I admit it: I don’t have a smart phone.
I do have a cell phone (well, I guess it counts as that. It’s shared among 4 family members, and is pretty much for emergency use only, although even that is doubtful: probably half the time when I’ve tried to use it, I get the message “no service.” And I recall it ringing exactly once — while I was playing for a student’s solo at ISSMA contest. Sigh.).
I would have to call my phone more of a “dumb phone.” It doesn’t have apps. It can’t text. Well, maybe it can. But I have sent perhaps 3 texts in my life, and it amazes me that people can communicate in this way. Heck, I can play a mean Beethoven Sonata on the piano, and yet my fingers are apparently too clumsy to type texts on this phone.
I do realize that I am fairly alone in my non-smartphone-ness.
Because, whenever I’m out in public and look around, and it seems that everyone is looking down at a device in their hands.
This is a phenomena of the past five years, and I find it fascinating. My non-ownership of one of these bits of technology has transformed me into the fly on the wall I’d often longed to be.
I wonder: what is so interesting on these little screens?
I can’t claim total innocence here, because at home I do spend a large amount of time on my desktop computer. I do sometimes think I should step away from the computer to interact with other family members. But guess what? They’re usually involved on their own technology.
When I’m away from home — I am pretty much unplugged. But many others aren’t. Whether I’m driving, in the grocery store, at a concert, even at church — people everywhere are engaged with their phones. I recently visited a college class with my daughter, and so many of the kids were on their phones during the lecture. I had to cringe while considering how difficult it must be to hold peoples’ attention while competing with the entire internet and all the incoming texts.
And this video made me think about the topic even more. What might we be missing in our real lives because we can’t look away from the little screen? Or maybe the little screen has become
What do you think? Are you tied to your smartphone? Any other dinosaurs out there like me?