Monday, May 23, 2016

Current Personal Technologies and Me!

beach052016Just finished vacation and had a great time. While on vacation there were plenty of times when today’s world of PA’s (Personal Assistant’s) were both used and at the same time left a desire for more.

History: The first time I ever used the term PA was with a Palm Pilot. I thought this was the greatest device that I could make notes with, what a wonder. Now the term PA can include AI (Artificial Intelligence) that can hear what we ask and can return information based on it’s knowledge gained of us. 

Back to the vacation.

First is the travel area and it does not deal with PA as much as I would like.

We used Google Maps (on the Samsung Galaxy Note 4) to plan our tripSamsung note 4 and once in the car connected the Bluetooth to receive the Navigation information. I added music through the phone (Amazon Prime or Google Music – I use both) so that we could enjoy our long trip.  As soon as we got onto the highway I set the cruise control and it wasn’t long until I was bored.

I do have podcasts that we listened to and if I had a digital Audible book  we could have listened to that. We can control what we want to hear better today than at anytime in the past and it could be a learning experience. 

I am also ready for Self-Driving Cars. We were on the road for about 11.5 hours and I could have used much of the time more effectively even if it was having a great conversation with my wife without driving distractions. We could have read books or magazines, or just sat back and relaxed. Sadly the return trip was about the same. I could drink coffee and talk however I always had to have my hand on the steering wheel and focus had to be on the road ahead. I sure would jump right at a proven Self-Driving system.

One really interesting item in our travels; the GPS, knowing our route and destination, would have text messages sent to our phone (or watch) noting upcoming traffic issues – accidents, construction. If needed we could have changed our route. The watch is another great device so that you can quickly glance at the watch to see what is happening; email, text message, confirmations, phone calls, it’s all there.

After we arrived at our place of stay (really nice and on the beach) I took out Tap (Amazon’s portable Echo device), checked the weather, and played some music. Each morning, once showered, I would check my Flash Briefing on Tap, then get the weather, and from there we could plan our day. All information was automatically location based unless I asked for something other. 

While on vacation I could connect back to the condo to look in on things. I had lights set for on and off back at the condo and I could check the security.

All in all it was a pleasant trip and a really nice vacation with a wonderful group. We enjoyed ourselves and out PA. If there is something I am looking forward to it’s more services automatically handled by the PA; making the reservation, ordering the Pizza (can do that with Alexa however it is coded for home), asking for area attractions. I am looking forward to the auto that not only tells you that you are low on gas but recommends the next gas station for fill up – based on your personal preferences.

The same could be said of asking for nearby restaurants. The current PA knows your preferences and makes all recommendations accordingly and can make the reservations when decisions are made. It, the PA, will have the phone numbers and information required to make that reservation.

Ah yes, at first there was some trepidation about security but alas we have passed that abyss and now are leaping head first into the wonderful world of PA with AI….