Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Is acceptance of "smart devices" a de-facto credential for upstanding citizenship? Why?

Back when I was in my teens, I used to love using the computer. The days of the giant beige CRT monitors, AOL Instant Messenger, KaZaa Lite, IRC, Windows 2000, and Netscape Navigator are over, and these programs are mostly relics of a bygone era. Still, I seem to mentally wax poetic about the days of Ethernet almost daily.

My daydreaming isn't based solely in nostalgia. I believe those lost user interfaces were in fact, much better. Many of the old-school programs I listed worked just fine. Reading and replying to email, chatting with friends and even sharing files with one another... it all happened more or less seamlessly. I actually felt more connected to my network of friends back then.

All of my 2004 swag has been stripped from me. But this wasn't my choice, it was forced by an agenda from large corporations to sign the masses to smart-device-centric cell phone contracts. In place of what was already working just fine, we've been shoved into submission to endless algorithmic "gunk" (for lack of a better term) in exchange for acceptance and perceived normalcy.

Now, all of the sudden, if you're smartphone-less, or even Internet-less you're perceived differently. You may even have trouble finding and holding a job. Isn't that a bit much? What ever happened to a land line? Time off from full connectivity at all times?

Ever try to pry a cell phone from someone's hands? Their reaction can be dramatic, and for good reason. As we all know smart phones contain a plethora of sensitive information about someone: their personal messages, private photographs, banking information, logged in accounts, and so on.

The difference, of course, is you can't fit an old-school giant desktop computer into your front pocket, and maybe there were benefits to this.

At this moment I'm swamped with tech. I own a mini desktop computer, a micro-computer, an iPod, and a LG Phoenix smart phone, and a flip phone with Internet. It's a lot.

I noticed my hands were cramping from holding the smart phone for hours a day, whether texting people, or watching YouTube videos, or browsing the web. That's why I have the flip phone, so I can limit myself from non-stop Internet.

The more I use the Internet, the more I build up a dependency on it. I'm often left wondering, what would happen if I trashed all my gear?

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