It’s gadget season in the tech world. Think of it like New York Fashion Week, untucked white-man edition.
Every fall, the world’s largest technology companies put on elaborate press events to show off their latest wonders. This year’s gatherings have been particularly glitzy. Ten years after the debut of the iPhone, Apple invited reporters to the office park it’s been building for the past six years — the monumental spaceship building that Steve Jobs unveiled in his last public address. Amazon, in the meantime, asked reporters to visit its Seattle headquarters, where it is building a humidity-controlled set of glass spheres that will one day function as a kind of indoor nature walk for employees. The new gadgets — Apple’s completely redesigned iPhone, Amazon’s bedside clock talking computer — were also kind of fun.
But despite the baubles and billion-dollar office parks, I’m really not feeling it this year. The technology industry is still exciting; it still packs the capacity for surprise. But where the surprise once felt like Christmas morning, it’s now like the entering-the-darkened-basement scene of a horror movie.