Creating Passionate Users

Are we too dependant on our tech?  Sure we are!  How many of your friends telephone  numbers do you remember?  One?  None?

I used to have dozens of numbers memorized – now I can barely remember my own!  Why?  My machines remember for me.  My PDA, my cell phone, my Widgets, my email system.  I don’t have to remember JACK (except for how to use all these ***damn machines!)

What I really want is a connection to my machines that is discreet – only I can hear it, and I access it just by thinking about it:

ME: *thinking*: “Machine, what is my friend’s Bruce’s cell phone number?”

Computer: (in my “ear/brain only): “My Eminence, (sorry – that’s the way I would program her though 🙂 ).  Anyway, “My Eminence, I do have Bruce’s cell phone number, but wouldn’t it save us both time if I just dialed it for you instead of reciting it to you – and THEN dialing it for you?”

ME: “Thank you –  I just want to know the number, that’s all.  I don’t need to call him just now.”

Computer: “Sir, I can gladly give you the cell phone number, but it is 2:14 PM, CST on a Tuesday.  It is most likely that Bruce is in his office, so your best chance of reaching him is with his office number.  Shall I dial that for you now, or would you just like me to recite that number to you?”

Would I let my tech be that invasive?   I almost have already. My tech has taken over some of the functions of my brain.  My tech remembers phone numbers so I don’t have to.  I’ve already given in to MyTech.  Now we’re just discussing the degree of “disconnected-ness” we are willing to negotiate with our machines.  I trust My Tech to remember the names and numbers of the people that mean the most to me in life.  I have no clue what my son or daughter’s cell phone numbers are.  I don’t know my dad’s number.  I do know how to find them in My Tech though.

So I’ve already sold out to the machine.  What’s a little voice in your ear going to hurt?

That night, you’re helping your 12-year old son with his math homework when you realize–in horror–that while he’s quite good with the calculator, he couldn’t multiply two three-digit numbers using only paper and pencil if his Wii depended on it.

Source: Creating Passionate Users


  1. I have to agree, we should not allow ourselves to strictly rely on technology for everything. Phone numbers though? I still like to keep a lot in my head. I still find myself memorizing license plates of annoying/scary drivers too.

    We are all making choices on a daily basis, just be sure you are aware of what you are choosing to not think about anymore.