Sunday, November 27, 2011

Too Much Technology?

I understand the value of technology, I really do. Being connected via Twitter, blogs, online courses and professional development opportunities has helped me grow more professionally and personally in the last year than I could have ever done on my own. But even with all the benefits I wonder if sometimes there's just too much technology. When is enough, enough... or too much even?

This isn't a new thought for me; it's something I've been wondering for a long time. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned, but I spend so much time on my computer that when I'm out and about I simply want to be out and about. I don't want email notifications. I don't want to see who's updating their FB statuses. If I'm out shopping, then I need to get that done. If I'm having dinner and drinks, then I want to be focused on the people who are there with me in that moment. Why do people need to be checking their phones ALL THE TIME?

Besides being frustrated with people who can't step away from their phones, I also don't get the whole app phenomena. Even though I have an iPod touch that my hubby got me for my anniversary last year, I rarely use it for anything but music. My favorite app? Solitaire - it helps me fall asleep at night when I can't. I can't justify spending the money on most apps, and most of the free ones -- I just don't see the point.

There are two of us here, just me and my husband. There are four laptops, if you count my work issued computer, a DVR, an Xbox, a Wii, a PlayStation 3 (which is for sale if anybody wants it), a Droid, a BlueRay player, a Sirius radio that hubby can carry around because the headphones double as an antenna, an iPod touch and an iPad (another item that is school issued). That's a lot of technology for two people, isn't it? Or are we just like everybody else these days?

What really got me thinking about this today is that my hubby told me he would like a Nook Tablet for Christmas. I asked him, "How is that different than your phone? Do you really need both?" This was followed by a huff and a puff and the comment that he would find something else he'd like to have. It's not that I don't want to get the poor guy what he wants. He certainly works his tail off, he has had a crappy year, and he deserves any gift that he gets. I just don't see how it's any different from what we have now, and if I'm going to spend that much money I'd like to get something that's different from one of the tech tools that we already have lying around the house.

So, am I alone in these thoughts? Am I being a fuddy-duddy? Or is there a point where the technology is simply redundant and isn't adding any value?

3 comments:

Ashok Singh's Blog said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nancy C said...

Hi Becky,
I understand your sentiments. I have two teenagers and I wish I had waited before getting them video games and cell phones. They are way too connected. And, honestly, I think I am way too connected. There are days that I am 'drawn' to the computer as if someone is inside calling my name. Other times, I shut the lid of the laptop and walk away.
On the flip side, Like Ashok commented, technology has provided businesses with automation, doctors with life saving tools and more.
I think the trick is to strike a balance (and to teach our children - own & students) how to as well.
Some really good points to ponder on.
Thanks for sharing.

Becky Bair said...

Thanks to both of you for your comments. I agree with both of you. There are so many positive things that come with being connected, professionally and personally. But Nancy, like you said, it's like it "calls" to us. And some times I wonder if it calls to much.

I suppose the craving for unconnected time and the concern about technology shows that it isn't the answer for everything, and that sometimes we do need times away from the screen (no matter how big it is).