I love technology, while hating to admit that I’m not sure what I’d do without it. Even to the fact that I don’t read many books due to being The World’s Slowest Competent Reader, but still considered buying a Kindle because I thought it would be convenient.
I was sat on the sofa the other day watching Netflix when it struck me how privileged I am that technology can afford me such enjoyment. Streaming services now make such a wide variety of content available when you want it and have somewhat changed the way I consume content.
I remember walking in to a shop once and looking at a figurine which was awesome. It was ridiculously detailed and well made, but it cost a fortune and I couldn’t justify the cost. The friend I was with tried to calculate a return on investment based on my joy. Say the figurine cost me £100. If I looked at it every day for 100 days, that pleasure from looking at would cost me £1 a day. Take it to 1000 days, at 10p a day for a little bit of pleasure my investment would become worthwhile.
Netflix has done the same for TV, where I used to watch it because it was there and “all” I paid was my license fee, now I determine the worth of a service by the pleasure it can give me for that cost. The Staircase was well worth my £6 for that month.
I’d also begun to really appreciate my robotic vacuum. I could justify this on time saving, but also walking in to clean floors with so little effort makes it worth it for me at least.
However, Sucky stopped vacuuming the floor unless I was there to tell it to. I thought it was a one off, until it didn’t manage it again and the cat hair was building up so much I was tempted to pick up my manual vacuum. Only tempted.
I had a fiddle around with the vacuum. I changed the schedule. I checked all the firmware was up to date. Nothing worked, so I took it off its dock, let the battery run out, recharged it and it started working again. It was the old “off and on again” trick.
My Amazon Echo had connection issues. I unplugged it and plugged it back in again and it was fixed.
My phone had an issue whereby it would play the music I had and what it suggested for me, but wouldn’t let me search for anything. Back it up, wipe it, restore it, working.
Part of me finds this really irritating. I’m sure there’s a life metaphor in there somewhere about sometimes resetting, refreshing and starting again, but this isn’t the time for that.
When I rang Apple to ask them what I could do so that my phone might start being able to search, I wanted some other advice than resetting. I know to do it because it’s so obvious. It’s so simple. We know that off and on again works more often than not, and that annoys me too, because it shouldn’t. We have such advanced technology now that it bugs me, for some reason, that every now and again even the circuits and the processors need a break, and that they can’t do that themselves.
How’s that for a first world problem?