Gadgets have replaced a lot of bulk in our lives

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from  Kansas City, MO
| Published: December 16, 2012


As some of you may have read yesterday, I had decided to shut my phone off for the whole day. At first I was wary of doing so, but after a short time I started to see the benefits of doing so. For those of you wondering, I successfully kept my phone off for 24 hours. There were times where I would have liked to have turned it on, but stopped myself because it wasn’t for any necessary reason. During my time without my precious companion, I realized that my phone replaced a lot of elements in my life.

An element that used to be very important in my childhood was books. I would carry two or three with me at a time because I would read through them so quickly. The older I got, the thicker the books became, and coupling that with gigantic textbooks that I had to lug around with me from classroom to classroom I wouldn’t be surprised if it did some serious damage to my posture. I’m pretty sure no matter how straight I intend to sit when I’m writing these articles, by the time I’m finished I look like a T-Rex.  Regardless, I don’t have to do that anymore because I have a Kindle. I used to read primarily on my smartphone (when I had a larger screen) but if I read something as long as an entire novel on my iPhone it’s most likely because I’m using it as my last resort.

It’s not just books, either. Newspapers and magazines are also almost a thing of the past for many, as we can get subscriptions sent right to our phone. Dictionaries and encyclopedias are accessible straight from our phones too. No more “What does that word mean?” Instead it’s “Did you know that a synonym for delicatessen is charcuterie?” Yes, now we have the power to be geniuses, and we can tell our friends all about our extensive knowledge of words and their meanings. We can keep up on the latest news stories and celebrity gossip without even having to do more than tap our screens a couple of times.

Quite a few other gadgets have been obliterated from my tote because of my phone, including (but not limited to) my iPod, a flashlight, and a personal DVD player. I actually had to dig around to find my iPod yesterday so I could listen to music at one point while I spent some time cleaning. I probably wouldn’t have even realized just how many things my phone replaced if it hadn’t been for yesterday. I disregarded a lot of things I actually use my phone for. I use my flashlight almost nightly so I can maneuver around the house without having to turn on a light to see where I’m going. The speaker on those phone isn’t that good if I want to listen to the music from around the house, but since I usually carry my phone with me anyway there’s really no need for an external speaker. It works as a small stereo too. I just find it fascinating that within a few years’ time these tiny devices could replace so many different things I used to use on a daily basis.

Has your phone (or tablet) replaced a lot of elements for you too? Do you still prefer more traditional methods of some forms of entertainment? Tell me what you think in the comments!