For your morning tea, the perfect toaster

We have always lagged behind Asia and Europe in cell phone technology. Now there's something else for which we can hang our heads in shame: the perfect toaster.

For toast and bagel snobs, who dismiss burnt toast and are appalled by morning offerings that are crisp on one end and still bread on the other, there's good news from the other side of the Atlantic.

If you visit the UK, and are ready to fork out £160 ($250), you can now get yourself the dream Magimix Vision Toaster, that apparently toasts your bread to perfection.

And it's been no mean feat to build that beauty.The Magimix took 15 years to design. For that perfect piece of bread, the trick consists of two parts. First, in addition to relying on a pre-programmable timer, it lets you view the bread through double-paned glass windows on the sides as it is being toasted, so that you know precisely when to pop it up. That is why it is called a Vision toaster. But if you have transparent windows on the sides, where would you have the heating elements? In the Magimix, this problem is solved by putting them at the corners, behind long life quartz elements that make sure the bread is evenly toasted.

Such technology obviously did not exist 100 years in 1909 when the first toasters were created. That it took a century for the toaster to be perfected just speaks volumes about man's persistence in his quest for small pleasures in life.

Yet, these are available only in the UK and that too, exclusively at John Lewis Stores for now. But it is safe to wager that happiness will soon spread to North America, probably in the near future. Now if only we could get one that would butter our toast for us ...

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