Guns on the Table
First off, since the piece is tied in to the iPhone launch, the issue of buying into marketing hype is mixed in with the issue of reflection-free dependence on technology. Now clearly neither is a good state of mind, but they are different creatures. Technology dependence has to do with life priorities but often etiquette in particular (love the bit about “guns on the table”). Yet, we all need some degree of technology in our lives; even if you give up email to only write physical letters, that’s still using technology. We do not all need marketing in our lives. Our world would be a far better place if all the marketing departments fell into the sea, right now.
I see the point about acquired ADD. That happens to me if I’m on the computer enough. There are too many inputs, and you never spend long enough doing any one thing to give it proper attention, nor do you let independent thoughts bubble up from within yourself. You are constantly reacting to stimuli. There, I just answered 2 emails.
I’m not beyond considering that rolling back to older technology is sometimes a good idea. I think urban centres would be better off reverting to bike-and-public transit systems, for example. Even so, sometimes better technology means newer stuff. About 50% of my complaints about my computer environment could be fixed by a display that was as readable as paper.
But the single most important thing is to reflect on it all, and be aware of how any one thing left unchecked can adversely affect one’s life. The unexamined life not worth living, and all that. But I mean you could move to the farm and write paper letters, or you could just quit out of mail.app for a few hours. Control your kung fu.