Say Hello to My Little Friend!

My iPhone is a constant companion that I use throughout all my waking hours. It’s literally the first thing I grab in the morning and the last thing I relinquish at night. Really, it is! When I dreamed of owning one I knew I would have many uses for it, but I never imagined how much it would become an integral part of my everyday life. How it would become… my best little friend.

I’ve often said that if I lost my laptop computer, it would be like cutting off my right arm. With my iPhone and its instant ease of use and portability it’s far worse! (The same said arm and a leg of your choice below the knee). And the funny thing is… I rarely use it to make phone calls! Maybe they should name it something else. iPhone no longer does it justice!

I text, I Spotify, I Instant Message. I tweet, I Facebook and I occasionally email. I know what LOL and TTYL means.  I have Siri, I have WolframAlpha and Evernote. I’ve reunited with family and friends and have made new ones in a digital world. I have the Internet, news, books, the information superhighway and the world at my fingertips!  Most of my communication is through the written word. I can go days without even an audible “Hello.” With dozens of apps I use on a daily basis there is so much more that I do with my iPhone. Even in preparing these thoughts and the creation of this blog entry, with my WordPress app,  it was accomplished in it’s entirety for the first time using only my little friend.

I have seen in my lifetime private written messages that we once called “letters” taking days for our family and friends to receive them. Oh how we waited in anticipation for day after day after day to receive a reply. Now the back-and-forth process, no matter the distance — or the time or circumstances that separate us — takes only a matter of seconds through our handheld gadgets. Is it any wonder the U.S. Postal service lost $16-billion last year? We now have an entire generation that has never even licked a stamp!

My music collection once numbered more than 400 CDs and amounted to around 5000+ songs. Stored in two heavy suitcase-like carrying cases, and weighing around 60 pounds, it could take several minutes to find and finally play a song of my choice. Todays modern technology has reduced my collection to one easily controlled device weighing a miniscule 4 ounces. And now with just a few taps of the screen any song in my now 18,000+ collection can be playing within a matter of seconds. Amazing! And this but scratches the surface of the tremendous power and capabilities of — yes again — my little friend.

I never thought much of the ability to make video phone calls. Like many things, I just didn’t get it! But now I have the opportunity to engage in frequent Facetime conversations with a few friends and my son who lives thousands of miles away in Brazil.  It’s amazing the new dimensions this feature offers and the clarity of the video. No longer is it a mere phone conversation. Instead it’s like a living room visit as we converse back and forth sharing not only words but sights as well through our two-way cameras. Only problem is… you gotta dress for it!

Finally, my long-time goal to free myself from the entanglement of paper has begun to see the light of day, and in a big way! All those loose slips of hand-written notes, the to-do lists, the reminders, the memory joggers those scraps with no rhyme, reason or organization now at least have found some order. The myriad pages and pieces of paper are no more and only a couple of small spiral notebooks, some files and notebooks remain. Life is great thanks to my little friend!

To say I’m amazed with the technological advances we’ve seen would be understated. All of this goes far-beyond anything I would have imagined just a decade or two ago. I envy what my children and their children will someday be able to do that by today’s standards are difficult for us mere mortals to conceive, to even imagine. I read Bill Gates’ 1997 book The Road Ahead, he wasn’t even close! And we’re using words now that 15-20 years ago would have sounded like something uttered by an extraterrestrial! (Google?)

“Never in recorded history has there been a period of such remarkable progress in terms of science and technology. These advances have helped to facilitate … growth and expansion throughout the world. But they have also contributed to the rise of materialism and self-indulgence and to the decline of morality.”*

So, there you go. I’ve introduced you to my little friend and have included him in my life at the risk of materialistic self-indulgence and moral decline. But you never really know, for as horrible as it can be — at the hands of the heartless and utterly fickle — friends can be easily forgotten when new ones come along. I’ve been recently introduced to iPad.

*M. Russell Ballard, Learning the Lessons of the Past, April 2009, LDS Church General Conference

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11 comments on “Say Hello to My Little Friend!

  1. Pat Errigo says:

    That’s great for you Rick. But I feel lucky that I can use this p.c. and the Tracfone that I have. I just recently moved up to a camera phone. I wasn’t brought up with all this stuff but I’m trying to learn.

    • Rick Gleason says:

      Thanks Pat for your visit and comment. I hear ya! I was lucky to get into the business of selling IBM PC’s as well as Apple 2s and their software back in 1983. In fact I sold one of the first and original Apple Macintosh’ back in the day. That was a great way to learn about them.

      I knew a personal computer would be a perfect tool for me when I first looked at an Apple several years before while living in Bend, OR. I bought my first IBM PC in ’83.

      It took a long time but I made the switch from PCs to Apple about 10 years ago and haven’t looked back since!

      Always good to hear from you!

  2. LeRoy Bloom says:

    Good for you. Almost everyone I know either has an iphone, Galaxy, or similar device. I haven’t ever felt the need for that much connectivity. I really like my cheap little trac phone, simple to operate and very inexpensive for minutes and days. I must admit there are times when I think about an iphone or some device like it. It would be useful while traveling, but since I have got all my research (or most of it) for my book finished I’m just not on the road nearly often enough to warrant the expense of such a device.

    So I wonder, have you given up your lap top and rely totally on the iphone, or are both still so elemental as to cause the metaphoric loss of limbs to lose either?

    Good article Rick. Hopefully you will start writing your blog more often.

    Lee

    • Rick Gleason says:

      I pay zero for cell phone access. Using Google Voice the only drawback is I only have service when I have WiFi. Small price to pay since it saves me at least $120 a month. Everything else the iPhone is known for works perfectly.

      Since I have Internet access at both home and work I get by. Were I on the road a lot it would not be viable but that’s not the case.

      Good to hear from you Leroy. Thanks as always.

  3. Gale Simcox says:

    Hi Rick So good to read your posts. I am going to Curwensville on the 4th and 5th of July. Visiting the Patton graves. Is there anything I should look for that you can think of. Let me know. Also I have been reunited with several cousins since using Ancestry. What a great journey it has been. Blessings, Gale

    Sent from my iPhone

    • Chris Dickens says:

      I’ve used my iPhone to get directions and to find parking and food. My iPad is my whole life and I see so many doing the same have laptops only use them at home . Finally got rid of my desktop.

    • Rick Gleason says:

      Gale,

      Thank you for stopping by and for your comment! There might be something I’d like you to do if you have the time. You may also want to send an email to LeRoy Bloom, whose comment appears just before yours. He has done extensive research on, and is about to publish a book about, the very prominent Bloom family. He may or may not have something for you to do while in Clearfield county. It certainly wouldn’t hurt to contact him. I’m sure too he’d appreciate the offer. I’ll send you his email address separately as well as my request, but only if you have time and it works with your schedule.

      Ancestry is indeed a great place to meet like-minded people. In my family history research I have come to know many distant, and not so distant, relatives that I otherwise would never have known.

      I think you’ve no doubt already seen it Gale, but for those that have not I’ve written about this subject on this blog at the following link:

      http://rixxblog.wordpress.com/2011/09/18/family-history-and-the-story-tellers/

      Meanwhile I hope your trip will be both an enjoyable and profitable one. I was born in Clearfield and many of my large family of aunts, uncles and cousins were born, raised and died there. I think something like 6 generations of my family are from Clearfield county. I still have cousins in the area, some who subscribe to this blog.

      Thanks again for writing.

  4. Ron Susek says:

    Hello, Rick’s little friend. Glad you have brought such joy to his life. He’s worth it. Ron.

    • Rick Gleason says:

      Auto-sequencing begins 2013182022919

      2:29:19 am PDT
      Monday, July 1, 2013

      Julian day number | 246475
      182nd Day, 27th Week, 3rd Quarter
      49.59% of 2012 elapsed, 50.41% remain

      Telestial Coordinates
      47° 38′ 30″ N 122° 4′ 58″ W
      Altitude 186′

      Ron,

      All my circuits are at maximum function and my battery is fully charged. But I must resist as my artificial intelligence is programmed such that I am forced to reply, “all of this seems like a big to-do over nothing.”

      As my superior Rick is currently in a natural state of rest, during which his consciousness of the world is suspended. I’ll assign Siri, his intelligent personal assistant and knowledge navigator, through Web Services the task of notifying him of your very pleasant and welcomed message. I’m sure he will be pleased.

      Should you reply to this message please reference the case sensitive number at the bottom of this automated correspondence in its entirety.

      Thank you,

      Rick’s iPhone
      LFF

      Serial number: DNH73945TVBZ22
      Name: iPhone 5 (GSM model: AT&T and Canada)
      iOS 6.1.4
      ModelCode: iphone_5
      Model Number: MD636
      Group1: iPhone
      Group2:
      Generation: 7
      Machine Model: iPhone5,1
      Model introduced: 2012
      Production year: 2012
      Production week: 37 (September)
      CPU speed: 1.3GHz
      Screen size: 4 inch
      Screen resolution: 1136×640 pixels
      Colour: Black
      Capacity: 32GB
      Factory: DN (China, Sichuan Province, Chengdu City, – Foxconn)

      Worth billions of monetary units.

      Reset to Idle State
      2013182022936

      Reference: 8388DA3754ek395308j7655

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