Tuesday, October 16, 2012
And today I stumbled upon another blog that captured the same sentiment as it relates to our use of technology: “One way that technology degrades us, in the words of philosopher Martin Heidegger, is ‘forgetfulness of being.’ With technology, we cut ourselves off from the moment, from physical presence, from reality itself. Rather than really experiencing something we distance ourselves by filtering the experience through a little device.” Uh oh.
The very ubiquity of portable gadgets seems to encourage their frequent use, no matter how inappropriate. And don’t even get me started on other people’s dumb use of smartphones in such places as movie theatres. As Albert Einstein observed: “It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.” I usually strive to keep technology in its proper place but even I occasionally need a reminder that practicing the art of being is the very picture of propriety.
Thursday, October 04, 2012
In the documentary’s liner notes, Hustwit noted about observing others’ interactions with their stuff: “Looking at their belongings, or how they interact with objects as part of their daily routine, can sometimes be a much richer, more honest representation of their life than what they might say about it. It’s more, well, objective.” And on the disc’s cover he queried: “What can we learn about who we are, and who we want to be, from the objects with which we surround ourselves?”
One thing I have learned this past year from the process of whittling my possessions down from several thousand to a couple of hundred is that I care much more about quality than quantity when it comes to material possessions. I’d rather have one well-designed pen, for example, than a drawer full of them. And I’ve learned that good design doesn’t have to be expensive, although I am willing to spend more for better design. When all is said and done, quality design more than pays for itself.