Thursday, January 18, 2018

The Day From Hell

Yesterday was the day from Hell for me.

It started out fine, my daughter-in-law took me to TUS airport from Fort Huachuca, where they live. From there I flew backwards to LA, even though I was going east to Nashville. Oh well, it makes sense to someone. No problems on that flight, so far so  good.

That's when the problems started. Have you ever flown out of LA on Southwest? They have made multiple gates out of each existing gate ahd that means things are TIGHT! Oh well, I can live with that. Then pre-boarding started and the couple in front of me had a dog and at least 8 huge packages. What happened to the rule of one carry-on and one personal item? I asked the gate agent and he just mumbled something about they can take what they want. Why?

Then I got on the airplane, a full flight naturally. The person sitting next to me was a Mexican, female Sumo wrestler who wanted more room. My reply to her demand that I move my elbow was not well received. All I said was "it''s attached to my arm".

Eventually we got to BNA, it seemed like it took forever! And that's when it got worse! I got my baggage and looked for my ride, an InShuttle van to Clarksville. Nothing. I called their office and was told it would be hours before someone could pick me up. Did I want my money back? NO!!!!! I want to go home!

Eventually they won. I cancelled them out and got a hotel room for the night.

It was not a good day.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Smart Speakers

One in six Americans now own a smart speaker, according to
new research out this week from NPR and Edison Research –
a figure that’s up 128 percent from January, 2017. Amazon’s
Echo speakers are still in the lead, the report says, as 11
percent now own an Amazon Alexa device compared with 4
percent who own a Google Home product.

Today, 16 percent of Americans own a smart speaker, or
around 39 million people.

The holiday shopping season also seemed to have played
a role in the increased adoption of smart devices in the U.S.,
with 7 percent of Americans reporting they acquired at least
one smart speaker between Black Friday and the end of
December, and 4 percent saying they acquired their first s
mart speaker during the holidays.

Both Amazon and Google used the holiday shopping season
to their advantage in terms of acquiring market share for their
respective devices by slashing prices to encourage more
impulse buys, and by heavily promoting the items across their
storefronts. In fact, analysts believe that both Amazon and
Google likely lost a few dollars per unit during the holiday
season, where they were discounting their smaller form factor
devices to $29 for the Amazon Echo Dot and $50 for the Google
Home Mini, for example.

The end result for Amazon was that the Echo Dot became a
top seller across its site and by manufacturers through the Black
Friday weekend, and through the holidays, Amazon recently said.

The new report also delved into how consumers are using their
devices, which have a range of functions including things like being
able to stream music, control their TV and other smart home
devices, and more.

Monday, January 15, 2018


Just in time for holiday preparation, Ecovacs
Robotics displayed its next-generation robotic
vacuum, DEEBOT OZMO 930, at Pepcom’s
Holiday Spectacular in San Francisco. OZMO
includes improved mopping and a breakthrough
adaptive floor/carpet sensing technology. The
Ecovacs line of robotic vacuums is Deebot.
Their robotic window washers are Winbots.
Their air purifiers are ATMOBOTs. Despite the
large window area at the Holiday Spectacular
venue Metreon City View, no demo of a Winbot.

Ozmo 930 can vacuum both rugs and floors,
adjusting to the surface. It can also mop and
will automatically avoid rugs when in mopping
mode. Users can set virtual boundaries to
precisely define the area to be cleaned if there
are restricted areas, such as stairs or projects in
progress. Ozmo 930 uses laser mapping to
learn a home’s floor plan and build a model for
efficient cleaning.   
Ecovacs is primarily known for their consumer
robotic appliances. They’ve been around for
over a decade and continue to develop new
features. In addition to the ability to adust to
floor surfaces and to mop as well as vacuum,
Ozmo 930 can be controlled via smartphone
app or programmed to clean specified areas
on a regular basis. There might still be features
that a maid service does better, but the Ozmo
will never call you at the last minute to say it
can’t come, does away with concerns about
letting strangers in your home whether or not
you’re there, and never needs a 1099.

Friday, January 12, 2018

The End of CES 2018

This is from CES:

CES 2018 officially wrapped today, after dazzling the world with
a glimpse into the future.

More than 3,900 exhibitors showcased world-changing
technologies that spanned more than 2.75 million net square
feet of exhibit space across Las Vegas - the largest show floor
in CES' 51 year history.

There were 860,732 tweets about CES 2018 and 450,554 uses
of the #CES2018 hashtag.

From major international brands to the more than 900 startups
participating in Eureka Park, CES 2018 truly reflected the vibrant
global tech industry.

Watch keynotes and conference sessions from #CES2018 online

Then, save the date for #CES2019: Jan. 8-11, 2019, in Las Vegas,
NV. See you next year!


TiVo, a global leader in consumer entertainment technology,
took advantage of Pepcom’s October 28 Holiday Spectacular
in San Francisco to demonstrate several additions to the their
latest advancements in hardware and user experience. TiVo
introduced the TiVo BOLT VOXTM and TiVo Mini VOXTM.
TiVo VOX Remote™ is part of the new product line. Viewers
can search by voice across live TV, DVR, video-on-demand
and online streaming services.

The visually rich, on-screen TiVo experience  with enhanced
usability includes built-in personalized recommendations and
intelligent predictions based on viewing habits. to help users
sort through the ever-expanding array of TV choices.  VOX
Remote™ empowers a user to use natural speech to refine
searches. For example, you can ask to be shown, “Westerns
where someone says, ‘Make my day’.”
Users can also request the ever-popular Tivo SkipMode™
to bypass commercial breaks. Upon verbal request, OnePass™
will scan multiple outlets to have locate episodes of a series.
Spend your time engrossed in the shows of your choice instead
of searching for something to watch. The system is backwards
compatible: owners of previous versions of TiVo BOLT, TiVo
Roamio and first-generation TiVo Mini can upgrade to voice
control by purchasing a separate TiVo VOX Remote for just
The TiVo Mini VOXTM enables users to bring the same
viewing and voice control experiences to every room in their
home that has a modern television.

Thursday, January 11, 2018


Notion is a complete home awareness solution, powered by a
multi-functional sensor and comprehensive IoT data analytics,
that monitors things like motion, water leaks, temperature, and
alarms, and delivers notifications about their entire home to
homeowners no matter where they are.

Notion has partnered with three of the top five home insurance
providers in the country to offer a cost-effective loss mitigation
system and home telematics solution. “At Notion, it’s our mission
to build products and services that give homeowners peace of mind
and ultimately empower them to live better, more present lives. That’s
what complete home awareness means to us,” said Brett Jurgens,
Co-Founder and CEO of Notion.
Notion’s starter packs have a bridge and either 3 or 5 sensors. Each
sensor is identical and multi-functional, from monitoring doors opening
and closing, to observing temperature, to detecting water leaks or a
sounding alarm. In the year preceding  Pepcom’s San Francisco Holiday
Spectacular, the company sent more than four million notifications and
has saved homeowners across the country over half a million dollars in
property damage.  
“We’re excited to work with Notion to materially change the way the
insurance industry operates, ” said d Toshi Otani, Co-Founder and
Managing Director at TransLink Capital, as he joined the Notion board
of directors.
Given than almost anyone can take a notion to do just about anything,
a cue to take a notion to go to could get you
there more efficiently

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Less Than 48 Hours at CES

I'm here for the shortest CES in history.

My flight arrived on Monday at 3PM and I leave on Wednesday at noon!