Gadgets and Super Powers.

January 1, 2007

It occurred to me the other day that my adolescent desire to be greater than my fellow men is why I like gadgets.  Call it a Batman complex.  Batman has no super powers.  He does have a utility belt and a whole lot of other stuff.  He is the consummate gadget guy.

Admittedly, no cell phone is going to make you a superman.  An iPod is not going to help you leap tall buildings anytime soon.  Having a really fast laptop is not going to make you invulnerable, even to viruses.

Yet the coolness persists.  Given my sedentary proclivities and the fact that I generally abhor the outdoors, life saving gadgets aren’t even really likely to help me much.  For example, I could take to wearing a Kevlar vest every day, but all that would accomplish is making me buy new clothes and probably making me sweat more.  I’m not Batman, after all.

I think GPS units are really cool, but if I have to drive anywhere further than 4 hours, I fly.  If I’m going somewhere I’ve never been, I take maps and I never veer off main highways.  Since 99% of the time I’m going to and from work or perhaps to a store, my need for a GPS is slight.

My Blackberry does give me the power to be away from my office and answer email and that’s important.  My iPod lets me listen to informative podcasts while I’m driving so that’s a plus in the advantage column.  My Nintendo DS lets me waste time while I’m not near a computer.  It’s certainly not an advantage, but it can be entertaining.

Someday, a gadget is going to come along that really does give a person an advantage in modern life.  I’ll be first in line for that one.  Of course after everyone gets one, it won’t be an advantage anymore, it will be a requirement.  Until then, there’s always something new to play with.

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