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Some people call me a cynic. I prefer skeptic, as I don’t always assume the worst. I appreciate things in life that present a thrill and make me smile, so I’m not all bad. I may be calm and collected on the outside, butinside I’m having palpitations and my mind is abuzz with wonder.

I’ve worked at several companies that brought forth new technology, and often I had to stifle my enthusiasm for fear of appearing too easily impressed in front of superiors. Why couldn’t I look amazed when an autonomous 10-ton vehicle followed a pre-programmed route (without anyone inside or anyone remotely controlling it) around a 5-mile course and not run into or over any planned and/or unplanned obstacles? It simply wouldn’t do to be impressed by outstanding work. Instead, I sat quietly with the executive team, nodded my head and said, sure, it was supposed to do that. Inside, my mind was blown and I had to save my enthusiasm for when I later told my young nephews all about it and showed them the pictures.

Now I feel less inhibited to be in awe of new technology. Today, I came face to face with the Coca-Cola Freestyle touch screen machine for the first time. Dazed, I stood for a moment while I got my bearings straight. From the initial 25 options, I chose Coke Zero, and then another screen appeared offering seven Coke Zero flavors. I paused, finger in mid-air, momentarily stunned. Seven Coke Zero flavors? Inconceivable! I didn’t even know three of them existed! Thankfully, no one was behind me while I paused and pushed and paused, although I was so distracted I forgot to add ice first.

This is one piece of technology I will make sure my nephews experience. They’re the customers who, when presented with a soda fountain, like to mix all the options into one cup. I can’t wait to hear how127 mixed flavors taste!

The Coca-Cola Freestyle machine