I Hate Planned Obsolescence!

Isn't technology wonderful!  It's definitely made our lives easier.  I have no idea what I did before the microwave. Reheating food on the stove, so time-consuming!  Technological advancements have really played well into my need for instant gratification.  Here's a fill-in-the-blank quiz for you:  I don't know how I ever got along without _______________.

There is, however, one part of this whole technological revolution I really hate- planned obsolescence! In this throwaway society, it's become the norm.  You don't like it, get rid of it and buy the next latest, greatest rendition- whether it's a car, a phone or a toaster. (Raise your hand if you even have a toaster.  Now they're convection/toaster ovens. Very handy.)

I have a 17" MacBook Pro.  I've had it for 6 or 7 years now and I love it.  It's still smarter than me. During my last visit to my friendly Apple store, they told me it's about at the end of its lifespan- it's really old. (I looked at this twenty-something and thought to myself, "define old!")  I love the big screen- they don't make them anymore. I love the way the keyboard feels as my fingers fly over the keys, mostly accurately, as I'm trying to get the thoughts out before I lose them. The new ones don't have that same gentle feel and sound.

When I bought it, I figured it would take a lifetime to fill 150 gigabytes.  That part is funny.  Between music and movies and all my files, I'm now having to off-load my movies and files just to make room for updates.  I bought an external hard drive knowing there's no way I can fill up 1TB of storage! (Famous last words- I'll get back to you on that.) And what's with this "cloud" business?  What happens when the cloud fills up?  Monsoon of data raining down from the sky! (Mental flash to The Phantom Tollbooth- great book!)

This looks like my first typewriter!  Yay for WhiteOut!
I got the first generation iPad.  I did learn my storage lesson and got the largest storage they offered. Only problem- I could no longer update the operating system.  It was slow, it crashed, apps dropped off like flies after a frost.  Sigh… It was obsolete- a grannyPad. It's been put out to pasture, now relegated to the guest bedroom as a guest perk.

My phone will be the next casualty of this (I'm convinced) conspiracy to stimulate the economy.

I feel like it's more about the bottom line, stockholders, staying ahead of the game.  BIGGER! NEWER!! BETTER!!!  I can't help thinking there has got to be a better way.  Somebody, please stop the madness! I know technology is improving at an exponential rate, and  I don't have a complaint with that.  It makes our lives easier.  But can't we figure out a way to update without trashing the old to bring on the new?

This picture made me think of the movie, Wall-E.
Maybe, instead of a science fair, schools should have a repurposing fair.  It could be the start of an entirely new industry.  To kick it off, bring in some old technology and ask the kids what they think it's for and what might its next life look like.  Here's a fun YouTube video, Kids React to Rotary Phones, to get you started.

In closing (because I could go on and on with this maxi-rant, but you get the idea), I offer a walk down memory lane.  Here's a link to more old technology.  I spent waaay too much time reminiscing here- not that I remember everything on the page, mind you.

Think about it for a moment- What's your favorite piece of "grandfather" technology you are loathe to part with (or did you)?  I look forward to your comments!

"Any technological advance can be dangerous.  Fire was dangerous from the start, and so (even more so) was speech - and both are still dangerous to this day - but human beings would not be human without them."  Isaac Asimov

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