Quick! Go Buy As Many Dumb Machines as You Can Find

Planning to give the familia more "smart" gadgets?

By Armando F Sanchez
Published on LatinoLA: April 6, 2016

Quick! Go Buy As Many Dumb Machines as You Can Find

I recommend you go and buy as many household machines that don't have any form of IT, sensors or computers in them. It the store label says "smart machine" put it back into the rack and look for a simple dumb ones.

Buy them for yourselves. If not for yourself, then buy them for older members of your family. I suggest you buy many of them and store them away. You are going to make positive points with those family members that you give it to them.

Why? you ask, should one go buy many of these inexpensive simple machines as possible?

The reason is that soon you won't be able to find them in stores. All you will find is "smart" items and the confusion and frustration they create will only be worse.

Consider the following. How are your parents and grandparents getting along with their smart phones, smart coffee makers, or smart televisions? Are they proficient in using them or are they always anxiously waiting for their grandchildren or you to come over to visit and then set up and update their devices? How many times do you hear from them "I just want these darn things to turn on and off and nothing more!"

Many of our abuelos, tias, and tios actually have their smart machine that you gave them still in their boxes and hidden in some dark room in their house. They may take them out and put them back on the table when you visit, but for the most part those gifts are never used. When you leave they put them back into the closets.

Why don't they use those wonderful time saving devices, you wonder? It's simple, they don't know how to make them work!

Each "great" next generation smart device comes with more buttons, codes, setting choices, and heaven knows what other set of choices on the panel screens. Parents come unglued when the electricity goes out in the neighborhood and then when the electricity returns they have to figure out how to reprogram and reset each device. The elders freak out when the power comes back and all their modern gadgets start up and keep blinking plus making more weird loud sounds.

Giving older people smart machines as gifts is like giving them a new hammer so that they can bang their head with it. You had good intentions giving that to them, but it will only add to their frustration. They are already on high blood pressure medicine and you go and give them a "modern time saving smart device"! What were you thinking!

The Internet is moving into the 5G level and it will be making more of our household machines part of the Internet of Things (IoT). Very soon our coffee machine will be able to "talk" with the television, refrigerator, vacuum cleaner, phones and our watches. I begin to wonder if our smart appliances will observe us and talk behind our backs and make up jokes about what we do and we won't even know it.

So once again, buy many simple appliances that only come with only two switches-on and off. Make absolutely sure you don't need a remote to work the device. Older people already have 5-6, or more, remotes laying around the house and they can't remember if it's part of the old TV or the new one. Poor parents and familia. All they want is to watch their novelas on TV. They push a button on the remote control and instead of turning on the television they have instead accidentally turned on the blender and alarm clock you gave them for Christmas. If you gave them many of the "great modern time saving devices" you in fact have turned their home into a shop of horrors. That new washing machine with high levels of IT now makes all kinds of disturbing sounds and blinks messages on the panel and they have no clue what "code 1917X3 see reference" means. Now they have to go to the laundromat on cold and windy days.

A recent article in MIT Technology Review states that people are overwhelmed by the new technology and that the solution will be that you will be able to simply talk to it and have it program itself.

When our artificial intelligent machines switch over to voice commands we will have to teach our Abuelitos the technological vocabulary and phrases like "cancel previous command, proceed to reprogram yourself, contact the repair center, update your software, etc.).

So the smart machine will be bilingual, so what? That machine better understand broken English and mispronounced words plus know how to ignore a few Spanish cuss words. My Abuelita likes to mix English and Spanish in the same sentence. Another issue about her pronunciation if she has taken a few shots from my Abuelito's "hidden" tequila bottle. Even I start to have troubles understanding her as she begins to babble just a little. Will our modern voice recognition machines understand babbling?

I'm letting you know now, if you don't want to keep getting constant phone calls from familia that need you to constantly and immediately rush over so that you can teach them once again on how to turn on and use their new machines, give them the old version with only simple switches and ABSOLUTELY no artificial intelligence.

Give yourselves the opportunity to sit down with them and have a wonderful leisurely family conversation over coffee and pan dulce instead of sitting on the kitchen table to reteaching them how to download operating manuals over the Internet in order to use all those darn electronic gadgets.

Buy them the dumbest machines you can find before they stop selling them. Buy them quickly before they remove your name from their Will and get back at you for giving them those supposedly "wonderful computerized gadgets that you are enjoying".

The Internet of Everything is just around the corner.

About Armando F Sanchez:
Armando F Sanchez is a national speaker, writer, worldwide traveler and CEO of Armando F Sanchez Production Network. His organization produces global web cast and podcast programming.
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