Friday, October 04, 2002

 

How connected does one have to be to count as connected? At what point do we need to start worrying about being called luddites? And why, why, why is the VCR the standard by which every technical competence is judged?Drivers, TiVos and Other Conundrums of the Digital Age discusses the increasingly increasing pace of technological advancement, and how consumers are being left behind.

I don't agree. I don't have a TV that does anything other than help to play DVDs or tapes. No channels, no basic cable, no digital cable, no sattelite. And no TiVo. I've got some gizmos and gadgets, but certainly not everything out there on the market. I don't need to get every new gadget. I have enough toys to make me happy (and the rest I can read about online, right?). And I think the idea of buying an underpowered, overpriced HDTV instead of a lower-priced but soon-to-be-obselete analog in the name of patriotrism and progress is a lot of what's wrong with this society today. Determinism. It's there, so we'll use it. Just because the technology is available does not mean that it should be, and as consumers, we have at least a little bit of choice.

Oh, yeah, and I'm an English geek in my mid (I guess) 20's. And I know what a driver is, and that my computer has an ethernet card (actually, we're on network card #2). Now, when my computer spazzed and dumped all of its drivers, wouldn't recognize a keyboard or a mouse, and seemingly permanently set its resolution at 640x480, well, help was required. But a lot of being a smart computer (or other electronics) owner is based on two things: 1) RTFM - whether it's print or online documentation, time, effort, and skill went into the creation of that computer documentation so use it! and 2) don't be afriad of your things. After all, they're just that: things. Unless the things belong to an employer, were HIDEOUSLY expensive, or are required for medical purposes, chances are that, should you be able to break (permanently and irrevocably) the things, you could live without and life will go on. But I don't think it's that easy to break computers, etc. Most people these days don't believe that a certain series of keystrokes will explode a computer, but many people - even some of those ultra-hip young'ins alluded to in this article - are more afriad of computers than seems necessary.

My 2 cents for the day.

- posted by laurie @ 10/04/2002 11:22:00 PM
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