Saturday, December 20, 2008

New Dependencies

The general technological muddle described in the last post continued until this afternoon, when we went out and bought a new router, and, after some fiddling and fussing concerning set up and password and blah blah blah, it works, for both our computers! And the sudden, descending feeling was, Ah, now we're at home!

I am not sure exactly when wireless internet became a necessity of life. We're both perfectly capable of doing without it for lengths of time when we're traveling; if it's not there, it's not. And yet it seems somehow to have become fused with the notion of relaxing at home, this ability to look things up, read the mail, talk to practically everybody. I don't want to think of it as an addiction; aren't we always adjusting to the next thing, incorporating it into the day-to-day to the point that you can't quite remember what you did without it? Which is just where the lovely human quality of practically endless adaptability and the tentacles of capitalism potently intersect. We just keep being introduced to whole new needs.

But still -- what if the new product brings us closer to community, what if you can use it to go exploring, what if it's an amazing way to play?


Dana said...

"And yet it seems somehow to have become fused with the notion of relaxing at home, this ability to look things up, read the mail, talk to practically everybody."

Yes. Remember when we had to go to *the library* to find things out? Oh, the good old days. ;)

jayme said...

when i moved this summer, verizon messed up my internet/cable order and i didn't have anything for the first week. i can attest to how incredibly alienating it is without contact to the outside world (from the inside of your apartment or house).

Nancy Devine said...

for me the internet is truly "an amazing way to play." it feeds some need in me to search and connect. the potential for developing community is almost intoxicating for me, someone who lives somewhere that can be very isolated.
when i'm going to the blogs i like, reading, commenting, getting response to comments, etc., i almost feel like i'm taking a really great class.

Mari said...

With every "gain" comes a loss. The internet is an incredible tool and a boon for those who are isolated or otherwise unable to connect with others in more analog ways. Still, there's a part of me that misses the space, both inner and outer, that seemed to exist in greater abundance before the internet and its infinite riches (or, as some would say, virtual clutter). The making of poems requires that space, that emptiness.

Thanks for your great blog, and for your poems.

Mari L'Esperance

jayme said...

i read the following in the new york times this morning about a near-crash at the denver airport and knew you'd have a chuckle/shake of the head. here is the downside to new technology:

"Passenger Mike Wilson of Denver described a chaotic scramble to leave the burning plane on updates he posted on from the airport using his cell phone."