Thursday, 24 September 2015

A Question of Smartness.

Having mentioned smart watches in a previous post, I thought it was about time I read up on just what the hell they are and what they do. In particular, I was looking to find out whether they offer any real benefits to the average human being strutting and fretting his hour upon the stage.

Well, it seems the modern ones offer an awful lot of clever functions, but functions don’t necessarily translate into real benefits. From what I could tell, there’s little or nothing the smart watch can do that isn’t already being done by something else. In fact, the article I read made no mention of benefits at all. What it did point out several times – both in the commentary and the quotations from interested parties – was that the market in smart watches is potentially worth many billions of dollars. And that, it seems, is the point.

Smart watches are here to provide an increasingly obsessive capitalist (for which read consumerist) system with yet another means to promote the insidious condition of desire – which eventually develops into the perception of need – in the minds of the many in order to further inflate the wealth and power possessed by the few. And it’s a fact that many wise commentators through the ages have pointed out that cultivating a persistent condition of desire and need actually makes people less happy, not more so. (Which is largely why I got out of the whole silly system over twenty years ago.)

So let’s go back a few dozen millennia to an earlier invention: the wheel. The wheel has been of lasting and inestimable value to the human race. Where the hell would we be without it? The smart watch, on the other hand, is mostly only here to make a few very rich people even richer. The question ‘So which is the smarter of the two?’ hardly needs asking.

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