The Future of Technology (as seen by Tom Selleck and AT&T in 1993)

Imagine sending a fax from the beach via a computer, or using a payphone to say goodnight to your child… from another timezone.

Tom Selleck provides the voice for this 1993 AT&T "we will" prediction campaign. It's as close to accuracy as a Michael Crichton novel, even if AT&T didn't pull anything off... besides dropped iPhone calls.

It was all part of AT&T’s WE WILL campaign, and remarkably accurate in its general predictions. But unfortunately we’re not sure the telecommunications company pulled any of these off. Hey- at least they were thinking.

Hey AT&T. Where's my Rosie Jetson?

Darwinian Evolution: Forwards and Backwards

Having been hunched over a laptop for about 18 of the past 24 hours (and since a Sony Google TV is on route as a gift), I thought this image would be appropriate for my blog banner. What do you think?

Feel free to use it in your next presentation. It’s adapted from the Darwin evolutionary image (source unknown), and I created the “sitting laptop man” based on some posture clip art. Then added a cell phone to primitive man, and a laptop to our ape ancestors.

Admit it… we’re just a few evolutionary moves away from being giant pieces of fat and flesh with tiny opposable thumbs for texting and remote controls.

The evolution and devolution lifecycle, illustrated

Mobile Phones To Be Banned from All Mobile Locations

I heard something noteworthy on the radio (a once-common method of listening to someone else’s MP3 collection while they spoke quite often and rang a bicycle bell when they thought they were funny). It seems there’s a government-sanctioned effort to tackle mobile drivers with the same vigilance as “Mothers Against Drunk Drivers” (MADD). I’m hoping the former finds a more aspirational acronym.

This morning I’m having a Keurig and I discover Uncle Jeff recounting the 5 first miles of his Atlanta commute; he says “It’s a wonder my brain stem didn’t catch fire, or something.”

Hey I’m with you on stopping idiot drivers even if I’m among them. If I turned into a zombie and couldn’t off myself, I’d hope you’d make me proud and put a Red Rider BB-Gun right to my head. Distracted people can be as bad as drunks on the roads. When I’m not home, I sometimes use those roads to transport my offspring. Besides the genetic desire I have to further my species and bloodline, I wouldn’t want a tombstone with a big iPhone decoration on the top.

Look at this bastard for proof:

Then again. What happens if I’m not listening to the radio (don’t ask because I’ve already explained it to you), an audio book, or someone nag me about how hard I am to get in touch with? I’ll tell you what happens…

If my corpus callasum isn’t a raging inferno, I’m reming.

It doesn’t start as a nap, really. It starts with a dreamy gaze into the converging horizon, accompanied by the sweet rhythmic repetition of the road-side bumps designed, ironically, to jar you into wakefulness. Then the eyelids drop for just a moment, which I allow for some necessary liquidation. How long has it been since I blinked? Better catch up on this one. Yes. Just a moment more.

Woahahhhhh. Drool wipe. Look right and left. Adrenaline high. I’m alive. No crash. How long was I out? Am I crazy? Did I fall asleep for a second or ten? Stay focused on the road… stare at that horizon. How long has it been since I blinked?

So we do need some personal freedom, and some stimulation on long drives. But we also need to impose laws on morons that are so intrigued with the latest text message they forgot one swift move of their fingers can bring about a few tons of impact. It’s a balancing act.

If, in the end, I need to stop mobile calls — even handsfree and brainfree ones — then I’ll do so reluctantly. But in return, I want to see a few things on the next episodes of “Mobil Cops”:


  • Guy with no shirt pulls over his 2010 luxury hybrid, and takes insane dash into adjacent yard. After some shaking-camera action, the suspect is later found by a wheezing officer… hiding under an upside-down plastic toddler pool.
  • Business woman wobbling while shouting at cop, swearing she was “saying the f’ing Rosary” in her car and that’s why her mouth was moving.
  • BMW being followed by squad cars as we see one, two, three cell phones get tossed from passenger window into roadside grass.

Your Cell Can Make Popcorn POP?

Can a mobile phone cook popcorn? Yeah I’m calling BS on this video because the manic “talking over each other” seems contrived. Nonetheless, it was enough to spook my wife, sister, and their friends.

So I feel obliged to spread the rumor (see video), even if Spopes has put that one in the “false” category.

It’s 2009 people. Check Snopes or Urband Legend sites before spreading this stuff.

Cell Phone Parody Videos: iPhone, oPhone, Blackberry and Android

It’s July 3, which is annual “bitch about your stupid cell phone day.” Don’t verify that on Wikipedia yet.

So let’s step back, but not rate or compare the Microsoft oPhone, iPhone, Android and Blackberry for a moment. But let’s not debate Mac versus Microsoft versus Google versus Blackberry. It just divides humanity, and that’s what politics are for.

So instead let’s debate not the cell phones but the quality of the video parodies they spawn. Given that I did three of these four, I’ll offer up some unbiased thoughts: And before you bitch about me using this post as “self promotion” read my damned tagline above. It’s my mission in life.

The Microsoft Mobile oPhone video (not mine) was Filet Mignon in a blender. Although it was a bit drawn out, there were a few great gags (the circular message text and the notion of programming for a circle). Nathan Weinberg, who runs the InsideMicrosoft and InsideGoogle blogs, is behind it (see him on YouTube).

 

The iPhone was, as all Nalts videos, was too long. But for a guy with no budget and in a hurry to get to work, that Nalts gets a B plus.

 

The Android video was a collaboration with Slater. I thought it would viralinate more, but in hindsight I think it was a bit too “inside Madison Avenue.” It didn’t help that my good camera was in repair so my part looked and sounded like ass. Slater and his wife cracked me up, though.

 

Finally there’s Blackberry/Crackberry. In retrospect I think most of these gags were too obvious. But it did garner a lot of media attention (a bunch of national networks ripped it… maybe I’ll have a judge audit that) because I released it just before a study confirmed that Blackberry’s are evil.

You know as I look back at Crackberry Blackberry, it got a lot more media attention that views. Counter that with this crappy video I posted last week (“Scary Maze“) which has been viewed 180K times — while Crackberry (now 2 years old) has only about 100K views.

Hey! Nalts is just like a cell-phone provider. Providing crappier quality but getting more business!