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Calling it now!

Image via: http://vidartop.blogspot.com/

 

I don’t actually have a dog in this fight.  I make it a policy to be platform agnostic.  When I first started working in entertainment and games you had Unix boxes, PC’s and Macs.  Depending on who I was working for, or what project I had in hand at the time, I had to be able to use all three fluently, a fluency I’ve managed to maintain.

But, for the next iteration of computer users, the ones who, in 10-15 years are going to be running the new tech startups, the future is going to be Google.

Once upon a time, Apple did something really clever.  They introduced computers into the elementary schools and by doing so they laid the groundwork for their branding and their technology, they had some hiccups along the way, but for a long time anyone who didn’t need higher-order access (like programmers) preferred Apple.

Now it’s Google that’s in the classrooms.  The Chromebook is rapidly becoming the standard for hands-on computer learning in classes.  Now, granted, these are cloud-based “dumb-terminals”, you “can’t” (notwithstanding the cleverness of students) load anything new onto them, you can only run the apps made available by the school.

So you have a large, upcoming population intimately familiar with Google and Chrome.  They are going to be familiar with how those systems work, how to work with objects in the cloud.  They will be comfortably ensconced within Google’s own walled garden (granted, the wall is only knee-high compared to Apple’s battlements) and they are going to be comfortable with the Google ecosystem.  They will be used to having a single account to access everything from any device, and the price points will make sure that Google derived-technology remains accessible to everyone.

They aren’t going to take out Apple’s market by going head-to head in smartphones, or even in laptops.  Instead they have targeted the future, and unless Apple starts to move back towards accessibility via education, one day they are going to wake up and find that they are trapped back in the boutique market they worked so hard to escape from.

 

 

Remember this….

Image sourced from: http://singularityhub.com

 

When I write sci-fi pieces, I’m usually looking at the mind.  Not just in how people act and react to one another, but in particular how they act and react within the constraints of technology.  In the proto-cyberpunk world I am currently working in, there is a certain amount of psychological risk when dealing with memories and experiences created through the use of implanted technology.  Not just the classic old trope of “can you be killed in cyberspace?” but a slightly more nuanced approach based around ideas like the one linked below.

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/d-brief/2014/08/27/researchers-copy-paste-fear-one-memory-another/#.VANhkjKwLYh

 

Adventures in coffee-making: Parte the Firste

Today I am trying to sort out the order of operations in making iced coffee.  DON’T MOCK ME, coffee is serious stuff.  Empires have been raised and fallen over it’s use.

I have the following ingredients in hand:

64oz of old brewed coffee (in the fridge).

cup of sugar

cup of heavy cream

cup of ice

 

Attempt#1

Order:  Fill glass with ice.  fill to 3/4 with cold coffee.  Add 1 tbsp cream and 1 tbsp sugar.  stir.

Result:  The cream freezes to the ice cubes and the sugar stays mostly undissolved.

Assessment:  Tasty, but not very sweet.  When the coffee is gone you get this sugar-water mix because the sugar doesn’t dissolve.

Go Big or Go Home

I’ve had the privilege of knowing Sana Choudary for a couple of years now.  I took  my mobile start-up through the Yetizen accelerator program, so I know, first hand, that the issue of women in tech is something she feels needs to be, and CAN BE brought to parity.

She’s is putting together a new conference that focuses on how women can improve the way they do business NOW, is what is still a male-centric industry.  Not discuss, not protest, but rather develop strategies that are applicable to the business world in its current state.  The more of us that step up and make our businesses shine, the more of us there will be to serve as examples, as inspirations to the women that come next.

Go buy a ticket!

BeUrHero

 

The Djinni and the Bottle

Person of Interest Logo S02

Person of Interest Logo S02

 

When the shows creators were quizzed about the reveal of PRISM (IRL) they mentioned that they were surprised by the relative non-reaction of the general populace here in the US.  The idea that citizens might not actually care all that much about the Govt. being able to play the ultimate peeping tom was not what they had expected.  Within the show, however, they finally seem to have found their new footing.

See, there is this psychological barrier, this “djinni in a bottle” effect that we have with regards to technology and scientific effort.  You often have several groups all pushing towards the same goal, be it the splitting of the atom, the development of wearable technologies, the creation of a shampoo that doesn’t sting when it gets in your eyes, and they can often run neck and neck when it comes to approaching the finish line.  Oftentimes everyone hits a wall and the research just spins its wheels for a few years (or decades).

But eventually someone breaks through.  Sometimes it’s a newcomer with deep pockets backing a new team (like Google with Glass) sometimes it’s a team that’s been working on solving the problem for years and a piece of new research or tech kicks them over into the winner’s circle. But in almost all cases, once that barrier has been broken, once one person or team has made the discovery, more follow, and usually swiftly.

But the tragic thing is that oftentimes, the group that makes the discovery, who breaks the barrier first is not the group that survives.  They are not the ones who figure out how to use the technology, or turn it into a viable product.  Sometimes they get crushed and bought up by a company that played it safer, or a group that came late to the party, sometimes the discovery sits idle for years.

In POI, that djinni is now well and truly out of the bottle.  Rather than trying to recruit Finch and his team, the Desima group has simply gone around, acquiring a parallel technology and preparing to crush (in a very literal fashion) any and all competitors.  We are looking at the difference in mindset between Finch (who proposed the Machine as a Shield, as a defensive tool) and Desima (who is interested only in the business of running the world).  Historically, IRL, the groups who are more business minded generally come out the winners.  I’m looking forward (perhaps apprehensively) to seeing how POI’s creators resolve this conflict in their own (already eerily predictive) created universe.

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A last note, y’all may have noticed that I keep the comments closed on this blog.  I am, however, always willing to talk about any of these posts, so come find me on G+ if you like.  The blog is perpetually fighting SPAM posts (even with CAPTCHA and other safeguards in place) so I keep the comments closed.