At the end of each year it’s time to look back and contemplate not only what gadgets, inventions or advances have revolutionized the tech scene, but what have been the main technological failures of the year. These are the ones that have stood out throughout 2018.
2018 has bequeathed spatial advances, virtual assistants increasingly perfect, new screens, road to a 5G technology that is increasingly closer or major advances in robotics, but also, as any year worth its salt, errors and failures in terms of algorithms , smart appliances or technological projects.
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If in the section of great successes we run into the NASA InSight probe to explore Mars, the great expansion of Alexa, Cortana or Google Assistant in homes, great technologies associated with smartphones – from the progress in the Internet of the Things or image quality- or gradual improvements in connected cars, deployment of new AI solutions in areas such as health or retail, as well as the use of Big Data to predict climatic catastrophes or improve smart cities, now it is necessary to review what has been the most famous technological failures of 2018.
7 technological failures that marked 2018
- The proliferation of hate speech on Twitter: It has not been a bad year only for Facebook -marked by its data breach or the Cambridge Analytica scandal in the open-, but the social network of Jack Dorsey has received strong criticism for its permissiveness and lack of control over the speeches of Nazis, white supremacists or racist agitators and propagators of conspiracies like Alex Jones, whose account was finally eliminated after high popular pressure. Meanwhile, the bots continue to flood the blue bird microblogging platform with lies and hate speech.
- Autonomous cars, still green: This 2018 will be sadly remembered for a handful of serious accidents of various companies in pilot tests with autonomous vehicles. – Virtually no one was spared: an Apple car suffered a collision last August in Santa Clara, in March there was the first death caused by the collision of an autonomous Uber car in the town of Arizona and also Waymo lived various accidents -in May and November, respectively-, despite blaming the test driver that these cars carry to control the route and prevent accidents. The conclusion is clear: the integration with vehicles driven by humans will not be easy and it is still necessary to improve the driving technology, as well as solve the various ethical debates around these cars.
- Google’s Dragonfly: Google tried to keep it secret, but its secret program to cooperate with the Chinese government to create a censored search engine actually deteriorated the company’s image, forced Zuckerberg to explain and provoked strikes, protests and resignations from High profile. The project started in the spring of last year, and in December 2017 the current CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai, and a representative of the Chinese government met to show a version of its search engine adapted to the demands of the Asian country. After the harsh criticism of the users, the project has been slowed down.
- CLOI, the botched robot of LG: One of the promises of the brand is that in 2018 it would incorporate AI to all its devices. Within the framework of the past CES 2018, the small domestic robot CLOi, integrated with electrical appliances and perfect to function as a kitchen assistant, was born. It was described as “the ultimate in simplicity to handle the smart home.” However, in the live test held at the technology fair CLOi fell silent after David VanderWaal, vice president of marketing for the company sent him a recipe with his mobile and asked: “What recipe could do with chicken?” . The answer was silence. After the CEI CLOi fell into an uncomfortable oblivion, good example of the erratic and first-time character of the automaton.
- The black year of Facebook: If you asked Mark Zuckerberg what was the worst of the last twelve months, he probably would not know where to start. Russian interference, false announcements, fake news, hate messages in Sri Lanka or Myanmar, loss of users in Europe – a phenomenon that coincided with the entry into force of the GDPR – vague explanations before the European Parliament and the US Congress and Senate United, the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the Italian fine, data leaks, FACUA accusations and a long etcetera.
- Project Maven, the dark military project of Google: As we explained in this article, Project Maven is a military program of AI, machine learning and deep learning impelledor by the United States Department of Defense opposed by thousands of employees of Google have subscribed to an internal request to demand the company’s exit from it, signed between Google and the Pentagon and that has a cost of 70 million Dollars. This controversial initiative aims to accelerate the analysis of data captured by smart devices such as drones in espionage actions and classify images of objects and people for military use. A recent revelation of the company’s involvement in a Department of Defense project to develop artificial vision systems for war has put the company under tremendous ethical scrutiny.
- Google + data leakage: It was never the social network most valued and loved by users, but the bet of Google has had to go through the back door due to one of the largest data leaks in history. Launched in June 2011, Google finally decided to advance a farewell following a highly publicized security breach that exposed data from up to half a million users.