Is it a sign of stupidity that we’re not more troubled by all our smart technology?
OH, THE HUMANITY. Or, in this case, lack thereof.
For this version of the light side of Pacific NW, we plunge digitally headfirst into what clearly qualifies as our new overlord — “smart technology” such as voice recognition and other forms of computer/human interaction — the imposition of which into every nook and cranny of our lives has left us all doing our best impressions of people waiting in a crowded room to audition for a zombie flick.
A confession: I am a large consumer of same, and if it all were yanked away one day, would be one of the first and foremost whiners. I also have friends and family who work in the field and, after reading this week’s cover story, all of them no doubt will find a good excuse to uninvite us to Thanksgiving this fall, my offers of fresh-from-the-oven flaky poppy-seed rolls notwithstanding.
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Perhaps it’s a small price to pay for being on the cutting edge of digital criticism. Someone has to do it. Don’t they?
’Tis a feeble protest. As I write this in my home office, I can see a puck-shaped personal digital assistant, which answers to a female name, awaiting marching orders — or preparing, no doubt, at some point to issue its own.
The puck is only one of (I felt obligated to count) nearly a dozen digital devices in our home today capable of receiving a voice command, if you add up all the phones, tablets, voice-command pucks (not the fridge; nope, not yet; I draw the line at the crisper drawer!) and other portals to the online netherworld.
It should be troubling, but somehow it isn’t, and this, I think, is the problem with America today. (Please feel free to Tweet that.)
Not that I don’t trust people, companies, security measures and myself to keep them all secured, password-protected and safe from prying ears. But it’s always good to have a solid backup plan to protect personal privacy and one’s deepest thoughts.
At our house, that plan is to make sure that the audible — and sometimes written — conversations remain as overpoweringly banal as possible. As you’ll see in this week’s story.