The Guardian Reveals That Big Tech Yields Useless Products

May 21, 2018

I don’t want to be a Luddite, but it seems to me that autonomous drones carrying interesting payloads are often darned helpful. The value of the big tech which gets these puppies aloft and in theater can be questioned when the person asking the questions is sitting at a laptop in an urban center thinking big thoughts. I would suggest that if that urban beastie were under fire in a slightly less refined environment and needed a bit of air cover to make an escape from a free fire zone, the big tech in the form of a MQ-1L Predator attack drone with AGM 114 K2 Hellfire Missiles would be somewhat useful. Mostly.

My hunch is that the British newspaper disseminating real news in “Ignore the Hype Over Big Tech. Its Products Are Mostly Useless” has a keen desire to poke sticks in the eye of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Netflix, and probably other outfits. Why not toss in Palantir Technologies too? Oh, don’t forget Darktrace.

The main point of the write up struck me as:

In fact, might Duplex be a grim portal into a future in which high-flyers get digital “assistants” to do their chores, while poorly paid people have to meekly talk to computers, in constant fear that they are about to be automated into joblessness?

I like this notion of reworking a two tier society so those in the lower tier could perform jobs like booking a haircut.

The target here is Google and its demo of its artificial intelligence wizardry. Some of this magic is performed in the UK by DeepMind.

Google is now a couple of decades into its search based businesses.

Several questions occur to me:

  • Where was the Guardian and other “real” news outfits in the pre IPO phase of Google when Yahoo took Google to task for finding inspiration in,, and Yahoo’s “pay to play” models?
  • Where have newspapers been for the last two decades as companies finding revenue streams different from print and classified display advertising on paper?
  • With the insight of a skilled editorial staff and the ability to generate information, why haven’t those professionals been able to communicate the risk of taking “free lunches” every day for two decades?

Net net: The train has left the station. The “woke” folks are already at the airport with their digital assistants in their pocket and the beach on their mind.

Stephen E Arnold, May 21, 2018



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