Tag Archives: iPad

I was born before Google

31 May

Kids

Dear Lucas, Stella, and Cora,

I was born before Google. Yes, I am that old. When I was little, we didn’t have an iPad, the Internet, streaming video, mobile phones, or Wii U. We had beta tapes, cassette tapes, regular TV scheduled programming, and our imaginations. (You have no clue what I am saying right about now I am sure.)

We didn’t have video, satellite radio, or a hard drive in our car. We didn’t have streaming music, cloud players, or FaceTime.

And when my mom told me something, I believed every last word down to “spinach makes you grow faster.” Well, because I couldn’t google it. It didn’t exist. There was no way to tell if people were making stuff up.

As your mom, it makes me uncomfortable that you figured out at five-years-old how to launch Netflix before I did. I also think it’s strange that you prefer watching homemade YouTube videos over real cartoons. And I am shocked that you, Lucas, want me to buy you an information architecture app so you can build your own website. You’re five for crying out loud.

We’re now entering an uncharted childhood territory and I see you all becoming obsessive over the latest Minecraft-Mario-Angry Bird mashup, Tinkerbell makeup video tutorial, Google Chrome app, and new releases on Netflix. And you all are getting on my nerves. (I know you’re only 16-months old Cora, but this includes you, too.) The more you are hooked on these devices, the worse your behavior is becoming. You fight over what video to watch. You fight over what device to watch it on. And you are fighting over who is in control. And when you don’t get your way, you all are going crazy like a crackhead who is out of crack.

I am sorry to have to do this. But I am disconnecting you from all devices for the next two weeks. You will have no iPad, no Netflix, no Hulu, no Amazon cloud player, no Wii, no Wii U, no DSi, no Leapster, no Playstation, no touchscreen computer, and no touching my iPhone.

The first few days will be tough. You will go through withdrawal. Then when you’ve reached a state of absolute boredom, I am really hoping that you figure out a way to use your imaginations to entertain yourselves and that you learn how much more fun it is to hang out with your siblings than a device.

So power down, kiddies. It’s time to see what life was like before Google.

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The iPad is more exciting than the birth of a child?

23 Jul

This is what I discovered when I went into labor with our second child. We had just received the iPad three days earlier and my husband was stoked. He played with it every free moment he had. And I knew it was cool, but I had no idea it would be more exciting than the birth of your child until the day Stella was born.

I had a difficult labor. By the time Stella arrived, I had labored for nearly 22 hours. And throughout the ordeal, the iPad seemed to overpower the experience. In the early hours when my contractions were 7 minutes apart, my husband used the iPad to check the World Cup scores for the South Korea vs. Greece game. By the evening, when I was dialated nearly 8 cm and in excruciating pain, instead of holding my hand and comforting me during each contraction, my husband was cradling the iPad.

I yelled at him that I would burn the iPad if he didn’t shut it down and focus on what was going on. I couldn’t believe he would marvel at the freaking iPad more than the birth of our daughter. After Stella finally arrived, he spent the evening playing with apps and surfing. Then my husband turned himself into an Apple salesmen. And for the next two days while we were in the hospital, I watched him give iPad demos over and over and over again to every nurse and doctor that walked into the room. Each pitch lasted at least 10 minutes. It was unbelievable. And each time, he sold everyone. Every time the nurses and doctors returned, they asked more questions about the iPad and its functionality.

This whole ordeal got me thinking about user experiences versus real experiences. I guess we’re living in a time where if the user experience is that great and that awesome, it can rival the experience of even the most precious and intimate human experiences. It’s sad, but true.