Friday, April 20, 2012

The Tiny Thumb Theory

Source: via Angelena on Pinterest

Disclaimer: The "scientific theories" herein are neither scientific nor particularly theory-like. I'm just poking a little fun at myself and my fellow cell phone addicts.

In the future, we all have tiny thumbs that make the touch screens and the tiny keyboards of our so-called "smart phones" infinitely easier to use. I only wish that I could speed up this inevitable evolutionary process, because I currently suck at text messaging on my own not-quite-smart, touch screen phone. It can sometimes take as much as an hour to send one text that says, "Wut r u doin? :)." My huge, gangly thumbs stumble over each letter, hitting the "d" when I mean "s," throwing in a period when I intend a comma. It's really very annoying. I'm sure you'll agree.

You know what's also annoying? Grammar. Capitalization. Punctuation. Spelling.

In the future, with our tiny text-messaging, angry-bird-launching thumbs, things like spelling, grammar, and proper word usage will have become obsolete, because Autocorrect--note the capital A--will take care of all of those pesky errors.

In the future, Autocorrect is a well-honed AI that also happens to be President of the United States. By then, all of the bugs (read: human error) will have worked themselves out, and websites like and will be a thing of our past, replaced (much like our good sense and any remaining language skills) with websites like and

Ah, the future. A place ruled by computers and humans with tiny, ridiculous-looking thumbs. I can hardly wait. By then, we'll probably even have formed a new language consisting entirely of emoticons.

We're already well on our way:

(=^.^=)   <*)))-{   o/\o   *\o/*   (-_-;)

<_< I think you get the point.

Now don't get me wrong. I love technology. I think it has the potential of leading us into all kinds of Jetson-like awesomeness complete with personal space mobiles and robot maids named Rosie. But in this current age of smart phone apps and autocorrect, I do wonder, in all that we're gaining, if we're also losing a little bit of something along the way.

Things like hand-writing. Will the children of the future know the feeling of tracing letters in a phonics book? Of learning cursive?  As antiquated as it may seem, I often still write my stories and poetry in long-hand...there's just something about putting pen to paper that helps me connect with my words and characters on an even greater level.

Things like spelling and grammatical skills, the fine and beautiful art of favor of short-hand and text-speak. "You" becomes "u." "Are" becomes "r." "Love" becomes "luv." And for what? A second saved by cutting down a word and effectively butchering language as we know it.

Things like face-to-face conversation, meeting a person's eyes when you're talking to them, the common courtesy of not staring at a phone while ordering dinner or spending time with a date. Politeness and respect and the manners that our parents taught us long ago.

Coming from a social-network-using, cell-phone-wielding blogger, this all may seem a little hypocritical. Essentially, I'm criticizing the effects of the technology that makes all that I do easier and more successful. Texting, mobile apps, twitter, facebook. They all go hand-in-hand with my world of blogging. They are my teammates, my tools of the trade.

But I'm not asking for these things to disappear. I'm only asking that we think a little bit about our future and our present the next time we text. The next time we launch an angry bird. The next time we stare at our phones instead of participating in human interaction.

Think about how much we've gained, yes...but also, about how much we stand to lose if we allow our phones to take over our lives. And most importantly, think about our tiny thumbs, because who wouldn't laugh when they think of that?

Are you a cell phone addict? Do you think we're losing anything with the ever-increasing popularity of cell phones?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...