I’m not a fan of (most) single-purpose technology. It perturbs me that most cameras can’t immediately tweet photos. I don’t like alarm clocks that can’t connect to my music library. I’ve even had difficulty adopting the immensely innovative Livescribe technology because I just don’t get why it won’t make me a double shot Americano.
Hence, my love for contemporary mobile technology. I was basically waiting for the iPhone since exiting my mother’s womb. I won’t deny that it is the realistion of a childish, sci-fi dream. It’s nerd heaven in my pocket.
The rise of the multi-purpose, however, simultaneously reminds us of the value of the single. Take coffee, for instance. The more a coffee making device can do, the crappier it is, period. Coffee don’t like digital.
Or what about bicycles? Could they be made to do all manner of digital tasks, much like our ridiculously multi-tasking cars tackle? Yes. Do we care? No.
My wife and I were observing our iPad-loving 4 year-old (pictured above) today, and were admittedly surprised as he simultaneously seems to be developing a passion for books. We’ve bought book apps and created homemade eBooks, but never saw the equivalent of what we see when he grabs a book and sits on the couch.
Maybe it’s because he can’t change his mind, click a home button, and kill some green pigs with antagonized, egg-laying vertebrates. Perhaps it’s because he can’t press words and make them do things only a hip-hop DJ should do. I don’t know what it is, but, I’m telling you, it’s different.
The level of focus is different. The breadth and depth with which he reads is incomparable. The time of reading is contradistinct. His eyes and posture look different when he’s reading from a paper based book.
Books are special, still.
Have you noticed something similar or different?
I’ve started it. Now join my meme! Write about an amazing piece of analogue technology that you use professionally, personally, or both. Why is it so awesome? Why can’t it seem to be replaced by a digital counterpart? Tweet it out with the #analoguerocks hashtag!