The technology ‘curse’

Published 11:30 am Friday, May 4, 2012

It seems that every single day I run into another example of “The Technology Curse.”   Being an engineer and businessman, I’m up to my ears in technology and have been for the last 40 years beginning with my university computer classes way back in 1971.   However, I find technology and the advancement of technology to be a mixed bag in some ways.
I (personally and professionally) benefit from and take advantage of technology, but I do so “behind the curve” rather than in “front of the curve.”   Before I invest in a new technology, I wait until I can clearly see the advantages and the real costs. Why?  Because every technology change requires financial and time investments and I’ve learned that they don’t all payoff.
The constant, ongoing and incessant need to repair, maintain and update computer-based technology has to be offset with efficiency and reduced costs somewhere else.  My problem with our “technology age” is that we are too quick to accept poor quality hardware, software, concepts and service from the purveyors of this stuff.   How many times a week does your automatic update feature kick in?  If the product is so good to begin with, why do I have to constantly update it?
The way the industry makes up for lack of dependability and consistency is to provide “overpriced” technical assistance on products they’ve sold you with people having heavy foreign accents.  So, why do we accept this situation?  Well, we’ve been sold the expectation that this is normal and it’s the price we pay to be more efficient.  I certainly hope that it does because I spend at least six hours per week just keeping the stuff running and another couple hours culling through the stuff that I don’t want.   So it had better save me at least 20 hours per week or it’s a bad deal.
The value proposition is also way over sold with social media (Think Twitter and Facebook).  There is a significant portion of our population that thinks that everything we do has to go through the social media.  Listen people, if it’s not something that is significant like a birth, death, new job or the like, don’t expect me to pay much attention.

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