Tuesday, January 14

technology and me

Let me preface this post with “I LOVE technology.” I love testing new things, trying new things, playing with new things.

That being said… Sometimes I experience what I like to call “technology confusion.” Do you ever feel like the world of technology might be moving a bit too fast or even a bit sideways? Here’s how it goes for me.

At work, the toilets flush when you stand up, the faucets in the sink turn on when you put your hands under the tap, the paper towels come out when you wave your hand in front of them, and when you pass your badge at a keypad, doors unlock. Ok, doors USUALLY unlock.

At home, my car unlocks when I grab the door handle, it starts when I push a button, and it locks when I place my finger over a certain area of the door handle. (and this works all around the car, including the back hatch, but that one works differently-- just don’t go there-- it does unlock!) My husband and sons just got new iphones. Their phones unlock with a “fingerprint technology sensor” (not my words, those go to Apple). My phone, a Samsung Galaxy S4, you make a cute little pattern with your finger.

So, in all, I am surrounded by all kinds of spiffy technology that’s meant to be amazing and cool. But here’s the reality.

At work, when the toilets flush, sometimes you aren’t standing yet. (I don’t want to think about that one.) Sometimes, if you don’t stand fast enough, they splash.  The faucets always work, but there is no way, that I can figure, to control the temperature of the water, and it’s usually COLD. The paper towels give a different amount each time, and the one in the kitchen gives an entirely different amount than the ones in the bathroom. The doors? Well, let’s just say we all smirk when someone walks forehead first into the door because the lock decided to be a prankster.

At home, the car, a Toyota, pretty much works exactly the same way every time and quite reliably. However, when you have a passenger, if you don’t unlock their door first, they have to stand outside, locked out, until you unlock from inside. Come on, Toyota, how about a double door handle grip or a little tiny button under the handle to release those other doors? i haven’t heard about the iphones, I am assuming they probably work exactly right like the Toyota. As for my phone, most of the time, my finger is smart enough to hit the pattern right. Whew.

So, what’s my problem?

Well, at home, when I use the rest room, sometimes I stand there for a second, thinking, “why didn’t it flush?” Often, I wave at the faucet like an idiot for a couple of seconds, but I usually am with it by the time I need a paper towel.  When I get in other people’s cars, I’m okay with things, as long as I’m not driving. Driving my husband’s car is exasperating as I have to remember to get the keys out! (With my car, they live in a pocket of my purse, never to come out except on the odd day when I get home first and need to unlock the front door….) And, there’s always times, like this morning, when I got to work, walked up to the front door and stuck my thumb against the card sensor. Nothing happened. (note it’s a “card” sensor--perhaps a card might be required, brain.) Oh and don’t get me started on touch screens-- we aren’t even going to discuss how many times I have touched a screen and tried to make something happen, only to realize that uh yea, no touch technology there. :) My husband is always amused by that.

All in all, I think I have adjusted to technology nicely. I love my Prius-C’s keyless entry, I embrace all the built in technology at work that’s designed to save me a nanosecond at a time, and I am pretty cool with not having to carry a bazillion keys to unlock doors. But, sometimes, it just seems like I have to do a little too much thinking on things that used to be superfluously part of my day. :) How about you?