Living the Techology(LESS) Day.
A destined day, a few weeks ago, I woke up and decided that I would spend that whole day without technology. I proposed that I would spend that day without my mighty iPhone (Oh Noes!), my laptop, and even a watch – well, to be fair, I haven’t been wearing a watch since Steve has basically taken over my life with his ‘small but very mighty’ creation.
Yet… sadly that day didn’t really..happen. In fact, quite the opposite. Because as ironic as my humble goal was, guess what woke me up that morning? Yup, Clock App on the phone! And really, wherever I went throughout that day, whether it was the library, the office, even the coffee shop… I had access to computers and free internet. Oh how awesome this technological age is.
It is quite admirable that we can live in a time when technological resources are so readily available – By that, I mean, available to the vast majority of the ‘developed’ world. Though I guess initiatives like those One-Laptop-a-Child things does extend the technological influence to other less developed areas. Anyway, we live in a unique place on the hypothetical human-history clock map where peoples of different backgrounds – the rich, the poor, the young, the old – can all have access to the jewels of ingenuity and fruits of innovation. In contrast, for much of our communal history, technology has been narrowly owned and manipulated by the elites.
Ironically then, this is also where my little concern comes in – we can’t really separate ourselves from all this, can we? Even as I type this, I have about 5 tabs of sites, Gmail, Youtube, INC etc open up as well. This blog itself is a result of the technology surge (and the more I write, the more ironic this entry is….). So the question now is, are we too reliant on the fruits that technology brings? I believe we are. But I don’t believe it is a bad thing.
While it’s true that prolonged exposure to screens and the hype of iPhone 4 can cause “googly eyes” (I thought this was hilarious… Urgent iPhone 4 PSA!!!! -LikeTotallyAwesome) I feel that in the greater scheme of things, there are more merits than fouls to our technologically fueled lives.
Most importantly, for me, it definitely ‘connects’ everything together – and I guess it does increase productivity – somefolds. I could be here checking my emails, updating myself with the latest news on NYTimes and have a deep, meaningful Skype chat with my friend in Otago…. all at the same time. Of course my eyesight may gradually decrease to the point of blindness, my spinal cord may, as a result of prolonged sitting position, be deformed, I may get a bunch of invisible and super deadly diseases because of the constant running of my laptop and I may have bad sleep because I’d hear the bing-ing of MSN IM’s in my dreams………… But regardless of all that could and probably is happening to me, I can’t really avoid it. and I shouldn’t try to avoid it.
Technology has always been part of our human experience – and today it is no different. In fact, it’s even more important to be constantly updated and know your tech. Just yesterday, I was at awed when a 4 year old girl knew how to operate my iPhone. We have always relied on technology to improve societies – today, it is so accessible that we rely on it to get through the day – those awkward moments where you intuitively whip out your phone and text…. you know what I’m talking about. You’re probably doing it now.
A lot of people write and talk about how prolonged LUI (Living-Under-the-Influence) can cause personality changes. My counterargument, I don’t have one. Because. I don’t need one. We have to make certain sacrifices if we want to live the life we want – think problems of Entitlement. We simply can’t have it all – we have 24 hours in a day, 7 days a week, 365 and a quarter of those in a year… we can’t be super productive, be super social and keep up to date with the latest goss. It just doesn’t work that – we can keep complaining about how we’re forgetting our roots, that ‘Human’ Touch… but eventually, the Virtual Boogie is where it’s at – Let’s face it, all this talk about how letters are nicer than phone calls – hey, the speech came first.. written records came later. With that in mind, it’s only logical to assume that cheap programmed presents will be the way of the future…. as sad as that may be.
Of course, I would be lying if I haven’t thought of all this as a tragedy – much more so than Hamlet. While I love a handwritten letter and a warm hug, I can’t help but see the emerging potential of this coming wave – which, really, has already happened (we’re just too stubborn to admit to it…).
So the bottom line is, there’s really nothing wrong with obsessing over technology. There’s really no need to try to live a Technology-LESS life…. because it can’t be achieved – unless you are OK with digging a deep hole and isolating yourself from everyone around you… and even digging a hole today would probably require some tech support – 1-800-DIG ME A HOLE.
As I have said (I think I have said) over and over again in this entry, we simply cannot avoid the influence of technology, the pixels of LCD screens (soon, LED screens…) or those babies I see at restaurants whose parents quiet them with portable DVD players… (it’s quite the sight). So, why not just stop complaining and celebrate the merits.
Viva la Vie (de la technologie)!
…ok that’s lame. Moving on.