Friday, September 16, 2005

The Generation Gap

The Generation Gap
Originally uploaded by cafn8.
I just read an article in the newspaper. It was a silly little piece about how cellphones have become teenagers' lifelines. The writer details an instance when the home phone rang and she and her husband watched in amazement as their teenage daughter took the call- her first land-line call in who-knows-how-long and how she looked so uncomfortable tethered to the wall (never mind who was on the other end of the line.)

She then talks about how amused she is by the fact that these teenage cellphone users actually use all of the non-talking functions on their phones, such as the date book, alarm, address book, etc. She seems to consider these functions silly, frivolous add-ons to what should simply be a portable version of the big, black rotary phone plugged into the wall. She echoes my co-workers who show off their expensive new high end cellphones as they boast proudly about their shrewd negotiations toward getting cheaper service by disabling the extras like text messaging and data. Why not just get a free cellphone and an expensive watch? The tone of the article was a bit condescending, as she compared cellphones to security blankets. Perhaps the comparison works, but I think cellphones are the new PDAs. Most do everything PDAs from a few years ago did, plus they benefit from being connected to cellular networks for data. In the end, the writer proves one point, although unintentionally. She just doesn't get it.


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