i finally joined the world of smartphones, and it feels great. being able to chat with friends and family overseas, for free, while i’m lying in bed, or taking a tea break, or when i come across something funny/interesting/sad, is awesome. being able to call them for free, without the encumbrance of headphones and both parties sitting at their computers, is equally awesome.
i last felt this way when i eventually signed up to facebook some years ago. today, i still enjoy facebook for the glimpse it gives me to my close, and not-so-close friends’ lives--their thoughts, their links, their pictures, their updates. it is a superficial interaction, but it is still one that i am happy to have. it is better than no glimpse at all.
i’ve come across so many people saying that they wish they were less connected, less addicted to the emails-messages-blogs etc that their phones bring to them instantly. i don’t foresee feeling this way, since i am quite particular with my phone usage. (it helps that i am online most of the day anyways, working on my laptop, so i can keep my phone for what/when my laptop does not allow.)
mel has a great (if slightly lengthy) post on the validation we get from being connected, check it out. as well as on the difference in perspective between today’s children and those of us who grew up without the internet.
despite working from home for just over a year, i have only recently begun to take part in skype conference calls with colleagues in hk. while there is some awkwardness due to time delays and not always hearing those further from the mic, (as well as fervent wishing that i too were there, in that room, dressed up, with my notebook and mug of coffee), i am realizing that the benefits outweigh the discomfort. it allows me to articulate, to interact, to feel validated, to feel part of a team again. oh yes, far more important than any slight awkwardness.