The Top 10 Best Technology Gifts Of 2017

The Top 10 Best Technology Gifts Of 2017

The perfect gifts to win over a technology enthusiast's heart.

Technology gifts are innovative, cool, and a look into the future. Every holiday season technology gifts are some of the most popular. Here's a list of the best technology-related gifts of 2017:

1. AirPods

AirPods are Apple's small, wireless, and simple headphones. Perfect for listening to music or talking to people, without having to deal with a headphone cord.

2. GoPro

GoPro is the most portable and active approved camera for any tech enthusiast who loves to capture life's moments.

3. Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo or "Alexa" is a great speaker that also adds an innovative aspect to the device. Any tech enthusiast will love saying "hey Alexa!"

4. Polaroid camera

Know a tech enthusiast who is still connected to the past? Polaroid Cameras are perfect for any tech enthusiast who wants to have a little piece from the past.

5. Fitbit

Know someone who is a fitness enthusiast and a tech enthusiast? The Fitbit is the perfect gift for them! It can connect right to your computer or phone and tracks your activity, weight, sleep, and more.

6. Roku streaming stick

Cable TV is simply going out of style. The Roku Stick is like a portable TV, which has thousands of movies, TV episodes, and channels.

7. Felix Gray glasses

The Felix Gray Glasses literally are made for tech enthusiasts who spend way too much time staring at screens. These glasses filter out the blue light that reflects from tech screens, which then reduces the glare and makes sure that our eyes are less strained.

8. Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch makes it super easy for gamers to play at home or on the go! A very new and unique gaming console idea.

9. Snapchat spectacles

Do you know a tech enthusiast who is obsessed with Snapchat and documenting their life moments? Spectacles by Snapchat literally make it so Snapchatters can document their life moments through their eyes.

10. Apple iPhone X

The ultimate tech enthusiast gift for 2017: iPhone X. The newest generation of the iPhone includes Face ID, total screen display, animojis, and more!

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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Alexa Is The New Smart House And It's More Unsettling Than You Think

Try not to become too reliant on an Alexa or Pat.

The Amazon Echo Dot, more formally known as Alexa, has been all the recent rage. It picks up on your voice when you call its name and tries to respond with an appropriate response. That might be putting music on or simply answering a trivia question. My family has recently purchased one, and there have been certain points where I feel like I’m living in the movie Smart House.

Smart House was a Disney Channel original movie about the Cooper family who wins a contest and moves into a futuristic house. The computer running the house, named Pat, takes care of everything including the cooking and cleaning.

However, soon Pat’s maternal instincts take over and she transforms into a real woman because she loves the family so much. She then ends up trapping the family in their own house because she believes the outside world is too dangerous. In the end, she gets transformed back into the computer after she is shown that she could never be the human mother the children need.

Now I’m not saying Alexa is going to turn into a motherly figure and try to smother my family with love, but there have been certain points where it feels almost unsettling having a computer listening to every conversation you have. I have even unplugged her from the wall because it’s gotten creepy.

It’s just the thought that she is listening to your every conversation and then selling information about you to different companies. It’s like the feeling you get when an add for a book you have just googled has popped up on your Facebook page.

Although Alexa doesn’t respond back to you unless you directly talk to her, her presence is always known. She even responds when a character on TV says her name. Her programming is intelligent, and I have gotten used to the way she “thinks” and know how to get the response I want out of her.

It’s just the thought a movie I had watched as a child is now becoming a reality in most homes around the world. Alexa can even be programmed to turn on the TV or the lights in your house. We are all one step closer to having our own “Pat” taking over our lives.

And while I enjoy certain aspects of Alexa such as asking her what the weather is or what was the news of the day it still makes me wonder if we rely too much on our technology. We have all become too trusting like the Cooper family and have our technology try to take over our lives.

Whatever the capacity, try not to become too reliant on an Alexa or Pat. It’s also good for them if they’re unplugged every once in a while.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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How Should We Feel About Losing Net Neutrality?

From starting rallies to claiming to “everything will be okay," how should we react to this new regulation?

As I type this, I find it disturbing that one day the freedom to express myself online will be cut short by the most recent discussion on Net Neutrality. I have slowly been exposed to the situation as the weeks go by. Why is nobody talking about the very thing that could end a way we connect with others and access information?

For those of you who are unfamiliar, you are not alone. I was too until I encountered a random article on Facebook that suggested that we “Stand up for Net Neutrality.” So what is Net Neutrality and why could this be taken away?

Net Neutrality allows you, the consumer, to gain access to internet services and to all the content the internet provides. While we browse the web we do not think twice about what website we are trying to access.

Without Net Neutrality we face the reality of allowing large companies to control what content you’re exposed to. What we may view on the internet may be carved the way THEY want us to see it. Smaller companies may be swallowed whole if there becomes an imbalance of power between companies.

On December 14th the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) will choose to keep or remove regulations that blocked larger companies from closing off certain sites. By treating small or large companies equally with regulations, there runs the risk of companies abusing the system. Companies can make certain that their consumers will not gain access to their rival company. This runs a risk of creating a monopoly and as consumers, we will not benefit from the removal of Net Neutrality.

I’m feeling slightly betrayed and conflicted here. As if we don't have enough on our plate involving otherworldly matters.

As I continue to look into this subject I have found articles that claim that “Concerns about Net Neutrality are overblown” which brings another perspective on why we shouldn't be anxious about this whole ordeal. I find that both arguments bring valid points which brings me to admit that I am honestly not sure what to believe.

As we continue to guard our internet rights until December 14th, I will try to keep myself as updated about this situation as possible. Getting myself into these discussions, finding people who think differently than me, and digging deep into how others interpret the bill would be the best way to expand my knowledge on this subject.

Will this dramatically change the internet? It has already brought awareness and fear to those who want to keep the internet free. Now that this situation is spreading, there are multiple rallies being set up in the United States to protect the Net Neutrality. Starting December 7th protests will start forming outside of Verizon retail stores near you.

Will Congress hear the concerns of the people? Or are we misinterpreting what is really going on? Take this moment to voice your concerns to others or contact your congressmen. When facing a scenario that takes away your rights, you should never be afraid to stand up and voice your disapproval.

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