Twitter chat: Are gadgets ever really gender-neutral?

Image by Flickr user MaitriImage by Flickr user Maitri

We&;ve all seen the pinking of gadgets, the iPhone in &;rose gold&; or the pink flip-phones. While it would be absurd to think these gadgets &;appeal to women&; &; all women, and of course no men #x1f609;" class="wp-smiley" style="height: 1em; max-height: 1em;" /> &; there must be people who like them.
But the pinking of gadgets, as the most visible attempt at &;gendering&; of gadgets, seems to obscure the fact that many have more subtle gender-biases built into them.
Last month, for our podcast, we asked for suggestions of experts on this topic &; and there was a huge groundswell of interest. We&;re just about to record those interviews.
But we&;d also like to hear more from you on Twitter &; so join us for a Twitter chat on the topic of gendering of gadgets, on 3rd February Friday at 4:30pm London time (5:30pm Brussels and Rome, 11:30am New York and 8:30am California).
We&;ll be asking four questions &; in this order. If you can&;t participate live, please feel free to leave your answers in the comments below, and we will try to incorporate them.

  1. Are hand-held consumer gadgets habitually made for men? If yes, are there any interesting exceptions?
  2. What about house-hold appliances, are they habitually made for one gender or the other? Will &;smart&; appliances and the Internet of Things alter this?
  3. Is software we use in our day-to-day lives gender neutral? If not, how is it gendered? How much of this intentional?
  4. Why are so many AI &;assistants&; given women&;s names and voices? Will this change?

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