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Tech

Is it all just a load of fancy, shiny Bollocks?

The Blogfather puts on his irreverent boxing gloves and lands one on the chops of Tech, and gives Will.i.am a pounding.

We've all been there. You've taken a battering. Everyone thinks you're a complete bastard, and you just want to keep a low profile, but then a giant rabbit called Simon gets killed on your watch. Typical. 

This is what befell United Airlines this week. Whilst hilarious tragic, it raises the oft-asked question that, in this day and age, surely we have the ability to fly giant rabbits safely across the skies?

If you read enough Tech news articles, you’d be under the impression that we are in the midst of a golden tech era. Never mind giant rabbits, Uber announced this week that they will be flying humans across the skies of London in taxis within three years.

It conjures up visions of London aflame; a burning Uber cab sticking out of the face of Big Ben, in scenes reminiscent of the Brexit propaganda movie, London Has Fallen.

...but then a giant rabbit called Simon gets killed on your watch

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London, the day after the launch of Uber's flying taxis.

Worried/excited? Well don't be because, of course, it won’t happen. Uber's PR peeps have been at it again, like they were with the self-drive car stuff. Akin to Amazon and their delivery drones and their Amazon Go store, it’s just a PR stunt to get more media. Fair enough, it works for them in that regard, but what are the chances that these tech advances will, realistically, be in use anytime soon? About the same as us getting a Labour government this June.

I thought I’d venture over to The Drum’s website in search of something more respectable and with substance.

And immediately encountered an article on Artificial Intelligence insights from the pretentious full-stop usage specialist, Will.i.am.

For.F.Sake.

But wait, we should explore this some more, before hastily dismissing it. What Will.i.am produced tech can be purchased? It appears that, for all his pomp about being a tech talisman, all there is for the general public to buy is…a pair of Bluetooth earphones. If you click on ‘store’ on his website, you just get a choice of a few T-shirts and a woolly hat.

I also discovered, quite ridiculously, that Will.i.am is the Director of Creative Innovation at Intel, and I also read yesterday that Intel reported lower than expected quarterly results, with share prices falling by 4%.

Are the two things connected? Who knows. Maybe appointing a Black Eyed Pea to a Directorship works. We just don’t know, although this is the guy who said we will be 3D printing human beings in the future. I wouldn’t trust him to print a boarding pass.

A peruse of the Technology section of the BBC website reveals a story of a real life ‘Iron Man’ suit being showcased at TED 2017. It seems that a good part of Tech is almost Sci-Fi masquerading as a form of entertainment news. How useful is it? Or rather, how ready to use is it, and on how wide a scale, are arguably the more pertinent questions.

How many people's fridges are ordering their food for them automatically while they are at work, something showcased at a tech conference over a year ago? People have been banging on about VR for a few years now, but its uptake is slow. Things change and evolve at a lot slower rate than we realise.

Maybe tech is over-reaching itself. What’s a real life concern for the majority of people these days? Probably something quite trivial like whether the new pound coin fits into trolleys at the supermarket (it does).

There is some good tech out there. Tech’s at its best when it is simple. Something like this. It’s a little GPS tracker, that you can stick on the kids, the pet dog, your mistress, basically anything that moves and you value. You can keep tabs on it via your phone. Useful and fun. As humans, we tend to like one thing that does one function really, really well, like Google. A point often made by Rory Sutherland. 

Also, it seems tech companies place far too much paranoid concern into creating products that can get your data. Last week Bose got into bother after a lawsuit was filed against them, alleging their wireless headphones spy on users by collecting data on what they are listening to. 

There is always talk of Tech replacing everyone’s job, and it being responsible for killing off pretty much anything and everything. The traditional printed ad is meant to be on its death bed, due to brands shifting ad spend to digital, but considering the two biggest players in the digital ad industry (Facebook and Google) got mugged for $100m by a ‘send us your Bank account details Plz’ phishing email this week, then maybe we should think twice.

Whilst there may be a shift to some degree, any ad, in whatever form it comes in, has to be first and foremost a simple, great idea. That’s probably why here at Gasp we love The Chip Shop Awards, which celebrates pure creativity. We sent off a few entries, as we do most years, and this year we’ve only gone and got four ruddy nominations!

Cue mini own trumpet blowing solo.

You can have a gander at a few of our nominated entries at the link above, but win or lose, we’re just looking forward to a good night out at the awards in Brixton, in June. We may stick one of those GPS tracking widgets on our Andrew, as he has been known to go AWOL after a few sherbets.

 


 

If the Blogfather’s forthright opinion and pithy wit is to your liking, then click here, and we can keep you connected, if you know what we mean (what we actually mean is that we will send you an email to notify you every time he writes a new one, nothing heavy is going down).

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...the pretentious full-stop usage specialist, Will.i.am.

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