I heard this week that Amazon.com is expecting to begin implementing a flying drone program this year, which will get products to customers’ doors about a half hour after placing an order online. I suspect that, not long after this goes into effect, people will be standing by the door 31 minutes after ordering, shaking their heads in irritation about their “late” delivery.
In a society that is ever more fast-paced, it’s easy for people to forget that we have control of (and responsibility for) things as integral and personal as our own thoughts and reactions.
As technology advances, “developed” humans find ways to take multi-tasking and expectations of results to increasingly higher levels. Pencil-and-paper math problems were replaced by simple touch calculators, which were replaced by smaller and more complex computers. Currently, I can just ask Siri to figure out my math problem for me. And in most instances, automatic algorithms predict my needs and solve problems in the background without my ever realizing the math is happening at all.
The faces of our smart phones are arrayed with neat rows of a hundred apps, all with little red bubbles demanding that we must find out RIGHT NOW that our friend Sarah “loves peanut butter so much (!!!)” or that someone just recorded himself riding a unicycle across a rain gutter. And we have accepted, for the most part, that relieving ourselves of these red bubbles is acceptable at any time: at work, while with family, out to dinner with a friend, on the john.