Off the beaten track ….

This a heady mix of petrolhead, techhead and bobblehead. Stuff that turns me on, turns me off and makes me laugh. Sometimes they are my thoughts, sometimes it’s the thoughts and views of others, that rate a worthy mention. It’s peeping through a one way mirror and and taking a look at me looking at you…..what ever it is, it’s me not taking myself seriously! Like Paul McCartney the Beatles dude said, “I don’t take me seriously. If we get some giggles, I don’t mind”.

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Triumph Bonneville art form.

Life at 1,396 feet: Inside the $95m New York City penthouse at the top of the tallest condo building in the Western Hemisphere

  • 432 Park Avenue in midtown Manhattan today became the tallest residential building in the Western Hemisphere
  • At 1,396 feet, it towers over Empire State Building, Chrysler Building and One World Trade Center without spire 
  • Designed by Rafael Viñoly, the 96-story condo offers 104 units, ranging in price from $16.95million to $95million
  • Tenants can observe spectacular views from huge 10-foot-by-10-foot windows, observation deck and telescopes
  • They can also access climate-controlled wine cellars, outdoor terrace, a spa, a ‘massage therapy room’ and pool
PUBLISHED: 23:31 GMT, 14 October 2014 UPDATED: 06:32 GMT, 15 October 2014
Standing at a staggering 1,396 feet, it offers breathtaking views of New York, including Central Park, lower Manhattan and the Atlantic Ocean.
This spectacular building is 432 Park Avenue, in midtown Manhattan, which today became the tallest residential site in the Western Hemisphere.
Designed by architect Rafael Viñoly, the 96-story condo offers 104 units, ranging in price from $16.95million to a whopping $95million penthouse suite.
Astonishingly, it towers over the Empire State Building (1,250ft), the Chrysler Building (1,046ft) and One World Trade Center without its spire (1,368ft). 
Stunning: This marble bathroom at 432 Park Avenue - which stands at a staggering 1,396 feet - offers a breathtaking view of New York
Stunning: This marble bathroom at 432 Park Avenue – which stands at a staggering 1,396 feet – offers a breathtaking view of New York
Sprawling: The building in midtown Manhattan today became the tallest residential site in the Western Hemisphere. Above, is a living room in the skyscraper 
Sprawling: The building in midtown Manhattan today became the tallest residential site in the Western Hemisphere. Above, is a living room in the skyscraper
A view to wake up to: Designed by architect Rafael Viñoly, the 96-story condo offers 104 units, ranging from $16.95million to $95million
A view to wake up to: Designed by architect Rafael Viñoly, the 96-story condo offers 104 units, ranging from $16.95million to $95million
Tall: 432 Park Avenue (center) towers over the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and One World Trade Center without its spire
 
Beautifully furnished: The building will welcome its first residents next year. Above, this unit features a telescope to look out over New York
Breathtaking: For those lucky few who can afford to purchase a unit, they will be able to observe the views from  10-foot-by-10-foot windows
Breathtaking: For those lucky few who can afford to purchase a unit, they will be able to observe the views from 10-foot-by-10-foot windows
An immaculate kitchen: The units, all built over 365 feet and designed by Deborah  Berke, also feature 12.5-foot ceilings and solid oak floors
An immaculate kitchen: The units, all built over 365 feet and designed by Deborah Berke, also feature 12.5-foot ceilings and solid oak floors
Skyline: And the rest of the building is just as impressive - with climate-controlled wine cellars, an outdoor terrace, a spa, a 'massage therapy room' and a pool. Above, this view of the Manhattan skyline shows 432 Park View (right). The crane on top will soon be removed from the site
Skyline: And the rest of the building is just as impressive – with climate-controlled wine cellars, an outdoor terrace, a spa, a ‘massage therapy room’ and a pool. Above, this view of the Manhattan skyline shows 432 Park View (right). The crane on top will soon be removed from the site
Residents can also frequent a billiards room, dine in a restaurant underneath a crystal chandelier, socialise in a lounge and keep fit in a private gym. 
The building, which sits between 56th and 57th Streets, first underwent excavation work on September 26, 2011, followed by three years of construction.
Today, the final concrete was poured on its highest floor, taking it to its full height of 1,396 feet, ABC reported. It can now be seen from the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and even as far away as Monmouth County in New Jersey. 
Avi Shemesh, the principal and co-founder of CIM Group, said she was delighted the topping of 432 was achieved today, weeks ahead of schedule.
Penthouse: Residents can also frequent a billiards room, socialise in a residents' lounge and keep fit in a private gym. Above, a living room
Penthouse: Residents can also frequent a billiards room, socialise in a residents’ lounge and keep fit in a private gym. Above, a living room
Fine dining: The building, which sits between 56th and 57th Streets, first underwent excavation work on September 26, 2011, followed by three years of construction. Today, the final concrete was poured on its highest floor, taking it to its full height of 1,396 feet
Fine dining: The building, which sits between 56th and 57th Streets, first underwent excavation work on September 26, 2011, followed by three years of construction. Today, the final concrete was poured on its highest floor, taking it to its full height of 1,396 feet
A good morning: Harry Macklowe, chairman  of Macklowe Properties, said: 'We are proud to have created a New York City landmark that can be seen throughout all five boroughs, and which will enhance our city’s iconic skyline.' Above, another view of New York from the property
A good morning: Harry Macklowe, chairman of Macklowe Properties, said: ‘We are proud to have created a New York City landmark that can be seen throughout all five boroughs, and which will enhance our city’s iconic skyline.’ Above, another view of New York from the property
Harry Macklowe, chairman of Macklowe Properties, added: ‘We are proud to have created a New York City landmark that can be seen throughout all five boroughs, and which will enhance our city’s iconic skyline.
‘At 1,396 feet, 432 Park Avenue is the tallest residential building in the Western Hemisphere, and represents an extraordinary accomplishment of architecture, design, engineering and craftsmanship.
‘In this second decade of the 21st century, we are privileged to have been part of creating something that will join the pantheon of legendary 20th century structures like the Chrysler, the Empire State and the Woolworth Buildings.’
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The day the Navy learned it could  fly from ships.

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One hundred years is a very long time.  Yet in the hierarchy of modern marvels, the  ability to recover and launch aircraft from the deck of a moving ship stands out as one of our signature accomplishments.  Which just goes to show you:

Some tricks never grow old.

 

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Naval aviation was invented one hundred years ago, on January 18, 1911, when a 24 year-old barnstormer pilot named Eugene B. Ely completed the world’s first successful landing on a ship. It happened in San Francisco Bay, aboard the cruiser USS Pennsylvania, which had a temporary 133-foot wooden landing strip built above her after-deck and gun turret as part of the experiment.

((One of the bases in Pensacola is named after him.)) 

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Ely accomplished his feat just eight years after the Wright Brothers made their first flight at Kitty Hawk.  His aircraft was rudimentary: a Curtiss Model D “Pusher” biplane, equipped with a 60 hp V-8 engine that gave the aircraft a 50 mph airspeed.  To get a sense of how simple it was, behold a contemporary replica of Ely’s 1911 Curtiss Pusher that was built to celebrate this 100th anniversary:

 

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But back then, innovation was afoot.  Ely’s Curtis Pusher had been fitted with a clever new invention called a tail-hook. The idea was to quickly halt the aircraft after landing by using the tail-hook to catch one or two of 22 rope lines.  Each propped up a foot above the deck and weighted by 50-pound sandbags tied to each end, strung three feet apart along the  Pennsylvania’s temporary flight deck.  Mark J. Denger of the California Center for Military History has written a tidy biography of Eugene Ely which narrates the historic day:

On the morning of January 18, 1911, Eugene Ely, in a Curtiss pusher biplane specially equipped with arresting hooks on its axle, took off from Selfridge Field (Tanforan Racetrack, in San Bruno, Calif.) and headed for the San Francisco Bay.  After about 10 minutes flying North toward Goat Island
(now Yerba Buena), Eugene spotted his target through the gray haze:  the PENNSYLVANIA.

 

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Ely’s plane was first sighted one-half mile from the PENNSYLVANIA’s bridge at an altitude of 1,500 feet, cruising at a speed of approximately 60 mph.  Now ten miles out from Tanforan, He circled the several vessels of the Pacific Fleet at anchor in San Francisco Bay. 

The aeroplane dipped to 400 feet as it passed directly over the MARYLAND and, still dropping, flew over the WEST VIRGINIA’s bow at an height of only 100 feet.  With a crosswind of almost 15 knots, he flew past the cruiser and then banked some 500 yards from the PENNSYLVANIA’s starboard quarter to set up his landing approach. 
Ely now headed straight for the ship, cutting his engine when he was only 75 feet from the fantail, and allowed the wind to glide the aircraft onto the landing deck.  At a speed of 40 mph Ely landed on the center line of the Pennsylvania’s deck at 11:01 a.m.

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The forward momentum of his plane was quickly retarded by the ropes stretched between the large movable piles of sand that had been placed along the entire length of the runway.  As the plane landed, the hooks on the undercarriage caught the ropes exactly as planned, which brought the plane to a complete stop. 

Once on board the PENNSYLVANIA, sheer pandemonium brook loose as Ely was greeted with a bombardment of cheers, boat horns and whistles, both aboard the PENNSYLVANIA and from the surrounding vessels.

 

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Ely was immediately greeted by his wife, Mabel, who greeted him with an enthusiastic “I knew you could do it,” and then by Captain Pond, Commanding Officer of the PENNSYLVANIA.  Then it was time for interviews and a few photographs for the reporters. 

Everything had gone exactly as planned.  Pond called it “the most important landing of a bird since the dove flew back to Noah’s ark.”  Pond would later report, “Nothing damaged, and not a bolt or brace startled, and Ely the coolest man on board.”

(NOTE: Safety first! Check out Ely’s inner-tube life preserver!)

 

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After completing several interviews, Ely was escorted to the Captain’s cabin where he and his wife were the honored guests at an officers lunch.  While they dined, the landing platform was cleared and the plane turned around in preparation for takeoff.

Then the Ely’s, Pond and the others posed for photographs.  57 minutes later, he made a perfect take-off from the platform, returning to Selfridge Field at the Tanforan racetrack where another tremendous ovation awaited him.

 

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Both the landing and take off were witnessed by several distinguished members of both U.S. Army and Navy, as well as state military officials. Ely had successfully demonstrated the possibility of the aircraft carrier.

 

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Indeed.  The US Navy’s first aircraft carrier, the USS Langley, was commissioned in 1922, eleven years later.  But Ely didn’t live to witness the milestone; he died just a few months after his historic flight, on October 11, 1911, when he was thrown from his aircraft during a crash at an air show.  But 100 years ago, he merged the power of naval warships and aviation in ways that remain cutting-edge, even today.

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A bay in a bomb crater, coloured glass pebbles and sands lapped by luminous waters: World’s most unusual beaches revealed

 
 
If you’re looking for a departure from your usual beach getaway, you may want to book a trip to one of these stunning spots.
These are some of the world’s most unusual beaches, offering visitors an experience they’re unlikely to find anywhere else.
Some of them are very public, while others are incredibly difficult to reach.
Hidden Beach on the Marieta Islands in Mexico earned its name for a reason. The secluded beach, concealed within a cavernous hole in the ground, can only be accessed through a small tunnel by swimmers or scuba divers.
The idyllic paradise has an incredibly unique history. It is believed to have formed when it was used as a bomb testing site in the early 1900s.
While some beaches developed thanks to the actions of man, others are unspoiled natural wonders.
And then there are the ones that are famous because of their quirks.
Take Maho Beach, for example. Holidaymakers who visit the beach on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin are treated to an amazing – and slightly frightening – display as planes zip over their heads at low altitude on approach to Princess Juliana International Airport.
Given the noise, it may not be the most relaxing spot, but it is definitely one of the most thrilling beaches in the world.
 
Look out below! You're not seeing things - airliners zoom over holidaymakers' heads on Maho Beach as they land on Saint Martin Island in the Caribbean
Look out below! You’re not seeing things – airliners zoom over holidaymakers’ heads on Maho Beach as they land on Saint Martin Island in the Caribbean
Paradise: The stunning Algarve caves in Portugal are a popular destination for curious tourists, who can also spot dolphins in the waters nearby
Paradise: The stunning Algarve caves in Portugal are a popular destination for curious tourists, who can also spot dolphins in the waters nearby
It's a secret: Hidden Beach in Mexico's Marieta Islands is believed to have formed when it was used as a bomb testing site in the early 1900s
It’s a secret: Hidden Beach in Mexico’s Marieta Islands is believed to have formed when it was used as a bomb testing site in the early 1900s
Pretty in pink: Harbour Islands in the Bahamas is famous for its pink sand beaches that stretch for several miles
Pretty in pink: Harbour Islands in the Bahamas is famous for its pink sand beaches that stretch for several miles
From sea to sky: A beach near the small Icelandic peninsula of Dyrholaey, a former volcanic island, features incredible black basalt sand that developed after eruptions
From sea to sky: A beach near the small Icelandic peninsula of Dyrholaey, a former volcanic island, features incredible black basalt sand that developed after eruptions
One man's trash is another man's treasure: Glass Beach formed in California's MacKerricher State Park after locals' rubbish was pounded into the sand by the surf
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure: Glass Beach formed in California’s MacKerricher State Park after locals’ rubbish was pounded into the sand by the surf
Magnificent: Cathedral-like arches are pictured at low tide at Praia As Catedrais ('beach of the cathedrals') near Ribadeo, Spain
Magnificent: Cathedral-like arches are pictured at low tide at Praia As Catedrais (‘beach of the cathedrals’) near Ribadeo, Spain
Dragon eggs: The large Moeraki Boulders at New Zealand's Koekohe Beach are concretions that formed in ancient sea floor sediments around 60 million years ago
Dragon eggs: The large Moeraki Boulders at New Zealand’s Koekohe Beach are concretions that formed in ancient sea floor sediments around 60 million years ago
Rugged beauty: Giant¿s Causeway is a series of nearly 40,000 basalt columns of cooled molten lava in County Antrim on the northeast coast of Northern Ireland
Rugged beauty: Giant’s Causeway is a series of nearly 40,000 basalt columns of cooled molten lava in County Antrim on the northeast coast of Northern Ireland
Looks like tar: The black sand on Punaluu Black Sand Beach in Hawaii is created when basalt lava flows into the ocean and rapidly cools
Looks like tar: The black sand on Punaluu Black Sand Beach in Hawaii is created when basalt lava flows into the ocean and rapidly cools
Lazy day: Sea Lions frolic on Red Sand Beach on Rabida Island, where the red sand is believed to have formed by the  oxidization of volcanic material
Lazy day: Sea Lions frolic on Red Sand Beach on Rabida Island, where the red sand is believed to have formed by the oxidization of volcanic material
Starry  night: This mesmerising display on the beach at Vaadhoo Island in the Maldives is caused by bioluminescent phytoplankton, which emanate a blue glow
 
Shell of a time: Australia's Shell Beach, in the Shark Bay World Heritage Area, is made of trillions of tiny Hamelin cockle shells and is one of only two in the world
Shell of a time: Australia’s Shell Beach, in the Shark Bay World Heritage Area, is made of trillions of tiny Hamelin cockle shells and is one of only two in the world

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SHIP AHOY!

Fleet of Tall Ships more than a century old bid farewell to London by sailing through the Thames Barrier on final day of regatta

  • Some 50 vessels from around the world arrived sailed through the Thames Barrier, ending a four-day festival
  • Spectators lined the river’s banks as they made their way past landmarks including the O2 Arena and Royal Docks 
  • It is London’s first regatta for 25 years and the first time a Tall Ships race has both started and finished in a UK port 
PUBLISHED: 20:49 GMT, 9 September 2014 UPDATED: 03:06 GMT, 10 September 2014
The ships, some of which are more than a century old, set off from West India Docks, sailing by the O2 Arena and the Royal Docks, before reaching the Thames Barrier.
The procession, the largest fleet of Tall Ships to have visited London in 25 years, arrived in the city following a race from Falmouth.  
The imposing ships have come from around the globe to take part the event, including from Spain, Holland, Portugal, Poland and Russia.
The participating vessels include Tenacious, the largest wooden tall ship of her kind which has been sailed by a crew with physical disabilities from the Jubilee Sailing Trust.
Other boats in the race included the Shtandart, a modern replica of a Russian navy flagship built for Peter the Great in 1703, and the Tecla, which is almost 100 years old.   
The Tall Ships Festival is set over four sites in Woolwich, Maritime Greenwich, Greenwich Peninsula and Canary Wharf and will line the river’s banks until Tuesday, before the grand parade down the river.
The event began in Falmouth and saw the ships race from the Cornish Port to the Isle of Wight, before cruising to the capital.  The parade sets off from Royal Greenwich, opposite Canary Wharf, on Tuesday.
Scroll down for video  
Polish training ship the Dar Mlodziezy passes by the 02 Arena as it makes it way down the River Thames, marking the end of The Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Festival
Polish training ship the Dar Mlodziezy passes by the 02 Arena as it makes it way down the River Thames, marking the end of The Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Festival
The Parade of Sail on the river Thames, the finale of the Tall Ships Festival in London. The procession started out at Greenwich and proceeded to the Thames Barrier
The Parade of Sail on the river Thames, the finale of the Tall Ships Festival in London. The procession started out at Greenwich and proceeded to the Thames Barrier
A vessel named the Thalassa sails down the river with the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf towering over them in the background
A vessel named the Thalassa sails down the river with the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf towering over them in the background
The historic fleet passes by the O2 Arena with the buildings of Canary Wharf in the background 
The historic fleet passes by the O2 Arena with the buildings of Canary Wharf in the background
The Dar Mlodziezy passes through the Thames Barrier, the end point on the final day of the Tall Ships Festival. The event is part of 'Totally Thames' a month-long arts and cultural festival 
The Dar Mlodziezy passes through the Thames Barrier, the end point on the final day of the Tall Ships Festival. The event is part of ‘Totally Thames’ a month-long arts and cultural festival
Two men lean on railings along the water's edge, watching the Dar Mlodziezy pass through the Thames Barrier 
Two men lean on railings along the water’s edge, watching the Dar Mlodziezy pass through the Thames Barrier
Some of the ships were anchored at West India Docks, waiting for high tide so they can leave the capital 
Some of the ships were anchored at West India Docks, waiting for high tide so they can leave the capital
The boats, some of which are more than a century old, are spread out over the water as they head through the Thames Barrier under clear skies 
The boats, some of which are more than a century old, are spread out over the water as they head through the Thames Barrier under clear skies
A crowd gather on the grass banks alongside the Thames to watch the procession. Some use their phones to take pictures of the historic vessels 
A crowd gather on the grass banks alongside the Thames to watch the procession. Some use their phones to take pictures of the historic vessels
A group of spectators set up chairs on the river's edge to catch  a glimpse of the parade. The white sails of the Dar Mlodziezy are in the background 
A group of spectators set up chairs on the river’s edge to catch a glimpse of the parade. The white sails of the Dar Mlodziezy are in the background
A crew member, dressed as a pirate, balances on the bow of the ship as it sails through the Thames Barrier. Another two behind him wave to spectators 
A crew member, dressed as a pirate, balances on the bow of the ship as it sails through the Thames Barrier. Another two behind him wave to spectators
At the start of the festival, the vessels sailed past famous landmarks, such as Canary Wharf and the City of London, pictured above
At the start of the festival, the vessels sailed past famous landmarks, such as Canary Wharf and the City of London, pictured above
Over the weekend the imposing ships saild past the 02 Arena, pictured above, the Thames Cable car and the Royal Docks
Over the weekend the imposing ships saild past the 02 Arena, pictured above, the Thames Cable car and the Royal Docks
The Tall Ship JR Tolkien is seen sailing sails past the Thames Barrier, one of the several famous spots in London which the ships pass during their journey
The Tall Ship JR Tolkien is seen sailing sails past the Thames Barrier, one of the several famous spots in London which the ships pass during their journey
The Tall Ship JR Tolkien is pictured sailing under the Thames cable car early this morning. Ships have come from all over the world to take part in the festival
The Tall Ship JR Tolkien is pictured sailing under the Thames cable car early this morning. Ships have come from all over the world to take part in the festival
The ships arrived in south east London after racing from Falmouth to the Isle of Wight on August 31. They then made their way to the capital on Friday 
The ships arrived in south east London after racing from Falmouth to the Isle of Wight on August 31. They then made their way to the capital on Friday
The Tall Ship Stad Amsterdam is pictured sailing past Canary Wharf on the River Thames. Twenty tall ships which will be moored at Wood Wharf in Canary Wharf 
The Tall Ship Stad Amsterdam is pictured sailing past Canary Wharf on the River Thames. Twenty tall ships which will be moored at Wood Wharf in Canary Wharf
The Tall Ship Tectona, built in India in 1929, is  moored outside the Old Royal Naval College at Greenwich as part of the Tall Ships Regatta
The Tall Ship Tectona, built in India in 1929, is moored outside the Old Royal Naval College at Greenwich as part of the Tall Ships Regatta
The Tall Ship Mercedes glides past the Thames Barrier on the River Thames. It is London's first regatta for 25 years and the first time a Tall Ships Race has both started and finished in a UK port
The Tall Ship Mercedes glides past the Thames Barrier on the River Thames. It is London’s first regatta for 25 years and the first time a Tall Ships Race has both started and finished in a UK port
Almost half of the vessels competing in the regatta are members of ASTO, the UK's Sail Training umbrella organisation 
Almost half of the vessels competing in the regatta are members of ASTO, the UK’s Sail Training umbrella organisation
The Tall Ships Festival takes place in four locations: Woolwich, pictured above, Maritime Greenwich, Greenwich Peninsula and Canary Wharf
The Tall Ships Festival takes place in four locations: Woolwich, pictured above, Maritime Greenwich, Greenwich Peninsula and Canary Wharf
More than 100,000 people flocked to the Cornish coast to wave off the vessels taking part in the event. The event in London is also expected to draw out big crowds
More than 100,000 people flocked to the Cornish coast to wave off the vessels taking part in the event. The event in London is also expected to draw out big crowds
The three mast barquentine 'Thalassa' from The Netherlands arrives in London for the start of the regatta
The three mast barquentine ‘Thalassa’ from The Netherlands arrives in London for the start of the regatta
A man takes pictures of the ships. The imposing ships have from around the globe, including from Spain, Holland, Portugal, Poland and Russia
A man takes pictures of the ships. The imposing ships have from around the globe, including from Spain, Holland, Portugal, Poland and Russia
 Tenacious, pictured above, is the largest wooden tall ship of her kind and has been sailed by a crew with physical disabilities from the Jubilee Sailing Trust
 Tenacious, pictured above, is the largest wooden tall ship of her kind and has been sailed by a crew with physical disabilities from the Jubilee Sailing Trust
Among their towering sails are 11 magnificent square-sail ships, which have been enjoyed by several residents in south  east London 

 

 

Apple unveiled the iPhone 6 and larger iPhone 6 Plus handsets, as well as a smartwatch device on September 9 2014 event and as usual there is a quite a flap as always with all things Apple! ( It’s fastest upgradable iPhone as yet, all you have to do is flip it upside down to to upgrade to the iPhone 9).

Here something to think about it’s from the TIME mag site. Click on the link to go the web site.

 

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How Apple Is Invading Our Bodies

 

 

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The Silicon Valley giant has redrawn the line that separates our technology and ourselves. That may not be a good thing

For the full story, read this week’s TIME magazine.

With the unveiling of the Apple Watch Tuesday in Cupertino, California, Apple is attempting to put technology somewhere where it’s never been particularly welcome. Like a pushy date, the Apple Watch wants to get intimate with us in a way we’re not entirely used to or prepared for. This isn’t just a new product, this is technology attempting to colonize our bodies.

The Apple Watch is very personal—“personal” and “intimate” were words that Apple CEO Tim Cook and his colleagues used over and over again when presenting it to the public for the first time. That’s where the watch is likely to change things, because it does something computers aren’t generally supposed to: it lives on your body. It perches on your wrist, like one of Cinderella’s helpful bluebirds. It gets closer than we’re used technology getting. It gets inside your personal bubble. We’re used to technology being safely Other, but the Apple Watch wants to snuggle up and become part of your Self.

This is new, and slightly unnerving. When technologies get adopted as fast as we tend to adopt Apple’s products, there are always unintended consequences. When the iPhone came out it was praised to the skies as a design and engineering marvel, because it is one, but no one really understood what it would be like to have it in our lives. Nobody anticipated the way iPhones  exert a constant gravitational tug on our attention. Do I have e-mail? What’s happening on Twitter? Could I get away with playing Tiny Wings at this meeting? When you’re carrying a smartphone, your attention is never entirely undivided.

he reality of living with an iPhone, or any smart, connected device, is that it makes reality feel just that little bit less real. One gets over-connected, to the point where the thoughts and opinions of distant anonymous strangers start to feel more urgent than those of your loved ones who are in the same room as you. One forgets how to be alone and undistracted. Ironically enough experiences don’t feel fully real till you’ve used your phone to make them virtual—tweeted them or tumbled them or Instagrammed them or YouTubed them, and the world has congratulated you for doing so. Smartphones create needs we never had before, and were probably better off without.

The great thing about the Apple Watch is that it’s always there—you don’t even have to take it out of your bag to look at it, the way you would with an iPhone. But unlike an iPhone you can’t put the Apple Watch away either. It’s always with you. During the company’s press event the artist Banksy posted a drawing to his Twitter feed of an iPhone growing roots that strangle and sink into the wrist of the hand holding it. You can see where he was coming from. This is technology establishing a new beachhead. To wear a device as powerful as the Apple Watch makes you ever so slightly post-human.

What might post-humanity be like? The paradox of a wearable device is that it both gives you control and takes it away at the same time. Consider the watch’s fitness applications. They capture all data that your body generates, your heart and activity and so on, gathers it up and stores and returns it to you in a form you can use. Once the development community gets through apping it, there’s no telling what else it might gather. This will change your experience of your body. The wristwatch made the idea of not knowing what time it was seem bizarre; in five years it might seem bizarre not to know how many calories you’ve eaten today, or what your resting heart rate is.

But wearables also ask you to give up control. Your phone will start telling you what you should and shouldn’t eat and how far you should run. It’s going to get in between you and your body and mediate that relationship. Wearables will make your physical self visible to the virtual world in the form of information, an indelible digital body-print, and that information is going to behave like any other information behaves these days. It will be copied and circulated. It will go places you don’t expect. People will use that information to track you and market to you. It will be bought and sold and leaked—imagine a data-spill comparable to the recent iCloud leak, only with Apple Watch data instead of naked selfies.

The Apple Watch represents a redrawing of the map that locates technology in one place and our bodies in another. The line between the two will never be as easy to find again. Once you’re OK with wearing technology, the only way forward is inward: the next product launch after the Apple Watch would logically be the iMplant.  If  Apple succeeds in legitimizing wearables as a category, it will have successfully established the founding node in a network that could spread throughout our bodies, with Apple setting the standards. Then we’ll really have to decide how much control we want—and what we’re prepared to give up for it.

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