Thursday, June 10, 2010

He Said She Said: Techonolgy

All I asked of the contributors is that they take one side of the issue and tell us why they believe that! Comment and tell us who you agree with or what you believe or think! The topics are suppose to elicit a response and start a conversation in comments. Enjoy!

Topic: Technology--Good or Not Good.

HE Said: Daddy Geek Boy

It’s a great time to be a geek. Technology is amazingly cool right now. Seriously, most of us are walking around with small computers in our pockets. In our pockets!!! Our phones not only make calls, but we can play games, surf the internet, carry around our entire music collections, and—thanks to the new iPhone—even edit our home movies. As long as I have my Blackberry* I am never bored.

I get bored really easily. I always have. As a kid, I would carry around a copy of the latest Mad magazine with me wherever I went in case life got dull. And for anyone who’s ever been dragged to the mall while their mom shops for clothes (as I was many a time) you can admit that there indeed were dull times. I remember sitting around listlessly waiting for her or my sister to emerge from the changing room so we could either get to the food court or head home. Armed with a smartphone, those outings would have been tolerable at the very least.

But it’s not only about passing the time, technology is about being connected. Facebook and Twitter allow us to keep in touch with friends around the world. Apps like Pandora lets us explore new music. Always having access to my work email actually allows for a greater degree of freedom, because I do not have to be tied to the office in order to be productive. Then there are games. Growing up it was hard to imagine heights greater than the black on green graphics of Tetris for Gameboy. But have you checked out PSP or DS? Excuse me while I try to revive the 12 year old version of me that passed out.

And it all just keeps getting better.

My kids are going to have an even richer experience with technology than I do. Someday they will look at the iPad the way we look at an Atari 2600 now. I want to encourage their love of tech and gadgets. I want them to be state of the art and understand how to use technology. So I will provide them with what I can, the gadgets, the knowledge and the fun that goes along with electronics. They need to know how to use technology to enrich their lives. After all, their dad’s a big geek. They should be too.

*Being a proud Mac user, you’d think I’d have an iPhone. But my dissatisfaction with AT&T overrides by being a card carrying member of the Apple cult.

She Said: Shelle

I'm going to start this off really well by saying I am a total geek when it comes to technology. I love it. In some cases I'd say just as much as Daddy Geek Boy and for almost the same reasons. I admit that I am very thankful that I was born in an era where I can drive a few hours and entertain my kids with Nintendo Ds's or a DVD player or My Phone or My Ipod. (I also would have an iPhone if it wasn't for AT & T hoarding all the rights to it). I am CONSTANTLY connected. For my work both personal and the one I have to clock into. I blog, tweet, facebook, etc...

That being said. I feel there is a big problem with it.

I know, I know, you are saying, "But Shelle, you just explained how much you are tapped into technology, and from this perspective, it doesn't seem like you have a chance of a debate here."

Hear me out is all I ask.

I feel technology is upsetting the basic family unit and the time given to it. The personal connection is gone. Some are even neglecting family in order to connect to their virtual outlets such as facebook, twitter, blogging, Fantasy (enter sport here), etc, meaning that a bigger percentage of their time meant to be spent with family is being spent on their virtual "family" instead.

Kids and their texting. My nephew's girlfriend told him she loved him for the first time via TEXT!? What the heck is that all about? I told him to drop her and quick. That should be said at least to their face. Texting keeps you from having to deal with physical reaction. Can't fulfill a responsibility? Just text the person you're letting down, no harm done for you because you can't feel the guilt coming off of them as their face falls from the news that you are neglecting your responsibility. Do you get what I mean?

Another example, I was at a restaurant the other day, I am a self proclaimed people watcher, I looked over and observed a family of 5, three boys and a Mom and Dad. Dad was on his iPhone (I was totally envious) and three boys were all playing their very own DS's while Mom was scanning the menu. This continued until their waiter came, at which point the Dad looked up and ordered, and then the Mom ordered for her and her three boys who still were zoned in on their games. Nothing was said to one another, no connection other than their virtual entertainment.

I can speak from personal experience. When I began blogging I started to notice that my laundry pile was higher than it should have been, the vacuuming was left undone a lot of the time, and bathrooms were being reported by HAZMAT. My husband soon became bitter towards blogging because all he heard was "I'm coming just need to read this last blog and comment" or "yes I'm on the computer AGAIN". I also still have a bad habit of checking my phone and needing it wherever I go. Right in the middle of a conversation I have been known to pull my phone out and check it for an email or a twitter/facebook reply. I realize it's rude, I just can't seem to stop myself from doing it. That one was a very hard habit to break, I still sometimes relapse.

I think kids also feel that they need constant stimuli from technology because it is everywhere. I refuse to let my kids take or play with any electronics when we are at the park or eating at the dinner table. We talk and interact with real human beings at night when we sit down to eat our one meal that we do eat together. When we go to the park or zoo or any outing, they have to soak it in whether they are bored or not.

I guess it's the abuse of technology that I find most disturbing. The urgency and panic if one is disconnected for even an few minutes. The what ifs? What if I miss a work email? What if I get behind in my blog reading? What if I miss a reply? It's overwhelming and adds to our daily stress. I mean think about it?

So families suffer... we suffer... so technology can also be a bad thing and I think if you are involved with the virtual world, then you at one point or another have experienced the bad technology ensues in our lives.


Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Ummmmm I guess I'm really long winded at midnight! Sorry, hope you get through it, if not, at least DGB's-he needs all the help he can get! Heh. :)

TisforTonya said...

one more "geek" checking in... seriously, I actually KNEW what they were talking about when they mentioned the original BBS system at the blogging conference - I DID that.

of course, finding a healthy balance between my blogging/work/family has been a challenge. I *think* I've finally achieved that... but maybe I'm only saying that because I power cleaned my house yesterday and am sitting her blogging in the middle of my clean living room. ask me again tomorrow after the girls have brought out all of their Little Pet Shop messes.

DCHY said...

I was one of the first to get Pong. Yes. I am THAT old. I am connected for two reasons - my deafness doesn't allow me to easily talk to people and I am on several committees/groups/clubs. I have been athletic director, project manager, overseeing manager, chairperson, secretary, treasurer, vice president, and president. Sometimes I will leave my pager behind on a certain day so I don't have to deal with the panic button. ;)

Gucci Mama said...

I actually agree with both of you. How's that for awesome?

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

T- I knew there was something lying underneath that bonded us! Sigh. Finding balance is key, but I think it's impossible to be honest. Your either up on your internet stuff or your up on your personal in real life stuff-- one or the other receives the majority of your time.

Imho! :)

DCHY- wow you're a busy guy! Technology is really good for all you named, but at least you understand to unplug every once in a while. I have realized lately that leaving my phone on silent and away from me has been refreshing.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Gucci Mama- I feel blessed now, thank you :)

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Hey the other part of my comment disappeared! WTHelk?

Gucci Mama- the rest of that was suppose to say, "I have seen what you can do to someone that doesn't agree with you and frankly, it scares me, so I'd rather stay on your side."

Gucci Mama said...

Shelle - Ha! My side is really the only place to be, Love.

kyooty said...

I just had to tell my mom how to write her email address? I can't imagine what my kids are going to teach me? My MIL told me once that when my hubbie first asked for a computer, she had a vision of a BIG room with a huge computer in it. I'm very glad that Commodore came along, and so was she, and now Geekness? pays the bills! We do not though have Cellphones, or Cable TV? so there is some simplicity. I am only Geek through association, my kids know how to do more then I do.

kyooty said...

Oh and Linux is better... I forget how to use the other stuffs.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

GM- hey! I'm not arguing with that! Whatever you say goes. *hands up, slowly backs away* ;)

I also need you to know that I don't talk about my feet problems with other people in the grocery store--so trashy. I have, though, been known to swap public bathroom stories--much classier.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Kyooty!!! No cell phones!? Or cable television!? You must live in a glorified cave...

And then you throw out linux (which I've never given a good try!)

Your a selective geek :) that's cool with me!

DGB said...

Shelle...of course everything in moderation. And we need to make sure tech enhances our lives and doesn't interfere. But the world is a much better place with iPads, doncha think?

Speaking of Pong...anyone remember the Odyssey video game system? <----Had it.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

DGB- sure you hit on my new obsession! Hittin below the belt.

I don't see a possibility with moderation... That's my thing-- it seems one over takes the other no matter what.

I want someone to write a post about how they moderate technology, work, and family together successfully-giving time to each equally! :)

Okay-have NO idea about the Odyssey thingy...

DGB said...

I will probably write that post at some point.

And're too young to know the Odyssey.

Anjeny said...

You both have a very good points. Moderation and I don't go hand in hand...that is my BIGGEST challenge. I tend to either go overboard one way or the other way.

My hub is tech geek and with his line of work, I get to benefit from all the new samples of new tech equipment that he had to test out. And that's where my problem lies...I find these different gadgets sooooo amazing that I lost myself in them.

When online chatting first came out, I was hooked on it so badly that I would literally go crazy if the power went out or the net got disconnected. I was starting to do that with blogging so that is one of the reason I'm not blogging as much. I do tend to neglect everything else for the virtual world.

So, I agree with both of you...there are great benefits to technology and at the same time, there are disadvantages too.

heelsnstocking said...

we have a good balance in the house, both kids are very active so never get a chnace to sit and abuse the gaming stuff or tv's etc. I ahvent had time to sit and watch TV since last AUG properly, i get a couple of tv shows in a week if im lucky! I tend to blog whne im on hold lol its a goog use of time that is normally wasted on elevator music or greensleaves!!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

DGB-I triple DOG dare you to write! i just don't believe it's possible without giving up on one of those three things... or giving less.

Anjeny--I'm the same way with new gadgets. I want to just sit and play with them. Sometimes it takes me longer to moderate them, depends on the gadget and how obsessed and reliant I have become on it.

Heels--that's cool. Will you teach a class on that? heh.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Correction DGB that is suppose to WRITE IT... not just WRITE. Because... duh... you already write! hehe.

DGB said...

Shelle...You've just given me my next Venus v. Mars assignment!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Perfect. And it will have to be good because I've made up my mind that I can't be convinced :)