Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Today's CNN Survey Question

Well, the one thing that I didn't want to happen....has happened.

Today's CNN survey question is:  Do you have a Smart Phone?  Hmmmmm.  Gosh, we have two phones, a Trac Fone and a regular land-line phone, both of which receive calls, take messages for us, and allow us to make outside calls.  I'd say that makes them "smart," considering our first phone was the crank type wooden box that hung on the wall. 

Okay, back to the CNN survey question.  Even though we have two phones, I voted "no."  I don't have a Smart Phone.  To be perfectly honest, I don't know what a Smart Phone is or what one does.  And, that's where my angst enters the picture.  The advances in technology are moving so swiftly that I'm feeling the dust in my face.  The world is passing me by, and I dreaded the day that would happen.

Okay, so this morning I did a little research and am now so thoroughly confused that I decided to lay my ignorance on the table and hope to god somebody else out there will feel as lost as I do.

1.  Unlike the traditional cell phone, smartphones allow users to install, configure, and run applications of their choosing.  (I'm scratching my head trying to think if I have anything around here that I could install or configure.) 
2.  Cell phones and PDAs are the common handheld devices today.  (What's a PDA?)
3.  Smartphones send and receive mobile phone calls - some smartphones are also WiFi capable.  (What's WiFi?)
4.  Smartphones have PIM capabilities (I guess that's personal information management), such as organizing to-do lists, calendar appointments, notes, etc. (Get real people, I can't find a frickin' pencil and a post-it note half the time!)
5.  Data synchronization.  (I really don't think I have any data that needs synchronizing right now........)
6.  Instant messaging (I just want to be left alone).
7.  Video game capability, can play audio and video files in some standard formats.  (Sorry, my eyesight isn't good enough to really need that feature.)
8.  The future promises to be even better when the smartphones will have NFC capabilities (near field communication) so the phone can act as a wireless credit card.  But, that's still in the trial phase of development, thank god.  (Didn't we once have paper money and coins?)
9.  The flexible interfaces and network protocols are appealing, too.  (Hey, I used to be flexible!)
10.  Then we have the OMA (Open Mobile Alliance), which is a 'collaborative organization with the mission to facilitate global user adoption of mobile data services by specifying market driven mobile service enablers that ensure service interoperability across devices, geographies, service providers, operators, and networks, while allowing businesses to compete through innovation and differentiation.'  (I'll be glad when that happens, whatever the hell it is.) 
11.  Then we have the SyncML project that will eliminate the trouble of worrying about whether your PIM devices sync up with your phone and vice-versa.  The project is designed so any kind of data can be synchronized with any application on any piece of hardware (the microwave, too?), through any network, provided they're all programmed to OMA standards.  This includes synchronization over the web, bluetooth, mail protocols and TCPIP networks.

What's a plugger to do!
Whew!  Knowing just this teeny-weeny-itsy-bitsy bit of how quickly my generation is being swallowed by the Smart Sharks makes me squirm and squeal.  Now I know why my parents' generation told us to go fly a kite when we tried to get them to use the computer.  We are officially entering the Plugger Phase of Planetary Possibilities, and I'm going to have to accept the fact that we are Has Beens without Smart Phones.  So be it. I'm going to go mix myself a Bloody Mary.  A very strong one.  With celery.

Today's Trivia:  I went to school with Alexander Graham Bell.
(Just kidding!!!!!!!!)