Recently, I was suddenly struck by the knowledge of how old fashioned that I really am, as far as electronic wizardry and techno gadgets go…I consider myself relatively modern, but I am slowly coming to the realization that I am in fact doomed to be “tragically unhip” the rest of my life! I mean, this is 2015 and I still use a desk top computer, with a tower and a mouse that is connected to the computer by a cord, it is not even a ‘wireless’ mouse!…
No matter, both are already out dated in this rapidly evolving, brave new techno world we are all becoming so rapidly immersed in!….Everybody else has moved on to laptop computers and built in flat, one dimensional mouses, and this is not even to mention that there are even newer computer like devices called ‘all in ones’ and tablets that are the newest of the newest trends in the computer field, and I must confess that I have absolutely no conception of what they are, what they do and i sadly realize and concede that I will never discover how or why they work at all!….
The younger you are, the better and easier it is for you to understand these new devices and all the constant never ending updating and innovating and improvements and refinements that are an inherent part of their electronic nature…The younger generation alive today now have all grown up with computers being household products, not at all remarkable to them, that they just take for granted, as if it was always this way…..
In other words, if you don’t understand the newest techno gadget, just ask a young person and they will immediately show you how to utilize it….Just like my generation, and I am a Baby Boomer, took for granted the television set (which was the main invention of my youth, along with it’s gradual evolution with the VCR and cable TV) the young people today, God bless them, take all this electronic sorcery in stride…
And even with television, my favorite social medium of them all, I am falling behind! TV sets today are just really monitors for all the digitally streamed content that we are bombarded with daily. Now we have “smart TV’s” that can access Net Flix, Amazon, Hulu, or other online movie providers, the list is endless, that were previously unavailable just a few short years ago….
Sometimes I feel like some obscure columnist from the newspaper deadline era, like in that that movie “All the President’s Men” about the Watergate scandal with Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, creased fedora on backwards, chomping on a cigar, using my trusty, rusty, dusty Royal typewriter, picking and pecking at my mechanical keyboard late into the night, churning out stories for some imagined deadline, all I am lacking is carbon copies!
The march of progress is inexorable and inevitable, and I realize that I will never catch up to all the modern innovations, it is already too late for me….Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, I am just stating a fact that I have just recently come to terms with and accepted as the way things are these days….We will never again, except in memory, be able to recreate “The Way We Were.”
Everything moves so very, very fast today, at warp speed. For another example take the evolution of the telephone….Alexander Graham Bell, who invented the first telephone, must be spinning in his grave at the development of the ubiquitous cell phones, the newest smart phones which are basically mini hand held and operated computers…
I have read that the cell phone market has reached 99% saturation point in America, I mean virtually everybody has one, and many people, including myself, no longer even own the hopelessly slow, outdated and annoying land line telephones in their homes, with their incessant telemarketing sales pitches, although they are still a fixture in offices and other businesses…
The newest cell phones, the so called smart phones, which EVERYBODY uses on the personal, social day to day level can handle any of the emails you do receive, but emails themselves are hopelessly outdated as a communication tool, except for work world functionality and the receipt of an endless flow of advertising and all the latest cyber bargains …The latest trend with the new smart phones is texting, and again, even I can do that….
It wasn’t easy at first, I had to learn how, and I am a slow typer, but I find that i text friends and relatives way more now than I actually call them up….Texting is much less intrusive and you can reply at your leisure, plus you can also text photos instantly to your friends without all the hassle of developing photographic prints and mailing them off…If you like you can text all day long in an extended conversation with friends instead of actually talking to them or even seeing them in person, ask any teenager about that one!
Not to mention that for entertainment the smart phones can also stream live television and movies, even sporting events. The list of available tasks and the requisite capability to resolve them are seemingly infinite, the amount of information available is only limited by your own individual expertise and dexterity with these amazing devices….
Will wonders never cease! But there is one new invention looming on the horizon that I will NEVER embrace….Now they are talking seriously about “smart cars,” of the government taking away your personal individual control of your own vehicle and having computers “drive” your cars for you on the freeway! OMG! STOP IT! We already have this technology available and in place on subways, trains and to some extent airplanes, and it usually works fine, at least the airplanes… Notice I said usually….
This government invasion of our privacy is routinely taken for granted, and the limits of their abilities are unknown to the common citizen, but we have to draw the line somewhere! Don’t be lulled into a false sense of complacency by these wonderful, useful technological tools, because always remember, they are a two way street…Just as you enjoy accessing all the fun, exciting features of these informational and entertainment devices, the government is just as surely watching back, storing information on all your personal browsing habits for their own convenience….
Frankly, I absolutely SHUDDER to think of the consequences of a computer malfunction on a busy freeway at say a holiday crush of traffic, or even more likely, the common flow of the daily rush hour, and how the government will glibly try to explain it as an inevitable “glitch in the system.” Thanks, but no thanks, techno nerds! I will drive my own car and be responsible for it, and I trust so will you all, but let us PLEASE keep the government in their tremendously bureaucratic, autocratic, blind faith in technology OUT of our personal vehicles. Enough is enough!
Driving our own car is one of the last freedoms as Americans we still have…Let’s keep it that way, let’s have a little common sense and realize that behind all the bells and whistles and glitz and glamor, technology does have it’s limits….God save us all from this onslaught of mindless, soulless, no responsibility or accountability technology run rampant! As the historical American Gadsden flag from the 1775 American Revolution states so eloquently:
DON’T TREAD ON ME!