Remember when words actually meant something? It is a fairly recent phenomena, one can scarcely go a week without hearing that a word has ‘lost all meaning’. ‘Ironic’ is one of these and fairly unambiguously.

When a once wonderful, descriptive and frankly complex word comes to be embodied by 20-something hipster in a fedora sipping lattes out on yet another gentrified sidewalk, it is time for said word to be retired. ‘Fascist’ has not lost all meaning.

Its use has just been grossly misapplied. The term and notion themselves remain more or less intact even if, or perhaps specifically because, the general population being too ignorant to use it correctly. The most recent addition to this list is the term ‘leak’.

Like its brothers ‘traitor’ and ‘treason’ before it, both the latter cases seeming antiquated even before being bludgeoned to death by reckless overuse.

What the Samsung Galaxy S8 is all about

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It has honestly gotten humorous the way these terms have been bandied about like anybody who is the least bit critical status quo is somehow, Benedict Arnold meets General Petain. So as it has become with the term ‘leak’.

Once a term reserved for major breakers of information and or trust at the lightest level of government, the Watergate informant springs to mind, the term ‘leak’  in recent years.

Outside the more literal meanings found in automotive repair and plumbing, has been applied to everything from records, to film reels to nude celebrity photos, only one of which carries ever close to the stakes of the original meaning (a shiny new button stating ‘I Am A Genius’ to anyone who can figure out which).

Honestly, these days it seems as though there are more sudden and dangerous leaks than a bottling plant located behind a shooting range. Such as what happened with the ‘leak’ on the design of the soon to be released Samsung Galaxy S8, which, if some people are to be believed, is the single most anticipated event since the end of the Second World War.

An inside job

The first round of ‘leaks’ were basically ‘teasers’. Professionally shot, shot videos that did everything possible to keep from showing the phone in detail. All of them including the official release date. It is enough to make one think that perhaps that said ‘leak’ may have been perpetrated by Samsung themselves.

A little taste to gather interest, in an odd sort of seemingly self-sabotaging advertising. With all the newfangled ‘guerrilla’ marketing about it is not outside the realm of possibility.

The next step in boot-legging

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What has turned out to be far more upsetting, though not for the reasons that one may think, is the release of poorly shot, poorly handled, ‘hands-on’ videos, clearly showing the phone and its function that will likely put some in mind of the edgy old boot-leg and zero-budget ‘cult’ films popular in the1980s and 1990s (ask your parents kids).

Mixed reactions

Despite being impressed by seeing what the next step in phone evolution could do, one reviewer of a boot-leg style video being heard to proclaim ‘good God that display!’, many commentators managed to find time and space for a good solid bit of whinging. Not that the phone was seen ahead of time. Perish the thought!

The greatest source of trepidation seemed to be the low, nearly pirate quality of the leaked hands-on demonstration, never mind that the maker risked legal action by doing so and they were lucky to get any such thing at all but that new features such as finger-print scanners and iris scanners, those are sensors that can scan your eye for increased  security are up by the camera lens.

Somewhere the buying public would rather it not be. Keep in mind this is on a cell phone. A greatly advance cell phone but a cell phone none the less.

What no one seemed to notice in all of their awing and fretting was that the Samsung Galaxy S8 in terms of direct functioning, you know, the things you use it for, is essentially identical to every smartphone design since the iPhone introduced the touchscreen.

Do they have new functions? Yes Virgina, indeed they do but that is what they are. Functions. On a device that has been used for pretty much the same thing in the same manner since 2007.

Red-letter day with the Samsung Galaxy S8

Mark your calendars and take stock good people of the world. For what we have just witnessed in recent days is a truly historical event no one would have previously thought possible.

An instance in which people have both overreacted and underreacted in the same instant to the same thing. Hear that click? It is the hands on the Doomsday Clock inching ever so slightly forward.

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Trevor McNeil spent much of his childhood playing video-games on early-form personal computers back when the disks were literally floppy. He attended the University of Victoria, completing a degree in Social Science with a concentration in Technology In Society, while also writing for the campus newspaper. He has written articles for such diverse publications as Humanity Death Watch, PopMatters and Perfect Sound Forever. He is a veteran of numerous “watershed moments” in the history of technological development and firmly believes that Han shot first.