TED Conversations

Robert Winner


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Are smart devices too smart for our good? Smartphones and tablets are rapidly becoming the universal remote controls for everyday life.

The next phase of the digital revolution will dramatically alter entire industries while simultaneously creating new ones. It will affect the way smartphone and tablet users — whose ranks are skyrocketing — manage their cars, their homes and their personal lives.

In the end, convenience will win out over ethical and legal concerns, analysts say, and the market will decide how far mobile technology should go.

One thing is for sure: The transition to a remote-control society already is well under way.

In todays electronic society, it is not inconcievable that a dishonest person can track, locate, and download all your information without your knowing it. Sole source items such as a Pad / tablet / etc ... that provide all information on you, your life, and property make destroying your life extremely easy.

Is this degree of "convience" really where we need to go.


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    Mar 13 2013: I'm pretty sure there isn't a need for smartphones; they just allow people to do things on the Internet that they would otherwise do on a computer but in more places. I must say that I'm guilty of being a bit dependent on my iPhone; I use it about every hour or so to do some non-phone related function (I'm pretty sure I use it more often for calls and texts). I think it's too far when they're used to manage cars for some reason. I feel like it would be too easy to be distracted by that sort of tactile technology while behind the wheel. Yet at the same time I'm also letting these companies with my information in my email...

    It will be interesting to what other sort of out-of-the-ordinary applications there will be in the future. However, I don't completely agree with having everything on one device.

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