The Potential Problems Of Amazon Go

The Potential Problems Of Amazon Go

The futuristic shopping method may come with a variety of issues.
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Last Monday, Amazon delivered the news of plans for an enhanced grocery shopping center that could be the future of retail. With no check-out kiosks and no lines, they hope to create a better and faster experience for all. Through deep learning algorithms, computer vision and sensor fusion (something Amazon calls "Just Walk Out" technology) customers will be able to enter the store and check-in with their smartphone. From there, you grab what you need and walk out.

The store will charge your Amazon account for the items and send you a receipt with no wait. Amazon is currently testing out their new 1,800 square foot shopping facility on Amazon employees in Seattle, Washington, and if all goes well, it will open to the public in early 2017. You can watch a video and check out the FAQs on the Amazon website here.

While I think this has potential, there are quite a few aspects that Amazon is staying eerily quiet about, including how exactly they are going to pull it off. Ignoring the hype, I can only think about the potential problems for this futuristic concept. How does it work?

In March 2015, Recode posted an article about a patent application filed by Amazon that outlined some of the ideas that would make the new store run smoothly. The article suggests we may have a reason to be concerned about our privacy with this system. They say, "the application describes the use of cameras that would snap photos to show, for example, when a person entered the facility, when she removed something from a shelf and when she left with an item in her hand. There is mention of facial recognition... User information may include, but is not limited to, user-identifying information (e.g., images of the user, height of the user, weight of the user), a user name and password, user biometrics, purchase history, payment instrument information (e.g., credit card, debit card, check card), purchase limits, and the like.” This is the same idea as an employee following you around the entire store, watching what you pick up, and writing it down, but through cameras, computers and technology we don't understand. Another theory introduces the use of RFID, or Radio Frequency Identification, which lets retailers identify products just like bar codes do, but through a wireless network. With the little information we have on the technology, Amazon claims it's similar to the specifics of self-driving cars.

But the problems don't end with the potential privacy invasions. The gist of Amazon's store has what we know as "shoplifting" as their selling point. How easy will it be to enter the store and just not scan your smartphone, essentially keeping yourself out of the system altogether?

What about the individuals who don't have smartphones? No smartphone, no sale. And something that happens to many as a regular occurrence--what if your phone dies while you're shopping? How will groceries be bagged, if at all? How will they handle a return policy? Picture this. Amazon Go opens up to the public and a father and his two young daughters decide to go shopping. The girls are tossing into the cart--this snack and that snack--while Dad shops, too. A perfectly logical and realistic situation. If a human being watching diligently behind a camera isn't involved, how will Amazon track multiple people putting multiple items in a cart? Do each of the daughters need a smartphone and Amazon account or can they somehow be "linked" to the main account? How will this technology know the girls belong to the father in the first place?

There are many unanswered questions about the specifics of Amazon Go. For now, all we can do is watch and wait for more information.


Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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25 Responses To Your Friend Who Doesn't Text Back

Omg thanks for responding so quickly...oh, wait.
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We all have that friend. That friend we love to death, but if we are sure of anything in this world, it’s that they will not respond to your text because they suck at texting. That moment when you see “Read 1:04 p.m.” and you’re like “and???? Helloooooooo!”

These are 25 responses for that dear friend.

1. Lol thanks for tagging me in that FB post, now text me tf back.


2. OMG, wait you met Chris Hemsworth and he’s professing his love to you??!! No? Okay, then you can def text me back.

3. Hey I’m coming to help you since you obviously broke your thumbs and can’t respond.

4. Lolol thanks for responding. I’ll just continue the conversation with myself. That’s cool.

5. Good chat.

6. Yeah I wouldn’t know how to respond either, pizza topping selection is a thought-provoking process. Take your time. Meditate on it.

7. The classic: ^^^^^^^^^


8. I hope you’re writing me the 8th Harry Potter novel.

9. That was a yes or no question. This isn’t difficult. You wouldn’t do well with ‘Sophie’s Choice.’

10. Omg, did you pass out from the excitement of getting a text from me? Totally understandable. Text me when you regain consciousness, love.

11. Omg what a witty and clever response. Nothing. So philosophical.

12. The only excuse I’ll accept is if you’re eating guac and don’t want to get it on your phone. Because avocados are life.

13. I love it when you do that adorable thing when you don’t text me back for hours. So cute.


14. Okay I’ll answer for you. Yes, you’re going out tonight. Glad we had this convo.

15. In the time it has taken you to respond, dinosaurs could have retaken the earth.

16. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA

17. The dramatic but also very valid response: That’s what happens when you don’t respond for 30 minutes. People die.


18. I apologize for asking if you were coming to watch Bachelor, clearly the decision has caused you serious reflection on your priorities. I’m sorry to have caused you this existential crisis.

19. Sorry I annoyed you with my friendship. But like plz respond…

20. Your response time is longer than Ross and Rachel’s entire relationship. 10 seasons. You couldn’t text me back for 10 seasons?!!

21. Wait. You’re responding too fast. I can’t keep up. Hang on. Don’t respond so quickly. Jeez.

22. A subtle but perfectly placed gif. What will you go with? The classic eye roll perhaps or maybe a “you suck.”


23. Did you fall off a cliff? Wait, you don’t exercise. Pause your Netflix and respond b*tch.

24. Omg I WON THE LOTTERY. *responds* Lol now you respond…

25. And my personal favorite and go to, Did you text me and then decide to THROW YOUR PHONE ACROSS THE OCEAN?! Lol swim fast, I need an answer.

Cover Image Credit: http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8289/7759302068_fac2dfd31d_b.jpg

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36 Things You Could Be Doing Other Than Being On Your Phone

Put down the phone, baby!

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My parents, especially my mom, are never silent when it comes to expressing their opinions on technology and social media. Living back at home for the summer after spending two semesters at college means that my phone habits are once again visible to my family. Although she isn't saying it as much as she did summers ago, my mom thinks that I spend a lot of time on my phone.

Her saying this has definitely opened my eyes, and I do realize that there are so many other things I could be doing other than being on my phone. Here are just some of those things:

1. Learn a little bit of a new language

2. Take a trip to the beach

3. Go for a walk (or a run)

4. Write poetry, a short story, or a journal entry

5. Go to the city

6. Write a letter of appreciation to your best friend

7. Cook (or learn how to cook) your favorite meal

8. Go out to eat

9. Draw (or color)

10. Soak in the tub

Giphy

11. See a live show or concert

12. Go on a shopping spree (or just window shop)

13. Plant some flowers

14. Play a board game with your family or friends

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15. Go to the gym

16. Meet up with a friend you haven't seen in a while

17. Solve a puzzle

18. Plan your outfits for the upcoming week

19. Take pictures with your friends

20. Get your nails done

21. Go to a museum or zoo

22. Do your hair just because

23. Organize your closet

24. Clean that part of your room (or house) that you've been putting off

25. Party with friends

26. Sunbathe

27. Go to a sports game

28. Do your friend's makeup just for fun

29. Watch a movie

30. Read a book

31. Meditate (or learn to meditate)

32. Work on a DIY project

33. Fill in future plans in a calendar

34. Volunteer

The Bronx Is Blooming

35. Study the next chapter just to be ahead of the game

36. Literally anything else that doesn't involve your phone or social media

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