Innocuous innovation

Photo by David McEachan on

Hidden in plain sight, the humble streetlamp sits on pretty much every road and has one use. It seems they’re being turned into multifunction devices hosting cctv, wifi hotspots and pollution meters.

I remember objecting to getting a phone with a camera; I’d bought a digital camera a few months previously and resented the fact that I’d be giving it up to use the one on the phone. My investment in the camera diminished my value of the camera on the phone and I found ALL the reasons to avoid using it; the images weren’t of the same quality, the storage was limited, the zoom was poor, etc.

This idea of a multifunction device was an anathema to me. Things were bought and used for a purpose until that single device was superseded – e.g. playing music on cassette tapes was the way we listened to music until CDs came along.

The cameras on phones developed at a pace that meant my digital camera now sits in a cupboard, its 5 megapixel lens sitting unused and forgotten. It’s single use, overridden by the advance of camera technology and the expanse of the mobile phone.

When you make an investment into a technology it’s impossible to futureproof everything, but at least be open to the new opportunities that might happen. Similarly, work out how you will use the technology when it becomes defunct and out of date.

Because it will.

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