Thursday, March 3, 2011

tech thursday: do you take your coffee with a splash of smart phone?

When Jennifer Cooper and I first discussed the whole idea of Tech Thursday, we wanted to be sure we stuck with discussions that looked thoughtfully at the intersection of technology and family.

So today, I want to talk about your morning coffee.

Say what? How is that remotely related to technology and family?

Mornings, at least when I was growing up, was a time to catch up with the other inhabitants of my house. We'd crack open a box of cereal, chat about what was on tap for the day, and pack our lunches. Before you get too nostalgic about the good ole, wholesome 80s (did I really just say that?), I should also include that these mornings included a lot of yelling up the stairs at my brother to get a move on, and frequently ended with rushing out of the front door and some much-needed object inevitably being left on the kitchen counter.

Fast forward to today. My mornings include a facebook check, email check, text message check, usually some multimedia forward of photo or video via my iPhone to a family member or friend, or Foot's Forecast perusal, and scan of the major newspapers on my laptop while throwing down one or two cups of liquid caffeine. Plus getting the Bug up, ready and fed. Mix in a brief stint of educational programming - - say Sesame Street -- that I stream through netflix or comcast on demand.

Has technology ruined our morning family time?

Two years ago, the New York Times ran a front-page article on the "new" morning routine of families:
This is morning in America in the Internet age. After six to eight hours of network deprivation — also known as sleep — people are increasingly waking up and lunging for cellphones and laptops, sometimes even before swinging their legs to the floor and tending to more biologically urgent activities.
Yes, that's an accurate depiction of my post-alarm clock activities. Of course, my mornings become a lot more complex and less tech-focused after the Bug wakes up, but I'm still attached to my iPhone.

So, back to coffee. Do you take yours with a splash of tech or a whole heaping helping? Has technology impacted your morning family time? What does the 'typical' family morning routine look like in the digital age?

I'll be checking my smart phone for your comments...

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Technology Thursday is a joint project of Classic Play! and (cool) progeny. Each week, both blogs will be taking on a family-technology-related issue. We invite you to join the conversation!

Past discussions in this series include


Lara said...

Okay so I don't have the phone next to the bed. But this is what my morning looks like: Kids up, everyone down the stairs, K-up in the brewer and mommy with her droid. I get a quick fix in and then we all SIT AT THE TABLE and TALK. I think balance is key.

Cool Progeny Baltimore said...

See, I definitely have the phone next to the bed. But not because I need a twitter fix, but because I can actually SEE the clock on the phone without my glasses. Haha. But I agree whole heartedly. BALANCE is critical. Eye contact, equally critically.

Jen C said...

I get up, paddle on downstairs in my pink fluffy robe like grandma would have worn, make coffee and then while the coffee is brewing I open my laptop and check email, facebook and my google homepage for news.

The kids come down then I get them breakfast, make lunches, push 'em out the door before the bus comes.

I agree with Lara though, balance is KEY!

I think the problem comes (and I have to be careful about this myself) is when we become so absorbed in online communication that we forget to have conversations with people in the room with us.

Jen C said...

EYE CONTACT!! Yes! I can't tell you how annoying it is to be having a conversation with someone who doesn't look at you when you're talking to them.