Wednesday 13 January 2010

in the pursuit for less mental space

I joined Twitter yesterday and am just starting to use it. I'm doing it because I work (well, as I pointed out in my first post, not at the moment) in the marketing field so I should really understand this kind of thing and also 'cos I'm curious, feel like I might be missing out on something and want to see what all the fuss is about. I'm well aware however that if I do want a simpler life joining Twitter probably isn't going to help me out.

A lot of technologies purport to simplify our lives "buy this machine - it will make your life easier! it will free up your time so you can do other, more valuable things!". But often the opposite happens; you end up spending more time doing whatever it was you wanted to get away from in the first place. I really experienced this with Sky +, the digital television recorder available here in Ireland and in the UK. The ads for this product really play the "technology makes your life simple, gives you control and lets you get on with the more important things in life" card. But since getting Sky + myself my TV viewing has shot up. I may be watching what I want when I want, but I'm watching a lot more of it than I did in the past. My life hasn't become simpler because I now have less time to do the same amount of stuff that I need to do (which in my case means less time for sleep). Of course I could just not watch all that pre-recorded TV, couldn't I?

The other thing that happens is that you end up doing other things, namely work, in order to pay for expensive new technology. I quite like the lyric from a Metric song (I can't remember the name) which goes "buy that car to drive to work, drive to work to pay for that car" - it's a nice distillation of the gerbil wheel many of us find ourselves on. But that's a big subject - it's a whole other topic for another day. If I ever find time between all my Twittering and TV viewing.

Anyway I can see Twitter is definitely going to take up a whole lot of my mental space. Especially when I figure out how to use it on my phone. I predict immediate addiction.

Will update,

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