Thursday, June 18, 2015

We are in the Digital Age: The Smart Life

In case you just woke up from a loooong sleep and you don't know, yes, this is a reminder that we are in the digital age NOW. The advancements of this age helped a lot of us in a multitude of ways and the conveniences the digital age provides is beyond words. It's such a hair-raising thought that now, you can do a lot of things not even thinkable just a decade ago. Jobs that never existed before or unheard of way back are now being offered. Things that were thought of not to be possible are now being created.

The advancement is exponentially fast that I can't even remember how life was during the era where we don't have mobile phones. Forgetting to bring a mobile phone now feels like not wearing underwear. You just have to go back and get it or you'll have to endure going through the entire day without one. Back in 1996, I got my first digital mobile phone. It was a one-liner, pixel generating machine Ericsson phone. At that time, it was more of a want than a need. All my textmates were my aunties and uncles as most of my friends didn't have one yet. I might say that I'm an early adapter but during those times, the only use I had for it was to use it to forward and save quotes (and jokes). It was the time when SMS was literally send all you can. A time when you greet everyone in your phone book good morning, good afternoon or good night. It was the first time people felt being connected with one another, digitally. It was the start.

Fast forward a year, from my one-liner pixel factory phone, I upgraded to the 4-liner variation of it. The Nokia 6150 then, phones became smaller but it was still the 4-liner variants as I upgraded to the 8-series phones from 8210, 8890 until, 256 color phones were starting to flood the market. Then, it was the era of PDA type phones, megapixel camera phones, until Nokia fame died and now, the competition is between two contenders -- iOS and Android, both smart phones.

In less than 2 decades, from just a one-liner call and text phone that can only display 12 characters per line and memory that can ONLY store 15 SMS, our smartphones right now can easily replace laptops and computers! Heck, a decade ago, I was using a Nokia 9500 to do work and it was workable at that time (pun intended). Now, I can work and do what most of what my computer can do using my iPhone and more!

From just calls and SMS to being able to do work, be entertained, give you peace of mind, and many more, we can safely say that this is now the digital age the people from the early 19th century dreamed about. Yes, we don't have flying cars yet as of the moment nor do we have floating houses but I think that is for the next century. Right now, we don't feel how fast we are advancing because we are like this frog:

Kids nowadays instantly feel being in the digital age. It was like they are born to fit in the digital age! I see some kids needing to watch shows on iPad when eating (not my kid) and schools requiring tablet computers as part of the curriculum (lucky them?). When my baby was less than 1-year old, he can already unlock the iPhone! But for most of us, we are like the frog up there -- slowly immersed in the digital age and by the time we know it, we are already in it and most of us are living comfortably because of it.

Personally, I see the digital advancement as an advantage majority of the time. Various available services help a lot of people, making their lives more convenient. For me, I use UBER to get me to places where there is no parking. My phone automatically connects to the car entertainment system when I hop in and lets me talk to people calling me hands free! Not only that, millions and millions of music are in my music library care of Deezer (and Spinnr) AND I don't even need to touch my phone to navigate through albums or playlists. I search using the entertainment system in my car -- which can also accept voice commands (Reminds me of the movie 2012 where John Cusack tried to start the Bentley and can't start it. Then the Russian tycoon guy just said, "Engine start"). Check out that scene below:

Monitor traffic situations via MMDA app and Waze
In terms of improving safety and security, most of our homes now are equipped with security cameras. You can also use your phone to view LIVE footages of either your home or office via the IP webcams like the FamCam (Partnership between Smart and PLDT Home)! Other safety advancements include cars that can be tracked via GPS and monitored via your smartphone! Other than tracking cars via your smartphone, drivers can now more or less estimate traffic condition using the MMDA app. Directions? Waze is the way to go. You'll be surprised how Waze directs you to roads and street you never knew existed but successfully does so -- with time estimate of more or less +/- 5 minutes! That's pretty good if I may say so.

Digital magazine via Buqo
These are just some of the ways technology now helps us and I haven't even started with social media apps like Facebook, Instagram etc. So if you think about it, all the things I have mentioned can be done using a smartphone. See how far we have advanced in less than 2 decades? From just SMS and calls to ALL that? If phones are now called smartphones, it is inevitable that the life we are living now in the digital age can now be called Smartlife. It's essentially convenience, entertainment, peace of mind everywhere and anywhere -- on demand, the moment you need it the most. I can't help but thank God how he chose for us to live in this lifetime of convenience!

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