Where's Waldo?

In the mid 80’s “Where’s Wally?” (Waldo here in the US and Canada) was published. In the early 90’s Waldo-mania swept the US as a pop culture sensation. My guess is that has died down over time, yet I do hear references to it on occasion.

Enter Google Latitude…

You now can know where Waldo (a.k.a Wally) is at all times. Well, not only Waldo; your girlfriend, boyfriend, spouse, children- you get the picture. Perhaps Google should have called it Google Lo-Jack.

In the realm of social networking this seems like another likely application to fit into the offering. I have written about Twitter and Google’s possible acquisition (though more for its real time search capabilities) as it builds out its web 2.0 service mix, enhancing communication and collaboration. Perhaps this is the platform for telecommuters. We know that all those telecommuters are really at the beach with a cell phone and a laptop (which in NY during the winter makes you hardcore and tough), so we now can have them using a super locked down laptop that facilitates productivity apps, communications and …..The Lo-Jack!

At the beach? Well, we’ll know which one and how far you are from the concession stand.

All said, like many aspects of technology, how we use these technologies and how they affect our daily lives and evolving behavior is a work in progress and much remains to be seen. Texting morphs into ‘sexting’ the way television becomes ‘smellivison’ on a now ancient episode of Bugs Bunny. Legislation is barely keeping up. Teens are being arrested and adults are seemingly taking points of view all along the spectrum. I guess at a minimum, if I am somehow pressured into one day providing a cell phone to my son (now 5), the lo-jack is my requirement. As for the rest…the jury is out on that- and soon we'll know where they are!


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