Who Tells the Creators of Technology When to Stop?

I’ll admit it. I’m as guilty as the next person when it comes to being glued to my phone. Yes, I’m distressed when I look around at a group of friends out to dinner and see them all on their phones, but what can I say? I do it too.

What really gets me though is that I know I don’t need it. Somewhere, deep in a drawer, is my old Nokia 3315. Gosh I loved that phone. It did everything I needed it to, and for years I refused to upgrade, until eventually I did, because everyone had, and somehow that created a need.7261754de66a72c34aa64c7e5cb41d26-red-technology-background

Technology changes lives, saves lives and improves lives, but like many things that can be used for good, it can also be just plain bad.

Companies, driven by the desire for money and success, create, improve and reinvent. And like lemmings we lap it up. We pour out our hard earned cash to buy the newest thing, because it’s new.

We don’t need it, but the very fact that everyone buys it creates a need.

There is no accountability; no one who looks at new technology and asks: Will this be truly beneficial for society in the long run? They just create and we consume.

Could we be lining our graves because we follow without thinking, people who are creating without thinking, and there is no one to tell them when enough is enough?

Is it not enough to just see with our eyes?

Fireworks over Water

Last night my church hosted our annual Carols by Candlelight. The event draws thousands of people and culminates with a large fireworks display.

This year the fireworks were spectacular, bursting into a clear sky in front of a full moon. I was standing at the back of the crowd, and wandered along the perimeter of the oval as the sky was lit by the dazzling colours. I must confess, my immediate instinct as they started was to get my camera out to take a photo, but as the thought registered, I looked out across the crowd and saw a sea of people with the glow of mobile phones reached out towards the sky.

Was it not enough just to see with their eyes?

I sometimes wonder how much we miss by being so consumed with capturing every moment. I once heard a story about a well-known musician who was giving a small concert. He announced at the beginning that there were to be no mobile phones, no recordings and no pictures taken; not only that, but this was going to be a one-off performance. The audience, knowing that they had this moment, and this moment only, to enjoy the performance, found themselves mesmerized by the music; engaged on a level that they  otherwise never would have been.

How often do we view the world through the lens of a camera, and never really take the time to really see it with our own eyes?