Technology of ‘The Jetsons’ found todayPublished 9:26am Monday, September 9, 2013
Column: Something about Nothing, by Julie Seedorf
I have a hard time imagining life without my cellphone. I have one of those phones that will do anything, and I spend a lot of time on my phone doing the anything that it will do. I can read. I can play games. I can surf the Internet and have answers in moments. I can text, call, make voice messages and follow the right route with Mapquest.
I even have an app — short for application — with a prayer list that gives me prayers and a place to put the people I need to be praying for, since I sometimes have a hard time remembering who I promised to pray for. I don’t think that is too bad for an old woman.
I remember watching the futuristic cartoon, “The Jetsons.” The show was popular on television from 1962 to 1988. They were a family in the future that had the latest technological appliances. I remember watching the Jetsons with my family, never dreaming that what we were seeing in the cartoon, such as their version of the microwave oven, was just a minute glimpse into how we really would be living.
The other day I observed the people around me in booths at a restaurant where I was dining. In every booth people had their cellphones out and were checking them. I can hear your comments now, “Those young people need to get a life.” Well, it wasn’t young people, it was people my age and older. If you want to call us young, you can, but I confess the older generation has been hooked, too.
When we used to travel with our kids, they were able to bring books and we played word games in the car. Now they can watch movies, play on their iPod or whatever fancy contraption they have.
In my day (my kids just love it when I say that) after school and in the evenings we would play games with our friends outside. In the spring, fall and summer we would play kick the can, Annie-I-over, pum pum pullaway, red Rover and more. We would go in the house and eat and head right back outside to keep playing. In the winter we would sled or play king of the hill, have snowball fights or make snow tunnels. We made lasting friendships playing those games.
Now kids can play games on their computers, tablets and iPads with people that they don’t know from around the world.
There are many people who shun technology today for different reasons. Some want the simple life. Others shun technology because they are scared they can’t learn to use many of the gadgets.
Our lives have all been changed by technology in our government, medical systems, schools and home whether we like or not. Those changes might be for the better or they might be for the worse. Every person has had an experience where it would have been easier to talk to a real person, jot something down with pen and pencil, not rely on online banking, and try to keep what little privacy we have left.
One of the hot new shows this summer has been “The Dome.” A dome entraps a town and it has powerful forces. No one knows where it came from; no one knows how to get rid of it. I also watch “Falling Skies” where aliens invade the Earth, and we people have to fight for the earth and our planet.
We never thought parts of “The Jetsons” would become reality. Is it possible that “The Dome” and “Falling Skies” could become a reality somewhere in the future?
Will we get to a point in our society where nothing will amaze us? Will we look at the new technology that comes out and say, “Is that all there is my friend, is that all there is?”
Wells resident Julie Seedorf’s column appears every Monday. Send email to her at email@example.com.