Apptrap, are you defined by digital?

many books on shevles and stacked on the floor.

A small selection of my messy books


I work in a digital company; we provide a variety of services for companies who have a presence online. This means that I’m probably more exposed to the tech driven world than plenty of other people I know. However, I like to think I’m still a bit of a traditionalist at heart.

True, I love my iPhone (and the Ether app in particular). Ok, I have a blog, Twitter and Facebook. Yes, I do check my emails about a million times a day. But I’ve not been swallowed up by the digital dragon – yet. I still write longhand, I still love unfolding a broadsheet, I never want to stop leaning back in the bath with a new, slowly wrinkling, book.

Only occasionally do I lie awake at night and worry that all of my thoughts are becoming shallow and superficial, that I never have enough brain space or time to delve a little deeper. Most of the time I think the balance is about right and all of that technology is only there to help me.

But if that’s the case, why does the drawing above our social media department fill me with such a feeling of cold foreboding? Maybe because the wobbly picture of an iPhone and its apps spells out the message: These Define Me.

That’s not what I want to hear. Certainly not what I want to believe about myself. If I have to be defined by anything, I want to be things like hot peppermint tea and cold coffee, five groaning bookshelves, ink stains on my fingers, a fuzzy dressing gown, the smell of our breakfast cooking, the cracks of light at the edge of the blind that tell you to hurry up and lift it. What about you? How would you prefer to define yourself?

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16 responses to “Apptrap, are you defined by digital?

  1. The internet is a necessary annoyance to me – even though I’m really grateful that I can earn my living like this, and couldn’t do it without it, I still look forward to the day when I find something else I enjoy and I can just throw my laptop in the sea. I’ll do it.

    I have no home or possessions to identify with. I guess the best answer is My Glasses, or a perpetual state of slight anxiety that keeps me company.

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  2. I like writing in longhand too, I can write more quickly and it seems to flow better. I like your defining items and would agree with the bookshelves, dressing gown (mine is lepoard print) and breakfast, bacon yum! We shouldn’t lose ourselves into the digital world but blogging is def a fun part of it 🙂

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  3. You mean, it literally spells out those words? Why would anyone want to be defined by a tool? Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around? Anyhow, no one who writes long hand and owns that many books can possibly be defined by the iPhone, or even one of its vastly superior yet analogous digital competitors. I think you’re safe.

    As far as how I like to define myself, short answer I don’t, but mugger hats, green Subarus, the other shore, bad sketches, words on a page, and hot mochas on snowy days.

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    • Yup, it literally says that. I think it means that the apps define rather than the actual device actually, but I’m scared to ask! What I do want to know though is, what’s a mugger hat??

      I;m glad you think I’m safe, sometimes I’m worried the Social Media team will get me and I’ll turn into a digital zombie.

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  4. Great post. I suppose technology is just another part of all the stuff that defines us, which is everything we own really. By choice, at least. Of course, we define which stuff we buy, which in turn defines us… guh buh fluh…

    Anyway. The point is that if I was still there I’d probably sabotage that horrible sounding drawing by night.

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  5. Lynsey, I totally agree with you! Glad I’ve left bigmouth and the social team now because I bloody hope my apps don’t ‘define’ me; all I have is the Lothian Bus Tracker and Blogger-droid so I can publish pictures to my godawful lunch blog. Oh and I downloaded a restaurant finder once because I managed to get completely lost in the borders ending up in Moffat and wondered where was good to eat.

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    • Sounds like you made the right choice! Hope the job is going good! I remember looking at your blog when you were eating cheap, hadn’t realised you were still going – will check it oot. I downloaded loads of apps in the first few days, now only really use the ones for reading stuff on the go. oh, and checking Twitter, doh.

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      • Ah I started a new blog where I just take photos of my lunch. Not because I thought anyone would be interested, but because James Cave wrote a snide comment on my mobile uploads album on Facebook saying “I can’t wait for another year of your lunch updates” so I started a blog just of lunch updates simply to wind him up 🙂 I don’t have the attention span for a proper blog, sadly 😦 I downloaded an ebook (Dracula, I think?) to my phone but it was very unsatisfying. Apps, pah!

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          • Well kind of. He started to get angry at me about the number of Boots Meal Deals I consume, and then wrote a short story about me dumpster diving to feed my addiction to pre-packed sandwiches!

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