Tag Archives: Technology

Monday Mini-Rant: Texting

Well hello ladies and gentleman and welcome back. It has been (insert whatever number here) days since I’ve posted and it’s about darn time I started again. Why did I choose the end of the semester to do so? Well because I’m a glutton for punishment. This Monday I’m talking about texting. First off, don’t do it while your driving. That’s just stupid. Second, don’t do it while walking, you might run into a pole. Actually you can ignore the second, that would be amusing to watch. But seriously, there are reasons to text and reasons to communicate some other way. First I’ll give you some of the situations where texting is appropriate. The person you’re texting is in another state or time zone (say South Dakota or Boston, you know who you are). You don’t know their schedule and you can’t be bothered to keep up with the time difference. They can respond when it’s convenient for them and you aren’t being a bother. When you’re giving someone directions. Instead of whipping out a map and compass, all the other person has to do is grab their phone and BOOM!! They have every turn and merge they need in the palm of their hand. Finally, when you’re notifying someone that when you have free time an extended conversation needs to take place. For instance, “Give me a call when you get a chance, we need to figure out our plans for Thanksgiving.” The importance of the future conversation is conveyed but there’s also an understanding that there’s no need to drop everything you’re doing and call someone to settle the issue. Now! Onto the improper uses. Having conversations with someone who lives less than a half an hour away from you. I’ll admit, I’ve done this before. A lot. Having said that, it’s a waste of time and it’s pointless. If someone lives close enough to you that you could easily drive there and have the same conversation as you would over text then GET OFF YOUR BUTT AND GO THERE!!!! The only thing these text conversations produce are awkwardness in real life. You can talk via text because it’s the most basic form of communication there is, but when facial expressions and body language get involved both parties shut down and it gets real awkward real quick. Second instance where you shouldn’t text? Romantic/Intimate messages to your significant other. If you have the urge to write something personal or intimate to your boyfriend/girlfriend or husband/wife then DON’T FREAKING TEXT IT!! Take the time to write a letter, address the envelope, buy the stamp, and raise the flag on your mail box. If you feel so strongly about someone that you can put together a poetic rendition of your feelings don’t waste it on a text message where your fat thumbs end up auto correcting half of what you typed. Take the time to write out what you have to say and how you feel. Even if you live with the person you’re sending it to, it might make a huge difference in your relationship. I don’t have a real life experience of the example I’m about to illustrate but I can guess at what it looks like. Imagine your married to the love of your life but right now you’re pissed as hell about something that happened yesterday. You get into an argument and storm off into the kitchen while your spouse ends up going to another room. Coincidentally, your son happened to bring the mail in that day and you find a letter addressed to you from your spouse. It happens to show just how thankful your spouse is for meeting you. It shows you that you make your spouse happy to wake up in the morning since they get to see your smiling face. Call me a romantic but I think a letter like that, a letter that matters more than hubby taking out the trash within 5 minutes of asking, would matter more than a text saying “I like your smile, you make my day.” that was sent in the heat of the moment. A letter, instead of a text, shows that despite the immediate situation, there are deeper, stronger feelings that persist throughout all of your encounters. It shows that there are deeper connections than whether or not the Misses got all the groceries or that Hubby remembered to grab the dry cleaning. My point is, texting (despite the opinion of some) has it’s place. There are situations where it’s an appropriate alternative to a house visit or a phone call but when we try to replace meaningful conversations with emotionless lights and notifications, we fall into trouble. Don’t let texting, or any form of instant messaging, replace meaningful conversations. If you’ve got something important to say, say (or write) it.

Entry 7: The Future Of Technology

Alright everyone I’ve been at this for almost 2 months now and I don’t plan on slowing down. This week I’m going to cut to the chase, no pleading for views or critiques. Let’s get to it, on to the future of technology!

First off, if you haven’t checked out Google Glass, you should. It’s a virtual reality peripheral that will allow you to access basic information and apps on the go. Basically it’s a set of eye glasses that connect to your Apple or Android device that let you look up information through your voice. Simply say “ok, glass” and then your requested search and wham! The info you desire is delivered directly to your retina. You can take pictures, record video, google pretty much anything, view the weather, and those are just the beta features. a year or two from now and the possibilities are limitless. Think of the power of your strongest and fastest computer combined with the sleekness of a pair of sunglasses. To say I’m excited about this would be to say that a few dinosaur species died out. I think you get it.

Now! Onto the next big gaming system. I’m not going to address the PS4 simply because it’s specs have been released and I’m not a Sony fan. So, The Xbox Durango is on the table. First off, I’m sick of people calling it the Infinity or the 720, it has an official code name. Use it. So, a few (read A LOT) of people have been complaining about the rumor that the Durango will be an “always online” console. A lot of people dislike this because internet connection isn’t as reliable in some places as it is in others. I for one have no problem with a console that is always connected to the internet. If you don’t live in the boonies, this feature isn’t a problem for you. Besides, I don’t see the lack of wireless support or internet support in certain areas as an individual failure but as a failure of the internet providers. America, ALL OF AMERICA, deserves reliable internet access. Everyone knows it wouldn’t be that difficult to make it happen so internet providers… make it happen!!

Now, while we’re on the subject of internet connectivity, let’s talk a little bit about Google Fiber. While I’m not the most educated person when it comes to this topic, Google Fiber could potentially revolutionize the way the internet is delivered to pretty much every single American. It’s in its testing phase but if it were to prove successful it could provide internet services that would dwarf any delivery system that’s currently available. The way I see it, Google has been making money for quite a few years while keeping its greatest innovations to itself. If the powers-at-be of Google have any common sense, they’ll release all of their inventions at the same time and completely dominate the electronic market.

So, this entry isn’t funny so much as it is informative, and for those of you who appreciate my humor, I’m sorry. I do believe that I’ve addressed a few topics that may change all of our lives within the next year or so. Between Google Glass and Google Fiber, the way we access the internet, and ultimately interact with each other, may change drastically within the next few years, and I for one cannot wait.

Entry #2: Making it worse, The purpose of a college education, and Touch screen ordering.

First off I’d like to thank anyone who stumble back to read my newest entry.  Again any comments or suggestions are welcome and appreciated.  I’d also like to say that if you find my blog to be amusing or informative enough feel free to tell anyone else who you think would enjoy it; but enough of the appetizer, on to the entree!

First off I’d like to address anyone who complains via the internet.  This topic was inspired by the former Mustang Confessions page that I referred to in my previous entry.  People not only complained on that page, they would then complain about people complaining, and yet even more people complaining about those people.  Let’s think about this for a second.  Actually, let’s not, I already have a headache from the chain of stupidity that could lead to such a ridiculous outcome.  Listen, you’re entitled to your opinions, everyone is.  Other people are even entitled to refute your opinion.  The first level of complaining I can tolerate but I refuse to accept 2 or 3 levels of it.  If you don’t have something constructive to say or at least something that isn’t making the conversation better; basically if all you’re doing is making the argument worse, keep it to yourself.  You aren’t amusing, you aren’t trolling people, you aren’t even clever; you’re just that annoying douche that everyone wishes they could slap up side the head.  Keep it to yourself unless it furthers and benefits the conversation.  You’re in college, act like it.

Speaking of being in college, one of my professors once told his class that the purpose of college wasn’t to teach you information but to teach you how to find information.  Am I the only one who has a problem with this?  Now obviously he didn’t mean he’s teaching us how to google something or look it up on Wikipedia; but seriously, their job isn’t to teach us information? So… let me get this straight… we’re paying thousands of dollars a year to become… researchers? Secondary researchers at that.  Now I’ll admit, we were learning how to use the online databases that are provided through the university.  That being said, I don’t think we’ll be able to easily access those databases after we graduate.  I’m all for going out and doing your research and taking your education into your own hands, but isn’t that why we’re here in the first place?  We decide our majors, pick our classes to an extent, choose whether or not to go to class.  To have a professor say that it isn’t his job to teach you the facts of the field of study he is supposedly an expert in seems absolutely ridiculous to me.  Another thing that I find ridiculous is how slow fast food places are to innovate and integrate new technology.

This past weekend my parents came to Marshall to visit their youngest son who doesn’t get to go home very often.  We ended up going to a couple retail stores, they bought me some sweet sunglasses and a shirt and told me about their recent trip to the Caribbean.  The first thing we did though was wait in line at A&W for almost a half an hour, just to spend 20 minutes trying to order our food from a woman who was not the most technologically inclined.  Now neither party was hostile, we didn’t raise our voices and she remained calm and polite, a testament to her customer service capabilities.  It was during this almost hour long endeavor that I had an epiphany.  I realized the Subway in town had a touch screen ordering system for their drive through, a feature I thoroughly enjoy utilizing.  Also, Walmart has a convenient self checkout lane that can cut down your checkout time pretty dramatically.  I wondered, why can’t fast food places utilize these technologies?  A touch screen menu that can be completely operated by the customer.  Now I know what some people may say, what about people who want to order from an actual person?  Well that’s simple, put the touch screen next to the ordering station that’s already there!  Come on companies, it’s not that difficult.

I’d like to thank everyone who made it this far, this entry got a bit more long winded than I had anticipated.  That being said, I wouldn’t have typed it if I didn’t think it was worth reading.  If you think it was worth your time feel free to send the link to someone else you think might find it worthwhile.  As always I appreciate any comments or feedback you may have and if you’ve got any suggestions for further entries I would love to hear those as well.  This is G-Rant signing off.