This is one of my all time favorites: Angry Man with Computer
I’m reminded by a popular TV series several years back “24″ where American intelligence officer Jack Bauer thwarted the utter decimation of humn civilization every week simply by cracking the evil-doer’s codes via instant messaging and texting on his cell phone while stuck in some hole 600 feet undeground. Just once, JUST ONE TIME, I’d like to see a movie where technology is portrayed realistically. You know, your cell phone battery dies at the same time you realize you left your charger in the other car, your Powerpoint presentation is interrupted because Windows wants to perform an automatic update, or you can’t proceed with your order because your new password will have to have at least one capital letter and a minimum of 8 characters. Nevermind that your Iphone can’t connect to your local network, the server is busy, we are experiencing heavy volume of calls at this time, run time error, and “would you like to make Dunkin Donuts as your homepage?” No, I would NOT, but thank you very much. Those of you who know me well, also know of how fond of and patient I am with tech support for anything computer related.
But, when you think about it, what we use now in our everyday life is simply mind numbing. Its absolutely incredible to think that my voice is a range of vibrations that are translated digitally to some random satellite orbiting the earth umpteen miles above and that it bounces that signal to a tower and back to my buddy Dave on his cell phone- who just so happens to be in Japan at the time of my call. I’m skeptical of course when I’m told that Dave and I are not the only ones on the planet trying to have a conversation. I’m even more skeptical when I’m told that there are millions upon millions of similar conversations bouncing every which way all over the globe at the very same time. We have become SO reliant on technology that when it doesn’t work we are flabbergasted. I met with another design consultant today that does a tremendous amount of work with satellite antenna receivers. He showed me his CAD model of a project that he was working on. The intracacy of the machined sections of this small and incredibly complex part was simply overwhelming. “Who actually can even machine this sort of thing?” I asked. It was rediculous. Even if I could show you an image, you couldn’t truly appreciate it until you’ve seen it at the near micron level. Its given me a much greater appreciation of the technology that we all take for granted every day. Next time your call drops, or Java wants to run an update, try not to be the guy in the video.
- Steve Frank