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Tag Archives: devices

Ever Closer to the Machine

Greg Mably

With apologies to Thoreau:

If we do not get out smartphones, and forge social networks, and devote days and nights to the work, but go to tinkering upon our lives to improve them, who will build devices? And if devices are not built, how shall we become a brand in season? But if we stay home and mind our business, who will want devices? We do not ride on the devices; they ride upon us.

I have taken liberties with this famous passage from Walden because my latest column for IEEE Spectrum is now online and it includes a nod to the great man. It also covers words related to wearables, including nearables, hearables, earables, and the oh-so-creepy baby-wearables (“a soft, flexible sensor at the belly button area,” coos one brand).