Miss Crankypants read an article about a new way to think of our stuff: The Internet of Things is supposed to mean that our appliances and conveniences will soon be so smart they won’t need us anymore. The examples range from a fridge that takes inventory and lets you know when the milk is running low to toasters that presumably understand how you like your bagels. But just like the Roomba, these “smarter than a fifth grader” appliances do not have your best interests at heart.
Since Miss Cranky’s refrigerator already hates her, a “smart” fridge would no doubt become a smartMOUTHed appliance. She’s going to open that freezer door one too many times, and then the cloying refrigerator voice will chide, “Honey. Have you looked in the mirror lately? Do us all a favor and skip the Ben & Jerry’s for once.”
The fruit and veggie bin won’t have mercy either. “Hahaha, some diet,” the crisper will say. “Who are you kidding? That’s the umpteenth carrot you’ve pretended to eat today. It doesn’t help if you dip your rabbit food in peanut butter!” Miss CP may have to start keeping the diet food in a root cellar, just to avoid the taunting.
The smart fridge of the future will probably feature a hologram of Michelle Obama, shaking her finger at you for all kinds of food sins. Then the door will hermetically seal itself until you have run five miles or died, whichever comes first.
And a smart toaster won’t be any more useful. So what if it can be programmed to guillotine your big fat oh-so-yummy piece of bread into a tiny triangle that gets stuck down in the slot? All that will do is force you to stick your fork in there and risk electrocution all for the sake of savoring a few forbidden carbs. Maybe the toaster of the future will be so freaking smart that it shocks you into sticking with that low-carb regimen that gives you bad breath and nightmares where bread, pasta and potatoes run away from you.
Do we really need gadgets that act like our moms?