I like to think of myself, certainly in terms of being a Person of a Certain Age, as pretty conversant with the high tech culture. I was an early adapter of computers, way back in the day when you need to be able open the box and plug boards in or move things around to make them functional because it was all about hardware then; back then. In those days, we used landline modems on what was then the World Wide Web and sat around and waited and waited while stuff downloaded. Offline readers were magical and if you couldn’t understand or, better yet, write HTML code, you were flaying around in the dark.

Those were the days…

In recent years, though, I’ve fallen behind. I cling to this ancient idea that websites such as this one ought to be the way a person who cares to establish a presence on the Internet goes about it and that sites like Facebook and Google+ and Twitter, which are based upon constant, lack-of-any-context postings. make a mockery of human interaction. I don’t have, and don’t especially want, a true Smart Phone; I don’t have, and don’t especially want, an iPad.

I can see real value in those things, but when I see every day that the vast majority of the content they make possible consists of “checking in” (i.e., “hey, look where I am now”); images of no real value (“here’s a photo of my dinner” and/or “here’s the sign at the gas station where I just filled up cheaply, suck it”), and a whole range of information about the user’s current state for which I have little–nay, not a smidgeon of–interest. There is clearly real value in having instruments which make constant connection to the internet available (searches, maps, directions, all sorts of support systems, not to mention–although I personally abhor–texting), but the overall impact of them is more information that I, or anyone, really wants to know, even if they don’t realize it.

In the end, though, it comes down to raging against the darkness or coming to grips with it, and I’ve been slowly embracing option two. I’ll be writing more about that this coming week and here’s a clue…

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