Internet of Things  – Crappy Cash Cow Rising


Paul Wallis, Sydney Media Jam CO2The Internet of Things will be Christmas for the hardware guys. Give them credit, promoting garbage is their real strong suit. The Internet of Things isn’t even remotely necessary. Existing tech can do all of it, with very minor modifications. It’ll be an excuse to add some Duh-level software, and call it smart, much like smart phones. This will be crap incarnate, as everyone knows. What’s interesting is the way it’s being sold.

Think about it. Do you actually need a fridge that can tell you need milk, or an oven that can tell you it needs cleaning? How about a washing machine that can analyse your washing and tell you that you might have rabies? Of course not. Yet the Internet of Things is being sold like sliced bread, as if you can’t live without it.

The processes and the selling process, are based on perception.
Tech is good, right? Sometimes, sure, but hardly always. New is good, right? Occasionally, at best. Tech comes and goes. Sometimes you’re glad to see the back of it. The Internet of Things, however, is about to be rammed down your throat as a must-have.

In the cheap and nasty world of hardware, engineers might get a look in, but it’s mainly sales at consumer level. Think of all the crap you’ve ever bought which failed almost immediately or simply didn’t live up to expectations on any level. Now apply that to every possible type of basic tech you have.

Internet of Things = Insecure

The “connectivity factor” is another load of bull. Creating multiple security risks where you currently have none is also apparently essential. In all the years I’ve been watching the Internet of Things emerging from the butthole of mediocrity which is promoting it, nobody has EVER addressed this issue in any degree of depth, if at all. It’s being ignored, entirely.  It’s a familiar pattern. Just about every expert has said the Internet of Things is a huge risk, therefore nothing is being done about it.

What to expect from the Internet of Things

Expect this:

  • Constant malfunctions. Either hardware, software, or both, the plague will descend like a void warranty Woodstock on the public.
  • Shoddy software, hardware, and connections. This is normal. New tech teething usually takes about 5-10 years.
  • Overpriced and ridiculous. You get something which can measure mould in a fridge. It uses a chemical particle detector, which means if it’s not calibrated properly, it can shut down your fridge.
  • The mystic ability of onboard software to interfere with normal operations. (Like a dysfunctional sound file that won’t let you close Windows, for example. The operating processes dictate, and the processes in the Internet of Things will be truly half-ass at best.
  • Your wardrobe will deliver a display, a lecture on how to wash your clothes, and SFA of any practical value.
  • No opt-out options. When you buy an Internet of Things gizmo, you won’t be able to avoid the features. It’s not like a car, where you can take or leave certain features. You get the crap whether you want it or not. The Internet of Things should be optional, but what fun would that be for the Internet of Things shills, if they can’t gouge you for something?

The economics of the Internet of Things

The good news? You’ll stop being such a materialist, (you awful person, you) after buying these things and fixing them has sent you broke. The trouble with cash cow tech is that nobody ever wonders how people will pay for them, pay for fixing them, or pay for new tech that actually works after having been incinerated a few times.

Paul Wallis books, sydney media jam

The 21st century Stone Age can be creatively counteracted. Creating solutions, creating better options, you name it; this is the way out of the sewer.

Better still, you can have some more stress to go with your techno-menagerie. Imagine trying to figure out whether your automatic ordering fridge (A fridge that can spend your money for you is a selling point, if you’re an idiot) has been helping launder money around the world. You can simply be ripped off by anyone with a few minutes to spend doing so.

More subtly, you can be ripped off for years by micro transactions milking your account, linked to anything from taxes to service charges and simply adding a bit more. These micro transactions actually predate the internet, robbing a few dollars or cents here or there, and with a world full of connected gadgets, you’re talking billions of dollars per second.

Won’t the other end of the transactions do something, you ask, from your sparkly new hand-dug burrow under a main road? No. They’re only responsible for their own due fees, charges, etc. They can happily dump any problems on you, because they’re not parties to any illegal transaction. You’d have to prove they had any liability. Cute, huh?

Parasites, rejoice! The Internet of Things hath come!

So for everyone but consumers, the Internet of Things will be wonderful. You can be happily sold more expensive crap in the sure knowledge that yet another type of tech will create a lot more problems with no solutions.

Things you might want to ask your wonderful, wise Internet of Things salesperson:

  1. Will the new Internet of Things alarm clock which also provides medical advice be able to help with euthanasia?
  2. Can your handy new clothes dryer/auditor/priest provide spiritual salvation, or at least a few good excuses?
  3. Can your dishwasher help to spread more diseases, and keep those nice guys in Big Pharma out of jail?
  4. Can your toaster oven incubate more politicians?
  5. How many ways can your new Domestic Gestalt of Things help with sending you broke?
  6. How many relationship problems can you have with a new dining table which also provides help with toxic waste foods selection?
  7. Is it possible to buy a connected chair which also does electrocutions while preventing you from watching anything?

I’m having nothing to do with the Internet of Things until someone can prove to me it’s not a total liability and total waste of time and money from inception.

Paul Wallis, Sydney Media Jam, Paul Wallis books

To Do List for a lazy computer tech sector


Wasp2Computers were designed to reduce labor and the internet was designed to survive a nuclear war, but neither seems to be able to survive the vast cosmic intellects of a brain-dead tech sector. This blog about computer tech isn’t going to be polite, so if you have a sensitive mind, sod off now and take your pet thought leader with you.

For the last couple of decades, the sector has been obsessed with tinker toy gadgets, mobiles, and other crap. Not a lot has been mentioned about functionality and efficiency.

We’re still talking about binary code, switches, and baseline performance here, not some mystic experience. This is the computer tech of the very early Stone Age. It’s like someone invented fire and forgot what they were supposed to do with it. We’re talking about things with all the innate inscrutability of a light switch – Most of which don’t work as well as a light switch.

Job page 25No multi-value coding. No nonary code. No better conductors. No multilevel logic and coding. No attempts to turn this absurd current pack of trilobite droppings in to something really revolutionary. The computer tech sector, like everything else, has become another mucking middle class trade for plodders, mediocrities, and “bad boys” whose brains didn’t survive kindergarten.

O noble tech-peasants, thou hath inherited the dung hill.

We’re also still talking about Diplodocus era things like disk drives, noisy computers, pernickety prehistorically-oriented operating systems that can’t run things that older systems could run with ease and “upgrades” which equate to doing the same things much less efficiently.

American Valhalla page 28There’s probably some psychological justification, however unacceptable, for this. Perhaps all those meetings have finally driven the entire sector over the edge into dribbling, cliché-fornicating madness. Perhaps the eternal mindless drone of hack marketing has killed off any chance of anyone paying actual attention to functional issues.

This slideshow logic has also apparently lost track of what this technology is about, let alone what it can do when someone with any talent lifts a finger. So perhaps a little update on what you bastards are supposed to be achieving is in order.

Let’s review the To Do list:

000_02801. Computers which can work at human speeds for productivity, not like comatose rocks. “Not responding”, “Script error on page, therefore world ends” and similar farcical runtime issues are not, repeat not, acceptable. These things should be responding instantly. Some of us are busy, you know.


2. Disk drives – Why do these fossils still exist? Too damn innovative to create something better?

3. Dysentery by code flow chart – If you’ve ever done even rudimentary coding, you have to wonder what all these damn useless extra steps on every process are supposed to achieve. Click > on/off is always going to be better than some damn runtime soap opera of processes. Justify your existences in some other way.

4. Tech issues – Nobody cares. Whatever it is should work instantly, no exceptions.

5. Massive memory usage – Why? Didn’t occur to the little diddums? How much of this crap in a box actually needs to be there?

You're looking sane today6. “Everything has to be cutesy-hootsey mobilesy wobilesy” – Take a flying leap back up your arse and beat yourself to death with a widget. Some people don’t want to evolve into mere platforms for thumbs with the attention span of a fruit fly.

7. Hardware, schmardware – OK, you executive clown-breeders have to make a living, too, but paying for your little “innovations” with every new OS is absurd. Make the new stuff “premium” or some other fabulous new thousand year old marketing ploy, and deliver the functional stuff that’s actually needed with fewer Oscar ceremonies for Least Credible Tech Culture. (Unless it’s decent hardware; in which case where is it?)

8. The Internet of Things as some sort of messianic achievement – Like hell it is. If you can’t get a basic PC to work efficiently, how’re you going to get toasters to deliver babies, or whatever this Internet of Things is supposed to do? Lose the hype and deliver.

Put it this way – It’s 20 years later, and Win 95 and 98 are still looking pretty good, because they worked. Subsequent OS by Hissy Fit didn’t, and don’t. People hated them, and still do. Any theories on why that might be so?

Ask some prepaid God, or whatever it is you believe in. Don’t ask the users. You won’t understand it, and won’t like it. Above all, do not engage in anything remotely resembling actual quality evaluation. It may eat you.

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