Lust: techno, that is

You’re reading this from your computer, or other electronic device. WordPress actually looks pretty good on my Android phone–I even  write and edit posts on my phone. But I digress. I am trying to appeal to your inner, or even outer, nerd. If you’re reading blogs and Facebook you’ve probably known techno-lust.

Techno-lust: n. having a burning desire for the latest and coolest new technology.

Not sure whether you suffer from techno-lust? Answer these questions three.

  1. Did you start wishing for a color Nook the day it was announced even though you already own an eReader?
  2. Did you start wanting an Apple Tablet before Steve Jobs announced the iPad to the world?
  3. Do you fast-forward through commercials, then rewind when you see a commercial for an iPad, Android phone or iPhone?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you have been techno-lustified.

Like most lust, this one can never be truly satisfied. There’s always another new device, software-upgrade or rumors of same–just days,weeks, months or years away.

(When you think about it–the crazy thing is not that we want that yet-to-be tech, the real insanity is that we buy now-tech when the super-cool stuff is within sight).

It’s always a tough call. I grabbed the first Kindle within weeks of its release and I’ve lusted after each new version, but couldn’t justify the expense of an upgrade. Now, I’m suffering serious iPad lust–but this time I’m waiting for the rumored iPad 2.

It reaches the point where it is difficult to distinguish lust from need. I do need a computer and access to the internet to perform my various odd jobs. In addition, I’m currently working on scanning and archiving family photos and preserving old vinyl records digitally. This isn’t work, but it goes beyond mere play. For these purposes I’d love to upgrade from my current netbook to a MacBook Pro. Is it lust, or a legitimate need?

The truth is probably somewhere in between–need, leaning toward lust. Nust? Needlust? It seems very different from the gotta-have-an-iPad feelings that cause me to pause longingly in front of the Apple store and replay those commercials just to have another look. I know I don’t need that device.

Yup. I suffer from serious burning techno-lust. This isn’t a want a thing just to have it kind of deal. No. Techno-lust isn’t about collecting things for display. Sure, certain types of technology carry status in the Geek world or the business world. (Look at all the folks carrying iPhones even as they complain it is nearly impossible to make a phone call with this device). But the real motive behind the lust is the desire to play with the technology.

I wanted an Android phone because I wanted to be able to participate in a Twitter conversation about an event while sitting at the event. My Palm phone allowed me to send and receive Tweets via text, but the web capabilities of that phone were minimal and frustratingly slow.

I use my phone all the time–to check the weather, map a route, listen to music, listen to audiobooks, read ebooks,  find a nearby restaurant, play games and–oh yeah–make phone calls. I use it so much that I can almost convince myself it satisfies a need and not merely lust.

That’s part of the power and the lure of technology. It seeps into our lives, becoming so entangled that we can’t imagine life without it. And the more technified the life, the more we want that next-big-thing.

Is there a cure for techno-lust? Probably. But I’m not sure I want a cure. The fact is, I enjoy working with computers in its many different forms from the car GPS that helps me get where I’m going to the Tivo that keeps me entertained.

The lust drives me and helps me to adapt as these machines evolve. I don’t understand it all, but I can usually figure out how to make  new software or hardware work. The more I learn, the more I can get done both at work and play.

So, I’ve learned to use my lust. And to say, “no” or “wait” when that lust pushes me to purchase every next big thing.

  • What device do you use most days in 2011 that you didn’t own in 2001?
  • If you had unlimited funds, what would be your next tech purchase?

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