If you let your imagination run wild in the world of automatic speech recognition (ASR) and natural language understanding (NLU), and you throw in a little fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD), you can come up with several illegal uses for systems such as Alexa Voice Service, Google Home, Siri, and Cortana that will give you pause. Just for fun, let’s play pretend in our world of infinite possibilities.
The superstar of CES® 2017 was not a car, or a robot, or even a TV; it was Alexa Voice Service (AVS), the software that allows you to control compatible devices with your voice. Various reports estimated there were 700–1,100 Alexa-controllable products at the show. I can't verify the number, but "and it works with Alexa" was the running gag at CES. The familiar Amazon/Alexa logo seemed to be everywhere.
Ultra HD (aka 4K) televisions have been widely available (at reasonable prices) for only a couple of years. The sets have four times the pixels of good old-fashioned HDTVs (aka 2K) and come in practical sizes up to 7' diagonal. That's all great, but with the advent of 4K HDR (high dynamic range), about 10 million first-generation 4K sets may experience an extinction-level event. So, should you buy one?
Officially, CES® 2017 runs from January 5 through January 8, 2017. That's Thursday through Sunday, so Las Vegas weekend rates apply. To maximize your CES investment (and to help you financially justify a weekend in Vegas), here are five reasons CES 2017 will be awesome!
Apple announced the 2016 upgrade to its MacBook Pro laptops. They are really expensive. They feature last year's Intel processors. They require adaptors (dongles) for every accessory you already own such as your Hard Drive, Jump Drive, HDMI, SD Card Reader, and Power cable (goodbye MagSafe), and, incredible as it might sound, they feature a 3.5mm headphone jack. So much for Apple's "time to ditch the 100-year-old headphone jack" story from its iPhone 7 launch. All of which elicits my somewhat incredulous response, Apple MacBook Pro 2016: WTF?