MADHATTERs Weekly – Issue 8, 10 Jan 2017


MADHATTERs – Tech news with a HAT perspective

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Alert Us. If you come across any interesting new developments in personal data or relevant tech news, please post a Notable with your HAT.


Tech News this week

NYT almost nearly said we should get HATs. We think the NYT (New York Times) would have, if it knew we exist (someone tell them please). This is because the debate over our ownership and control of personal data has just gone into…health records. Seems we can’t access it, but cybercriminals can – and do. They hack and steal this very personal info. Solution? Disaggregate the data and give it back to patients, says the NYT. It’s an entitlement and civil right that should be recognised, it adds. Of course we agree. Now say it…Get. A. HAT.

The App store is coming to a car near you…Carmakers are collaborating through the SmartDeviceLink (SDL) Consortium on the connected car. A bit late in the game but FOMO finally hits. Automakers clearly aren’t happy to cede control of the in-car user experience to the tech giants. So they’re starting their own market of apps. Of course we want our car to talk back to us through an app. Who wouldn’t? Just imagine…you’re alone in your car and it chimes “Something smells funny in here”. But seriously. A little bird tells us that the HATDeX team is talking to the mobility folks, so watch this space…

Uber must be feeling the heat…Uber’s trying to play nice by sharing a shedload of data from its trip logs to  “help improve urban planning around the world”.  Does this make up for all the other fights it’s having with cities around the world? Probably not. But this is its first olive branch and city officials seem to be grateful…

Do not stay calm if the Internet is down. The UN considers internet access disruption a human rights violation. So cry foul. Protest. Burn effigies. GET US BACK ONLINE! It seems it’s not great for the country either; nations lost USD2.4 billion last year due to Internet shutdowns

And who’s the boss... You can now ignore those after-hours emails from your boss! But only if you’re in France, which just introduced a ‘right to disconnect’ rule for employees. Almost worth moving for…

Be Cautious About…

Alexa, you doll, you…A San Diego TV news anchor inadvertently triggered orders for dollhouses in Amazon-Echo-equipped households recently. So check the voice order settings on yours. Remember, Alexa listens to Skype calls too!

Impress Your Friends With…

3-D printing your baking tray. Is there anything a 3-D printer can’t do? It’s never been a better time to get one for the home. This entry-level model costs a mere USD150. And we’re not kidding about the tray – it seems you can now 3D-print high-quality metal products at home too.

Geek Out On…

The bed that stole your pillow. Beds are getting smarter, and not just at tracking sleep. This one adjusts itself and warms your feet. Better yet, it detects and reduces snoring. Now we just need a bot and a personality and we’ll never leave home…

And Finally…

Christmas may be over. But here are some connected devices for Uncle Fred, who might still be feeling festive. WIRED has listed five of the most bizarre IoT gadgets. Think about the data you can get on that rectal thermometer…


HAT News

This week, for the first time (unless you’ve been hanging out in MarketSquare), HATDeX is very excited to introduce everyone to the Big HAT Community (BHC). Part growth plan, part “official mandate” to hang out with other HATTERs, HATDeX says “this is a strategy we’re going to be pursuing all year to encourage new people to learn about the HAT, old friends to become HATTERs, and excited HATTERs to welcome their friends.” To learn more,  our read our Community Manager Jonathan Holtby’s Notable about the BHC on MarketSquare.

Latest newbie. We welcome Anna DeWolf, who’s joined HATDeX as our new Marketing Assistant. Anna’s been busy working with the product team; have a look at the HAT Product Strategy she’s posted on Notables.

HAT research. What’s the R & D side of the HAT been up to in 2016? Find out in this review of the year.

Noteworthy Notables

MarketSquare is becoming quite a hub of activity, as the BHC adopts it as its new home. Here are some highlights: Anna has outlined the HAT’s product strategy for the next couple of months. Jonathan has started a daily news digest for startup founders. And CTO Xiao Ma is talking WeChat mobile strategy.

And the winner is…   A big shout out to for providing the winning quotable quote (from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy):

“There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.

There is another theory which states that this has already happened.


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