As local lad Jim Morrison of The Doors once said, “This is the end.” This is the final Technology Today column for FLORIDA TODAY.
On October 23, 2010, my first headline was “Life with Kindle: So far, so good.” I was relating my experience using the (then new) Kindle e-reader from Amazon.com. Today, e-books are an established part of the literary marketplace.
In 2011, I lamented the loss of several computing pioneers, including Steve Jobs. Atlantis completed STS-135 – the final mission of the shuttle program. IBM’s Watson supercomputer kicked off modern advancements in artificial intelligence with its victory over humans in Jeopardy!
In 2012, the news was about mobile phones (Apple’s iPhone 5 broke sales records – sound familiar?), the emergence of cloud computing as a mainstream platform, and social networks. Facebook went public. Psy’s “Gangnam Style” video went viral.
In 2013, I selected privacy, complexity, and fragility as the top three themes of the year. Google Glass was full of promise – until people objected to being spied upon. The digital train wreck known as HealthCare.gov failed to launch. I learned what it was like to lose your iPhone while traveling in Europe.
2014 was the beginning of seemingly daily security vulnerabilities. Hydraulic fracturing started altering the energy landscape. Doctors Without Borders battled the Ebola outbreak in West Africa with a trial vaccine from Canada.
In 2015, it was the rise of artificial intelligence, the proliferation of Internet-connected devices, and the surging popularity of drones that caught my attention. Siri came first, but Alexa proved to be a more capable digital assistant. Drones shut down Gatwick airport in 2018, illustrating how problematic they have become.
Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2016 was “surreal.” Big Data made its debut. Cybersecurity continued to be a problem: Yahoo! reported over one billion customer email accounts were compromised.
In 2017, you could have made (or lost) a lot of money speculating on cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. It was also the year when the #MeToo movement started and many powerful people were outed.
This year, Facebook had a remarkably bad year. The first genetically engineered humans were born in China. I continued to enjoy life without cable TV.
I want to thank all my loyal readers. Send me an email and I’ll add you to my mailing list. You can also go to www.cts.today/join and fill out the simple form.
I’ll close by quoting from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: “So long, and thanks for all the fish.” It’s been a great ride, but it’s time to leave before the hyperspace bypass arrives.
Scott Tilley is an emeritus professor at the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne. Contact him at TechnologyToday@srtilley.com
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