As I was browsing the Internets today as usual, I noticed how much like to moan about the long years of research and development devoted into everyday stuff we are so lucky to enjoy. Bending iPhones, unintuitive user interfaces or ‘the fact that I have to click again’, you name it.
It struck me how lazy and spoiled we are and thus I thought it would be in place to say ‘thanks’ for once.
Here’s my thanks to all programmers, researchers and developers out there somewhere, you made a hell of a good job. A few things I wanted to mention.
1. Portable inspiration
We finally do not have to carry a pen and a notebook everywhere to jot down the eureka moments – thanks to the capacity of smartphones and the most basic of the solutions we can take notes on the go in cloud apps and access them back home to dwell on them. Genius.
2. Open knowledge for all
The days of stacking secrets in libraries are long gone. It’s not just about Wikipedia, which I am sure is (off the record, naturally) the biggest reference source and supports a lot of degrees handed out to students worldwide, but we can see the brightest academic minds on free online courses.
3. You get to see the latest movies in the comfort of your own sofa… or a plane seat.
Netflix – yes. But have you thought how great it is to be able to watch the latest releases in the long-haul flights? I remember when I was 14 or so and travelling via a coach to Italy for a summer school trip. The journey was to take more than 20 hours, and as a form of entertainment there were two 14-inch TVs hooked up to some battered VCR and the pilot had some 3 cheesy productions we could choose from. I still enjoyed that.
These days I have access to the movies which just left the cinema and i get to see them while some pretty lady serves me neatly packed lunch. Awesome.
Yup, as I am writing this, my dear friend Google drive is working a lot harder than I am to make sure is ‘dear’ not ‘dera’. We get the comfort of not looking stupid (unless we really want to). Oh yes, we still can’t have Google differentiate between ‘you’re’ and ‘your’ which puts majority of English-speaking natives in a pickle, but I’m pretty sure some geniuses out there are trying to get that sorted for you too.
5. Games are beautiful.
We get to immerse in 3d-models resembling real life and have an impact on magnificent in-game stories or simply wonder virtual realities for no reason at all just to enjoy the view. The games are not that expensive and in majority of time provide HOURS of entertainment. Well-made games also teach, expand vocabulary and hopefully make us better people.
6. A fiver gets you legal, unlimited music
We ripped music.
Unless we were filthy rich, we all did rip music at some point.
But the technology stepped in, first we had last.fm to explore new frontiers, then there was a breakthrough and spotify got us an all-you-can-eat option where we get to pick our snacks. Spotify also skips out the greedy record labels so that aspiring musicians can have greater control and for once indie artists can have their share of bread too.
There is still a debate going on on how much damage social media have inflicted on their users (tip: a lot, probably), but overall we can finally keep in touch. We can get connected on a lot more complex level than just skype calls with people from different continents.
8. Digital art
‘Undo’, that’s all.
10. Matchmaking system in starcraft
Yup, if you lose a few games in a row it would give you someone from lower league, just to cheer you up. ; )
So what are you grateful for? Let’s take a moment to think about all the good stuff tech has brought us rather than the drawbacks.