The 6 (no wait, 15) Laws of Technology Everyone Should Know

A contributor to the Wall Street Journal published an article about 6 Laws of Technology written by an MIT Professor during the cold war, that he believes can apply to today’s climate of Tech Giants and Social Media. You can check out the article HERE for more details, but here are the 6 Laws in list form:

  1.  ‘Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral’
  2. ‘Invention is the mother of necessity.’
  3. ‘Technology comes in packages, big and small.
  4. ‘Although technology might be a prime element in many public issues, nontechnical factors take precedence in technology-policy decisions.’
  5. ‘All history is relevant, but the history of technology is the most relevant.’
  6.  ‘Technology is a very human activity.’

In response a writer an wrote an article in response that listed 9 Laws the WSJ had missed. Here is a large excerpt from this article below: (Warning: snarky slopes ahead.)

Law #1: Big brother is watching, along with 273 of his siblings and an unemployed college dropout living in his parent’s basement in Parma, Ohio.

Law #2: The actual battery life of your phone is always less than one half what the manufacturer claims it to be.

Law #3: As technology firms grow larger they either become cable providers or start behaving like them.

Law #4: Each new feature added to a product adds diminishing value and increasing complexity. Corollary 1: After release 5.0 that complexity creates a steady state where fixing one bug creates another bug. Corollary 2: After release 10.0 fixing one bug creates at least two additional bugs. (E.g. Windows, iOS, Mac OS)

Law #5: Engineers inevitably design technology that is easy for engineers to use. Corollary: if you are not an engineer, all technology will eventually make you mutter “WTF?” under your breath.

Law #6: Your IT support person thinks you’re an idiot.

Law #7: “Labor saving” device are designed to foist labor onto the customer. Corollary: “Time saving” devices are designed to eliminate your free time.

Law #8: Technical support lines play irritating music and obnoxious up-sell ads because they’re hoping you’ll hang up and self-service using their website which contains a useless FAQ, an indecipherable user manual, and a hopelessly impenetrable customer-run forum.

Law #9: The intellectual and social value of a blog post is inversely proportional to the ‘clickability’ of its title.


What do you YOU think?

Can we improve the world’s food system with Tech?


I came across an interesting article called, “Rebuilding the World’s Food System Using Technology: Here’s How” that talks about how we can use our latest IoT sensors to improve the human condition through this process.

From the article:

” What if we could capture and analyze data that would enable us to predict consumer demand and adjust our food production for better yields? What if we could track the location and temperature of our products across the food supply chain to prevent food spoilage? What about monitoring the health of our livestock to prevent a contagious disease from spreading in herds? 

We can now. Sensor and auditing technology has become more sophisticated over the past decade, not only capturing data points but also communicating with other systems to automate solutions. The internet of things is revolutionizing the food industry. “


xR in EDU Conference!

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to attend the xR in EDU Conference hosted at SRI International in Menlo Park, CA.

It was very inspiring to hear from both Industry Innovators as well as leading educators in the field. I’ve been trying to wrap my head around how to best support teachers in integrating Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and mixed reality in their classrooms, and appreciated the perspectives that both industry and educational folks shared. It was great to get both sides of the table in one place to begin the conversation!

Check out my Google Photos Album here to check out some key moments as well as some presentation slides.

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Can Humans Affect our local Space Weather?

Very interesting article on the NASA blog about how human activity can affect Space Weather around our planet. From the article:

“A number of experiments and observations have figured out that, under the right conditions, radio communications signals in the VLF frequency range can in fact affect the properties of the high-energy radiation environment around the Earth,” said Phil Erickson, assistant director at the MIT Haystack Observatory, Westford, Massachusetts.

Click HERE to watch a video by NASA about VLFs (very low frequency waves); a screenshot from this video is seen below.

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Another NASA video (screenshot below) explains how “Human Activity Impacted Space Weather“, based on results of experiments from Cold War nuclear tests.

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Fascinating stuff!