Alexis Madrigal | KUOW News and Information

Alexis Madrigal

The Apple Watch is not what I expected. Yes, it is beautiful. You can stand in the shower and watch water bounce off the screen as if it were a lotus leaf. The details of the hardware can be stunning like that.

But most of the features that really excited me when the watch was introduced have turned out to be disappointments. As a physical activity tracker, it's mediocre. The messaging system, which Apple seemingly lavished attention on, is no better than regular old texting. The hyped "crown" scroll wheel for navigation is a rarely used little flourish.

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Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

My coffee maker is texting me again. It's scheduled to make coffee tomorrow, the message says, but I need to refill its water tank. Welcome to the future.

The Mr. Coffee Smart Optimal Brew Coffeemaker with WeMo — yes, that is its official name — is just one of many household appliances being remade to connect to the Internet and take care of themselves. There are thermostats, smoke alarms, washing machines and even $1,000 Bluetooth-connected toilets.

It's time I admitted something: Though I've written about the Internet for years, my online security practices are not good. Despite constant warnings from knowledgeable friends, I persist in doing all the things with my passwords that you're not supposed to. I don't make them complicated enough. I reuse the same ones over and over. I don't change them very often. And I keep a list of important ones in a file on my computer. Frankly, it's shameful!