What Would You Do if Technology Failed?
One of the things I found most intriguing about Ally Condie's Matched is how technology is approached in this new society. At one point Cassie says that the Society is in part a reaction to the overabundance of technology faced by earlier generations. They had access to technology all the time and rather than controlling it, technology controlled them. And when it failed, they were doomed.
“And as the Society reminds us, there's a difference between knowledge and technology. Knowledge doesn't fail us.” Pages 31-32
I don't entirely agree with the quote, but I do find myself nodding my head all the same. Even though I have plenty of knowledge crammed into my brain, I do feel like I often lean on technology more than I did ten years ago. It makes me think of how I am often dependent on technology for things I just simply used to know. I used to have a stellar memory when it came to phone numbers and birthdays. Now I'm lost without my cell phone contacts and Facebook reminders.
I rely on spell check. When I'm planning meals, I'm usually more likely to turn to an internet search than to the four shelves of cookbooks in my kitchen. We do still keep maps in our car, but they are our back-up in case we hit a poor signal zone and our phones' turn-by-turn directions stop working. While we're on the topic of phones, do we really want to talk about how often the only way I can find my iPhone is to call it from another phone?
Technology is not absent in Cassie's world, but the use of technology for personal purposes is seriously limited by the Society. My life is pretty dependent on personal uses of technology. From my employment to my banking -- it's a little frightening to think about it failing. Do I possess the ability to live a life without technology? Nope. But I also don't think technology is going to fail. At least, I hope it won't. Someone's working on making sure it doesn't, right? Hmm, maybe I better go memorize some of those phone numbers ... just in case.
Do you rely on technology for knowledge?