This week, I have found myself in a similar spot as most of my fellow students: engrosed in technology. Although, unlike most of my friends, it’s a spot I don’t enjoy finding myself in.
I have spent a rather large portion of my time scouring the library databases for research articles for a project that, let’s face it, I’d rather not be doing. Meanwhile I’m cursing out my own laptop because I somehow accidentally deleted Microsoft Word. I swear if Open Office auto corrects yet another word that isn’t a mistake, I will lose it. And if I’m not researching, or writing something up, I find myself on the Mac in The Quad office editing video on iMovie for my TV and Radio class.
Granted, I’m not much of a technology person to begin with, then add deadlines to that and I’m ready to throw it all out the window. But this week, I’m trying to be a little thankful for the things I take for granted, and technology is definitely one of them.
I take for granted that if I break down on the side of the road, I can call anyone of my family or friends to be rescued in the blink of an eye. I take for granted that I can print multiple copies of anything I write for any purposes I wish. I take for granted that I can warm my lunch in 30 seconds flat, and check the weather anytime I am debating between jeans or shorts. Certainly technology is a powerful constant in our daily lives.
As you go through your day, remember first, to be thankful for the daily conveniences we often take for granted, and second, to be careful with the power at your finger tips. We hear everyday of some news story telling the tail of technology used for harm: to cheat, lie, or hurt others. Even in innocence, technology can threaten traditional values and lead to the frivolous waste of valuable time.
I hope my generation will use technology as a tool to do even greater things, not as a distraction from striving for greatness.
Through it all though, I must say, I miss books: pencils and notebooks, novels, short stories, all on real tangible paper. Despite the convenience of the online databases bursting with useful scholarly articles, I miss going out to a large library, hunting through the stacks of paper on paper, and turning each page in search of new knowledge. There is actually something oddly romantic about the library. Its like the tangible preservation of our history, culture, and lives.
Consider taking a trip to your local library this semester. Remember a simpler time when you sat in a circle around the library floor eating snacks, making crafts, and reading books. Even in the midst of a technological boom, we don’t have to forget those little old pleasures in life.