Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Technology--Moving from the Old to the New, Ghana-Style


It is an article of e-faith that as soon as anything hip, trendy and new becomes de rigeur, the old is phased out slowly and surely. No surprises, then, that you will find many outlets dedicated to printing digital cameras, but very few are ready to print film from the old cameras.

This was one particular trial that I was happy to endure today. Happy, because it served to underscore, in so many ways, that technology in a developing country like Ghana is a potentially spurious concept.

Spurious, because Ghanaians, say, are quite happy to see that a lot has changed in the mobile telephony world on account of being able to access GPRS services and live (voicemail) SMS, but if these technologies are leaving behind old technologies, such as the basic ability to make a clear call on your phone, then one begins to question whether something is not rather a-miss!

In this specific context of looking for an outlet to print my "normal" and conventional films, whilst I was amused, I was also irritated, because all the places I knew were either no longer printing such films, or had moved on to other places.

Life is evidently about living and learning, but it takes some experiences like these to make you stop and think whether the technology should not start to complement existing ones, rather than making them obsolete?
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