BALANCE ON THE TECH BEAM

My daily bus ride to and from work is a technophile's paradise. At any given time, virtually all my fellow commuters may have headphones on or be tapping away at an iPod or smartphone. Even novel-reading is done largely (though not exclusively) with svelte e-readers.

It's fun to be a part of this "heaven of tech"—I love technology and devour news about the latest trends in hardware and software. But seeing the prevalence of tech in people's everyday commute also got me thinking about the larger role it plays in our lives. For my part, I often feel overconnected, bombarded by a constant stream of input that's corrosive to my ability to focus. At times technology strikes me as not only ubiquitous, but consuming and even addictive. On the other hand, I know that for some it can seem remote, inaccessible, or threatening. I know there are many people who feel like they're being left behind by technology—because it's too complex for them, or because for economic or geographic reasons they can't take part in it.

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September 20, 2010
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