|AT&T telephone with dial|
Since I was a child in the 50's, technology has gotten more and more complicated. Several events in the past few months has brought this lesson to roost right here, in my daily life!
|21st Century cell phone|
I well remember the good old black bakelite AT&T telephones. They were connected to the wall via a cord and usually it sat on a desk in the living room. It was rare that you had more than one. It had a distinctive ring you hear on many state-of-the-art cell phones today and a very short cord. I know mine has that ring. It had a dial and you picked it up to listen first for the dial tone and if no one was talking you "dialed" the number. We had a two party line at first. You knew it was for you as each party had a different ring. My grandparents had one that hung on the wall and you had to crank it to get an operator who then placed the call for you. As for long distance calls, well, it wasn't until the 60's in Oregon, 70's in Lancaster, CA, you could make a direct call!
Remember the kerkaffle about video phones? First shown at the 1964 World's Fair in New York everyone said they didn't want one. What about their hair? Their makeup? When first Skype came along, then Apple made everyone of their products with built-in cameras there was hardly a whimper. Then came Apple FaceTime and you could talk to anyone else with an Apple product ... iMac, Mac Book, iPad and iPhone and people never worried about such things again.
|Now you have a phone, a video and|
photo camera, texting and
Internet surfing in your pocket!
Today, we worry about the battery life of our cellular phones that do just about everything but make a call! I know I never take a camera on trips anymore. My iPhone does just fine (though I carry a plug and cord with me just in case it needs a charge)!
|If my neighbor hadn't shown me I would have never|
found the key hidden in the fob. You push a button
on the door, it opens and you then push a button
on the dash to start the car!
A day or two before last Christmas my car started acting wonky. Getting it to start became a kind of ritual dance. The car wouldn't open, then it wouldn't start. My fob doesn't appear to have a key but luckily a friend showed me there was one and how to open the fob to access it. Finally on Christmas Day no ritual worked and I called AAA, reluctantly, to have them come start the car. He came out, checked the battery and said it was on the edge of failing and since I had been told batteries last 2 - 4 years here in the desert figured that at nearly 3 years it was time. The car started.
However, the next day, the car wouldn't start and while the dance ritual finally worked I drove straight to the dealer to see what was wrong. He heard my tale and then said, lets go to parts. I brought both fobs with me and both didn't work. There he had the parts man change the batteries for a total of $12.00 and the car has started every time since.
|1963 VW car keys|
My first car was a Volkswagen and that little 1963 blue baby had two keys. One to get in the car and start it my twisting the key in the ignition and the other to open the rear engine compartment and the glove box. No keys, no enter. Pretty much the same today. After my truck was stolen I had them put in a kill switch. I leave with the fob and nothing happens. You try to force you way into the car and the horn starts sounding. I check it from time to time to make sure too. However, it isn't foolproof. I made quite a show at Costco when the alarm went off and I HAD the keys. Finally, I got it to stop.
|Casio watches lasted forever.|
I got an Apple watch because it has many medical features that at 73 I need to be aware of. It takes your pulse, has you breathe now and then, records your pulse rate and steps taken each and every day. The newest one has an EKG feature built in, has a feature that if you fall and don't respond calls 911 and may soon be approved for measuring your insulin levels. It can go into the water up to 30 ft. for swimmers and you can talk to it (with an iPhone nearby, like Dick Tracey) and even receive and send text messages. However, for me at best I have about a two, two and a half day battery life before it gives me dire warnings.
|Besides being a watch it is also|
a darn good medical device
designed to monitor and record
There was nothing wrong with my old, trusty Casio but it was, well a watch. You could set an alarm and use it, clumsily as a stop watch but it was pretty limited.
The Apple watch, while expensive, but compared to the cheapest Rolex watch, is cheaper by many times, and it does a great many more things than tell time, and the date. One of the features that I try to neglect and when I do it get rewarded with an "attaboy" is to stand. I get so involved with painting or cooking or reading that I have learned to stand when it says too and realize how stiff I have become.
|Who can forget the clunk, de-clunk, de-clunk as the|
first remotes went through the channels.
He came over and after touching every inch of the TV found it's very small and almost hidden turn on switch. He pushed it and the TV turned on. However, without the remote we couldn't do anything still. I had replaced the batteries but it turns out one of the batteries had leaked and fowled the wires. With a cotton swab and 91 proof alcohol we cleaned the connections, put the batteries back in and vióla, it worked! He pointed out that companies use the cheapest batteries they can find so after he left I changed every remote in the house with new Duracell batteries.
Again, this is quite a change from my youth where you had to get up and manually change the channels. Remember? I can remember the very first remotes. My aunt and uncle had a huge Zenith console with a TV, record player, AM-FM radio in a lovely wood cabinet. They had the first remote I had ever seen. Today, much comedy ensues as some member of the household looks for a misplaced remote or the kids tussle with each other to have command over the TV.
So, like it or not, we are a battery driven world. What will become of us when all our cars are battery powered? Or the remote doesn't work. One of the funniest videos I have ever seen was of a woman trying to get into the car and the remote didn't work. Someone came along, got out the key and opened the door for her. Been there and, well, done that!
Thank you for reading my blog. I invite you to take the time to read earlier blogs where my emphasis is to explore the ways art and design affects our daily lives ... and always has. I share with you what inspires me with the hope that it will inspire you as well. Comments are always welcomed!
Be sure to check my ETSY store ... KrugsStudio.etsy.com. I am adding many new and exciting, collectible birdhouses and craft items. Many of the items talked about here will be for sale there!