Lessons from a broken mobile phone

PUBLISHED : Friday, 13 February, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 13 February, 2009, 12:00am

It was a small but expensive accident. When checking my messages the other day, I dropped my mobile phone. When I picked it up, I saw that half of the LCD screen was damaged.

I rely on my phone for much more than calls. I use it for messaging, playing music, taking photos, playing video games and surfing the internet. Now, I can only receive calls and dial numbers which I can remember.

I really miss messaging. It is a useful way to stay in touch with friends, as you cannot phone them during class. But the interesting thing is that I am really enjoying listening to people's voices again, instead of messaging them.

On the bus I can no longer play video games, but I get just as much entertainment from reading instead.

My accident has taught me that technology changes our lives, but does not always make them better. In some ways, we may even be better off without it.

Yau Chun-hei, STFA Tam Pak Yu College

From the Editor

Thank you for your letter, Chun-hei. It's impossible to deny that technology has improved our lives. The advances in medical sciences, for example, cure sick people and extend their lives. We can travel across the world in a matter of hours. We can send messages to people thousands of kilometres away in a matter of seconds.

But all this technology does mean we tend to overlook life's simpler pleasures. As you have discovered, sometimes taking life more slowly can be equally enjoyable. Why not set aside a day each week or each month when you switch off your mobile phone, your game console, your computer and your TV and do something different?

Play a board game with your family, go for a hike with friends, learn to cook something delicious - then serve it - or challenge yourself to read a book you think is difficult.

You'll soon remember how easy and enjoyable life can be, even if you're not plugged in.

Karly, Sub-editor