Wednesday, July 5, 2017

In Awe Of Technology

Let me start out this post by advising you that this is going to be one whose theme can be summed up with the "old man" phrase, "They didn't have that back in my day." 

Technology has become a dominant force in life in the early 21st century. It seems that everyone and everything, one way or another is connected to the internet. It is in such excess that most of the people you know could easily be described as being "addicted" to some electronic device or social media.  

As a "babyboomer" whose life has been concurrent with the technology boom that makes the world what it is today, from time to time I find myself taking a step back. 

Why? To recognize and appreciate the degree of technological progress that happened in my lifetime. But it's something millennials and Generation Z take for granted. Here's something that happened last week that sparked that got me thinking. 

Let me take you back 40 years to a typical summer night in the life of 15 year old me. I'm an avid New York Yankees fan. I'm in bed for the night but not anywhere close to going to sleep. I'm focused on trying to listen to the portable AM/FM radio about the size of a lunch box sitting up against the wall by my bed next to my pillow. It is tuned into 770AM. That's WABC in New York; the flagship station for the Yankees baseball games. Although I'm only 2 hours away from NYC, the voice of either, Phil Rissuto, Frank Messer, or Bill White fades in and out and at times, requires concentration to hear. But other than a game or two that's on television each week, this is the only way I can follow my team in real time. 

Now, fast forward to last week. The Yankees were in the middle of a west coast road trip and were playing the A's in Oakland. The game started at 9:30 central time. I was tired and didn't want to stay up and watch it on TV. Once I was safely tucked in for the night I signed on to the Sirius XM moble app so I could listen to it on my phone. 

So there I was in the same situation 4 decades later. But it wasn't signal from the clear channel radio station that was giving me access to the broadcast, it was the internet. 

Not only does technology allow me to access to a variety of streaming platforms on my phone it turns my car radio into a conduit for personalized entertainment. 

For me it's a combination of music, talk shows, comedy, and sports on XM radio, music or podcasts on my I-Pod Classic or audio books through my phone's Amazon Audible app. 

The other aspect of technology that has become routine for the masses that amazes me is something, that along with flying cars. (where are they anyway?) has always been an innovation just over the horizon. Here's a picture of where I first saw this technology in use. 
Video phone technology was considered part of the future by way of science fiction as early as the 1950s. It was considered an optimistic certainty when I was a little kid.

Nowadays we get a video call, aka Face Time, from my granddaughter at least once a week. She talks with us for a while and then proceeds to show us what she's doing, my grandson, her latest toy, or what's going on at her house. 

I'm sorry but the fact that video calls are a reality just amazes me. 

The fact that I can put the videos I shoot on my phone on You Tube and anyone who wants to can see them is absolutely astounding. 

I know these things aren't even the cutting edge of technology any more. It's like being fascinated by a microwave oven back in the 70s. But that doesn't mean they aren't amazing achievements.  

I'm sure if you are around my age or older you can understand what I mean when I write about these things with this type of appreciation. 

If you are millennial you grew up with some technology but nothing like we have today. 

Generation Z, those who are just now reaching their 20s have always had technology as part of their lives. But even in their electronic world things have advanced extremely quickly. 

I maybe easily impressed but I can't help look around at the way some of the everyday things in our lives have changed and wonder "how did we get here?". 

What aspect of this technological age we live in amazes, fascinates, or impresses you? What can't you believe you can do every time you do it? I'd like to know. Let me know by way of Facebook. You can leave a comment or send me a friend request through this link. Havens  

That's gonna about do it for my little dissertation about how I'm awed by technology. 

And yes, I do realize the irony of writing this post and not mentioning the ability to blog as part of technology. 

Thanks for coming by to read my blog. See you next time, everybody. 

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