So we look in wonder at Mobile Phones. They're gaming devices, they're cameras, they're electronic wallets. Oh, and occasionally they're phones as well, when you're not texting or Twittering or throwing birds into pigs.
The mobile market seems captivating and enchanting to us as we marvel at all the things phones can do.
Well, yes, I am impressed with mobile phones, but I'm not impressed with all this functionality anymore. Why?
Because I saw it happen in technology before. It happened slower, more erratically, but it happened.
It happened with the personal computer.
At first there are these massive devices that do a few things and has some software for it.
Then there's more. More software, more options, more tools.
And then we're using them for everything. I'm honestly on a computer about eleven hours a day, on and off, because of my job and hobbies. In any way shape or form should I be startled that my phone (which is a small computer) does everything under the sun (including telling me when the sun sets)?
No. It's not startling at all. The Phones replicated the speed and diversity of PCs, just a lot faster and a lot broader because the mindset, technology, and systems were in place faster and in a more orderly manner.
So yes, on one hand I'm impressed with all my phone can do – but in another, not surprised at all.
This also is a reminder about the eternal cycle of development, that bounce between generalist and specialist technology. We're on a generalist swing now, where devices (mobile) do everything, even if the environment is controlled. It's the same thing that happened with computers and indeed the internet.
So for us who are professional geeks, we ought to ask when/if/what the next swing to specialist devices is going to be . . .