Biggest Tech Turkeys of 2016 – according to Cnet, first Microsoft’s Surface tablet. Second, Google’s messenger overload; Third, watching sports in VR; Fourth, NFL draft prospect Laremey Tunsil smoking weed with a grass mask on Twitter – it went viral; Surface went offline during the AFC championship game in January; Twitter unceremoniously dumped Vine – a new service for sharing six-second videos; Uber is losing money; smartwatches are so 2015 – nobody is buying them; McDonald’s Un-Happy Meal, which has had a recall for burns and rashes; Microsoft would like you to forget about Tay, an AI they let loose on Twitter – she turned into a horny racist; Facebook declared war on the Philippines; Kanye asked Zuckerberg of Facebook for a load; Hulk Hogan slams Gawker in a privacy lawsuit; Snapchat filters draw ire; Computers blamed for missed flights with several airlines; Tesla’s autopilot led to a fatal car crash; T-Mobile moved to a single unlimited data plan and angered many customers; Verizon added fees to avoid fees; The FBI backed down from pushing Apple to unlock their iPhone; Apple eliminated the standard headphone jack in their new smartphones; BlackBerry goes nowhere and outsourced their phone business; The founder of Oculus said some bizarre political things; Nobody wants Twitter; Facebook admitted having a team that dictated what appeared on the trending topics list and was biased in stories it presented – they ran a hoax piece on a Fox News anchor; Facebook censored the wrong Vietnam War photo; Pokemon Go ticked off players; Yahoo lost at least 500 million accounts and FriendFinder lost 412 million accounts due to hacking; A massive Internet outage swept across the U.S. in October; Hackers influenced the presidential race; Not only was the current presidential contest the ugliest ever, but it showed how far social media were off in predicting a Clinton win; Sexting became part of this election.
U.S. Factory Output Rises Slightly in October – The greater production of home electronics, automobiles and appliances aided the output rise. Manufacturers have endured a brutal year that crimped sales and hiring. The relatively strong U.S. dollar made U.S. goods more expensive overseas, hurting exports, while low energy prices dried up demand for drilling equipment and pipelines. Business was more cautious about investing in machinery.
New Cheap Levitating Voice-Controlled Speakers – Spaco (which means “space”) has the cheapest electrostatic Wi-Fi speakers out there, at only $199 each. They can be controlled by voice even in noisy environments, and it becomes smarter the more you use it. It understands your music choices and settings. The special levitating top part offers 720-degree surround sound without requiring wall mounts. Their 5.1 system gives the same audio performance no matter where you place it. It is being marketed as a super high-end home audio system.