Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Our Technology Infused Life

Via Chuck Tryon's delicious feed (which, I bet he didn't even know I followed), I found this New York Times article that describes my family as well. Basically, it says that nowadays, families hop on laptops and blackberries and iPhones over their coffee and cereal, barely interacting with each other. The morning isn't as much of a problem for us as the hour before dinner. Because the kids have such a spread out schedule in the mornings, with Geeky Boy having to get up at 6, but Geeky Girl not needing to get up until 7 (even stretching until 7:30 without a problem), we're kind of running around from about 6-8. I do hop on the computer while Geeky Boy is in the shower, but then I fix lunches, get him out the door, get Geeky Girl up, and this year, I *am* going to go for a walk (more on that later). So there isn't really time to stare at a screen for long.

But before dinner, we all retreat to our separate spaces for about an hour, catching up on blogs, gaming, answering a couple of last-minute emails. It's not terribly problematic, but our computer use in general has increased over the summer as we've run out of things to do. We've filled too much of our empty time with the computer rather than other things. In part, this is because our schedule is out of whack. Mr. Geeky, who was going into the office every day at 9, stopped doing that this past week, and what is he doing? Working on the computer. We had just gotten used to a certain routine that involved other activities and the presence of Mr. Geeky has thrown us off.

Grace mentioned in a comment yesterday that she had technology fatigue. Although her blog post is about not wanting to learn new technology that will be outdated the day after she learns it, my fatigue has more to do with using it. Will Richardson wrote a post recently pondering whether he was a slave to technology. I'm not sure what it would mean to be a slave to it; I suppose being unable to live without it. But I can imagine living without it. Sometimes I want to chuck it all and go become a chef or something. So, what do you think readers, when is technology too much?