Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Finger sweeping fears!

Today I have dragged myself and my business into the 21st century by upgrading my current mobile to a supposedly 'smart' phone. I make the transition still kicking and screaming, I might add, as I am still of the opinion that a phone should be just that. However, given the current mobile is becoming increasingly temperamental, it was only a matter of time before this step was taken. As a writer, I have also been tempted by the notion that I can use my new phone, via the Evernote App, as a notepad so I can take notes wherever and whenever inspiration strikes. Of course, this will never replace the thrill and satisfaction of writing on a new page of a beautiful notebook, but practicalities need to be considered.

There is nothing like speaking to a mobile phone company to make you feel old. I found myself stuttering and stumbling over my words as I tried to convey what I wanted from my new phone while feeling utterly out of my comfort zone. Sadly, despite the valiant efforts of the polite young man from Orange, I still came away with a sense of foreboding about the impending arrival of said phone. The transfer of data from the old handset to the new will be simple, I'm reliably informed, with the new phone taking me through each step one by one. I still have a strong feeling that the cat is going to learn some new vocabulary over the next few days!

The conversation with Orange reminded me of my own youth, and the confidence I had in using the emerging technology at that time. As a college student I worked at Boots the Chemist on Saturdays and I still clearly remember the day the old tills were replaced by those capable of scanning bar codes. We received training prior to the transition, and the older women in our team were really concerned about this new-fangled equipment. Somehow, despite never having used one before, the new tills seemed intuitive to us younger team members, and we indulged our youthful egos by helping our more senior colleagues with any issues they had. How then, over 20 years later, do I find myself in their shoes? Have I really fallen that far behind in my knowledge of technological advances, I wonder?

I do feel it is important, as a business owner, to stay abreast of  technology if that means I am able to offer a high quality service to my clients. However, at the risk of sounding like my parents - actually, scratch that, my grandparents - I still believe that technology will come full circle. In years to come, the pencil and notepad will come back in vogue because no-one will be able to afford the electricity to charge said devices. Then the 'finger-sweeping' youth of today will be truly impressed by this granny's beautiful handwriting and remarkable ability to handle a pencil!

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