These are NOT my words but all long time members of this forum should recognise the Author and perhaps see a little Irony.
by gabriel murphy
Let’s face it: the high-tech world is high-maintenance.
Remember when a server was someone who waited on you in the restaurant? Today, it is the server’s fault your e-mail is not retrievable. Mention the word server today and it is likely to be interpreted as the computer, not a person.
Five years ago high-tech maintenance was somewhat limited to these servers. We understood them to be the backbone of the Internet. These computer terminals would often act like my 2-year-old—they’d act up for no reason whatsoever.
Now we have the proliferation of cellular phones, Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), and routers that are invading our homes. Cassette players are being replaced by MP3 players, and pagers have been replaced with wireless messaging devices so we can send an e-mail while we wait for the traffic light to change.
The “killer application” of e-mail has made it quick and simple to connect with someone or a group of people, and Instant Messaging (IM) technology provides immediate delivery if your receiver is on-line at the same time. If he/she is not, the technology will forward to his/her cellular phone or PDA.
Today, your server usually isn’t the problem—it’s your connection. The Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) will deliver the internet to you at ridiculous rates of speed via the traditional dial-up modem. This has created significant problems for the telecoms because it thrusts a flawed technology to market. Remember ION?
Your future, “smart homes” will have networked refrigerators, stoves, and showers. All the things you rely on within your home will be networked. You will control them via the web, PDA, or cellular telephone. You might turn on your shower as you finish your morning jog, or program your shower, refrigerator, and stove to be turned off from a remote location.
The Problem of Unsolicited E-mail, Pop-up Ads, and Wireless Messages
Unsolicited e-mail has a new challenger today—pop-up advertisements. Programs like Gator and others have surreptitiously found their way onto our personal computers. As we surf the web, these software applications will generate a pop-up window behind our web browser. These pop-up ads market everything from DVDs to software, weight loss pills to adult content—all of which lend to our frustration.
Spammers—those who send out unsolicited messages in bulk, have gone beyond e-mail to harass us with instant messaging software, such as ICQ or AOL Instant Messenger. Soon they’ll do so with the same frequency on our PDAs.
Perhaps I’m being extreme—but I adamantly believe that the problem of unsolicited messaging via pop-ups, e-mail, and wireless devices poses a major threat not to the advancement of technology, but to the future adoption of it. Unless this problem is addressed, consumer sentiment for technology will quickly erode. The market demands technology that fixes this problem.
Don’t Let Technology Take Over Your Life
The proliferation of wireless devices, or instant communication and always “on-line” can have an adverse impact on your social and family life. Much research has been conducted around the premise of technology taking over our lives. Two simple rules I use to ensure that technology doesn’t take over my life is to not take my cellular phone to the dinner table and family events, and to limit the technology I use based on the frequency of spam and the people that know how to get a hold of me. For example, my cellular telephone does not receive unsolicited messages, and only those that really need to find me right away know my number. In my experience, 99% of things that people would like to talk to me about in real-time can wait. I refuse to turn into a person who wears a headpiece connected to my cell phone while eating lunch. Instant messaging is out, and a private e-mail address filters spam and ensures that spammers cannot obtain my e-mail address.
This is what works for me, and I suggest for the sake of your productivity, family, and your sanity, that you adopt a similar technology-limitation plan as well.
Gabriel Murphy is the founder and President of CommuniTech.Net. He might be reached at 1.800.WebHost.