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ALYSSA SCHNUGG: Technology can change, but the important stuff will stay the same

When the internet became a “thing” in the middle-90s, I was pretty quick to jump on board and embrace it. I even made some extra cash by starting a little business where I went to people’s homes and taught them how to use it.

However, I’ve started to fall behind in keeping up with technology as something new and amazing pops up almost daily.

I’ve heard terms like Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa but didn’t give them much thought until I was personally introduced to one of them recently when a friend walked into her house and turned on her lights and some music by simply uttering a command.

“What magic is this?” I asked and she explained and I was amazed.

In today’s world, I am seeing things come to exist that were in movies and cartoon shows I watched as a child that were supposed to happen in the future, and in some cases a thousand years or more.

And yet, barely 40 years later, here they are. Star Trek’s tricorder is our smart phones and I first saw a “smart watch” on the Jetsons. Nike now has self-tying shoe laces like from Back to the Future, where we also all saw a hover board in action and wondered if they’d ever be invented. I’ve seen dozens of futuristic shows in my youth where someone walked into a room and commanded lights and music to turn on and it’s now a reality.

I became a bit depressed after watching my friend interact with her Google Home. If technology has changed so much, both with gadgets and medical advances, what will the next 20, 30 or 50 years bring? And I want to see it all; however, at almost 50, chances are that won’t happen.

Unless of course, they invent a way to live forever and, with the way things are going, who knows, right?

I can only imagine how much more astounding it is for those much older than me as they’ve seen the world even before television.

I came home and watched my son try to coax my grandson into walking and we cheered him on each time he took a few steps.

Technology is neat and some are afraid we’ll lose our humanity because of it. But there are things no amount of wires and artificial intelligence can change — a baby taking his first steps, the pride a parent will feel when that child enters kindergarten or the comfort they will give to him when he wakes up with a nightmare. Technology can’t take away your first kiss or the look on your spouse’s face at the altar during your marriage. It can’t take away grief when we lose a friend or loved one.

I’m excited about the future and to see new fun stuff from my childhood television shows and movies come to fruition, but I also know the best things in life will never come from a blister pack.

Alyssa Schnugg is Senior Writer at the Oxford Eagle. Email her at alyssa.schnugg@oxfordeagle.com