Just as the world seems like this increasingly wired network of communities that constantly feels the need to stay in touch, are we in the process actually loosing touch? I don't find it unimaginable that soon mobile phones will be confined to the dusty corners of the nostalgia shops and people will never speak face to face. Everyone will only speak to their smart phones or whoever is in it. "Hey let's Hang Out at the Coffee Shop" would not mean meeting at a coffee shop but a Google plus group video conference during coffee breaks.
There was a time when people just received a morning paper, now I'm not sure what to read, Times of India, Straight Times, WSJ or a mix of everything on Flipboard or Evri. While I love the Flipboard magazine interface, I also love Evri's organization by topic of interest. Even better just read what every body is reading by tuning into your Twitter channel. We are so spoilt for choice on this information crazy highway you're just not sure where to exit. Does it really matter if I knew Colnel Gadaffi's whereabouts by the minute or his birthday even? Speaking of which, I rarely call friends on their birthdays, and remembering them is not so special anymore, thanks to Facebook reminders. I have so many friends on my Facebook I don't know most of them.
All of this just says one thing the virtual world has helped us go viral, not without infecting us in the process. Human beings are highly evolved species, our brain senses everything from body temperature, to texture and the subtlest of body languages. It will take a digital dodo to assume that a smiley can evoke the same human response as a smile. Communication advances has undoubtedly brought the world together, yet we run this risk of becoming transactional. It's so much easier to defraud, be ruthless in business or ignore a friend, as the person is just a digital rendering. You don't really know the person, because you never felt that handshake or warm embrace.
A story for bed time is a personalized children's book reading software. You can record yourself reading the book and your children can launch their favorite bed time stories, to hear and see you read them. An up in the air salesman's dream, a one time setup for a life time of guilt free cocktail parties and business travel. But maybe your children will never think of Noddy as that lovable little boy, but a funny kid in a car, as they never felt that good night kiss and your warm embrace. I'm sure as we speak someone is solving that with an iPad app, but you must realize, not everything is solved with a digital embrace.