Tech babies

5 years ago

No, I haven't a child of my own. 

Yes, I'm a tech-geek. I know just about anything and everything that is needed to know about technology. I can build, dismantle, and rebuild a desktop computer. And I know the common prices of all the thingymajig in, on, or at one's computer/iPad/laptop/cellphone/smartphone. I can actually make programs to run in those computer/ipad/laptop/smartphone. 

Sounds presumptuous? 

Not really if your line of work is IT, and you've been exposed to information technology since its public baptism (i.e. when the general masses outside the military and/or banking business were allowed to have/use it) and grew up with it. My first computer arrived at home in 1985, when mom's office underwent a massive upgrade to their system and she was able to buy one. The only game in it was good 'ole Snakes. Then Digger came about, and so on.

Mostly, however, I used its word processor and spreadsheet. Anyone remember Lotus 123? Word Perfect? Well, I'd utilized the word processor to type my novels, and the spreadsheet to work my father's expense reports. He paid me for them. Oh, memories..

Anyway.

I was first exposed to mobile phones in 1986. The gargantuan, brick-sized mobile phone that's attached to an even larger charging station the size of a briefcase. Remember?

Needless to say, I was already in my double-digit age at that time. But my nephews and nieces, 6-to-10 years younger than I, were not allowed to touch them gadgets. At all, to the cost of reprimands to groundings. Them things were expensive and easy to break, dangit!

So yesterday, when I saw a 2 yr old clutching a cellphone and adamantly refused to allow her mom to pick up a call, then bawled when her mom finally snatched the phone away, I cringed. Then I looked around and see elementary school kids toting Blackberries, iPhones, iPads, and just about every other gadget imaginable - on school ground. 

What the hell happened between then and now? Has gadget prices dipped so low, and thus make it worthless, to be regarded at all? What about empathy to people who can't afford them on school grounds? Do parents still teach empathy to their children? Am I just the jaded one who insists to keep my cellphone *in* my bag when I'm in a public transport (where there are aplenty of pickpockets and such) and clutch it protectively when/if I have to use it? 

Yes, I'm aware that utilizing a touch-screen-based gadget help children with their fine motor skills, or even linguistic skills. But is it necessary to flaunt the gadget about when you're in public eyes? Is it prudent to let your child, your single-digit-aged child, hold it out in the open where just about every pickpocketer and their grandmothers can easily grab it out of your child's hands? Is it wise to proverbially enlighten the world that your child - and by proxy, you - are loaded enough to make them a target for kidnapping?

Funny in an era where just about every other mother is anal-retentive with child-safety to the point where a child can't go out of the house sans a full-body armor, they would actually place a gargantuan bullseye on the kids' head saying: "Yo, my folks are rich! Come and kidnap me and/or repossess every single thing I have on hand because they're like, rich-kids' toys!" 

Jaded?

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