Published in Longmont Daily Times-Call, September 19, 2004
You love your computer. You love that digital camera. And the latest cell phone might possibly be the coolest thing you’ve seen your whole life. No question about it, electronics are cool and are easily attached to our active lifestyles. But do you ever wonder if perhaps we might be getting too close to the gear that is intended to enhance — not define – our lives?
With all due respect to Jeff Foxworthy and his “You might be a redneck” routine, I’d like to explore our common everyday obsession with technology in a little segment called:
…YOU MIGHT BE A GEEK
- If your kitchen table regularly resembles the “Battleship” game with laptops back-to-back instant messaging each other… you might be a geek.
- If your home has a wireless network that works best in the bathroom (and is regularly tested)… you might be a geek.
- If you use text messaging to tell your family dinner is ready… you might be a geek.
- If your home has more computers than children and pets combined… you might be a geek.
- If a friend asks where she can buy film for her camera and you have absolutely NO IDEA what she’s talking about… you might be a geek.
- If eBay is more than a website, it’s a way of life… you might be a geek.
- If you routinely use chat-speak like ROTFLOL (Rolling On The Floor Laughing Out Loud) in everyday language… you might be a geek.
- If you believe that if something is not on Google then it doesn’t exist… you might be a geek.
- If you schedule your family vacation so as to stop at all the Best Buy and Circuit City stores between here and Dallas… you might be a geek.
Now, the obsession can be taken too far at which point there’s hardly even a question:
- If you have color coordinated cell phone holders for all of your outfits… or
- If you wake up at 2am to check for text messages… or
- If you use the names of websites or software as verbs in everyday language (“Yeah, I Photoshopped him”)… or
- If you carry a picture of the Linux penguin in your wallet…
Face it, if this is you, welcome to official geekdom.
Fortunately, being a geek isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Gone are the days of the stereotypical pocket protector and thick black glasses held together with a strap of tape in the center. (And if by chance you still meet the stereotype, please stop it – it’s making the rest of us look bad.)
Seriously though, turn off the cell phone every now and then. Shut down the computer. Take a walk outside on one of these beautiful Colorado mornings and revel in the beauty that is all around us. Once you do, you’ll see that God has done some awesome work, even without Photoshop.
Kevin King is the President and Chief Technologist with Precision Solutions, Inc., a leading technology solutions provider in Longmont, Colorado. He can be reached by email at Kevin@PrecisOnline.com or by voice at 303/651-7050.