The debate will rage about whether technology drives progress or if there is no such thing as progress, just quicker, cheaper and more effective ways of doing the same old things. It can be argued that it was advances in technology that led to the creation, formation and development of the USA, especially during the Civil War. And it would be hard to deny that technology has made huge contributions in travel, communication and healthcare.
As far as leisure is concerned, it’s allowed creative imaginations to play ball with big, bright colours and to take us on multi-level journeys. And there’s the rub. However good the technology, no matter how many pixels you can keep cramming into a centimetre, the end result is only going to be as good as the content that it displays.
So as the pixel intensity of HD television goes from 1080 to 4000, the question is: why? This review in Digital Trends of the difference between the two forms comes up with an astounding piece of information: the main benefit is better picture quality. Well, that’s reassuring because at least it’s doing what it’s designed to do and yet slightly disappointing because I was looking forward to it cracking a couple of beers open for me at half time so I don’t have to move from the sofa.
Film critic Mark Kermode’s favourite bête noir is the development of 3D cinema and the use of technology as a gimmick over the real appeal of cinema which is a shared cultural experience of a protagonist’s journey that raises and releases tension with an emotionally satisfying ending. As Kermode rightly points out, the fact that a film sucks in 3D does not make it nice and shiny. Even a seminal movie like Citizen Kane, which used ground-breaking cinematography at the time, is remembered for the use of close-ups and distant shots to augment the story of a man whose emotional journey went from intimacy to greatness and back again. The camera work added to and helped tell the story, it didn’t replace it.
Nobody likes having their hardware or account hacked and changing and remembering passwords can be a right pain in the derrière. So those fun chaps at Motorola have been trying to solve the password problem and have come up with two ideas – a tattoo that sends a message to your devices that confirms that you’re the correct user and a pill that turns your body into a living authentication device. The tattoo is more likely to enter into common usage in the near future, although the pill has received Federal Drug Administration approval in the US which is the usual big sticking point.
While these are good ideas to solve the inability of people like me to remember their passwords, change their passwords or even to remember to change their passwords, I also have a problem with remembering to take my vitamin tablets. Whether the pills and tattoos can be hacked and copied is another thing that needs to be addressed. But it’s all a step in the right direction for making computing more secure. Until that happens, have a chat with those nice people at SpecTronics about how you can keep your IT equipment securely protected.