13 Oct 2010

Its strange isn't it?

How we become dependent on our technology?

There are people who, like some kind of neo-luddites, disconnect themselves from anything technological in order to 'get back to nature', or 'slow down'. While I have a kind of grudging respect for them, I don't see the point.

In the last 50 years human ingenuity has come up with hundreds of gadgets and technological marvels which have the potential to make us more productive, more creative and less parochial than those who live a mere 2 generations before us.

We have devices that allow us to communicate with people on the other side of the world, and they fit in our pockets. We are connected to each other's knowledge in so many ways that we really have no further excuse for ignorance and prejudice.

As those who follow my twitter or Facebook are aware (two more technologies that are having a huge impact on our societies) I am without my own computer for the first time in almost a decade. I am currently writing this on my wife's laptop, which I only have access to while she's not using it. It has none of my collected thoughts on it, none of the little apps that I have installed and forgotten about but that I really notice the lack of. It also has none of my games and is incapable of running any but those released a good 5 years ago.

Seriously, its like having a piece of my brain removed. I use my PC as a repository of random thoughts, doodles, and other miscellany. Its as if certain key parts of my memory have been excised, parts that may well be incidental but which nevertheless play a large part in making me who I am. Its disorienting, debilitating and the only cure is to throw money which I don't have into buying new parts.

I had thought that a new power supply would be the answer to my problems, but the power supply arrived and it turned out to be the motherboard. The new motherboard I have (which I bought in relative ignorance of new memory standards and CPU compatibility) is not going to take the memory that I already have. Its turned into an epic clusterfuck and I'm getting frustrated with the whole enterprise.

I should consider myself lucky I suppose, that I have access to other computers which I can use to get may daily dose of connectedness, but its not my computer. The whole endeavour has highlighted to me how dependent I have become on technology, how enmeshed my life has become with a network of devices. How much of a cyborg I really am. We truly are living in the future.

M out

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