Thursday, September 13, 2012

Let's Talk About Tech, Baby

Recently, there have been a lot of articles out there about unplugging from technology. It seems our lives have been run over with "gadgets" and many people have a really hard time turning it all off and just connecting with people. I don't think I have a hard time turning off my technology, but I do have a whack-load of technology in my tiny condo. I am not going to list it all out, but if I take into account computers, TVs, gaming, music, photography, etc I have about 15 different items of technology!

That is just insane. I remember when I went away to university I cancelled my cell phone because there was a FREE landline in my room. Now I have two cell phones! I also cancelled my cable for an entire year last year just for fun. But I found it too quiet living alone without a TV so I always found myself turning on movies.

When I think back to my childhood, we did have a Nintendo, but my brother rarely let me play it (haha). We also only watching one hour of TV and when I turned 12 and got a TV in my room it was on a timer to turn off at 10:10. I honestly remember a lot of time playing make believe. Do kids still do that?

When I think back to my favourite memories, none of them involve "watching TV" or "playing Angry Birds". So if we aren't making memories, why are we bothering to spend so much money on all this stuff? Honestly, 99% of the technology you own is a LUXURY. A TV and cable are NOT fixed expenses! While I think you need to have a phone, a smartphone with an expensive data plan is also a luxury you choose to have. I got most of my technology second hand or as gifts and I actively search for better deals on month carrying costs of my items.

When I cancelled my cable, I got Netflix. It is probably the best $8 I spend every month because I can watch so many TV shows and movies! Considering the price of cable in Toronto, it was money well spent. When I chose to get cable again, I chose a less expensive package and I love the channels I get on it.

Another point on contention with having lots of technology is storage. I keep all of my DVDs and Blu Rays in a CD binder to save space. I also have a universal remote and I thought I would take some time to discuss that! I used to have a bajillion remotes and I wanted to get something that would seamlessly control them all. For Christmas one year, my dad got me the Logitech Harmony 700.

 This remote is super easy to set up and works amazing. My TV has a ridiculous amount of inputs, but the Logitech help line was able to help me get it all up and running. I also like that if something isn't working properly, I don't have to use trial and error to fix it- there is a help button which asks a bunch of yes or no questions and can fix the problem! My only complaint is that you cannot rename custom settings. That is kind of annoying but I rarely use my custom ones.

It is kind of funny how technology can take over our lives and then more technology comes out to help organize our lives. Have you seen those homes that run on Ipads? You can apparently run your whole house (think temperature, lighting, audio, etc) on an Ipad! Sometimes I am confident that I finally live in the future, but I really wonder what kind of world my kids will grow up.

Do you have a love/hate relationship with technology?

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