I’m often commenting on how I feel that the abuse of current technology is sort of ruining our society. Well maybe “ruining” is too strong a word, perhaps “changing it considerably” is more applicable. People are engaging in less face to face interaction and are relying more and more on the latest technological advances through instant messaging, social networking websites and the likes of all that.
While I often harp on the negative aspects of the introduction of this medium to everyday life (ignorant drivers on cell phones, etc), there are a great deal of positive spins on this as well. For example, I have been a “roadgeek” all my life. Roads, transportation and to an extent, networks of just about anything, fascinate me to no end and it’s because of this fascination that I returned to school earlier in the year for a civil engineering degree. Growing up I thought I was the only one in the world that took photos of road signs and begged my parents to drive through construction zones. With the internet explosion, I discovered that I wasn’t alone in this passion and I regularly chat with others with similar interests and I maintain my roadgeek website documenting our little corner of the world. Technology has given me the opportunity to network and share with others interested in the same subjects as I.
The same holds true for the gay, and to a bigger extent, gay bear community. It was through the olden days of the BBS (bulletin-board service) that I first met like minded individuals online back in 1986 (let’s hear it for the Commodore 64!) at 300 baud and today Earl and I enjoy the company of many people we have met recently that have similar interests as we do. I mean, think about it, as I sit here at my computer, I am able to chat with my friend Steve in Buffalo and carry on as if we were sitting across the supper table from one another. We can see each other if we want to, or we can just type little quips back and forth. Back in the day we’d have to let our fingers do the walking and wait until the rates dropped after 5.
This weekend was another example of bringing people together through technology, as Earl and I met up with Greg and Bob in Connecticut. Greg and I have chatted for a couple of years online and we have met up for lunch and whatnot on several occasions. Last night was the first night that all four of us met up as a group and quite frankly we had an outstanding time. Earl and I would have never met Greg and Bob if it weren’t for the technology available to us.
So I have to remember that when I complain about the occasional gross abuse of technology around me, there’s also a great benefit for many others.
Now if we could just do something about the La Cucaracha ring tones.