My Blackberry broke the other day prompting me to get another phone. I have three offices and my office seems to be on the phone anymore. I went to the mobile phone store and picked out a few phones. A Blackberry for my spouse and I got a Droid. We both spent our weekend trying to figure our phones out. Then when I had an emergency call on Monday, it got cut off three of four times; yep, got to love that Droid. So back to the store I went saying, “What gives?” Reid was very kind and after about an hour, he was able to save my contacts and sent me on my way with another Droid, but it got me thinking…
What ever happened to the simplicity of phones? You know you hear a ring and answer it by saying hello. Now for those who do not know what a real ring sounds like it sort of goes like this; ringgggggggggggggggg, ringggggggggggggggg. Really it isn’t a top forty song or a rap, phones used to ring to alert you to a call.
You know man always wanted/needed to communicate with one another. Really when you think of it, even before phones and we were able to communicate from afar. Man used smoke signals, drums, sounds, even animals that carried messages. So communicating from a distance is nothing new.
However using a telephone is somewhat new if you look at history as a whole. In March of 1876, Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone. The story goes that his buddy Thomas Watson made the device which was a wooden stand, a funnel, some copper wire and a cup of acid. (no not that kind of acid) But parts combined created the first “telephone call”.
In 1877, construction of the first regular telephone line from Boston to Somerville, Massachusetts was completed. Then telephone service between Boston and Providence happened a year later and by 1882 service between New York and Chicago started. Time flies because by 1904 there were over three million phones in the US.
Soon switchboards helped us place calls, and then we had party lines which are a story in itself. Then it happened. Weapon of mass distraction arrived in the form of cell phones! The first “official mobile phone” was used in Sweden by the Swedish police in 1946 and by 1967, mobile phone technology was available; however, the user had to stay within one cell area. Yep, you could not drive and talk. Back then you had to pay attention when you drove, gosh imagine that!
Still these little devices of mass distraction did not make a huge impact until about 1983 when Motorola introduced the first portable cell phone. Well and as we know the rest is history. Well not quite yet; we still have to remember texting. Though I text occasionally, this country needs to pass a very harsh and strict law about texting and driving. If someone is texting while driving, they should be treated just as a drunk driver if not even more harsh. This whole idea of we need to just shoot the bull with people as we drive is about as immature as it gets.
I wonder what Alexander Graham Bell would have thought that his invention has become an addiction? Still for me, my office is on my phone, when my Droid decides to work correctly and when it does work correctly, I can actually have my office in my phone. Not that it matters and I am in the process of deleting it, it came with Avatar. I suppose that is so people can now watch movies while driving.
Don’t get me wrong. I am glad the internet is at my finger tips and I can write and post articles when I am at one of my other offices and can do so from my phone (not from my car!). I am glad important information is at my finger tips. I am also glad i am an adult and can use this tool responsibly. I am concerned that once again, we as humans took a great invention and abused and misused it by having parents spend over 400.00 a month in texting, or talking while driving, or allowing cell phones in school. I have no doubt that there will soon be cell phone anonymous soon.