We live in XXI century, our lives have become easier thanks to lots of inventions. But have you ever thought about our addiction to technology? It has got to every part of my life and I haven’t even realized that. I wake up thanks to an alarm clock on my mobile phone, during breakfast I check the news on my notebook and all the time I look at my electronic clock to check the time. At university I use PC in laboratories, lecturers show us what they do on their own computers using projectors. I am a programmer, so at work I write new code or read the old one - all using the computer and staring at the display. At the weekends in the evenings it’s all the same because my life revolves around computers.
Nowadays everyone is in hurry. There is little time to stop for a moment and have a conversation in real life. We use text messages and internet chats to contact with others. Writing has substituted talking and caused simplifying our language because some communicators have the limit of characters per one message. I am a great example of that, not only because of limitations. I live in a two-person room in a dorm. My roommate sits in front of his computer around 2 meters from me and for me it’s easier to write to him instead of turning around and talk. We both don’t have to stop doing our tasks or pause the music. I also “talk” to my computer for few hours every day. Yeah, “talk” - I got used to writing commands in pseudo-languages, so sometimes I think about that as a form of talking. I have noticed that when I write to other people I use short sentences, which contain only most important information that is required by the topic of our conversation - like I would do if I “talked” to my computer and made it do a specific thing. Now, when I know that, I try to call instead of writing and waiting with some cases until I can talk to someone face to face.
Pocket-size devices are cool, right? Lots of possibilities for such a small thing. What a wonderful invention - smartphone. It has everything you need - internet access, communication tools, place to make notes and a great potential for entertainment. I can put my phone in my pocket and always take it with me. All day I feel a slim weight in my pocket reminding me that I have an access to everything in hand and call. But that is not enough - phones are still too big and can be left on a shelf or a desk. We need something smaller and handier. And that’s where smartwatches and smartbands come. - smaller, lighter and easier to carry. No need to reach my pocket to check notifications, it’s all on my wrist. I had a smartband once and got used to it so much that I felt uncomfortable every time I had to put it off. I lost it during relocation and now I’m happy that it happened. To fight my phone addiction I put it at least one meter from me, so it’s too far to reach without standing. When I do something important or at night, I also turn the volume off, so it cannot give me a reason to take a break from my duties.
Portable devices are useful, but they have limitations. Why not carry my notebook with me? It’s not too big to fit in my backpack. It provides confidence that I am prepared for everything and I can deal with every problem. I can have a big screen, internet access, and all my data with me for a just microscopic cost of a heavier backpack. So tempting, but also very fallacious.
Nowadays we want things that are multifunctional. Why should I carry a paper book if I have a mobile phone in my pocket? It’s smaller and I can save many e-books on it. I can also buy an e-book reader to reduce my eye’s tiredness. But that’s still not a real book, and (for me) it can’t provide a similar atmosphere. Books are the only oldschool items, that are getting replaced - smartwatches are getting more and more popular.
It’s easy to talk about a problem, but the most difficult thing is to find a solution. I try to use conventional stuff and meet people as often as I can. Virtual entertainment can be replaced by real one - like card and board games, music instruments and sport. Think about this - how technology has affected your life - , but don’t share your solutions below, talk about them to people around you ;).
Originally published at brightinventions.pl
By Grzegorz Cieśla, Junior Software Engineer @ Bright Inventions