Technology Mash

 

Many years ago I attended what is now the Annual Consumer Electronic Show (CES), which began in Anaheim and moved to Las Vegas — growing from about the size of your home to gianormous. I attended a few in Vegas, but it was simply overwhelming, and tiring without commensurate education. I concluded that its primary advantage was for booth employees to seek new jobs.
 
Computers are no longer the focus and today it is almost anything with a chip — which soon will be everything.
 
I primarily rely on CNET to keep me informed, and much of the technology this year is in gadgets and automobiles.
 
This year the CES appears to be particularly inane. Last year, it brought us 3D TV, which went nowhere, and this year Curved TV.
 
Yawn.
 
Of course not everything goes on at CES. Some things are announced by CNET just because it is CNET. I suspect that 3D printers shown at the CES will have the longest-lasting impression. (Yes, they are currently expensive, but I paid a princely $3,000 for my first Apple LaserWriter Printer.)
 
One automobile concept of the future announced was designed here at UCSD, and it is called the Driver Attention Guard, which was demonstrated by Audi.
 
In effect, it watches the driver’s head and eyes, and if the driver is distracted by ANYTHING from texting, to a medical emergency, to just daydreaming, will slow or stop the car.
 
As an interim to complete driverless cars, this is a worthy development.  Distracted drivers are a menace I don’t understand. Ever since my racing days I have driven with two hands, and my wife tells me what she sees that is interesting because I concentrate on the road and the other drivers. I have always admired those whose abilities are so great that they can eat, text, or sightsee.
 
Racing is relatively safe because everyone is focused.
 
In still other technology news, and Uber car has been attacked in Paris by angry taxo drivers. Uber, you will recall is an app driven private pick-up service available around the world. Cities are struggling to protect the Cab companies, which pay dearly for their “Medallions” while technology permits private drivers to pick up and deliver people and packages, and pay on-line which reduces the need for cash and makes it safer for the driver..
 
In Paris, the government has tried to protect taxis by a rule that forbids pickups without a 15 minute wait. Of course this just slows but does not stop technology — in Paris the is Uber,  LeCab,  AlloCab, and SnapCar, and here in California there is Lyft and others.
 
In Paris, the attack came when taxi drivers put up roadblocks to channel the traffic at the airport from four lanes to one so the private delivery service cars could be targeted — abd the police stood by and let several attacks take place.
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One Response

  1. I, too, focus on drivers in front, behind, and to the side when driving. Rush Hour is safer than other times of the day because these people are also focused on getting to work.

    On occasion, I will take the shuttle to the airport which enables me to “site see”. I am continually amazed at the detail along I-15 that, otherwise, I never get a chance to see.

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