If you live, work, or just drive around in any large city, you know how frustrating it can be to find a place to park your vehicle. Paying for the privilege is a given; it’s just a question of how far away from your actual destination it will be and how much you will be charged.
From the “It’s Déjà Vu All Over Again” Department
Previously in this space, we discussed the relative merits of web applications in comparison with native apps for desktop platforms, such as Windows and Mac. Today we examine the question: Are there similar advantages and disadvantages with regard to native mobile apps?
The robots are coming! The robots are coming!
Okay, Paul Revere, settle down. Yes, robots of various kinds and with various capabilities are in development. Many are already available, in some form or fashion, and deployed in industries from manufacturing to hospitality and security. And there has been more than a little hand-wringing and scaremongering about how robots, and automation in general, will affect jobs, the economy, and the nature of business itself.
Consider the lowly umbrella: A mundane object, often cheaply made and inexpensively acquired, and with a singular habit of failing to do the job it was designed for. In anything but a light rain that falls straight down, an umbrella—even one of those big golf umbrellas—will keep very little of you dry. And if you’re sharing it with someone, forget it. As the Police sang many years ago, “It’s a big enough umbrella, but it’s always me that ends up getting wet.” It’s a wonder anyone uses the dadgum things at all.
It’s hard to believe, but Twitter is 12 years old this year. Remember when it was new? At the time, a whole lot of people wrote it off as a solution in search of a problem. Who, in their right mind, would want to participate in a service whose only function was to enable people to share their most mundane thoughts with each other, and with the world at large, in 140-character chunks?
The grand vision for human-computer interaction in recent years has been mobility: Users with lightweight, low-power “dumb terminals” communicating with cloud services via ubiquitous and speedy wireless connections to perform every computing task imaginable, from email and web surfing to more computationally intensive tasks such as video editing and big-data analytics. All of this, of course, would be courtesy of the cloud; there would no longer be any need, outside of perhaps gaming, for laptops and desktops with super-powerful, multicore processors.