from the oh-my-god-it-even-has-a-watermark dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Chalk up another looming casualty of the Internet age: business cards. Ubiquitous as pinstripes, the 2-by-3.5-inch pieces of card stock have long been a staple in executive briefcases. But now, writes Matt Stevens, young and Web-savvy people who are accustomed to connecting digitally, see business cards as irrelevant, wasteful — and just plain lame. 'When I go into a meeting and there are five bankers across the table, they all hand me business cards and they all end up in a pile, in a shoe box somewhere,' says Diego Berdakin, the founder of BeachMint, a fast-growing e-commerce site that has raised $75 million from investors without ever bothering to print a card. 'If someone comes in to meet me, we've already been connected through email, so it really doesn't feel like a necessity in my life.' Some 77 million smartphone users have downloaded the Bump app, which allows them to bump their phones together and instantly exchange contact information. Others carry a personalized quick-response code that smartphones can scan like a hyperlink. At 36, Ralph Barbagallo is near the cutoff for Generation Y but despises business cards all the same. Barbagallo says he goes to three major conferences a year and has to distribute paper cards, but lugging and exchanging fistfuls of them is a pain and it's hard to remember who is who. 'When they run out this time, I'm not printing any more,' says Barbagallo. 'They need to die somehow.'"
"Today's robots are very primitive, capable of understanding only a few
simple instructions such as 'go left', 'go right', and 'build car'."