By Roger Paradiso
Top Ten Digital nightmares I think about every day:
- Driverless cars. One day you will be in a driverless car— Uber, etc. I won’t. I’d rather walk. The thought that an automated moving vehicle can navigate the crazy drivers in the Village causes me to lose sleep at night.
- Spam. digital forms sent to my social media, email, or text accounts. It can drive you crazy. We went through robocalls and junk mail in the analog world. And now junk emails and texts in the digital world are called spam. Can we make it a law to fine these people $500 for every unwarranted and unwanted invasion of privacy?
- Robotic house cleaners. I think of Woody Allen’s movie Sleeper. I laugh. They’ll never work right? They’re coming soon to a house near you.
- Alexa or other such devices. Like Hal in Kubrick’s 2001, I wonder if the Alexa will turn on me. Will it spy on me? No, they have laws against that. Really? And they can make mistakes. Did you ever you allow a Google Maps robot to take you somewhere on a trip and find out it told you to make a left when it should have been a right? It happens. These could be useful devices, with human supervision, but I would not want to use them all the time. Maps are still being sold and they don’t lie to you. And remembering how to get somewhere is beginning to become a lost art. There is something to say about being good at directions. It makes you remember landmarks and other attractions of a trip. Keep teaching kids to do most of this work themselves or we will lose it as a human function. And then the robots will take over. LOL.
Digital technology makes everything obsolete almost from the time you buy something. Very soon, the next latest model comes out. Can they please make this a law: every new version must use universal parts and operate in the same manner, shape, or size. Don’t you hate it when you buy something you thought you were good at using, like a phone, but remodeling requires relearning? And they change the size, so you have to buy a new charger and a new protective cover. Don’t you guys make enough money at Apple and Google to make everything universal, so we don’t have to keep changing every year or two. It’s good for the environment. Give it a try Apple, Samsung, and Google et al.
Next week we conclude the countdown. Until then watch out for driverless cars….