Using our voices instead of our fingers to get information from search providers and elsewhere is becoming more and more common. I recently bought an Amazon Alexa and am amazed at how good it is at voice recognition. I rarely have to repeat myself, and the response is nearly instantaneous. Google’s voice search is also excellent. But Apple is way behind. Too often, when I ask Siri a question (on any platform), she either doesn’t understand me or can’t return relevant data. Even if I asked her to explain Apple’s lag in voice recognition with the question, “Why, Siri?” she’d probably respond with a link to the local Y.
Speaking of tech companies, I see that Melania Trump will meet with Facebook and Google to talk about cyberbullying. I notice she isn’t going to meet with Twitter, the social media outlet used exclusively by her husband, the man who put the bully in bully pulpit.
My wife and I laughed out loud several times while watching the new Ricky Gervais standup special, “Humanity,” on Netflix. It is not for the easily offended, but contains a lengthy chunk on how he has dealt with people offended by his comments in the past. Yes, he’s arrogant and condescending, but I’m glad he’s gone back to standup, because most of his recent projects (“Derek,” “David Brent: Life On The Road,” “Life’s Too Short”) have been remarkably unfunny. I prefer his HBO series “Extras,” his 2009 movie “The Invention of Lying,” and his two “Out Of England” standup specials.
I’ve watched every episode of every season of “Survivor,” which means I’ve seen Jeff Probst impose his will on the show more and more each year. I can’t think of another reality show host who yells at contestants during challenges as much as he does. Also, each season, I’m surprised when, after four or five episodes, the camera somehow lands on someone I didn’t even know was playing the game. She or he has been left out of the edit completely up until that point, while the dominant players got all the attention. I wonder what it’s like for those leftovers to watch the show at home with their families and have to remind them, “No, really, I was there, too!”