I like to cook and bake. The act of putting something together relaxes me, and I've certainly had plenty of time in 2020 to do this. In fact, I've been doing so much that my wife and daughter ordered me a new stand mixer while I was making them cookies this past weekend. They thought it would make it easier for me to continue to prepare more meals when life returns to some sort of normalcy.
I'm not a chef, and I certainly struggle through some recipes, but I enjoy the time working through the act of assembling something. I also struggle with fitting in the time to prepare things around an otherwise busy life. When I saw this article on smart appliances, I stopped to think that some of these might be nice, but perhaps they're also reduce some of the skills I've built and perhaps make my time in the kitchen less enjoyable. Would I become dependent on them, entitled, or even less excited about the task of cooking?
It's something I hadn't considered too often, especially in other areas where AI and "smart" items are becoming more commonplace. I think some of advances in the data platform are good, and certainly some of the cloud services handle tasks that are fairly simple and they do them well. Backups happening in many of the PaaS services are mostly something we don't need to configure or worry about, though we ought to be sure we know how to actually perform a restore. I have high hopes for some of the index automation and other changes, though there is a ways to go.
Is the use of more AI in systems better? In some sense I think this can help us cope with busier and more complex lives, and allow us time to focus on the things we want to focus on. At the same time, I suspect these systems aren't as mature as the marketing suggests, and the options certainly command a premium, which is something that might benefit the vendor more than the consumer.
Like any advance, this could be helpful or hurtful for any of us. I like to assemble things from scratch more often than not, and I'm not sure if I think the AI gadgetry is something I'd enjoy. For now, I'm taking a small step, with a little mechanical assistance that might let me less time on the physical activity of combining things and more time planning my next steps or chatting with the audience that is often sitting at the counter.