Going Postal: Scratch and Win Edition

“Give me a 1!  Give me a 7!  Give me a 17!”  Going Postal, #17.

I’ve dealt with some pretty unique postcards in my life, from the Arctic Circle to the Vatican Post and most recently from archives of pre-1917 Russia, but an interactive postcard is something new.  Cue Anette from Sweden.

Postcrossing member Anette (anettespostcards on Postcrossing.com) knows how to make a person smile.  Her profile tells of how, for her, sending postcards isn’t about building a collection or having the most cards – although she does have the 6th highest rank for Swedish Postcrossing users – but rather about finding the right one to send to the person based on their interests, adding a nice stamp, and hoping it brings a smile to their face when it slips into their mailbox.

Anette's "scrape-able" Minesweeper postcard game!

Anette’s “scrape-able” Minesweeper postcard game!

When her postcard arrived in my mailbox on May 14 after ten days of travel from just outside Eskilstuna, Sweden, I couldn’t believe my eyes.  It was Minesweeper.  But it was hiding something.

On top of the postcard was a layer of silver…stuff…like you find on lottery tickets and perfume samples.  Some of it had peeled away somewhere along the journey and low and behold numbers are hidden below!

The mitten stamp and cool postmark made this a complete, amazing postcard to receive!

The mitten stamp and cool postmark made this a complete, amazing postcard to receive!

I was never the greatest Minesweeper player, having tried it when even Solitaire got too boring as a kid, but I know enough to know the numbers indicate how close a “bomb” is that could end your game.  It looks like I’m safe so far as only 1’s are showing.

Interactive postcards are amazing.  Having the ability to interact with a hobby that is itself interactive (with the people you send to) but usually limited to sorting and staring (I have a box, I’ve gone through it many, many times) is a unique and exciting opportunity.  Technology today is making this more of a possibility, and in ways that blow scratchable cards right out of the water!

Meet UK-based design company Uniform and their latest invention: the digital postcard.  The conductive ink printed on a postcard can be connected to a Postcard Player to play music and voice memos (and who knows what else).  While it makes postcard collecting a lot more expensive, how cool would it be to mail a song to your friend so they can read why you like it, listen to it, and keep it in their postcard collection all at the same time?!  So cool.  Hopefully one of these comes through my mail box soon.

Back to my Swedish scratch and win.  My big internal dilemma now is…do I scratch?  If I hit a bomb, I can’t just hit the smiley face and reset the whole thing…..


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