During my recent trip to Helsinki, one of my friends asked me if it really is possible that someone could do all of their necessary computing (re: live) from just their phone. They cited things like needing a larger screen for movies or games, and just the general discomfort of having much of what they interact with happening on a 3-5in screen.
Well, you kind of know my answer to this line of questioning. But, I wanted to open it up here as there was a conversation on another website which also brought this topic to light that reentered my view.
The perspective of computing where I am from (USA and middle class) is that there are more and better screened options to do various types of computing. There’s the automotive dashboard or cylcing computer for transportation. There’s the TV for home media viewing. There’s the mobile and tablet for personal media viewing, gaming, and creation. There are tablets made for collaboration. And other examples. Given all of those available screens, it is easily the assumed practice to master each of those interfaces within their specific domain because they are available to you. When you don’t have (or want) a TV, you morph the smaller screen of a mobile, understanding its limitations and using a few of its benefits (sitting in bed with your favorite programming on-demand-style).
However, I chose to go about computing differently, and hence the question from my friend. Clearly, they were impressed that I could do so much from a mobile and tablet. But, they had very little context of what it meant to go about computing when the mobile was the primary or only means of doing life-by-PC. One of our friends on the trip was from an area where the majority of people didn’t have access to much more than a mobile and perhaps a radio or community TV. They could see how my lifestyle choice lent me a perspective into how they lived a bit more than some other commentators on mobile. And that’s really where this article, and conversation topic comes from. They said simply, if I had the choice to live mobile-only, but there was more, most people would chose the more instead of the only. With many not able to make that choice, sometimes, we have to consider our brothers and do our best to see through their eyes – was my response to these.
And so I’ll put the question to you as it was put to me. Could you see a situation where you had a mobile or tablet as your primary computer? If so, what challenges would you run into personally, professionally, spiritually, etc.?