So I’ve just had Spotify explained to me on the school run – I am, of course, none the wiser although I think I could probably bluff on the subject for about 30 seconds. I thought I was keeping up quite well, I was giving myself an inner pat on the back when my “teacher” mentioned “streaming” and lost me…
I am finding this is happening increasingly – getting “lost” that is. I like to think I am fairly up with technology but only yesterday I had to follow the “idiot” instructions from the “Apple automated voice” to find something as simple as the serial number on my non-functioning computer. I then had to follow somewhat complicated instructions from the “Apple human” in order to restore function to my computer and throughout this somewhat painful 30 minute experience, I was fully aware that he was speaking to me much as I speak to my 3 year old daughter. Speaking slowly and in words rarely above 2 syllables, he talked me through the rebooting of my computer and I wanted to scream…I really wanted to scream….I am NOT STUPID, I am just not 16 any more, that’s all! So I don’t really know what bytes are, what “streaming” is or what the finer points of the differences between iTunes and Spotify are but I do know lots of other things that I’m sure the “Apple human” doesn’t. Ok, so Latin and Ancient Greek may not be one of the most modern, progressive or even vocational degrees but I am not bad with roots of words and crosswords – so there, computer geeks!
I know that technology is a wonderful, wonderful thing and it has changed our world immeasurably and mainly for the good but I do sometimes wistfully wish that we could go back to the simpler times of my childhood. A time when there was one BBC computer for the whole school (a large unwieldy machine treated with respect and awe by all); a time when we (illegally) taped songs from the top 40 on a Sunday evening to play on our tape recorders or walkmans; a time when we phoned our friends to ask things rather than text/email them; a time when there was only 3 TV channels and everyone watched “The Generation Game” on a Saturday evening; a time when going on holiday involved sitting on those high chairs at the “Thomas Cook” counter, flicking through holiday brochures and deciding on a holiday based on a couple of grainy photographs and a basic weather chart.
I am not whinging about how life has moved on – I am as addicted to my iPhone, iMac and iPad as much as the next person – look, here I am blogging for heaven’s sake – but in a rare moment of seriousness for me, I do worry that the next generation – my kids – are so technology-saavy, so attached to this device or that device, that they sometimes forget just to be humans, talk to each other and have a laugh together. On that note, I am going to stop being the ultimate hypocrite, using technology, to criticise over-use of technology and get back to what I do best – procrastination!