Monthly Archives: November 2011

failure of imagination

Mirror, mirror: The New York Times wants to serve you info as you’re brushing your teeth

It’s another smart house scheme that lives in your bathroom mirror and tracks your prescriptions by RFID. I got almost this exact pitch when I toured Microsoft Research’s demo smart house as a Microsoft intern in 2008. So what’s new? It’s an ad platform:

And it’s also a retail opportunity. So, say, based on my use of this product, that a local retailer wants to promote something to me.

“Mirror: show coupon.”
“Mirror: show coupon.”

I can call up a coupon here, and then save it to my phone, and then go to a physical location to redeem it. So, again, it’s a conversation that happens in front of the mirror, but then it can drive behavior elsewhere, out in the world.

Hey. Creative Technologist for R&D Brian House. This is 2011. In the event that I do purchase a magic mirror that shows me ads, and I see something I like, I’m not gonna bother asking it for a coupon, OBEXing or mailing or whatevering it to my phone, and then going to some brick and mortar store with it. Technology is supposed to save time! I’m gonna order the thing from Amazon and get it in the mail.