everybody’s clever nowadays

24Jan11

I only sort of mean that. Actually I don’t really mean it at all. I was thinking about the Great Big Web Crescendo, the Digital Swell, this Pixelly Everpresentness and the Gadgetisation of Everything (call it what you will)… and the line from the end of Rubber Ring — everybody’s clever nowadays — has been stuck in my head ever since. It even led me to indulge in a bit of a Morrissey stint on the cross-trainer at the gym yesterday — an interesting choice of soundtrack, given I don’t choose the Pope of Mope to accompany me in any kind of sweat-related activity, ever.

I have to say, though, that You’re the one for me, fatty, was especially rousing. Perhaps even worthy of a permanent slot in my woefully underutilised gym playlist (although for the sake of accuracy here, neglect of the playlist is only a byproduct of my altogether woefully underutilised gym membership).

I think about the everybody’s clever thing a lot. With regard to technology, I mean. I can’t really help it. It’s sort of my job to talk about it in a work sense [it being the impact of technology on our lives, with special focus on the improvements technology brings]. But it spills over into everything, unstoppably.

I can’t possibly go into this in detail right now. It’s 1.55am. So I will cut right to my roughly-hatched conclusion, boiling it right down to pretty much nothing. Technology is awesome. But we will always be stupid, however awesome technology gets.

And for all its vaunted benefits, technology will never save us time. Because any time it saves us we pour right back into it. Because our attention spans are so rent asunder, and our time so divided in the face of the Availability of Absolutely Everything at All Times, that we lose any time we might have gained having to operate in a default headless chicken mode, trying to remember what it was we were doing 30 seconds ago. Um, I think I might have overstated my case there.

It’s 2.09 now. Tomorrow is a public holiday, which means I have no set bedtime. I have 500 words to write now before I can sleep. Although I might settle for 250 words + a promise of very good writing behaviour (not likely) tomorrow. 

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