The One ...

Smart Knife


 
The Want: A pocket-sized, multipurpose gadget for the office MacGyver, secure enough to keep important contacts and PowerPoints safe from prying eyes.
 
The Get: The Victorinox Swiss Army Presentation Master may resemble its timeless, Boy Scout counterpart, but its components are cutting edge. In addition to the usual blades, it comes equipped with a 32-GB USB thumb drive—complete with a biometric fingerprint sensor for identification—and a built-in laser pointer. If the device sounds like a Mission: Impossible prop, it won’t surprise you to learn that, if tampered with, its circuitry will self-destruct. The perfect tool for a grunt on the corporate battlefield. $302.14; www.victorinox.com
 

ALPINE ARMY

 
A short conversation with Major Christoph Brunner, Swiss Army spokesman.
 
Why does Switzerland have an army if it’s neutral?
To defend the nation and protect the people of Switzerland. We also have peacekeeping soldiers, professionals and conscripts, all over the world—two to five people in various missions across the Far East, Africa, and the Middle East. And we have 220 soldiers in Kosovo. There has to be a United Nations mission, otherwise we do not participate.
 
What is a Swiss soldier’s basic equipment?
Clothes, in different variations, boots, helmet, and many other articles. The most important is the Swiss-made SG 550 assault rifle. All conscripts are also given a Swiss Army knife. It’s a model you can buy in stores.
 
Are they given any training on the knife?
No. That’s not necessary. The Swiss are used to these knives from very early on. It’s not considered a weapon, but a tool.

Jaroslovsky is a technology columnist and reviewer for Bloomberg News and Bloomberg Businessweek.

Steve Ballmer, Power Forward
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