Since pagers came out, followed by cellular phones and now PDAs with interconnectivity, there has been a growing need for people to "get connected" with the internet, friends, or family. But is this all coming too fast?
Imagine, now, that you could be walking down the street reading K5 on your own personal computer, complete with headgear reminiscent of the movie Hackers. How much attention could you possibly be paying to the people around you, to the crosswalk sign telling you to "Don't Walk", or to the car barrelling down the road because they may be a few seconds late to an informal lunch date (or worse, they're browsing K5 as well). There has already been some discussion on this topic recently on K5, but only regarding cellular phones. Portable computers (while still in development stages) can only add to distractions, and that level of distraction is only going to cause trouble.
Of course, this is just worse-case. I'm not a Luddite, I have a PDA and cell phone myself. I value being connected. I can see the benefits; for example, if there were a constantly updated analysis of traffic patterns during rush hour, there would be a lot less stress in my life. But the problem that I see is that many people may not learn how to integrate the new technologies into their lives. If the phone rings, you do not have to pick it up. If you get an e-mail, you do not have to read it immediately.
What do you think? Am I just a doomsayer, touting all the horrible things that only could happen, but with training and a little common sense, could be avoided? Or is there a possibility that I'm right, and this new wave of technology will require a complete re-thinking of how hhigh tech devices fit into our lives?