Monday, November 3, 2014

Low Tech

When asked whether his kids enjoyed the amazing technology devices that he had created - specifically the iPad - Steve Jobs famously replied, “They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”

He was apparently not alone in the world of technology leaders - lots of folks that spend their days living and breathing tech, limit the amount of interaction their kids have with those same electronic devices.

That's admirable.  And totally freaking impossible.

I mean, we do monitor the screen time Finn gets at home, but temptation is everywhere!  Especially when you're hung over!  Or busy!  Or feeling like just maybe being a grown-up for just a minute and pretending that your life is actually your own, IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK?

While we attempt to limit the technology to just 30 mins every other day (plus those extra-special qualified situations), increasingly technology is sneaking in around the corners.  Finn now has iPad apps for both his reading homework and his math homework.

Who wants to read books when you can read an app, particularly an app that reads for you in a far more attractive voice than your clumsy Dad's?  I know I don't.  I wish Finn's reading app could keep me up to date on all of my important reading.  By which I mean celebrity gossip and Derek Jeter fanzines.

But I digress.

While the concerns about addiction and impact on cognitive ability linger, conversations with Finn have gotten more... interesting, of late.

For instance:

  • When I informed him that his behavior was making me frustrated one morning and tried to engage him in a discussion about how we could fix that, he set me straight.  "I think you just need to meditate, Daddy."
  • Last week, after we told him that we would no longer be reminding him of his chores, we asked him what might need to be cleaned up before he could have dessert.  Without missing a beat, he replied, "If I told you, then I'd be reminding you."
  • As his mom was pressing him for details on a story that he was telling that wasn't quite ringing true, he stopped her dead and asked, "Why are you asking questions?  You have all of the information that you need."  And then went back to playing Legos.

    This will not do.  I did not intend to have these types of conversations until our children were much older.  Edie just showed us that she can count to eleven (though to be fair, I'm pretty sure she has no idea what she's saying).  I'm at risk of being outsmarted by my children before either of them reach the age of 10.

    Either I need to start killing their brain cells with technology or I need to double down on killing my own brain cells with beer so I no longer care.  At the moment, it's a toss-up.  

    Maybe we'll do both.

    No comments: