Nov 11, 2010 -- posted by Ranjit
Technology is a bitch, I tell you! You see, 50 years ago, nobody knew what a Smartphone was, let alone, our dear old iPhone and now, everybody talks about it. Some people hate it, some people love it and others can’t afford it. In the middle of it all, I seriously wonder if life would have been different if we didn’t have an iPhone. To start with, one less topic to fight over and I guess, Apple would have been closer to their niche product in Macintosh, which by the way again is a very controversial product.
We seriously believe that technology makes it all worth it. But, if you think about it, generation nerd didn’t exist 30 years ago. But, some people were still outcasts who enjoyed a Ham radio more than the company of real people. It’s a vicious circle and the more important question is, how far back we would want to go to break out of this circle when technology doesn’t affect our lives the way it does today. Or to be perfectly balanced towards people who love technology… do we really want to go back?
I think I would. And I will tell you why. Because boredom is a 21st century word. I have never seen my grandfather feeling bored. That state of mind does not exist for him. Within the rituals of everydayness that he follows, he never once complains that he is bored of them. And we, with our xBoxs and Play Stations, Facebook and Blogs, SMS and Emails and this list could go on, are perpetually looking for the next thing that might grab our attention for a few seconds. So we have RSS feeds, Google Reader, Buzz, Digg and the entire randomness of digital jargon that holds our attention for five minutes and poof! There it goes, taking away the satisfaction of doing something important in your day.
Life was simpler without Google maps, trying to tell you to turn on every street to reach your destination… you could get lost; know a city like a flâneur. Life was simple without Google search that would always tell you the best places to eat food in a city destroying the experience of eating crappy food every once in a while to appreciate good food. To be honest, I think technology is so central to making our lives comfortable that we don’t even know what comfortable means anymore.
There is warm water for cold winter mornings, destroying the experience of a cold shower that actually does make you feel really alive after the first five seconds. There is a raincoat that destroys the experience of being really drenched in the middle of a heavy downpour. What is it about being uncomfortable once in a while, that scares us so much?
Anyway, one of these days, I am going to follow into the footsteps of people that believe in the Slow Movement. And really experiment with being away from my laptop or my “iPhone” for a couple of hours in a day. In fact, the idea of going offline escaping the gift/curse of constant communication and infinite information would probably help in being able to actually pick up a hardcover real book or a walk in the city or feeling alive without worrying about boredom.
I think, I should give up technology to not be bored.