Friday, February 24, 2012

Advances in Technology

Every news outlet and advertising medium touts the benefits of our society's advances in technology. Every other day the newest, latest, must-have gadget goes on sale and we all rush like lemmings to the store to throw out our hard-earned money. But did you ever stop to think about the negative aspects of what we have lost or left behind due to these advances? Have you even taken a moment to count the costs? Well, for the purposes of this blog, I have done a little bit of thinking along these lines. You don't have to thank me, I consider this a public service. Let me illustrate three obvious examples.

1). Telephones - In the old days we talked into a receiver that was wired to a base unit with a cord that looked like a piggy's tail. If we wanted to storm out on a bad conversation with a point of emphasis, we could slam the receiver into its cradle with gusto. I can assure you that it was quite unpleasant for the person on the other end of the line. Now with my cell phone, I can only press the "end" button with a frowny face. This does nothing to make clear my disgust.

2). Eyeglasses - In the old days we could use our glasses in several key ways. We could grab them at one temple and quickly rip them off our faces to demonstrate incredulity. (Think of Oscar Goldman in the old Six Million Dollar Man show from the 1970s). We could also calmly nibble on the end of one earpiece to advertise that we were in deep thought. None of this works at any level with these new-fangled contact lenses.

3). Car Ignitions - Once upon a time, when our cars wouldn't start, we could turn the key in the ignition with a grimace on our face and mutter, "Come on mama!" Now we have these space-age vehicles that start with the push of a button. Plus, we don't even have a key on which we can hang a dangly chain.

Oh technology, you are a cruel mistress.