The Technological Era
We make a lot of assumptions about life, and about progress. Many of them are due simply to the fact that we’ve never lived at any other time. All we know is what we’ve lived, and what we’ve read, and really, there’s not much hope of objectively – or even fairly – comparing the two. But I usually make it a point to try.
I was skimming through CollideMagazine.com and a fragment of a sentence sent my mind whirring: “As technology becomes increasingly pervasive…”
Is this the Age of Technology?
Is technology really becoming “increasingly pervasive”? It sure seems that way to us. Take a look at any middle class college student or urban professional and you can practically see the microwaves and satellite signals radiating from them. It’s a rare day when I don’t literally have the entire internet in my pocket, and my personal files in my bag. I usually have my Rebel XT on me as well. Even my 2-year-old has a (fake) cell-phone. It beeps and everything.
But has there been more of a technological invasion in recent years than in past eras? I don’t really think so. In fact, to think that technology has only recently become pervasive is to put a startlingly strict definition on the term technology.
Do you have a Moleskine on you? That’s stuffed full of tech advances: paper, glue, bonded leather, cardboard, twine. And those little books have been around for centuries (according to the packaging). And of course you need a pen. It’s probably made of plastic and a relatively novel type of ink, but the whole concept of a pen had to have been invented some time. What about your shirt? Is it hand-stitched? If not, then technology made it. Of course, even hand-stitching has the benefits of the needle, thread, and the loom that made the fabric, so…
You get my point. We have this habit of framing issues in such a way that it seems like no people or events came before us. We are the beginning of all things. Maybe if we spent more time acknowledging the facts – for example, that the advances of massive companies like Microsoft and Apple are often miniscule compared to the advances brought about by individuals like Tesla and Edison – we might find it easier to get rid of the arrogance that washes over everything we do.