“Smart” phones, iPad’s, Tablets, DVR’s, gadgets upon gadgets.
I can’t stand them.
And before I get started, I am not a crotchety old man who doesn’t understand technology. I am an IT professional and a user of technology in my personal life as well.
What bothers me is that the majority of our simple-minded society is ruled by this technology. It dictates their lives. It controls people. It holds them in its clutches. It should be the other way around.
When I see people all the way from little kids to adults with some sort of “device” attached to them wherever they go, it disgusts me. We’ve become a bunch of mindless drones walking around with things in our ears and eyes glued to monitors in the palms of our hands. Poking, tapping, and sliding our fingers constantly on touch screen surfaces. Grown men and women behave like little kids bedazzled by blinking lights and buzzing sounds.
“Oooo…pretty…I must have this”.
Need versus want is one of the cruxes of the problem. The bright minds on Madison Avenue have convinced the masses of morons to believe they “need” this stuff. Combine that feeling of need with a history of getting what you want (and throwing a tantrum if you don’t) and you’ve got a recipe for an unsavory character. Device addiction is a huge reflection of a rude, self centered, narcissistic, and anti-social society. Kids don’t actually play together and adults don’t actually interact with each other. It makes me laugh when I’m out in a social setting and people are staring at their fucking palm rocket instead of interacting with the person they are with. Or yapping away while at a check out counter as if the clerk or person on the other side of the counter doesn’t exist. Just like the idiot box (television), it contributes to the dumbing down and rottage of our minds.
We need to understand and be concerned about how the over consumption of media and digital content affects our concentration, focus, and imagination…especially on young people. It has affected our linguistics and our ability to write with our hands. We send text messages comprised of made-up words and laden with cryptic abbreviations and many of us actually talk this way. Heaven forbid you ask someone to write something down and what you’ll get is something that looks like chicken scratch or the likes of what a kindergartner would produce.
We have been duped by the makers of these devices to live in a manufactured and false reality. A fictitious sense of self in which every idiotic schmuck thinks they are a super-star. Everybody is so important these days that they have to be connected and able to be reached 24/7. And what is the content of this importance? FaceBook, YouTube, games, porn, gambling, fun, fun, fun. Teenagers, soccer moms, and non-executives pretending they need all this connectivity while standing in line at Starbucks or Kroger so they can tell the world they are in line at Starbucks or Kroger…hilarious and nonsensical at the same time. I’m on FaceBook and I love the internet, but I like the fact that in order to access all that stuff I have to use my desktop computer at home. Why does all that stuff have to follow us around wherever we go?
The vast majority of users are not leveraging the technology for anything good. And that is exactly what our technological masters want…for us to be disengaged and disinterested in reality. We are actually creating the content that gives Facebook any value whatsoever...in effect, working for free and making a billionaire that much richer with every single picture and blurb posted. Free to post equals free to add shareholder value and in effect our narcissism has been leveraged against us.
It is peddled as a tool for learning and creativity, but I find that especially in the areas of music and visual arts that it has sapped the human soul out of these art forms. It enables people who have no artistic or musical background to call themselves artists and musicians. Just like the fast food industry has waged a war of taste bud homogeny on the planet, technology has done the same to our eyes and ears. Instant gratification is the name of the game and as a society and especially our younger generations have no patience. We throw a hissy-fit if we don’t get it NOW.
What I think it boils down to is a complete misalignment of priorities, misunderstanding and disregard for the concept of moderation, a general lack of sensibility, and the inability to think logically about the future. Harness and enjoy what is on offer, but use your intellect to retain control. Understand that your choices today for yourself and others affects your tomorrow. Know the difference between needs/wants and be able to survive and live without your wants when presented with a situation where you have to do so. Maintain balance in all facets of your life in which being centered is valued. All this combined is just some of the characteristics of what constitutes a civilized society.
To put it very simply it is about mind over matter.
Put down and shut off the matter once in a while and let the mind prevail.