Whom Do You Really Love This Valentine’s Day?

What is it that you love the most today? On this Valentine’s Day. Yes, your mobile phone! You probably can’t stay without your work being interrupted every few minutes by a notification. Not just mobile phone, our love affair with technology products goes beyond that. Let’s explore how technology is changing the way we celebrate Valentine’s Day and our relations with those we love.

Just imagine someone who could remind you of all your appointments, upcoming meetings, remind you when to take your pills, set the AC / heater to proper setting, adjust volume on your music system, switch channels on your television set, open the garage door, and perform a million such myriad tasks throughout the day, without complaining. Certainly its only technology you can think of and nobody else.

Technology has begun to occupy a central part in our lives, like our Valentine, maybe even more so in some cases, unfortunately. Our love for technology is many a times very disruptive in human relations. Imagine you are on a dinner with your Valentine and the constant notifications keep interrupting – that’s very impolite and unromantic. Although none really makes voice calls in 2020, the constant attention to the mobile somehow shows that it is more important than the person sitting in front of you. That is harmful to relations.

Technology has a way on enslaving us. Want to find the best restaurant in town for the dinner, Google it. Want to find where a movie is playing, Google it. Want to find what is the perfect gift to give, Google it. Its almost as if Google has become our Valentine. Why not ask your Valentine instead what she/he wants and get it. This need to know, at this moment, is worrisome. Many pieces of information we google all day could probably have been put off for a later time.

So which technology do we love? Mobile phones, obviously. We can’t live without them, or so it appears. Apple watches synced with mobile, that is another. Even on a morning walk or jogging, we need technology to reassure us that we have indeed covered the ‘n’ number of steps in time ‘t’ minutes. This love for our body is somehow interlinked with love for technology.

Automation has invaded the homes. Whether it is our humble TV, music system, apartment doors, security camera, AC and heating systems, window blinds, pet toys, everything is controlled by technology.

Alexa and Siri keep us company by responding to our “commands”. Its a good thing these commands are directed only at products of technology, not at people, for that would create chaos. As technology becomes all pervasive, a new way of interacting with technology products is emerging – voice control and voice activation. Voice will be the new user interface of the 2020s. And just imagine if the voice that responds is same as your Valentine’s voice! Well, now it is technically possible.

But no matter how much we love and adore technology, it is not without its risks. Risks like privacy issues, and obsolescence. Today, it is estimated that the life of a technology product is less than a year. The product may last beyond that, but before a year is out, a newer device that is “better, faster, with a bigger screen, more memory, and more features ” will be out and you will find yourself stuck with an “outdated” product while your friends move around with “newer” models. These small incremental changes don’t come cheap. It is important to consider whether you need the “fastest processor, and largest screen size, and a higher resolution camera” every 12 months. You will be pleasantly surprised that life moves on perfectly even if you use your tech products for 2-3 years. Save that money for your Valentine instead. Love your technology for a longer time. Love your Valentine forever. Remember, the “latest” product is in development stage in the lab. If it is already being sold, it is “outdated”.

Technology has changed the way the world looks at love and relationships. Technology has become the enabler to find love. Technology has also played the role of a villain in many cases causing breakups.

On this Valentine’s Day, spend a tech-free day with your loved one. Give your undivided time, “notification-free” time to your loved one.

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