Microsoft claims that many industries; as well as families enjoying outdoor sporting and camping activities, could benefit from this technology. They also announced a program to license the technology free for use in devices designed for people with hearing, vision or learning disabilities.
There is every possibility that down the track innovative technologies will bring more such convenience situations to us for every day use.
But this raises an interesting issue, that many things work the 'so called wrong way round'. I thought it a good idea to check some of these out.
Recently, travelling on The Ghan from Darwin to Alice Springs, the carriage supervisor (attendant) came to fold down the bunk beds in the cabin. The first step was to unhinge the clip that held the bench seat in place, and it then folded down into a single bed. Then the upper bunk which had been stowed into the wall cavity was brought down.
The pillows and reading lights were at one end of these two bunk beds, but it was a much better fit with the standing tray table for the person on the bottom bunk to sleep the other way round. And so it was, and it worked well, the wrong way round.
Another example are Australian made motor vehicles have their indicator switch on the right side of the steering wheel near the driver's side window. European manufactured vehicles have the indicator switch on the left hand side of the vehicle, which to many of us, is the wrong way round.
Surprise, surprise, the indicator switch works either way – we just have to get used to using it 'the wrong way around'.
The one-tenth of the people reading this who are left-handed will be able to think of many more situations where everyday 'conveniences' are the wrong way around for them!
Even in church buildings and worship furniture, some people feel as though things are set up the wrong way around. Baptist worship has an emphasis on preaching the Word, and therefore the architecture of the building and the inside furniture focuses on the pulpit. It is centre stage.
To a Baptist entering many an Anglican church, it all seems the wrong way round, as the pulpit is to the far left or the far right, or even along the side of the building. The emphasis within Anglicanism is the sacrament, so the table takes centre stage. True worship is conducted in both types of buildings.
Some of the remarkable maturing experiences in my own ministry happened during the twelve years I spent as an industrial chaplain with the InterChurch Trade and Industry Mission (ITIM) 1980-92 at Shell Refinery in Sydney for two days a week.
The quarterly ITIM staff meetings, where the chaplains from different traditions (Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox) came together, with their different aspects seemingly from 'the wrong way round', proved enriching and empowering.
It provided knowledgeable background when pioneering the Sports and Leisure Ministry. It gave more confidence in appointing chaplains from a wide range of Christian theological perspectives to suit the various sporting teams and associations.
In some ways, it also helped to open the eyes of many of my colleagues who came from rather 'theologically protected' backgrounds.
Jesus said something about this too, when his disciples questioned him about others who were preaching His message. To the disciples it was somehow the wrong way round, but Jesus assured them that these 'others' too were for Him, even though they were not one of the close knit band of brothers.