From tech to trivia

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The Verizon iPhone was unveiled today. Or, to put it another way, we got to see tomorrow’s trivia question today.

The very excellent Blog of the Nation reminds us that the pace of technological miracles that are supposed to make our lives easier is accelerating. Or so it seems. The time between “that’s so cool” and “what the heck is that?” is getting shorter.

Which means the age at which you will feel old because your children have absolutely no clue what that item is that you found indispensable just a few years ago — wasn’t it just a few years ago? — is probably shorter than the age at which that occurred for me.

Watch it and weep, whippersnappers:

John Asante at Blog of the Nation appears to know this all to well:


A few months ago, my friends and I were chatting with a few teens after a soul concert here in D.C. We got into a discussion about the evolution of rap.

And I kid you not, one of them said the first rap album he listened to was Kanye West’s The College Dropout. The choice of artist wasn’t the shocker — it was the fact that this album came out when I was a senior in high school. I’m not that old, am I?

And that’s the thing. You are now “old” at an earlier age.

But back to the present. People are actually arguing these days about the phone they use, in the way we once had that infernal PC vs. Mac debate (go ask your parents).

That sort of thing, Linda Holmes of the Monkey See blog says, should stop:


Here’s the thing: To my knowledge, no one is going to line you up and require you to purchase an iPhone if you are happy with the monkey-friendly phone you have now. You can choose to be in bed with whatever companies you like, or you can dislike mobile technology, or you can put a rotary phone on your desk and call yourself Commissioner Gordon. As long as I have what serves me and you have what serves you, I feel no need to explain to you why you would be better off with my phone, and I’ll thank you not to explain why I would be better off with your phone. Why? Because these things inevitably devolve into battles about how the brand name on the thing you use to type “I’m down the street — I’ll see you in 10 minutes” says something about whether you are an independent free thinker or a tool of The Man.

Enjoy your new toys, then. Because tomorrow, it’s all trivia.

In the meantime, if you want to cram for that afternoon lunch with your tech friends, here’s the cheat sheet on the new iPhone from John Moe:

NPR’s Talk of the Nation will kick around the delights of the Verizon iPhone this afternoon between 1 & 3.

(Photo via Flickr under Creative Commons license)