Remember when people used to talk about the newest thing, on the cutting edge of technology? This was back in the day when stretches of time existed between the latest thing. Now it feels that we live each day on the technology edge, with a continuous stream of newer faster cooler smaller.
I am certainly not a Luddite but I like to wait before buying the latest. You’ll never catch me in a lineup on the pavement outside some store for hours before they open. Recently I felt vindicated in my preference to wait, with the release of the newest iPhone. Fast on the heels of “now available” came the reports of phones bending in pockets and software updates rendering phones unusable. My old iPhone 4 may be old, but it works just fine, thank you very much.
I feel no urge to have the latest, which provides a nice counterbalance for my children, who get all the marketing messages in addition to peer pressure to have the coolest thing. When my youngest, at age 7, came home to complain that she doesn’t have her own iPhone and tablet like her friend did, it sparked a good conversation about not measuring happiness by the stuff on our shelves. We talked about buying things because we can benefit from them, not just because they are cool. To shop with an awareness of the marketing noise, and knowing how to listen to what our needs are so that we buy what is right for us.
Which may explain why our house still doesn’t have a microwave. I never have the need or desire to use one, so why waste precious kitchen space on it?
As with all aspects of parenting, our views shape and inform how our children see the world. Have you thought about how your views about technology influences your kids?