Technology is a key component to our everyday lives. Without it, you wouldn’t be reading this blog right now. Instead, you’d be waiting patiently by your mailbox for a hand-delivered piece of loose leaf paper covered in the chicken scratch of yours truly. I think we can all agree that technology helped us dodge a bullet on that one. The fact is, whether you are reading this on your computer, netbook, tablet, iPhone, Android, or recently installed, computer-processor equipped, Terminator-style Super Robot Eye, you interact with at least one piece of technology every day.
I recently had a fun, lively debate with my Aunt (via email, mind you) about the impact of technology on society and how things have changed so much (not for the better, in her eyes). I argued that technology has brought the world closer together while she argued that it keeps people, especially school age kids, from in-person interaction and perhaps isolates us more than brings us together. I scoffed at her points, then had a text-message conversation with my cubicle neighbor about the subject. She (or maybe it’s a “he”, I don’t know, we’ve never seen or spoken to each other) agreed with me.
All joking aside…
“Whoa Jim, all joking aside? We never agreed to that!”
Very well, loyal reader, we’ll keep the humor flowing. So anyway, after our debate, which was worthy of a Harvard-Princeton showdown, I started to think about the remote possibility that she may have some good points and I was just being stubborn. Another text message from my neighbor confirmed my stubbornness and so I set out to find examples of how we’ve gone a bit too far with technology. A .6054 second Google search later revealed all I needed to know.
So after taking a look at my day-to-day routine, I came up with 10 examples of how we’ve gone a bit overboard with technology and how I’ve become spoiled. Here they are in no particular order.
1) I used a “randomizer” I found online to take these 10 examples and put them in “no particular order”. How lazy is that? Yikes.
2) On Saturday night, our neighbors, along with my sister and brother-in-law, joined us for dinner at our house. After dinner, we all sat around playing Draw Something with one another on our phones. If you are unfamiliar with this game, it’s essentially an electronic version of Pictionary. As we sat there in silence, concentrating on our phone screens, it occurred to me; why didn’t we just play Pictionary?
3) After using my voice-recognition software to write the first few paragraphs of my novel, I used the voice playback feature of my novel-writing software to read it back to me. I chose the British voice option because, well, the option was there, but I was somewhat disappointed when the voice did not sound exactly like Michael Caine. I’ll be writing a strongly worded letter to the creators to show my disdain. Well, probably not “writing” it so much as “speaking” it with my voice-recognition software.
4) I am constantly frustrated by the fact that my DVR can record two shows at the same time, but will not allow me to watch a third. I’m forced to watch one of the other 3 televisions in our house, requiring me to remove my butt from the comfortable butt-shaped impression I’ve made on the couch and spend the next 30 minutes or so creating a new, slightly less comfortable butt-shaped impression on another couch. I mean seriously, come on!
5) And speaking of television, the ability to pause live TV is what makes me think we’re not all that far away from teleportation. But I’m going to be pretty upset if they come out with a teleporting pad, charge me an arm and leg for it, and then come out with a newer, better version like 8 months later. I’m looking at you Apple.
6) This video. Nothing else to say.
7) The realization that a flashlight is an essential household item only occurs after about 5 hours of no electricity results in the inability to recharge your smartphone after your consistent use of the “flashlight app” has caused the battery to run out.
8) After the hearing the news that the Encyclopedia Britannica will no longer be offered in print form, any child under the age of 16 will likely respond with, “Encyclo-what? Are you talking about Wikipedia?”
9) Many cars today are equipped with OnStar or some other voice activated system which can search for directions, call someone, or send for emergency help, all at the touch of a button or sound of a voice. These features are becoming a bit too intuitive however, if you ask me. The other day, after being cut off and nearly swerving into a light post, I yelled out, “Son of a B****!”. Suddenly I heard the sound of a number being dialed and then the voice of my old boss. Weird.
10) I could have written this entire post with my cell phone and bluetooth while sitting in the driver’s seat of a car while it parallel parks itself into a spot I never could have gotten into myself, all while listening to a radio station created for me based on my listening preferences and downloading directions to the next available parking spot that my car will park itself in. I didn’t. I’m not that cool. But I could have. Just saying.
PS – You’ll notice over there in the upper right sidebar, a quirky little potato informing you of the progress being made on my novel. I just began writing last night and plan to write as often as possible, so check back regularly as I’ll update my word count and the mood of Mr. Spud every time I write. This will give you a reason to stop by on the days between blog posts (as if you needed a reason, right? right!)