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Image by DanTheMan1000 via Flickr

I was thinking the other day about technology, generally speaking, and what it means to us. What do we simply take for granted and does it make us a happier society? Or a sad, detached, uncaring one?

I mentioned yesterday that I have a very sick family member. I was sitting in his hospital room the other day looking at all the wires, machines, and computers helping keep him comfortable. Technology is helping him without a doubt. Technology and medicine seem to work very well together. “Advances in medicine”… People living longer, getting better faster, and perhaps illness being detected early. A good thing.

But technology as a word can mean so many things. I almost always think of it as the latest and greatest gadget, operating system, application, cloud based web app, etc…In this way, technology gets a lot of flack. It can be very distracting.

My parents rarely use their computer. Their parents may have never even seen a modern computer let alone know what to use it for…So, my feelings about technology can be very generational…One of my aunt’s told me the other day that she missed my wedding announcement as she checks her email “every month or two”! Wow. I check it every 30 minutes…haha. She seems to have an issue with technology to me, but it’s not an issue for her. She just enjoys technology differently.

Can we do away with ‘modern technology‘? Is it a good thing? Is it making us smarter? More aware of world events? Would Wikileaks have been such a huge thing without technology?

I think about the things that make me happy. My fiancée, my kids, mountain biking, nature, friends, good food, delicious coffee. Technological advances have played an enormous role in my life. We had a C-Section last year, which 50 years ago wouldn’t have happened. Modern shipping, packaging and food storage gets me food and coffee that doesn’t grow here. My bike today is a totally different beast than my first mountain bike 20 years ago because of computers and technology.

BUT, hanging out with my family, friends, getting on my bike and going for a ride have nothing to do with technology. They have to do with ignoring technology for a while and enjoying life.

So, my goal is to balance technology with quality time to live a long and happy existence.

What does technology mean to you?

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