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Monday, November 12, 2012

Where did good ol' pen and paper go?

I am the type who takes long to adapt to changes. 

I don't like it when one picks up the pen from my desk and never returns it, somehow the Reylonds company had managed to make one customised pen for me, and now it's gone...I have to get used to a new one!! 

I also don't like when my neighbor's kid glances through my newspaper and folds it in a different way before I open the paper. Yes, am a meanie...but I do like to see the headlines first on a newspaper. I do not open the television with my morning cuppa, I read the good ol' newspaper.

I do not like when I receive a text message from Indian railways reminding me of my train timing, this was not supposed to be like this, I was supposed to check the ticket, calculate the traffic time and plan my travel. I don't like this. 

Psst...I hate it though, these days, whens they miss sending me the text.

I think, if there were a Tech goddess, which I strongly think that there should be one, considering the close to crore gods and goddesses that we have, would have been really pissed with me at my resistance to carry a cell phone. I remember my mum had a cell phone in 2000s, I reluctantly got my first cell phone in 2006. Tech goddess, tried her best (yes, it's a she, very persistent, you see) to lure me to the cell phone world, and finally, when I gave in, must have had a party by launching smartphones :(.

We will talk about that experience in a while. 

Then came the ages of social networking, Orkut came jumping around, scrapping and sh******** all over the cyberworld. Peer pressure pushed me to Orkut and I found many people 'Checking me out' every day!! I felt popular, wanted...amen! I hated getting used to the social norms to follow in Orkut, but nonetheless I managed to scrap. Then Orkut just became intrusive, I shunned it, took a sigh of relief, no more pressure, till a friend sends an invite to make my face available on a book. 

We will come to that story in a while too.

So the point I am trying to make is that I do not like change. I take long to get used to that. I remember my dad used to be all hyper, at the start of every month, lining up all the bills that he had to pay, tracking all the details in his diary. A friend forced me to do auto-debit for my phone and landline bills, I hated him for long. Mum, on the other hand managed to get her land tax, electricity bills, all paid online :(. 

I believe, that's also a trick of the Tech goddess, finding an ally in the family and thereby making inroads to the non-believer.

Amidst all of these shameless invasions of technology, I, of course, took up jobs, that predominantly took me more and more away from the ol' ways of doing things, of pens and papers and increasingly towards the bytes and pixels. I can never talk tech lingo (you know the chants to worship the Tech goddess), but I managed to stutter my way through. I learnt strange ways of communicating through pings and beeps, through cartoons and stupidly smiling faces, I learnt that you can really control your expressions when you communicate this way. I also learnt that I am going increasingly bad at behaving in real life with people and that I get terrible pain in my hand whenever I try to write on paper with a pen for long. However, my left hand seemed quite useful, as I punched my way through the QWERTY key board...I became ambidextrous.

So, while Tech goddess was at her fag end of celebration by introducing the smartphone, I decided, by now, getting quite ambidextrous with QWERTY key board, that I need to move away from the alphanumeric ones (that's the only reason for me getting a smartphone, no other reason, you can understand how challenged I am) and buy a smartphone. More challenges awaited me as I surfed the smartphone market. It seems they all come with a touchpad, touchpad only, and you really have to look hard for phone with a keyboard to punch on.

So the Tech goddess, wasn't just stopping at taking the pen and the paper away, she now wanted to take the opposable thumb away too, thereby taking us back to the world of the apes, where finger tips did wonders. A change I refused to take in, till now, can't promise though.

While the book with many faces changed their interfaces like the girls in their pre-teens, I continued in my struggle to make the most out of my smartphone, downloading some of 'this' for Android and some of 'that' for Android. I wandered through the book on my smartphone, I 'liked' and I 'commented' instead of s...crapping. While doing all of that, I realised that a bigger and wider version of this smartphone has also entered the world, they are spreading themselves like wildfire, every other chair in the airport lounge is hunched on them, every other palm is trying to hold them, every other finger tip is recording videos on them, every other shoulder is sporting a bag with them. 

I sigh again...only a while till it gets on to my palm :(. One with a keyboard to punch on, I tell myself, my saving grace...to write while I travel, to note down quickly while I observe, yes I do need one of those, I repeat, but with a keyboard to punch on, I reassure myself.

I have difficulty adapting to change....I do.