Technology may not be what it is cracked up to be
Originally posted by Jonathan Rivett @ smh.com.au
If the digital revolution is so amazing, why is my electric toothbrush still so rubbish?
I tried to transcribe this column using voice-recognition technology but gave up after 45 hours and 175 attempts. Technology may not be all it is cracked up to be.
Technology. It is changing everything. And it is doing it fast. Very, very fast.
In the next 20 or 30 years, 50 or 60 per cent of today’s jobs will be done by something non-human. Probably not by a duck or a cold sausage but quite possibly by a mechanical arm or swarm of nanoparticles.
We are also told that soon you will be able to merge your brain with a supercomputer. Think of the possibilities: you could take over the world or count cards at a blackjack table really easily or play minesweeper in your head all day.
So, you know … swings and roundabouts.
And that is just the near future. At this very moment we have 3D printers and autonomous cars and hydrogen-powered buses and affordable virtual reality and Bluetooth toasters.
Since the advent of the internet and the invention of the Commodore 64, they assure us we have been pummeled repeatedly by earthquakes of convenience. And we will be shaken in the most comforting way by glorious aftershocks for the rest of our lives (which will be forever, by the way).
And yet I can’t get the bloody voice-recognition software on my computer to work.
I can not hear anyone on my mobile phone. That’s not because I am a doddering old fool; it is just the nature of mobile phones - they’re rubbish.
I can not get any electronic device to last more than about 32 days.
Last week Netflix recommended that I watch Barbie: Life in the Dollhouse because I had watched I Am a Killer.
All I am saying is, if technology is going to usher in a new world order, could it at least gets its own stuff in order first?