Monday, January 11, 2016

Always on is not always best

I have become an eager consumer of quite a bit of technology, from mobile commerce and VOiP calling to streaming video, online chats, and Sirius radio. 

Technology keeps me connected to the larger world, allowing my small business to function seamlessly with global clients.

On a personal level, technology brings me more news and entertainment options than I could consume in ten lifetimes. Yet the best part of all these technologies is the most basic of features: the OFF button.

Less can definitely be more in this age of always-on communication and global news cycles. Enough can be plenty. And too much of a good thing can be a waste of time.

Case in point: I have on-demand video. I have Roku video streaming. I have Amazon Prime and Amazon Fire TV media player. I have Chromecast. I even have an old-fashioned antenna in my attic for over-the-air channels on secondary TVs. So, what did I ask for this holiday season? Netflix.

Don't get me wrong, I love the range of choice and new programming. But I would have to be laid up for years to see even a fraction of what's on my watch list.

Finding more time to watch TV was not among my New Year's resolutions. Instead, I was planning more days at the gym, adding an exercise class, taking advantage of this mild winter to hike the nearby fields and trails.

With technology, it seems that I can have it all, at least in terms of choice. But in reality, I should never expect to take advantage of it all.

Sometimes the best option is to turn off the TV, the laptop, the tablet, and the smartphone, and reconnect with the real world. Smell the coffee, or the roses, and take a moment to appreciate what's right here, right now.

No subscriptions, monthly fees, or updating required.

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