Looking Up and Down by Trevor Plumbly

Jacquie Sends Her Love!

It’s clear to me that these computer geeks won’t stop until their insidious creations rule the world. They’ve done pretty well over the years: they’ve released us of the burden of having to write or even speak to each other; ‘online’ rules the world. And that, as you all know, pisses me off no end. Someone recently sent me an ‘e-card’, for Christ’s sake! What the bloody hell is an ‘e-card’ doing in polite society, let alone in my computer? I pondered the import of this piece of electronic emotion for a bit: does it mean that the poor sod who sent it has become IT brainwashed and can no longer string a sentence or two together? Or holds me in such low regard, that they think I’d be happy to bask in remote controlled sentiment? The architect of this abomination appears to be one Jacquie Lawson, who I can only hope is wedded to a caring machine and constantly besieged with computerised hugs and kisses from her virtual offspring.

Think It Over . . .

. . . while you still can. I’m probably being a bit harsh on Ms Lawson; but, let’s face it, she’s one of the geeks and, as far as I’m concerned, most of them deserve to be tarred with the same brush. I’m sorry to keep painting over an old surface, but I’ve been positive for at least two blogs and I’m getting a bit sick of it. AI (artificial intelligence) is the latest gift from these digital despots; they’ve finally come up with technology’s Holy Grail, a machine that can practically think! Don’t worry about mundane things like driving to work, just plug in the gizmo and let the computer handle traffic stress. But who’s responsible in the event of an accident? Lawyers, I’m sure, will have all sorts of defence ploys ready for the first collision, ‘It wasn’t me, it was the computers fault!’ or ‘The web crashed just as we were approaching the red light.’ Trouble is that there’s not much you can do if a cyber-driver decides to have a bad day except wait for the impact.

Too much technologyPopulated By Isolation

Sad to say that my fellow bloggers, caring though they are, don’t seem to share my concerns, Ange is of the ‘that’s the way it’s done these days’ camp, which loosely translates as ‘You’re on your own Trev’. Emily though, fights dirty by saying ‘But you use technology!’ Of course I use it! I can’t get away from it. I can no longer have a telephone, I’ve got to have a ‘smartphone’ that sends and receives emails, acts as a talking road map and takes photos when all I want to do is make bloody phone calls. It’s getting increasingly difficult to open any form of dialogue without a www prefix. With the aid of Skype, we’ve all just about got our own TV stations. Satellites can monitor all our waking movements, so how long is it going to be before they start to govern them? They’ve even parked one of the damn things on Mars. It doesn’t work anymore, but, according to the boffins, it’s a triumph for science. If there’s life up there, I bet they’re grateful for getting our junk dropped on them. It’s a strange world we live in these days, with boffins, geeks and technocrats claiming new ground almost daily, in the name of progress and knowledge. My criticism is somewhat simplistic: shouldn’t all that effort benefit humanity as a whole rather than convenience and commerce? Apart from a bit of national and scientific back-slapping, landing on the Moon did little to improve the average citizen’s lot in life, nor will, I predict, landing on Mars. I don’t suggest for one moment that these guys could fix humanity’s woes, but at least they could lend a hand instead of chucking scrap metal up into an already crowded universe in the name of ‘progress’ and, worst of all, inventing things like bloody ‘e-cards’.

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