Page 2 – News Debris For The Week Of September 25th –
A New Camera Always Pointed at the Customer’s Bed
Amazon has a new product in the Echo family called the Spot. I’m not so much focused on the idea of what it does (think of it as a Dot with an LCD display and camera) as the social implications and motivations behind a device that sits on your nightstand and points a camera at your bed.
A moment of reflection.
The article that explores this is by Tom Warren at The Verge. The title is: “Amazon’s Echo Spot is a sneaky way to get a camera into your bedroom.”
Author Warren addresses the psychology of the situation and the systematic assault on the customer’s mental barriers. Just a few years ago, there was a major fuss about some smart TVs that had a TV camera facing the viewer. Later we learned that a government spy agency had learned how to hack into these systems.
So my question is, knowing that the Echo Spot is a virtually irresistible target for hackers, why bring it to market? And why would customers, who must be very suspicious of any product with a camera by now, happily pay for a product that’s always focused on their bed?
Perhaps with a household full of enough internet cameras, people just won’t care anymore.
• At Computerworld, Jonny Evans has a comprehensive list of: “How your iPhone can save your life.” It’s a good list to study on a rainy Saturday and make sure you know how to set up the various features.
• Yep. Apple’s iTunes is bloated. But was the approach Apple took with iTunes 12.7 sensible? Kirk McElhearn has his own ideas in “This Is Where iTunes Is Bloated.”
• Firefox, as we know, comes from the Mozilla Foundation. It’s a non-profit organization, not one of the tech giants loaded with corporate agenda. And so, many (including me) have a warm place in their heart for Firefox. However, over the years, the speed, simplicity and elegance of Google’s Chrome has resulted in a significant market share.
• Who was Amazon before there was an Amazon? Interestingly, it was Sears, Roebuck & Company. Here’s an interesting analysis at The Atlantic. . “The History of Sears Predicts Nearly Everything Amazon Is Doing.”
• Finally, here’s a tasty article at BuzzFeed that goes behind the scenes with Apple’s development of camera technology in its iPhones. “Inside Apple’s Quest To Transform Photography.” There are lots of nice tidbits including comments form Apple’s SVP of Product Marketing Phil Schiller related to Apple’s ultimate goal with iPhone cameras.
Particle Debris is a generally a mix of John Martellaro’s observations and opinions about a standout event or article of the week (preamble on page one) followed on page two by a discussion of articles that didn’t make the TMO headlines, the technical news debris. The column is published most every Friday except for holiday weekends.