Technology, Love It or Hate It

I love technology when it works. I am guilty of dependence on things technical. When I take pictures the computer becomes an indispensable tool to process the files into a form that either presents on the web or on the canvas. I get great satisfaction when I’m able to capture a subject in a compelling way. Then  using software tools, I first name the files showing the subject’s identity, then to embedding descriptions into the file (metadata) to document the species; where it was; what it was doing; when it was captured; and other information. Then I enter the images into a database so they can be found in a search among the tens of thousands of other images in my collection. I can then extract an image from the file that satisfies my taste to maximize the attractiveness of the subject.

I love technology for communicating the written word, whether it be an email or this blog, those ones and zeros are key to getting the ideas expressed and delivered. I love the technology of the Smartphone and the way it can deliver encyclopedic information in real time, how it keeps me in touch with people and places. Its GPS keeps me pointed in the right direction on a long journey (mostly). It seems there’s no limit to what these devices can do. We’ve come to believe no matter what is required, “There’s an app for that!”

Technology allows me to paint the canvas with the subjects I wish to present in a framed piece. Framed art on a wall has an impact that is not possible with light emanating from a computer screen. Pigment inks from the modern ink-jet devices promise a printed result that will last ‘forever’. The high end matt papers receiving these inks can draw the viewer in like no previous materials could do.

I hate technology when it fails. I hate that I am so dependent on technology, and when it fails, that dependence becomes apparent. Last week several of my beloved tech toys let me down. I had to reload the operating system and install all my applications on my desktop PC. These steps were not easy. Murphy’s law intervened, and a substantial investment of time was required to overcome several obstacles. Prior to the decision to reinstall the OS, my large carriage printer stopped delivering two of its 11 colors, thus rendering it useless. I purchased tools and cleaning solutions to revive the lost channels, but after trying this approach, a failed main board halted all further progress. I had to buy a new Epson 4900 printer. I first considered replacing it with an older, more robust 4880, but I was swayed away from this approach due to my investment in inks and supplies. Unlike the OS problem, which required a substantial investment of time, the printer was a drain on both my time and money resources.

I spent more than a week rebuilding my system to achieve a platform for executing my business and my avocation. I’m ready to put my new printer into service. Once I’ve crossed that hurdle I’ll be back to where I was before all this nonsense cropped up.

I love technology!