The Washington Post

The smart refrigerator

The smart refrigerator would know that nobody wants one. In the effervescence of chatter about how computers would change all our machinery, there was a spate of speculation about smart refrigerators. Of course, smart refrigerators! Certainly there’s room for improvement in refrigerator intelligence.

That is, until people started trying to describe what a smart refrigerator might do. Our futurists came up with things like weighing the milk and ordering more from the milk-delivery system that went out of business decades ago, decades which also saw milk consumption replaced by soda drinking. Aha! We approach an the news peg! And the real reason we don’t want smart refrigerators. WE DON’T WANT TO BE SMART ABOUT FOOD!

If ever there was a nation which seemed to want to confuse itself about health issues we are it. Our food information is a jumble as disorganized as that drawer in your kitchen filled with miscellany. That’s what we need, a smart kitchen-miscellany-drawer! A smart refrigerator would only be considered a nag or a nanny and the smart part would soon be disabled with a screwdriver, or a leg of mutton if necessary. Hmm. This all makes me rethink my prediction that we want smart cars.

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