FOSTER CITY, CALIF.—Oh, what a year it was. Rocked by data privacy scandals, social media tampering, and #MeToo movement-inspired management oustings, it’s easy to get stuck in the storyline that 2018 was a year that the tech industry would like to completely forget. But that isn’t the complete picture. To be clear, those tech company-instigated concerns are all extremely important issues and will likely impact not just the tech world, but our overall society for many years to come. However, there were also quite a few positive and forward-looking developments that came from the tech industry this year as it’s struggled through its awkward adolescent stage and into full adulthood. For one, 2018 was the year when the idea of voice computing went mainstream. Thanks to the ongoing success of products like Amazon’s Alexa-powered Echo line and the Google Assistant-driven Google Home series, a large percentage of US homes now have an entirely new way to interact with the internet and information in general. While there are certainly growing pains to overcome and capabilities to expand, there’s no doubt that we’ll soon look backward to 2018 as the real beginning of an entirely new way of interacting with the digital… Read full this story
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