Friday, October 23, 2009

Tired of Technology

We live in an amazing world. From the comfort of my room, I can connect with people all over the world. Turn on the computer, make sure the internet is working, and I'm on my way.

Technology is very useful. In fact, I can't imagine life without it. Email is particularly wonderful, helping me stay in touch with friends, pass on good articles, get needed info out to my students, and let people know about upcoming auditions or presentations. I use it often, sending anywhere from 4-20 emails and receiving an average of 10 or more per day. What would I do without it?

In the online world I have met many people, through blogs, websites, forums, and social networking sites. Some of these people, like my "twin" and the dear penpal I have yet to meet in person, have become some of my closest friends. Facebook records that I'm, in fact, friends with 234 people - something that shocked me, since I don't spend that much time on there! Yet, am I really that close to most of those people?

Who would I be without all of the thoughts, ideas, and encouragement I have gotten from reading online blog posts, articles, and webzines? I can't imagine... Reading the writings of people from many walks of life with many differing views has shaped who I am. It has caused me to think, challenged my preconceived ideas, and made me thankful for the unique way God has made each of us. Still, it's far too easy to skim through article after article online without actually applying them to my life.

We live in a technological age. A TV or two takes residence in nearly every house, there's always something new for music, it's now assumed that you have a cell phone (or something even fancier), and new gadgets are continually coming out. It's ironic that I'm posting these musings on a blog, for people around the world to read.

But I must admit, I'm a bit old-fashioned when it comes to technology. It takes a while for me to try something new. With things continually changing, I want to be sure it will actually stay around before I get connected to it. Plus, with the money many new things cost and the time it takes to learn how to operate them, often I just prefer using what I had before.

However, new advances aren't bad. Technology can be very useful, and I am very thankful for it! I rarely watch TV, but an occasional good movie is a fun way to relax. I've stubbornly refused to get an ipod after all of the money I've put into CDs and the fact that I find it easier to use CD players, but I can see the benefit of the other technology. Our family got cell phones a year and a half ago, and it has been wonderful to be able to call family for free, as well as friends when you want to talk for a while. When I'm out and about, it's helpful to be able to call home. Yet, I keep it plugged in in my room when I'm home, and I'm kind of glad that the reception down in our valley isn't that great, for it keeps me from using it a lot.

I use computer technology the most, and I'm very grateful for all of the good programs my brother has set me up with. However, it takes me longer to join each new site that comes around. My brother often talks about something for months before I'll finally try it out. Firefox, Gmail, Blogger, Facebook, Picasa, and now even Delicious I enjoy using, thanks to Elijah's persistence and patience. =) Though I appreciate the convenience of a laptop, when I got a computer, I opted for a regular desktop... I didn't want the temptation of carrying my computer even outside with me! But, for the future, I can see it's benefits...

Technology is amazingly wonderful, and it's a tool that can be very effective, in it's proper place. Yet, it's so readily available and so easily makes time seem to disappear, that I get tired of it. It doesn't help that the computer screen often seems to give me headaches.

I enjoy the emails, comments, e-cards, and writings on my "wall." Yet, there's still something about a personal letter showing up in the mailbox. I don't like the fact that all of the writing I do on the computer makes me tired of writing by the time I could sit down with a pen in hand. Letters to friends and my journal have suffered.

Staying in contact with friends and family all over the world through Facebook has wonderful benefits. Although I in no way keep up with the 234 people I'm "friends" with, I have been able to stay up-to-date with friends that I probably otherwise wouldn't. But there's something wrong when I have very little time to just be with friends that live close by. Why does it take weeks for us to actually arrange times to get togehter? Why is it "easier" to just stay connected through the internet, when you only live 15 minutes apart?

I am so thankful for the things I am able to read online. Yet, I dislike the fact that I read less books and magazines these days. In an online world everything is constantly changing; when I hold printed words in my hand, I am more likely to read it carefully and take it seriously.

Much of what I do involves the computer these days. Researching things for musicals, browsing for new music for dance, looking up dance costumes and the price of lighting equipment, making charts and forms... It would be so much harder to do this without the computer! Yet, I enjoy each Sunday when I take a break from the screen and don't turn the computer on at all. It's so refereshing to feel like I have time to play games with family, read, or enjoy friends, without feeling like I have stuff to catch up with online.

Recorded music is wonderfully uplifting, and very powerful. Yet, there's still nothing I enjoy quite so much as peaceful quiet. A walk along our road, drinking in God's beautiful creation and the stillness is one of my favorite, most refreshing things.

Am I antagonistic to technology? No. I am just trying to find ways to use it less, so that I can live real life more.


Ella said...

I know how thankful I am for enables me to keep in touch with my dearest friends in the world!

My family isn't entirely technologically advanced. My Mom and I do use MP3 players, which I love as opposed to messing with CDs. And we do have DirecTV....but we aren't in any of those "social networking" sites....though I do see the good in those.

However, I always try to make sure that technology doesn't over rule my life. Sometimes, you have to turn it off!

~Miss Zara~ said...

I argee with you Ella,I love keeping in touch with my friends aswell all over the world.I don't go on it too much either.

Miss Emily said...

I agree, technology is a wonderful thing but I recently realized it was taking so much of my time! Hours would go by without any warning. I'm glad there's a facebook, or else it'd be harder to keep in touch with many people, although a phone call or letter is so much nicer than a comment on my "wall". I'm thankful for blogs and such because I too have learned so much and have been challeged by some blogs that I read, including Maidens of Worth, so thank you!!

Mrs. Hart said...

Such perception and maturity from one so young. Such wisdom.

I think I agree with everything you wrote. Probably even moreso. My 50+ years give me a perspective that even you can't see (though you come pretty close ).

Sometimes, I too long for the simplicity and slower pace of life before technology...

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. I love technology but there are times that wish I could live a simpler lifestyle-like the Amish do. Technology is a wonderful tool & has it's place but it should never be abused. Be blessed. :)

Kaomi said...

I so agree with everything you said. I love technology, but not all the time. Simple life is good, at least some of the time. Sometimes I just have to turn my computer off for a week and remind myself of what is really important.

Rosa said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Elijah Lofgren said...

Thanks for this post. (I'm way behind on blog reading).

I also get tired of technology. I don't check email often enough for many people who often carry little laptops around where they can check it almost all the time.

By the way: The comment by "Rosa" seems like spam.