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CES 2015: The Internet of Things is Here, and It May Even Be Useful
Forget the drones, 4K TVs and virtual reality headsets. This year's Consumer Electronics Show was dominated by devices and services that connect your world.
At last year's Consumer Electronics Show, the talk was about the "Internet of Things," in which every device is a smart device and they all communicate with you via the internet and your smartphone. And a few gadgets, such as an internet-connected Crock-Pot, attempted to deliver on that promise. This year, however, the Internet of Things (or the "Internet of Everything," depending on who you spoke to), was everywhere, with everything from smart ceiling fans to connected flower pots on display. And some of them actually went beyond the obvious gimmicks and were products you might actually want to own.
Shawn DuBravac, chief economist of the Consumer Electronics Association and author of "Digital Destiny," kicked things off with a pre-CES presentation highlighting the trends that he believes will shape our world over the next year and beyond.
For DuBravac, the future will be determined by what he calls the "5 Pillars of our Digital Destiny," which include ubiquitous computing, cheap digital storage, constant connectivity, proliferation of digital devices and the "sensorization" of technology. Those pillars have helped create the smartphone market, which is now bigger than the market for personal computers. But DuBravac sees it spawning an even bigger universe of products that serve what he calls the "Internet of Me," consisting of everything from internet-connected thermostats to smart toothbrushes. Within a few years, he says, the market for such products will reach 50 billion devices, compared to the current smartphone market of 2 billion units.
DuBravac sees a world in which communication among products and services becomes ubiquitous and beneficial, as tools like internet-connected toothbrushes automatically relay information to dentists. "It could mean that every dentist becomes a data scientist," he says. And sensors and connectivity can bring new life to old devices. One new product highlighted by Dubravac was the Roost, a normal-looking 9-volt battery that, when added to any smoke detector, turns it into an internet-connected device that can alert you anywhere when it senses smoke -- or when the battery is about to go dead.
The Internet of Things (or Everything or Me) so dominated CES that Samsung, which introduced a series of innovative TVs, appliances and more at its main press conference, devoted a second event to a rambling speech by CEO B.K. Yoon about IoT, where he pledged $100 million in investments in IoT-related companies. "The Internet of Things is absolutely amazing," Yoon said, while introducing devices such as a sleep monitor that could determine the best time to wake you in the morning based on your sleeping patterns, and relay that data to your smart lighting system or connected alarm app.
If you think IoT is a lot of hot air, CES still had plenty to offer, including one product quite literally based on hot air. Toyota was joined by futurist (and Big Think expert) Michio Kaku to show off the Mirai hydrogen-powered car. As previously announced, the fuel-cell vehicle will be available later this year in limited quantities. Kaku said we're about to enter a new age of hydrogen, "a non-polluting society, that's going to perhaps one day vanquish global warming." To get there, of course, we'll need not just more hydrogen-powered vehicles, but an efficient, ubiquitous fueling network. That's why Toyota's other announcement, that it's granting royalty-free access to its collection of 5,680 hydrogen-related patents, may have been more important than any news about the car itself. Kaku's "hydrogen society" may not be around the corner -- Toyota only expects to sell about 700 Mirais this year -- but the patent release could spur other companies to follow suit and develop more hydrogen-powered vehicles and the network required to keep them running.
CES also featured plenty of more "traditional" gadgets, including stunning ultra high-definition TVs from the likes of Sony, LG and Samsung; tablets, PCs and smartphones from companies large and small; and audio products ranging from Crosley's retro turntables to LG's total-home speaker system. Trying to differentiate themselves from the streaming audio pack, both Sony and rocker Neil Young's Pono Music showed off high-resolution portable audio players, with Sony's new Walkman ZX2 going for $1,200, while Young's Pono Player sells for a more modest $400. Young boasted that his player -- which raised over $6 million in a Kickstarter campaign last year -- is "the same as an iPod, except that it sounds like God."
Still, even with the audio and video products, the self-driving cars, the drones, the 3D printers, and the virtual-reality headsets, CES 2015 will inevitably be remembered for the devices and technology that connect everything to everything else, whether they're smart watches, fitness trackers, smoke detectors, smart vents or tea kettles. This, according to DuBravac, is one reason you may not see a single hot product that dominates CES the way certain devices did in the past. While smartphones and HDTVs are mass-market products, connected-home gadgets serve much smaller groups. DuBravac calls this "fragmented innovation," and says it will lead to more widespread adoption of new technologies in products targeting narrower groups of consumers. "There is a greater array of innovation," he says.
However, the bigger question may be, do we really need internet-connected tennis rackets, baby bottles or batteries? That's really up to the marketplace, which is why, as always, plenty of the products shown at CES this year may never turn up on Amazon or in your local Best Buy. DuBravac points out that, just because something can be digitized and shared, doesn't necessarily mean it should be. "We have for a long time come to CES to see what's technologically possible, what's technologically feasible." he says. "But we’re now shifting and the focus is on what is technologically meaningful. Should we digitize it? How should we use it?"
Image Credits: Photos 1-3: Meg Marco; Photos 4-5: Marc Perton
The team caught a glimpse of a process that takes 18,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 years.
- In Italy, a team of scientists is using a highly sophisticated detector to hunt for dark matter.
- The team observed an ultra-rare particle interaction that reveals the half-life of a xenon-124 atom to be 18 sextillion years.
- The half-life of a process is how long it takes for half of the radioactive nuclei present in a sample to decay.
Humans are particularly prone to shiver when a group does or thinks the same thing at the same time.
A few years ago, I proposed that the feeling of cold in one's spine, while for example watching a film or listening to music, corresponds to an event when our vital need for cognition is satisfied.
Certain colors are globally linked to certain feelings, the study reveals.
- Color psychology is often used in marketing to alter your perception of products and services.
- Various studies and experiments across multiple years have given us more insight into the link between personality and color.
- The results of a new study spanning 6 continents (30 nations) shows universal correlations between colors and emotions around the globe.
The root of color psychology<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="9e40cf62fa8922fcca6c57e2fcb215b6"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OM4fXB23pCQ?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>There is a very likely chance you've even been "fooled" by color marketing in the past, or you've chosen one product over another subconsciously due to colors that were designed to influence your emotions.<br></p><p>Companies that want to be known for being dependable often use blue in their logos, for example (Dell, HP, IBM). Companies that want to be perceived as fun and exciting go for a splash of orange (Fanta, Nickelodeon, even Amazon). Green is associated with natural, peaceful emotions and is often used by companies like Whole Foods and Tropicana. </p><p><strong>Your favorite color says a lot about your personality. </strong></p><p>Various studies and experiments across multiple years (<a href="https://www.researchgate.net/publication/49595886_Personality_Traits_and_Colour_Preferences" target="_blank">2010</a>, <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jopy.12087" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">2014</a>, <a href="http://oaji.net/articles/2015/1170-1448038739.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">2015</a>, and more recently in <a href="https://www.verywellmind.com/color-psychology-2795824#modern-research-on-color-psychology" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">2019</a>) have given us more insight into the link between your personality and your favorite color.</p><p>Red, for example, is considered a bold color and is associated with feelings such as excitement, passion, anger, danger, energy, and love. The personality traits of this color might be someone who is bold, a little impulsive, and who loves adventure. </p><p>Orange, on the other hand, is considered representative of creativity, happiness, and freedom. The personality traits of this color can be fun, playful, cheerful, nurturing, and productive. Read more about color psychology and personalities <a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/color-personality-psychology?rebelltitem=2#rebelltitem2" target="_self">here</a>.</p>
Study reveals which colors best suit which emotions around the globe<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDYzMTk5OS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyODc4OTg5OH0.bY-pu-MFNivdJLDJuBp9TBKrhwuy7hngUa1aIWxQMVw/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C93%2C0%2C94&height=700" id="33fff" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="1a5d7bb00dac94bd6201616789fb4882" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="concept of color psychology how colors make us feel color emotions" />
Certain colors are globally ties to certain emotions, the study reveals.
Image by agsandrew on Shutterstock<p>In this particular survey, participants were asked to fill out an online questionnaire which involved assigning 20 emotions to 12 different color terms. They were also asked to specify the intensity with which they associated the color term with the emotion.</p><p><strong>Certain colors are globally linked to certain emotions, the study reveals.</strong></p><p>The results of this study showed a few definite correlations between colors and emotions throughout the globe. Red, for example, is the only color that is strongly associated with both negative (anger) and positive (love) feelings. Brown, on the other end of the spectrum, is the color that triggers the fewest emotions globally.<br></p><p>The color white is closely associated with sadness in China, while purple is what is closely associated with sadness in Greece. This can be traced back to the roots of each culture, with white being worn at funerals in China and dark purple being the Greek Orthodox Church's color of mourning. </p><p>Yellow is more associated with joy, specifically in countries that see less sunshine. Meanwhile, its association with joy is weaker in areas that have greater exposure to sunshine. </p><p><a href="https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200910150247.htm" target="_blank">According to Dr. Oberfeld-Twistel</a>, it is difficult to say exactly what the causes for global similarities and differences are. "There is a range of possible influencing factors: language, culture, religion, climate, the history of human development, the human perceptual system."</p>