Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument

Touted as an “underwater Yellowstone” and “a deep sea Serengeti”, this new marine national monument is the first in the Atlantic Ocean.  Considering that there has been enough press about damaging hurricanes, oil spills, and garbage floating in Earth’s oceans, it’s refreshing and NEWWorthy to read about a new monument off Cape Cod.

Which is NEWWorthy: Surface Dial or Mac Pro Touch Bar?

Microsoft and Apple released new user interface aids — or toys, depending on how you perceive these kinds of things — recently.

Microsoft’s Surface Dial sells for about $100 and provides a new kind of input device, particularly for creative types.  Apple’s Touch Bar is only available initially with the new Mac Pro and adds about $300 or more to the cost.  It is a productivity aid, and Apple claims it’s better than the idea of providing a touch-screen computer.

So which is NEWWorthy?  It’s too early to tell, but here are some initial reactions.  Mashable says that “Apple’s new Touch Bar looks like an ergonomic nightmare“.  That’s not to say that you won’t be able to make good productive use of the touch bar, it’s just that you might suffer some pains in doing so.  Meanwhile, here’s Techcrunch’s “Hands-on with the Surface Dial.”

I haven’t had a chance to try either one.  But the Surface Dial appears to be the sexier, more exciting of the two new devices.  In time, we’ll find out which one is truly NEWWorthy.  For now, they both are.

Bot economy

Get used to hearing the term “bot economy” as bots slowly replace apps.  Chat bots are bots (software) that provide customer and other text services to humans.  There are also search bots, edit bots, anti-vandalism bots, and many others.  Wikipedia lists some of the Wikipedia bots.  There are also many, too many, malicious bots.

Google, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft make bots too, hoping that eventually their virtual helpers will be established as the best in the business.  App stores are flooded with apps, but The Economist informs us that the market for bots is just getting started.  Some, like Bloomberg, are calling it the “bot economy”.

Many bots don’t have faces, but many do have personalities and some have voices.  Consumer robots that help us in our daily lives with tasks like laundry, cleaning (not just vacuuming), driving, etc. may still be years away, but bots are here now.  Welcome to the bot economy.  Whether it becomes as big as the app economy has been over the last decade, time will tell.  For now, bots are NEWWorthy.