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Recent Technological Innovations That Are So So | Touchstone Words

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The- Not So- Greatest Recent Technological Innovations

By Shane Staret on 2017-11-08

The wheel. The steam engine. The car. The cell phone. The computer. The segway...What do most of these things have in common? That’s right, they all were enormous failures that had absolutely no impact on the human race. All of them, except for the glorious segway.


While there has been no invention throughout human history that eclipses the greatness of the segway, there are quite a few that come close. It would be hard to imagine a functioning society without some of the revolutionary inventions that follow.

Have you ever heard of Tay? “She” was an AI created by Microsoft in 2016 whose purpose was to respond to different Twitter users who tweeted to her. The catch was that she was “the AI with zero chill”...meaning she wasn’t meant to respond in the most politically correct way…


Tay was only released for 16 hours before being pulled by Microsoft for constantly tweeting misogynistic, racist, and hateful tweets. Let’s be honest with ourselves for a moment. Who did not expect this to happen? The internet is infamous for being the home of a bunch of politically incorrect people, so of course, a bot that interacts with these people will also be corrupted. Considering Tay was in development for about two years but only lasted for a day...this was a huge failure.

But, there is something out there that is even more visually revolting than Tay’s tweets. And no, it isn’t Crocs. It’s 3D TV. Apparently, back around 2009 different companies like Sony and LG thought that there was a market of people who wanted to watch normal TV in 3D. However, after multiple companies released their line of 3D televisions starting in 2010, consumer demand literally dropped down the well in 2013. Many people complained of headaches and eyestrain, while some people have even had seizures directly caused by viewing a 3D TV. In the past, manufacturers have tried to promote how innovative and “fun” having a 3D TV can be, with convincing advertisements like this one:


Adverts like these and other forms of marketing somehow did not manage to convince audiences that 3D TVs were still cool, and thus, manufacturers have announced that they will be discontinued in 2017.

Yet somehow, those glasses that the dad is wearing in that picture are not the dumbest-looking glasses ever made. That award would go to Google Glass.


This, my friends, was supposed to revolutionize the way we lived. Prototypes were released in 2013, with the ability to take pictures and videos, and a touchpad that was conveniently placed on the side of the glasses. However, many were cautious when praising the Google Glass, as there were many concerns regarding privacy and safety, as many were afraid that people would stealthily take pictures with the glasses. Google decided to stop releasing the prototype in 2015, however, an official edition called the “Google Glass Enterprise Edition” was announced in July of 2017. It is mainly only for companies who want to use the Google Glasses specifically for their workers and it is not for personal use. While Google may have had some success with the Google Glass, it is certain that these glasses did not live up to the hype they had back when they were first released in 2013.

Sometimes, inventions can revolutionize the way that we live. Just imagine a world without the Internet or without computers. Society would fundamentally be much different compared to today. However, other inventions are simply there for us to laugh at or be disappointed about. For every amazing invention, like the iPhone and the light bulb, there are a ton of...iffy ones to say the least. There is something to be said though about all of the questionable inventions we see released all the time. Without these, companies would not be able to learn from their mistakes and build on them. You don’t have to look very far to find incredible technological inventions that we created because companies, like Apple and Microsoft, managed to learn from their failures. So, who knows, maybe in 20 years something like the segway really will revolutionize the way we travel.



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