Thursday, September 9, 2010

Not There Yet

There are six realms of technology into which I have not yet delved. Here they are and the reasons I am still abstaining:

1. The i-Phone, or any “smart phone” (e.g. Blackberry) via which the owner can send and receive e-mail and access the Internet. I remain the only one in my family of five who does not have one.

I can foresee the day when I am required to have one for work. Until that day comes, however, my little old flip-phone works just fine. I can make and receive calls and also text, though without a “QWERTY” keyboard (I hate that term), there’s a lot of trial and error and it’s time consuming. I can usually make a phone call faster. Honestly, though, I don’t text enough to warrant the upgrade. I don’t see myself wanting or needing Internet access so much that I must carry it with me at all times. The people who walk around and are constantly engaged with these things greatly annoy me.

2. Facebook. Again, I’m the lone family member who is still holding out. And to be fair, I access Wife’s FB page on occasion to catch up with friends and family members who are her “friends” and to look at photos, especially the ones that Daughter posts.

I don’t see myself relenting on this anytime soon. One reason is that I love to keep in touch with people. I know that sounds contradictory but, if I were ever to start the Facebook thing, I could see myself becoming way too obsessed with it. When I do get on Wife’s page, I’ll find myself typing in random names in the “Search” box, just trying to see who might be out there. I think I’m better off just hitch-hiking off of Wife from time to time when she tells me there is a matter of interest and keeping up via my old fashioned blog.

3. Twitter. While I can fathom MAYBE surrendering one day to Facebook (no time soon), I just don’t see me and Twitter ever getting together. Let’s be real. I don’t care what you are doing every minute of every day and I know you feel the same. No tweets needed in my world.

4. GPS. It’s my understanding that a lot of the smart phones have these now. The stand-alone versions have these voices that tell you where to go and how to get there. I have a friend who argues with the voice. In reality, I guess this is a pretty convenient gadget and I am certainly directionally challenged. Call me old fashioned (again), but I’m sticking with MapQuest and Yahoo Maps.

5. iPod / digital music. I can see this coming. I borrowed Wife’s the other day when I had to have some dental work done. She turned it to the Les Miserables soundtrack for me. Combined with the Novocain and the legal limit of nitrous oxide, I was transported. But, still, I see life left in my CDs.

6. Electronic readers like Amazon’s “Kindle.” I get almost all my books from the library so this is really unnecessary for me. Maybe the library will one day be nothing more than a website from which we download books onto our electronic readers (and that will be a sad day). Until that happens, I’m staying with the real thing. I hardly every pay for books now, so no need to get something that will cost me.

13 comments:

Bob Barbanes said...

Oh Bob, I am so conflicted about these very things. One one hand, as a pilot I welcome new technology...relish it, even! Anything that makes my job/life easier, I say bring it on!

On the other hand, as you know I often complain that we become slaves to this technology. Like my friends who simply can't be apart from their phones.

I do not have a "smart phone" yet either. But I desperately want an iPhone and will have one soon, I'm sure. Having the internet with me at all times? Oh yeah! It's just SOOOO handy, in millions of ways.

And Facebook...I love Facebook! I keep a FB tab open any time I'm on my computer. I even see my own blog eventually migrating over to my Facebook page (hmmph, more people would read it than they do now!). FB is awesome - great way to keep in touch with people all over the world...assuming you know and care about people all over the world.

Agree with you on Twitter. What a waste of time.

GPS. Now this...I was all set to go out and buy a Tom-Tom or Garmin for the car. They're just too convenient, especially when you're looking for a hard-to-find restaurant and have missed the turn (ask me how I know this!). And it seems I'm the only one driving down the road with paper maps these days. How quaint! I've got a great GPS in the helicopter; why not the car too? But as you noted, the new smart phones all have pretty darned good GPS's built right in. My iPhone will have the GPS feature. Two birds, one device.

As for digital music, I cannot remember the last time I bought a CD, and cannot foresee ever buying another. CD's are dead dead dead. Downloading digital music is the way to go. I don't listen to a whole lot of music, but in the car I take my iPod along and play it through the radio.

I would probably like a Kindle or some sort of tablet (probably an iPad). Unfortunately, as I get older, reading becomes more difficult. I would betcha that these tablets all have a feature that allows you to "zoom in" and increase the font size. Oh, how I would love that! You just wait until you get old enough to need reading glasses! Then you'll see (pun intended).

We would never go back to a horse and buggy, of course. Time and technology march inevitably onward. As long as that technology improves my life, I'm all for it. You know...if you had an iPhone4 and I had an iPhone4, I could bring you along in the helicopter and show you what it's like with absolutely zero fear of you getting airsick on me.

Kelly said...

For the most part, I love technology. I'll weigh in with my opinion on each of these points.

1. If you spent time around me, I would greatly annoy you. (and possible convert you...I can be persuasive)

2. Agreed.

3. Agreed. My brother mentioned how fun it would be to have a Twitter account to be able to "tweet" about weather conditions. (yes, we're sometimes fanatical about that topic in our family) I suggested he could just as easily set up a "group" of those who would be interested in his text messaging (see #1 above) and transmit his observations that way.

4. I got my husband a GPS years ago and he uses it as a tool in figuring acreage, etc. I use the one built into my iPhone (not where it talks to me, but where I can follow the blue dot on the screen) and love it!

5. I can't imagine not having my iPod. 'nuf said.

6. I still buy books more often than I should. As much as I love our library, it was lacking the only times I tried finding things. Still....I don't see myself going the Kindle or e-reader route any time soon.

Bob said...

Lest anyone think I am considering joining my Amish brethren 100 south of here . . . I am not necessarily OPPOSED to any of these technological advances; I just haven't engaged with any of them yet. But hey, I once swore I'd never have a cell phone. Call me slow to progress.

Bob B: If you ever migrate your blog over to FB, you must give me plenty of warning. Couldn't imagine my cyber-life without you! :-) Please keep the blog too.

Debby said...

I don't have a smart phone. We have one cell, one that Dylan bought for himself when he was still in HS. (He's 24 now)I use FB, some. Mostly just to make comments on the neice's and nephew's wall so that nobody thinks I died. I tweeted once. It didn't make sense to me. So I never did it again. I just think of it as a giant puddle of trivia waiting to suck the unwary in. GPS? Here, they've just given us all 911 addresses. Well. Okay. It's been like three years ago. But the problem is the GPSs don't have the physical addresses. Just the old addresses. So most things can't be found anyway. Plus, living in the woods, it's not hard to find what you're looking for anyway. I have an IPOD. Can't find it. One of the drawbacks of tiny little gadgents.

Debby said...

Sorry to blab, but here's a funny Amish story. Our friends went over to an Amish guys place to order some tin siding. The guy went upstairs of his shop, came back down with a bunch of papers printed off the internet AND a fax sheet. He said, "If you go on der innernut you can see it yourself." Mary and Danny looked at each other an laughed. They had been out technologied by the Amish. They don't have a computer.

Additional side note: this Amish guy also has a hidden cellphone and an air hammer. He's been pulled in front of his church for having these sorts of things, but he simply repented, and then put a second floor on his shop and locked the stuff up. We figure it's because he has children. If he is shunned, he will never see or speak with his children again. His wife and he fight like cats and dogs. He said once, "If Amish could have divorces, I'd have one of them too."

quid said...

Bob, I only have a small ipod that was handed down from one of my kids. I am getting a free Qwerty phone (no data service, I text all the time) with my reduced fee cell phone package later this month. I'm always one or two steps behind there.

Can't see having a GPS, since I am an impeccable navigator.

I'm in Human Resources, or will be someday again... and I'm fighting off Facebook. Too many people can reach you to try to get a job, and, of course, you have to watch everything you say. That is why my blog is deliberately kept low key. I'm a bing LinkedIn fan.....more professional. I do not own a laptop, just the prehistoric desk model. Just for the record, I still love CD's. I love that grouping of songs that carries out a theme. Tweet schmeet.

Sigh. I love books. I love the smell of them and the feel of them. I daresay, I don't want a Kindle, but I think it will go the way of the cellphone, and at some point, books will become obsolete.

Clearwater High School bought Kindles for all their students this year instead of textbooks.

quid

Pam said...

LOVE my Blackberry and I enjoy Facebook. I have a Twitter account but rarely Tweet. Seldom use my ipod and will never own an electronic reader. I love the feel and smell of real books. Also, I have a great sense of direction and love Mapscos. I have no use for a GPS.

Pencil Writer said...

I'm nearly in the same position as you, Bob. Tweeting seems to me to be such a huge waste of time and energy. And WHY do that? Aren't enough people talking on their mobile phones non-stop already? I do facebook for the same reasons several others said they did. I have family all over the world and I do like to keep up and see pictures and that part is fun.

I use my daughters GPS when were traveling together, but I'm not "into" it so much. I love paper maps, road atlases and mapquest, etc. I like to see several miles down the road and get a feel for where I'm going. The GPS usually is my best friend only when we're lost, but not always. Sometimes hers instructs me to go to places there is no access to drive.

As far as a Kindle goes, since our library here is limited, it might be nice--as long as the device is less cumbersome than hauling around some of the substantial novels I like to read. Still, I love, again as others have mentioned, the feel of a book, etc.

My husband was recently presented with some kind of iPod or iPod-like electronic item that also does videos for his 25 year anniversary of working for the company "prize". I don't think he's used it yet and he's had it 2 or 3 weeks.

I just took up texting on my cellphone recently. Some of my family and friends simply don't check their voice mail and if I need them, I get better results by texting. I wasn't going to go there for the longest time. And then my youngest daughter started sending me photos of that adorable little daughter of hers and I had to relent. It was a financial decision. (Yes, take that to the judge, right?)

An iPad might be lots of fun (expensive fun) but I don't want one unless they have a shatter-proof screen. They are very price-y too esp. if you get all the bells and whistles with wifi or whatever.

Pluses and minuses, I guess. Hang in there, Bob. Keep it simple while you can.

Redlefty said...

My kindle (as a birthday present) is on its way in the mail. I travel a lot for work, love to read, and it just sucks trying to get a bunch of books onto a plane these days. Looking forward to it!

Most of the rest of your list I'm right there with you. :)

Steve H. said...

Bob,

* I have a cheap cell phone and have never sent a text message

* I love FB for the reasons you describe but will probably never be a Twitter guy

* My Amazon Kindle arrives this week. My wife got it as a birthday gift so I'll let you know how it goes.

* I listen to CD's rarely...My Ipod nano is with me on the streets of Hong Kong always.

Les Miserables is the greatest musical ever :)

Hal Johnson said...

1. Smart Phones
2. Facebook
3. Twitter
4. GPS
5. iPod
6. E-readers

Smart-phones: I resisted until about a year and half ago, when I finally allowed myself to be absorbed into the iPhone collective. It was hard to understand why people found them so indispensable before I got one; now I would hate to do without it. But then, it's not just a toy for me. It's also a great workplace tool; it's great to be able to check the weather and file a flight plan without having to find a computer.

Facebook: Similar story. I was invited by a couple of friends to join. I did, and pretty much ignored it for a year. But, when old Army buddies and school chums started surfacing, I was hooked. I probably spend too much time on Facebook, but for a nosy person like me, it's been engaging.

Twitter: I've tried Twitter a bit, but I just don't get it. Especially when I can Facebook on my iPhone. Har.

GPS: I have one that I bought cheap off of Amazon, but I don't use it often. And, like Bob B. mentioned, that function is available on smart phones.

iPod: I have one, but most of the time I use my iPhone to listen to music. Funny thing is, about half of the music I buy is still from CD's; I then import them to my computer and iPhone. I like the liner notes and art, and I still grieve over the demise of nice big vinyl album covers.

E-readers: I've been talking myself out of buying a Kindle for about a year now. But, I travel by airline, and while I'm at work I sometimes fly from one base to another in a helicopter. I'm about to order a Kindle, now that the price is down to $139. It didn't seem worth spending the money for a good while, because, yeah, best sellers were usually ten bucks on Amazon, but you can find lots of used books out there for a third that price or less. But, it's getting more common for writers to release older titles for prices that are competitive with used books, and some writers are releasing titles for e-readers only. Steve Brewer, a writer in my area, just released a thriller titled "Firepower" on Kindle for $2.99, and he tells me that he will make the same money per copy as a hardcover selling for $24.50. I don't think print books will ever go away, but I think e-books are here to say. That said, if you don't want to buy a Kindle or other e-reader, Amazon offers the Kindle program for PC's, Macs, and smartphones free of charge.

But you know what, Bob? All in all, I kind of envy you.

Hal Johnson said...

Smart-phones: I resisted until about a year and half ago, when I finally allowed myself to be absorbed into the iPhone collective. It was hard to understand why people found them so indispensable before I got one; now I would hate to do without it. But then, it's not just a toy for me. It's also a great workplace tool; it's great to be able to check the weather and file a flight plan without having to find a computer.

Facebook: Similar story. I was invited by a couple of friends to join. I did, and pretty much ignored it for a year. But, when old Army buddies and school chums started surfacing, I was hooked. I probably spend too much time on Facebook, but for a nosy person like me, it's been engaging.

Twitter: I've tried Twitter a bit, but I just don't get it. Especially when I can Facebook on my iPhone. Har.

GPS: I have one that I bought cheap off of Amazon, but I don't use it often. And, like Bob B. mentioned, that function is available on smart phones.

iPod: I have one, but most of the time I use my iPhone to listen to music. Funny thing is, about half of the music I buy is still from CD's; I then import them to my computer and iPhone. I like the liner notes and art, and I still grieve over the demise of nice big vinyl album covers.

E-readers: I've been talking myself out of buying a Kindle for about a year now. But, I travel by airline, and while I'm at work I sometimes fly from one base to another in a helicopter. I'm about to order a Kindle, now that the price is down to $139. It didn't seem worth spending the money for a good while, because, yeah, best sellers were usually ten bucks on Amazon, but you can find lots of used books out there for a third that price or less. But, it's getting more common for writers to release older titles for prices that are competitive with used books, and some writers are releasing titles for e-readers only. Steve Brewer, a writer in my area, just released a thriller titled "Firepower" on Kindle for $2.99, and he tells me that he will make the same money per copy as a hardcover selling for $24.50. I don't think print books will ever go away, but I think e-books are here to say. That said, if you don't want to buy a Kindle or other e-reader, Amazon offers the Kindle program for PC's, Macs, and smartphones free of charge.

But you know what, Bob? All in all, I kind of envy you.

Hal Johnson said...

Smart-phones: I resisted until about a year and half ago, when I finally allowed myself to be absorbed into the iPhone collective. It was hard to understand why people found them so indispensable before I got one; now I would hate to do without it. But then, it's not just a toy for me. It's also a great workplace tool; it's great to be able to check the weather and file a flight plan without having to find a computer.

Facebook: Similar story. I was invited by a couple of friends to join. I did, and pretty much ignored it for a year. But, when old Army buddies and school chums started surfacing, I was hooked. I probably spend too much time on Facebook, but for a nosy person like me, it's been engaging.

Twitter: I've tried Twitter a bit, but I just don't get it.

GPS: I have one that I bought cheap off of Amazon, but I don't use it often.

iPod: Would hate to do without it.

E-readers: I've been talking myself out of buying a Kindle for about a year now. But, I'm about to order a Kindle, now that the price is down to $139. It didn't seem worth spending the money for a good while, because, yeah, best sellers were usually ten bucks on Amazon, but you can find lots of used books out there for a third that price or less. But, it's getting more common for writers to release older titles for prices that are competitive with used books, and some writers are releasing titles for e-readers only. Steve Brewer, a writer in my area, just released a thriller titled "Firepower" on Kindle for $2.99, and he tells me that he will make the same money per copy as a hardcover selling for $24.50. I don't think print books will ever go away, but I think e-books are here to stay. That said, if you don't want to buy a Kindle or other e-reader, Amazon offers the Kindle program for PC's, Macs, and smartphones free of charge.