in the world, away from them?
Or are you upset because the first time you hit on the philosophical and existential elements of materialism it was in a brad pitt movie?
What, exactly, does Syria have to do with OP?
Given that there is something terrible happening at all times, do you find yourself fatigued after so many years of trying to convince everyone to stop living life and to start needlessly becoming anxious about a war they can't influence instead of looking for a new toy?
I eagerly await your response to the hundreds of consumer product reviews that get posted on HN on a weekly basis. I hope you can convince all of them, too, that they are out of touch and need to focus their attentions on whatever some pseudo-anonymous guy on the internet deems important at the moment.