With the working week I’ve just had I’m reminded of a quote that has stayed in my mind from years gone by. “Life itself is very simple; it is us that choose to complicate it.”
I think this is so true. Brought home to me by so many things, but recently by reading about how so many banks and businesses are constantly sustaining denial of service attacks on their networks. Another link was because a program about a guy who sold everything and who bought a remote island and now lives there with his girlfriend. She came out for a holiday and has now given up her life too to be with him. The admiration I have of him leaving the rat race and technology behind is somewhat tainted by the notion that pretty much all of it has stemmed from using technology.
Back to the network attacks on banks and businesses, this problem is only going to get more prevalent and be more successful in the future I think. We have sought to make our lives easier and by doing such, we have actually made them far more complex than they need to be.
With each increment of change, with each technical advance we limit our own imagination on a wider scale, to a more intrinsic level, and we only increase our dependability on something so fragile, and that can be so technically advanced in so many ways, whole systems can be brought down by the submission or subtraction of a . or a /. Did you see them all?
Recently, even a very prominent bank announced that it had an outage of service not because of an attack on its network but caused by “The complexity of the banks own internal systems.”
I know technology allows us to do so much, but we are becoming far too dependent on it and it is being ‘deployed’ into places and applications where it is not needed. It’s involvement superfluous, it’s operation only known when some sensor for something that doesn’t need a sensor sends out a spurious error that no one understands for something that is still working. Some automobile manufactures sell their cars on whether it has hot spot wireless technology. It’s purpose and technical ability as a car almost going unrecognized. The physical tactile craftsmanship of instrument binnacles with bezels and dials. Replaced by a heads up display of a “virtual cockpit environment.” I would think to myself, this isn’t a virtual environment; I am here, aren’t I? Driver-less cars unveiled in London this week signals the dawning of yet another new development.
Parents wait at the gates of schools for their children, head down stuck into their phone. Their children then come home and ‘plug’ themselves into mobile devices.
I know technology can allow us freedom, I know it allows us to create, and do things generations before couldn’t even dream of. But it is coming at a price, a huge cost, and we are yet to see it.
Companies spending time and millions developing apps and games and systems that stretch boundaries but that can limit our own.
Children and adults whose world would descend into misery if they can’t connect to wi-fi or if their battery dies. Social events that are brilliant and engaging, overshadowed by the flashing light of a new text message, voicemail, or email.
Every computer, every application, has a limitation. The algorithms and anomalies that make it function can be incredibly complex. Partly because it has to interact with so many other variables within its platform.
Can you try something? If you have children, try drawing or painting with them or writing, using a pen, or a pencil, and paints. Imagination limited only by the size of the paper. Would you dare try taking that ‘mobile device’ away?
I’ve just seen an article online from The New Yorker dedicating its time to the demise of Twitter. According to the author, something Twitter used to be was “essential” apparently. However have I survived by not being part of it?
Another thing that ‘bugs’ me is the adverts telling us that we need a smart phone for everything. Pretty soon, I think we are all in danger of a need to be sold apps that tell us how to breathe. And what happens if they go wrong?
Mark Scotchford © 29/01/2016