Thursday, April 27, 2017

helping us, or mastering us?

our devices and dependency

our devices help us into dependency,
we surrender using our own minds to parse the situation
and posit potential answers,
we defer to the device, the tool, the Internet,

the weather?
an anonymous app assures us it knows what will happen,
a GPS device knows where we are and where everything else is,
like a parent who holds our hand while we cross the street,
it shepherds us on our way,
even our walking?
our progress measured to a tenth of a mile,
even our steps, pulse, health monitored and told to us,

why should we use mind and senses to stumble toward answers
when we can question Google or Siri
and shortcut process directly to what we want to know?

just as we prospered with our parents in charge,
so do we prosper with our devices increasingly in charge of us,

yet I fear our culture needs to be more adolescent now
and figure to find a way to our independence,
to find our way forward,
so that then we can come back to the devices
and use them as wonderful tools
that more supplement than supplant
the decision-maker within us,
the one who can bring “why” and “where” to the journey,
the tools know well the “what” of it all,

the question is:
who is the master?

by Henry H. Walker

April 24, ’17

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