Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Technology matters !

Phil and I seem to be turning into the sort of people who have silly problems with technology. And not even complicated technology at that. There's the matter of leaving stuff behind. 

One of the most notable was when we were half way down the hill from our son's house to the railway station to make our way homewards when I remembered that my mobile phone was still plugged into a charger in our son's kitchen. I think I have never run uphill so fast as on that occasion, leaving Phil to manoeuvre two wheelie suitcases down the rest of the hill. And we caught the train... by a whisker, but certainly we caught it. 

There have been a number of cases where we have stayed at a friend's house and managed to leave an adapter plug behind. This has happened on more than one occasion. It's a bit like paying a token rent. 

Our son managed to walk off with one of our iPad chargers after his weekend at our house. This was not a problem as we had another. No, the problem arose because I successfully left the spare cable at home in the UK. 

Difficult stuff we can cope with; it's the nitty-gritty everyday stuff that gets to us! 

This morning we went down to MediaMarkt to purchase a new cable. All good! Except that the USB end of the cable is a new, more modern kind of USB: an example of the continuing miniaturisation of everything technological. So this afternoon we had to go back and try to change it, or at the very least buy an adapter so that it can be used. 

Well, we found a cable that fits the bill, but not an Apple gadget. So we bought it. Much cheaper than the wrong device. Amazingly, after much waiting around we even managed to get a refund on the first cable we bought. And this in spite of the pessimism of the young man who helped us find the correct device. He was half convinced that because we had opened the box - and who can open Apple boxes without tearing at least one corner? - they would not give us a refund. But they did! Result! 

In the meantime, I have been getting stressed about nonsense that goes on the world of the posh folk. Why, I ask you, does a retiring Prime Minister have to give out honours? Why does a Chancellor of the Exchequer need to get honours for doing his job? Especially if he has not done the job in any spectacularly good way? And why does his image consultant need to receive honours? And as for the Prime Minister's wife's hair stylist, well, I remain totally gobsmacked. Does this nonsense not devalue the whole idea giving honours for exceptional service? Or is Samantha Cameron's hair so difficult that her stylist worked above and beyond the call of duty? 

And then there is the story of someone at a zoo in Ireland, posting pictures of his son standing INSIDE the rhino enclosure! Why would you lift your child over the wall into an enclosure with large, potentially dangerous animals? Why was the wall low enough for him to do that? The world is full of nonsense! 

Back to technology. I read that Apple has replaced its hand gun emoji with a water pistol – reflecting growing despair in America and worldwide over gun crime. Personally, I don't use emojis but I am all in favour of something that tries to combat the increase in gun crime. 

Our grandson has a new iPhone. This is a small bone of contention as the child is only 11. His mother says he will need a phone when he starts secondary school in September. Except, of course, that the school doesn't like them to have phones in school. (The grumpy old fogey in me wonders how we ever managed when our children went to secondary school and had to let themselves into an empty house to wait until we got home from work. No mobile phones then!) I suspect that the true reason for his acquiring an iPhone is so that he can play Pok√©mon Go without pestering to borrow his mother's phone. 

Anyway, he is very proud of the fact that he does not have to put in a password or a pincode but just places his finger on the button. It recognises his fingerprint! This, together with voice recognition, is apparently where the future of phones, laptops, cash machines, card payments and all sorts of transactions is taking us. No more will we need to memorise passwords and Pins! 

Now, I suffer from chronic attacks of dermatitis, which plays havoc with my finger ends and, I suppose, with my fingerprints. Am I going to excluded from the new technology of the modern age? Am I to be condemned to old fogeydom for ever?

No comments:

Post a Comment