Thursday, September 03, 2015

Walkie Not Talkie

click photo to enlarge
I've never been a fan of the telephone. There's something about talking to a disembodied voice that doesn't appeal to me. Moreover, I spent too much time speaking to people on the phone during my working life. That's not to say I don't appreciate their utility, and of course, I do use phones. With that in mind you might think that the rise of the smartphone would be something I'd welcome because it offers communication without the necessity for speaking. In fact, I wonder if these days such devices aren't more used for texting (SMS), email, social media communication etc, than simply speaking to people. But the fact is, though I recognise their multiple uses, and though I use my wife's smartphone, I haven't succumbed to one myself because I have enough computers of one kind or another and the idea of having one to use on a regular basis when I'm out and about is simply too much to contemplate.

I sometimes wonder what smartphone users would do if they had their device surgically removed. What would they do with their hands, their eyes, their ears and their brains? Would they have to look about them, make their own entertainment, fret because they don't know what their friends and acquaintances are doing, organise their time and social interactions better because there was no phone to make last-minute adjustments? I do wonder whether smartphones will turn us into lobster people who carry massive smartphones as evolution causes us to develop massively over-sized thumbs from countless keypresses.

I recognise that my relative antipathy to smartphones isn't widely held. On reflection it probably comes from the deep enjoyment I get from looking at our world, finding out about it and reflecting on what I see. A smartphone would get in the way of that - and it would encourage me to use an inferior camera!

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Olympus E-M10
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 63mm (126mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/400 sec
Exposure Compensation: 0
Image Stabilisation: On