Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Why i think Smart phones are Dumb.



I'm adding louielouie's video: this is my very diverse hometown of Tacoma. And it shows all the famous places in our area, some that are within a mile of where my parents live. Warning: it's a rap, so the F-word is a big part of the chorus and lyrics. But the rap is good. I like the dude's car.

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In the old days you called your friends on the land line, only they weren't called land lines back then, it was 'the phone'. If you were unable to visit them in person, face to face, you dialed them up, they answered and you had a conversation in real time.


It was still communication. Live.

Then the computer came around and we all got email, on our home desktop computers, where we could sit happily with a glass of wine or a cup of coffee, play some music while conversing with our friends in writing. This became the better way of communication because, hey, it was a busy world and this way we were not interrupting whatever fun thing they were doing WITHOUT US and they could get back to us then they had more time.

And if you happened to be a good typist (as i am - 80 wpm) then you could actually make your friends a little crazy with your verbosity and keyboarding skills in an email that goes on and on because it only took you 5 minutes to type while it took them 12 minutes to read. (Which is still not a lot of time actually, when you think of how much time you used to spend actually talking on the phone to a live body.) AND if some time had passed since you last saw them, then you could at least attach a photo of yourself in the email so they remember what you looked like.

So the communication got shorter with email, no matter how fast you typed or how slow a reader they were.

But it was still communication, at least.

THEN came along the Smart Phones. Everyone seems to be getting email and texts on Smart Phones. (Not to mention those damn Tweets).

Everything about communication just now got even shorter and more distant. Not only do we no longer listen to a voice, we have to keep it within a few words.

So i find myself no longer emailing as much these days. It is not because i don't have things to tell you or want to tell you or that i don't want to stay in touch. It's because what i have to say is not conducive to SmartPhones and people on the run.

I believe technology is hurting relationships. There is a certain irony in today's Facebook World that we can have hundreds of 'friends' we never see or talk to, but that's a whole 'nother post.

22 comments:

jojo cucina cucina said...

Disclaimer: i do not own a cell phone, much less a smart phone. My husband bought me one for a short period of time last fall, one of those throw aways, where you buy a phone card for them. But the card expired and i no longer have the phone. I do not miss it at all. and only used it twice when i had it.

EoDE said...

I don’t think it’s so much the smart phones that are dumb, but it’s the way some people use them that’s dumb.

My husband and I were talking about this the other day. We were both among the last holdouts on cell phones, but I started using one regularly when I started taking care of my mom. I was dividing my time between her house and mine, so I got a cell phone so that people who needed to call me only had to keep up with one number instead of two.

Similarly, my husband, who teaches at a community college, got a cell phone so that he can check on his elderly mom in between classes or she can call him if we’re out and about and away from our home phone.

We both have real basic phones because we don’t need anything more than that, but I can see why some people might need---or just want---the technology of the smart phones.

On the other hand, though, I don’t get people who spend all their time on a phone to the point that they ignore the people they’re actually with.

Case in point: A couple of weeks ago my husband and I were eating lunch at a restaurant when a couple came in and sat down across from us. They both whipped out their cell phones and spent the entire time waiting for their food texting or surfing the net.

When their food came, they put their phones up, but they still didn’t have much to say to each other---apparently they were too exhausted from communicating with everyone else!

equeyaya said...

Let's not forget the art of letter writing!

I think too much is missed in the hurry of internet and text messaging communication. People misread and misunderstand and get offended and relationships are hurt. The world is moving faster and faster and we don't take the time to truly communicate.

I find myself too addicted to my phone, constantly looking for some kind of input from the outside world. This at a time when I should be taking more time to look inward.

If I were a stronger person, I could overcome that.

louielouie said...

My daughter is convinced that Google, or any other search engine, is destroying our ability to honor the experts we know.

For example, if you want to know the words to a song, you just call uncle John and he sings it to you and throws in assuming anecdote about the artist. For grammar you call aunt Susan; food safety questions, grandma; inane historical data, her dad; general BS or any question you want a passionate answer to, factual or not, uncle Doug.

Now all you need to do is Google your questions, totally missing out on the human interaction. Pretty soon there will be no more” phone a friend” because no one will know who knows stuff.


Plus the question-calls give her the chance to shuck and jive with her extended family. And it gives them the chance to show off their expertise.

PS looking for old Ad jingles? I’m your gal.

susieatl said...

I remember the days where you had to find a pay phone if your car broke down...when I first moved to Atlanta I had to go knock on doors to get someone to call the towing company. The house I could find where someone was home was later condemned and torn down it was so nasty.

Now, I can call anytime..which is great. Amanda broke down on a dark road at 9 pm and she could reach me and AAA without worrying.

As far as communicating goes...I had lost touch with everyone from high school/college...now I email or get an email from someone every few weeks. My handwriting is horrible so typing suits my needs much better.

And I hate phone calls. Call me, tell me what you want and get off. So smart phones allow me to get the information (especially for work) without wasting my time with chitchat.

Personally, I love this age. If I'd had a smartphone when I was a social worker, my job would have been much easier..and probably safer now that I think about it.

I love being able to find out stuff without having to call someone..I can research companies and don't need a personal referral. Those never work anyway. I hate when someone refers a company with high praise and then the company sucks for you. Awkward.

I love the computer age..and can't wait to see what it can do for us in the future.

jojo cucina cucina said...

1. The art of letter writing indeed, eque!

2. louielouie is your gal for getting real mail - greeting cards!

2. BTW, louie, i totally get you about Google. Smart people don't get to show off as much anymore. But i LOVE Google. The only reason i might like to own an iPhone is for Googling stuff.

3. EoDE, i remember after posting this i was awake in the middle of the night and i thought to myself i totally forgot the part about how people are checking their iPhones and Droids or whatever while being out with you.

They meet you somewhere, for lunch, wine whatever. They keep their phone on the table, not too close, but not too far away and then they surreptitiously sneak looks at is as you are talking to them.

By the way, i googled the word 'surreptitiously' because i wasn't sure how to spell it.

4. susieatl, i hate the phone too. Besides having an iPhone to get on Google i might like a phone that just texts only. But no phone calls.

jojo cucina cucina said...

4096 characters are the most you can post so i had to cut and paste this one:

********************

Today was my first day of vacation and i wake up to the smoke alarm screaming at 6:30 am (earlier than i wake up for work) this morning because my husband made toast and it set off the alarm.

Needless to say, I was not very happy about that because i had not slept well at all at his mom's house (where we traveled to Eastern Washington - 3 1/2 hours away this weekend the night before).

So i got up anyway, went for a run, ate leftover Chinese food for breakfast and took a nap at 11:00 am!

Then i got up and went to the Watson's plant store, which is my favorite place, next to bookstores and had the nicest experience.

I was in the market for a hanging basket and finally found one i liked. As i am looking up at it this sweet little lady (by my guess in her mid 80's) asked her younger friend (who was probably in her early to mid 70's) what the basket cost. The friend replies she doesn't know. The 80ish lady asks her friend to go find the clerk to see what it cost and i'm thinking dammit, i can't buy it now.

So instead I take it down for her thinking the price is on top. It's not. The friend returns with a clerk who tells her it's $39.99.

The older woman says 'my husband will kill me if i spend that kind of money on flowers'. Right away i love that she is as old as she is and she and her husband are both still together and alive. (It's not often you run into married couples in their mid 80's.)

And I laughed and i said 'what does your husband do for himself that he spends money on?'

She replies, "He golfs! He is always golfing."

So i said, 'well there you go, that costs money. Tell him that flowers to you are like golfing to him'. Her friend is just smiling away as we're talking and she tells her friend too, 'you should buy it'.

I say to her too. 'You SHOULD buy it. It's really the prettiest of this kind.'

She declines. And i can see she really has changed her mind. So i say to her. 'Well this bacopa basket is only $24.99 and it's very easy to grow. You could buy that. And i can buy yours if you really don't want it. And i promise i will take good care of it.'

Her friend is smiling the whole time we are talking. The lady replies that is a great idea because her husband won't have a problem with that price. And maybe she'll hide the geraniums that she is buying and put them out later.

As we are in line together, it was a long line, so I helped put their geraniums in a flat box. She had 5 geraniums with her hanging basket but it was 2 for 1 today so i told her she could go get another one for free.

She seemed like she didn't know what to do so her friend said, 'go get another one because it would be free'. So the lady goes off and while she is gone her friend tells me that she is in the early stages of alzheimers and gets confused.

I said, 'oh, you can't really tell'. But i kind of explains how the friend was knowingly smiling and being so patient.

And the lady comes back with her 6th geranium and i got rung up and they got rung up and we said our goodbyes and thank yous. Them thanking me for helping with the geraniums and the other basket and me thanking them for getting the basket i had my eye one.

And i drove home smiling.

It was a great first day of vacation.

louielouie said...

My first day of vacation hasn’t happened yet. I am in Spokane at a conference BY MYSELF it’s not one I usually go to so don’t have my regular state conference pals around. Every one is either here with their school group or brought the family (how do the other spouses get the time off to bring the kids along on a work-trip), do no other wives work???

Anyway I went for a long-hard-hot walk to make up for the conference dessert I had at lunch (of course it wasn’t even good, but the lunch meeting was almost 2 hours long, and there the dessert was on the table in front of the whole time) and the ice cream bar at break – I don’t even like ice cream bars.

So anyway, I walk with my heart rate up for 40 minutes and come back to cool down (it is HOT in Spokane), wash off and go to dinner. I went to two restaurants but their bars were TOO hot so I came back to the hotel.

The hotel bar was cool and dark and the bartender brought me water right away-and two Hendricks before the meal was through. I had some good calamari but most importantly, the best salad ever. It was spinach, asparagus and an over easy egg and a fantastic strip of bacon. I do not know what was in the dressing or how they made it so fabulous. When I ordered it and it said it had bacon and egg, I figured there were little crumbles like most spinach salads but this was incredible, and that’s not just the gin speaking, the salad was served when I was only half way through my first drink.

So here I am back in the hotel room, showered and in my pjs, I’m supposed to be working on a grant report but just don’t care. Maybe I’ll read the book I bought on poverty, or just go to bed. . .

I would come back to Spokane just for that salad, never mind that my sister lives here, she’s never in town when I am. I know because I actually called her this time. The salad was the best.

jojo cucina cucina said...

i have never heard of a bacon and egg salad. It sounds weirdly good.

Oh, it WAS hot in East. Washington this weekend while we were there working on Brian's mom's yard. I couldn't believe how hot it was since we're so used to 62 degrees. (how can it be so different a few hours away?)

And what's with sunscreen anyway? I needed sunscreen but my husband's sunscreen is 50, which i don't get at all because he's Italian bred and not some pale Scandinavian type. Thankfully his sister showed up (who loves the sun as much as i do) and she had #15. Otherwise i am sure i would have a wicked sunburn. Because there is no way i am wearing #50.

I hate those Twilight movies and their vampire looks.

Lynnie said...

I found a bottle of blueberry wine tonight. I've had it for years, and it was in the back of one of our kitchen cabinets. I got it way back when I visited the Ya-Ya Wiscontessas in Algoma, Wisconsin. We visited the local winery, and somehow, this bottle ended up escaping until tonight. I am loving it and wish that I had gotten more. Blueberries are very good for you!

About Googling instead of knowing stuff and being able to show off: That's what Trivia contests in local bars are for. My regret is that my community chorus rehearses on the same night that Trivia is held, so a choice must be made. Why must all of the good stuff happen on the same night?

Mr. Lynnie is now in a country band. Last Thursday night he was ready to quit. He (the music snob) thought that they were awful. Then they did well on both Friday and Saturday night, and now he's all excited about it (and making money.) But originally it was agreed that they would play only one night per weekend. But one of the guys keeps adding gigs, and although everyone is complaining about it, nobody will just "refuse to play."

And I don't like being a band widow on the weekends. I haven't heard them yet because they've played too far away for me to drive alone at night, and I don't want to go as early as Steve goes to set up and stay all night until they are finished. He doesn't get home until 3 a.m.

But they are playing closer to home next Saturday night, and then they are playing at a "battle of the bands" on the 4th in the afternoon. So I'll go to those and see what all of the excitement is about.

That's about it, I guess. It's Summer, and I like Summer. Why do I spend so much time indoors?

Modern Hippie said...

the only thing about the new form of communication is that in general we do it more - we "tweet" (well i dont) and update facebook status maybe several times a day, once a day at the very minimum once a week where you may only email every once in awhile.

i never loose the passion for email. facebook updates are like news headlines and my emails are the articles.

but it definitley is changing.

jojo cucina cucina said...

Lynnie, blueberry wine does not sound right to me. Maybe for breakfast? LOL.

Lynnie, my husband is in a band too and they mostly play charity type of events that are private so i don't go that often. But i sort of like being a band widow cause i like being home by myself. Your husband's band sounds similar. they play more often in the summer, which i don't like as well because it interferes with planning a trip.

They have a guy too who keeps adding gigs. The thing is since they are charity they don't get paid. And if it comes down between a flyfishing trip and the band well the flyfishing has to win out sometimes. (As it did last summer.)

Do they have a website?

Re: tweeting. I am way too verbose for twitter. But i get that things are changing. And who wants to read a blog post on a Smart phone?

jojo cucina cucina said...

I am having a great start to my vacation, in spite of being scared out of sleep with the smoke alarm going off barely past dawn on my first day. Kylee and i walked Chambers Golf Course and had breakfast in Steilacoom.

I went home and washed windows and even the screens. They look great. I figured i saved $60 doing them myself. So i poured some wine as a reward.

I am reading The Other Boleyn Girl. It's VERY good. My mother in law had read it for book club and loaned it to me. I just netflixed the movie ( i hate that Scarlett Johanssen, but i hear she is good.)

I saw the Richard Burton movie Anne of a Thousand Days years and years ago and loved it. So i netflixed that one again.

I haven't started watching Lost yet but i might start tomorrow.

My patio is looking good. I love my new plants. I have to hang my lights and then i'm done. It's still a little cool to sit out there in the morning with coffee, but i think that will change.

I haven't washed my hair for about 5 days. I think that is what i love about vacation the most. I can hide it in a messy ponytail or french braid.

louielouie said...

I’m back home and am feeling good; maybe it’s the Jameson’s, maybe it’s ‘cause the Mariners beat the Yankees, or maybe it’s because Jon Stewart is on and I LOVE Jon Stewart.

Jo, let’s not be hating on pale folks, some of us just can’t help it.

I did end up start reading the Poverty book (I finished Richard Russo’s That Old Cape Magic, which I had to buy at the airport because I brought along a book I had already read) and it is very interesting. I knew there was a difference between being raised poor and being raised in generational poverty but it does really open your eyes. Even a do-gooder-middle-class-liberal like me doesn’t really get it. Do-gooder-middle-class-liberals like me just feel guilty for having educated parents.

And, along the 6 degrees of separation thinking, how are all the “non wired” going to be in touch. It’s hard to have wireless when you’re living in your car. And another 6th degree thing Lynnie, my cousins are from Algoma Wisconsin. I haven’t been back in a couple of years for a wedding/funeral but some even still live-and-drink-to excess-there. It’s my family tradition.

equeyaya said...

oh, i've missed a few days of posts here! jo, i love your experience in the plant store! relating to older people takes time, but it is so worth it.

louie, your salad and pjs in the hotel sounds great, too. i was at a conference last week and roomed with two of my coworkers. we ate and drank too much, but of course it was a lot of fun.

lynnie, i can't believe you haven't heard Mr. Lynnie's band play yet! i'd be all over hearing the music snob in the country band, lol.

i shopped for my new house today and took all the stuff over there. It was a four hour ordeal. i also met the neighbors across the street and they seem very nice. Tomorrow we start moving the dozens and dozens of boxes and Friday the furniture goes over. I figure Saturday I'll move over the last odds and ends, and Sunday and Monday I'll work on getting things organized. I hope I can make it homey for us. Grace seems angry like she's struggling with this, but she won't talk to me about it. :(

louielouie said...

Got home early today because I had to leave work for a Dr.’s appointment. I guess I’m healthy but will know more after the blood tests, mammogram and bone density scan. I also got a DTaP shot. Apparently folks my age didn’t get the booster that 6th graders get now and Pertussis (whooping cough) is making a comeback. Yikes.

I was so disappointed to find I had not lost one pound since my appointment last year. I have been working my butt off. Well, as it turns out, not my butt-off or thighs-off or jiggly-arms-off.

So instead of having a drink as soon as I got home I did my Jillian Michaels’ workout. I’m afraid to quit - maybe I would have weighed 20 pounds more without her – still waiting for those 30-day abs.

I also made my husband drink his whole 24ounce Stella Artois by himself – actually that’s not much of a sacrifice for me. Had he surprised me with a double Jameson’s like he did last night, I would have succumbed, just to be polite.

Good luck Eque with all that work ahead of you, take it easy on yourself and don’t worry too much about your daughter. You are probably both sad-angry; it’s a process.

You are strong women.

jojo cucina cucina said...

Day 4 of vacation.
I watched Disc 2 of Lost. So i'm 8 episodes into the first season. I love watching it again. I love Jack's character too. Maybe more now than i did the first time because of what i know. And it seems SO obvious to me that Kate loves him. I didn't notice that so much either. Kylee if you are reading, i am not really giving up anything.

i liked the Richard Russo book about marriage. I read it last summer. I've read all his books and he is my favorite author now. (Since Pat Conroy and Barbara Kingsolver hit and miss and are rather lazy writers.)

I've been reading most of the day. I really love the Other Boleyn Girl and can't wait to watch the movie. Natalie Portman plays Ann Boleyn. And the ever pouty Scarlett Johanssen plays her sister. It seems like it should be the other way around.

It's cold outside today. It was only 52 degrees when i woke up and i think it's only 60 degrees right now. I actually had to put the heat on.

I'm eating leftover pasta and drinking an Alaskan Amber. But i actually think i want some hot tea. It's a hot tea kind of day.

louie, remember what we always say: muscle weighs more than fat.

What is Jamesons anyway? Sounds like a big girl drink.

eque, louie is right. you are strong women.

louielouie said...

wow,

check this out. a sweet utube all about Tacoma. you south sound girls will love it, and the rest of you will get at chance to see Jo's home town.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZVI5ohXgfU&feature=related

jojo cucina cucina said...

OMG, i can't believe someone did a rap about our town. And it's a good rap too. He didn't miss much! Except few good parts. Like....Point Defiance. Ruston Way...Proctor District...Pour at Four wine bar, but i guess if he rapped about those it would be like Andy Samberg's SNL Lazy Sunday rap on The Chronicles of Narnia.

I loved it!

louielouie said...

thanks jo,

I love that he gave a shout out to Lakewood, Parkland and Spanaway

ron says it's a 63 impala

jojo cucina cucina said...

those 1963 Impala's are selling for $5,000! Amazing. I thought it might be the Thelma and Louise car, but of course, that was a Thunderbird. 1966.

I love Google.

I noticed that Puyallup didn't make the rap! LOL.

equeyaya said...

that is a very cool video.