Monday, August 27, 2012

Trend in Dependance

I saw a TV spot this weekend for a product that allows you to unlock your front door via your smart phone. Looked good! I immediately thought that it would allow you lock your door if you run out and forgot. Or if your babysitter just got back from an ice cream run with your kids and you want to be sure he locked the door when they got home.  Or if your newly driving teen forgets a house key and you are in a restaurant 20 minutes away you can let her in and scold her later.

 Now that is what technology is supposed to do - convenience, peace of mind and more.

They touted the ability to unlock the door from the car to avoid fumbling with keys when your arms are full of groceries. Or not having to leave A key with the neighbors when you are on vacation. This is good stuff.

But then I got to thinking about what would happen when you lose your phone. Or lose wireless coverage. What do you do when you are so happy with technology that you do not even carry a house key any more? If the technology has a glitch you are sunk.

This is the reason I am not giving up my land line phone to go 100% cellular. And I am not storing everything I have in the cloud.I won't even get a Kindle because you cannot toss it in the bottom of your beach bag and assume it will survive the trip undented and unbroken.

Our lives are moving towards smart phones having a role in everything and even if you take away my personal geezer factor I still see the risk of real problems should all of these elaborate and usually reliable systems break down.

My son did not know how to use a fax machine but he can command the web masterfully from his phone. My daughter used to send texts (before she could drive) to say "pick me up in 10- minutes."  She was lucky if I even looked at my phone (non-smart) every hour when I was sitting in my living room.

Technology is great and I do embrace it when it makes my life easier. But I also am leery enough to reject it when I see it making me a slave. 

There will always be a place for the good old ways. Not all of them, of course, but most of them are not ready to go away just yet.

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