Sunday, March 22, 2009

technology confessional

i have a confession to make.  i don't really care all that much about consumer technology right now.   it seems frivolous and stupid.  all the cool third world applications have happened - the mobile phones, the $100 laptop, the market ladies with money transfers. now it's devolving into advertising and free dancing cat stickers on facebook and to wit, the NGO i helped in india 5 years ago is now selling ayurvedic medicines online, instead of trying to get villagers access to land records through hand held mapping to give them loans.   it was supposed to be that technology would make these tiny small changes in life, real-time pricing and water testing and slowly these little small things would build and lighten the reality burden of poor societies and collectively they would gather to move a mountain.  now it seems we're busy adding to the pile of thrown out diet coke cans and empty oxygen tanks and the other litter that awaits you when you get to the base camp of mount everest.  in the meantime i plan to write a lot and i think try to reconnect what's human; what's absorbing linking back to what's necessary.  technology is a medium and a tool; but right now it's being used to make a lot of stupid shit.  the only useful spot of interest for me right now is video communications - cisco telepresence and stuff like that.

ed note - i actually loved the dancing cat sticker on facebook and for some reason it stopped working and i sort of want it back.

ps - i would really like it if they stopped using the 1 inch long antiquated flip phones on 24.  it's not right.  are they actually *double-tapping* their text messages?  

1 comment:

Capt. BS said...

Well, I can't say much more than I "know of" some up-and-coming third-world technologies (e.g. portable water purification/filtration systems, wide-areawireless broadband internet, solar-powered anything), I do know this: none of the major wireless carriers have yet developed a phone -- of any form factor -- that can: instantly access any government, medical, or other records and dynamically reformat their contents to fit on a 2.5" screen; track the location of anyone in any building; access live video feeds from any surveillance system; and, most importantly, be remotely programmed to explode. Among other things. So I'm not so sure that Jack Bauer's phone can be deemed "antiquated" when its technological capabilities far exceed those which are on the market today.