Sunday, September 09, 2007

On technology.

There is a pious note in taking a sober and pragmatic approach to digital goods, rather than getting wrapped up in the romantic lie of gadget-lust. Conveniences help us to extend the productivity and scope of our Christian lives; gimmicks play on fantasies of a private "realized-eschatology" of unlimited whatever (unlimited information, unlimited usefulness, unlimited portability) and prey upon the vulnerable human longing for the infinite.

At bottom, the distinction between conveniences and gimmicks has three criteria: (1) does it waste more time than it saves? (2) does it attract unwanted attention? and (3) does it fail to do the job better than common alternatives? When it came to Pocket PCs, nearly all of their advertised functionality would have earned a "yes" from one or more of the above questions (except for word-processing, and music playing). If I had had the perspective then that I do now, I would have saved thousands of dollars, and purchased a more practical solution.

1 comment:

Suzanna said...

To use a cliche: "Hindsight is twenty-twenty."