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Tech just isn’t for techies: IRL, Silicon Valley and life sized mechanical horse

Elizabeth Rust : April 13, 2015 11:19 am : Blog, Tech just isn't or techies


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Did you know people are using Twitter to meet new people in real life? According to the New York Times Tweeters are posting open invitations to see who shows up.

“As I see it, you meet everyone you can because you never know what’s going to happen down the road,” Peter Shankman said. “Everyone you meet, everyone you talk to, you should be networking. You’re not necessarily looking for business, but if you have the opportunity to meet someone and say, ‘Hi,’ why wouldn’t you?”

Though some Tweeters warn that responding to open invitations can pose risks.

Julia Lynton-Boelte, a life coach from Vashon, Wash., showed up at a park in Oakland, Calif., after a Facebook friend she barely knew invited all her followers to come celebrate the completion of her most recent art project, a giant, heart-shaped pillow. “She wanted all her friends to show up and bring a pillow,” she said. “So I drove to the park with this pillow, which is an awkward thing to do, right? You can’t really play it off like, ‘Oh, I always bring my pillow to the park.’”

Ms. Lynton-Boelte soon realized the invitation wasn’t as open as it seemed. “I definitely was not expected at that party,” she said. Perhaps, she guessed, the artist just wanted to brag about her art project but felt more comfortable couching it in a faux invitation. “I had to make the best of a bad situation.”

Lots of bytes
Cities are trying to create their own Silicon Valleys, but is this a good thing? See what this new father said. Cinemas just got a little more high-tech. This is what traditional marketplaces can learn from Etsy. This is the very well coordinated Black Twitter campaigning for #Ferguson and #MikeBrown. Another study claiming that using Facebook too much can make you depressed. But Facebook is now everywhere thanks to their advertising campaign. Forget the #Applewatch, check out this alarm clock. Or how mobile phone developers are really focusing on the camera. A new app for dating women. A ski resort funded by crowdsourcing. If you break a leg, you could get an even better bionic one. Tech will not solve education. A life-sized mechanical horse!

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And just for kicks, check out the Lego Titanic. It’s quite possibly the biggest Lego kit ever sold.

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Tech just isn’t for techies: Germanwings, Emojis and Game Boy

Elizabeth Rust : April 7, 2015 11:18 am : Blog, Tech just isn't or techies


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Over the past couple weeks there have been several debates about how we can make our planes safer following a co-pilot crashing a Germanwings plane into the French Alps. Many of these debates centre around better screening of crew members for mental illness and never leaving one pilot in the cockpit.

But amongst these debates, some aviation experts are saying that we don’t need anyone in the cockpit.

According to the New York Times: “Advances in sensor technology, computing and artificial intelligence are making human pilots less necessary than ever in the cockpit. Already, government agencies are experimenting with replacing the co-pilot, perhaps even both pilots on cargo planes, with robots or remote operators.”

Amy Pritchett, an associate professor of aerospace engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology warns: “If you put more technology in the cockpit, you have more technology that can fail.”

Lots of bytes
Privacy is going to be written about a lot in 2015, especially when it comes to medical records. Is it masculine to use Emojis? Maybe if you don’t fake your personality. Why is technology not part of the election debate? 400/1 odds of getting a job at Google. Let’s live in the moment, not with our devices, because computers can forget. Uber and Facebook are becoming best friends – I hope not at least. Can Long Beach, California become the next Silicon Valley? This fast typistneeds a better keyboard of she’s going to have to quit her job. I used to love my Game Boy. This is how the Chinese are getting around censorship. Check out these tech rumors. Charge your smartphone in a minute. Technology is making us lonely.

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More evidence suggests that we’re interacting less with each other because of smartphone use. This one says we’re having less sex because of them. But then again, maybe technology can make sex better.

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Tech just isn’t for techies: The Kardashians, Monica Lewinsky and Silicon Valley celebrities

Elizabeth Rust : March 23, 2015 11:16 am : Blog, Tech just isn't or techies

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Who owns our social media? Is social media meant to be owned by corporations, people or brands? This week The Guardian started this debate by listing the people who own the UK’s cities Twitter handles.

London, for example, is not owned by the city, but avatar fashion designer based in Texas. Gloucester is owned by Kevin Burge who loves his city and regularly tweets and answers questions about it.

“I’m passionate about Gloucester, and want to tell people how good Gloucester is.” Kevin only had second thoughts about using the Twitter handle once, and that was during the riots in 2011. “People were tweeting, let’s smash up @Gloucester, and I didn’t want the police to think it was me tweeting,” he said.


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Read this to find out if your emails are being tracked. This for medical record hacking. And this if you suspect your computer. Dell want your data from Tesco. Passwords, passwords and passwords! But it’s not all bad, use this to translate love. How dare you Comcast. Brits are worried about artificial intelligence. This is how much social media is worth. Monica Lewinksy cares about cyber bullying, but does Ted Cruz? These women are making a career from it. Ain’t no Cloud mishap for Taylor SwiftSilicon Valley celebrities. Crush Apple. Amazon may have their way on delivery drones.


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And just for kicks, The Kardashians become even more fake. And because I just found it so interesting, learn about the career of an LA paparazzi.

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Tech just isn’t for techies: Fashtech, hotel WiFi and AOL is vintage

Elizabeth Rust : March 20, 2015 11:17 am : Blog, Tech just isn't or techies

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Sustainable technology is a big trend for 2015, i.e. what’s going to happen when you throw your old mobile away? Is it going to end up in a landfill never to decompose? What about donate it to a charity? How tech devices are made in the first place? Are they made from recycled materials, or not?

Sean Miles at Design Works has created a mobile phone made out of recycled resin and specially treated grass clippings.”This creates a composite material, like carbon fibre”, he told the BBC, which can be used as an alternative to plastic injection moulding.

Currently it is thought that fewer than 25% of unused phones are recycled in the UK. Maybe we need to rethink this?!


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Apps are changing the way we tip. Will WiFi finally work in hotels – throughout the entire hotel? Maybe I can use one of Facebook’s future drones. Fashion and technology have such a complex relationship. Yes, watches are techie fashion. I think these app controlled colour changing shoes are ugly. I’m not sure I’d want my child to have a WiFi enabled Barbie. Children need to be outside, instead of watching a screen. Your retirement fund probably has a tech startup. Techie Japan. Top techie terms explained here! I loved AOL instant messenger, what about those chat rooms? Ellen Pao decision is a step back for all women. Will the Daily Telegraph survive, especially since half of all UK advertising spending goes to digital media? New Silicon Valley television comedy. Social media posts have become almost synonymous with bragging.


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And just for kicks, check out Shep the drone – the world’s first drone sheepdog.

I also love this birdsong app.

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Tech just isn’t for techies: Smelfie, YikYak and ramen

Elizabeth Rust : March 16, 2015 5:07 pm : Blog, Tech just isn't or techies

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“Everything tastes the same, and it’s the internet’s fault.”

That’s what celebrity chef David Chang told The Guardian. He explained that every city he goes to, the ramen tastes the same.

“Ramen is everywhere, and a lot of it is the same. I don’t want to go to every city and taste the same fu*king thing. Everyone’s serving tonkotsu ramen, everyone’s serving pork. You could do a blind taste test and not have any idea where the fu*k you’re eating.”

The internet he says it taking away the creative process. Chefs no longer learn how to cook from other chefs or learn to cook by making mistakes. Food bloggers and review websites make it impossible to do so.

“One thing the internet prevents is trial and error. Everybody wants something instantly. That’s fantastic, but what it sacrifices is the process of fu*king up. I’m sorry, but nobody is born a chef genius, it’s whoever makes the best mistakes. And right now the internet puts people in the position where they have to get it right immediately.”

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Selfies are so yesterday, tomorrow it’s all about the smelfie. Only rich people need an iPhone. In France people have extramarital affairs – I had no idea! What about one with a robot? This is Tinder for the very lonely. Because you can be whoever you want with the internet, hence YikYak abuse. You can get human tissue online? This startup wants to be your mobile matchmaker. I want to learn how to drive a crane. Thanks Tavi for taking privacy seriously. Slow down – everything is so fastbecause of the internet. But that’s a good thing for these Olympic techies. Beaconscan be a good thing too. School libraries are the new tech startups. The digital divide is really going to affect us.

So excited – it’s Spring!

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And just for kicks, check out the newest place on Earth. (Also my cat as a triangular face, he may be vocal, but he is no athlete!).

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