iPhone Nation

“My world is much bigger than you see.”

Serena Ryder


Do you drive by GPS? I recently purchased a Garmin GPS and I find it makes driving more interesting. It talks to me when I am alone and it tells me where to go. It warns me when traffic is heavy and it tells me how fast I am going. It lets me know when I am near my destination and it does not judge me when I take a wrong turn, or when I end up on someone’s lawn, or in their roof.


I am new to GPS driving and I find that I watch my GPS a little too much. With each turn I watch how the GPS readjusts so that it follows exactly what I do. I wonder if I waved into the sky, would the little GPS selfie wave back?

iPhone Nation

I realized that driving by GPS has a downside that relates to how I use technology. Things like a GPS, an iPhone and Facebook can change how we live in the world. They interpret the world for us and make it feel that screen experience is real experience. It is so subtle. I was driving my car and looking at the screen more than I was actually looking outside! For a moment, I lost touch with reality and became one with my GPS self. Technology can change how we relate to the world around us and the world inside of us.

In a 2012 New York Times article, teachers are reportedly finding that students are less analytical about what they read because of technology. Consume more, think less, rinse and repeat. We are more distractible because of how we use our technology. You may want to check out this post by Joe Kraus and his rather funny youtube link to a talk that he gave about technology.

My GPS driving experience made me reflect. How I use technology is shrinking my world, making me less creative and less present. I engage my world through my technology rather than through direct experience. And I don’t like what that is doing to me. I don’t know about you, I would rather have my crayons than my iPhone.


Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten.

Then when you hit puberty they take the crayons away and replace them with books on algebra etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the creative bug is just a wee voice telling you, “Iʼd like my crayons back, please.”       Hugh MacLeod

Keep it real

12 thoughts on “iPhone Nation

  1. Pretty real writing Mr. Swaby! Our GPS quit so have to rely on my sense of direction (which is not good) or Google maps. So it does make life interesting. My favorite part of the post is about “getting your crayons back” – far too often we do not allow ourselves to be creative or forget the sheer joy of colour! I love colour, bright, bold – just as vibrant as the lives we live. Thanks for your sheer joy of creating and sharing.


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