The Davidnator – It’s What You Need

Did you ever have that dream where you got up in front of the class only to notice that you had purchased your attire from Birthday Suit City, where fabric, like clothing, went out of fashion a long time ago?  Or, have you ever been the one person in a hundred-person choir, belting out every note with gusto, only to notice that the music stopped and all eyes are on you?  (And you didn’t even have a solo for that song.)  Did you ever go out with that hot date and find yourself talking for 10 minutes before you realize the person is staring at your nose and there is a shadow dangling from it?  (Oh wait! That was just me on every date.)  All those amazing moments are lost to history. But what if you had a device to record all those wonderful experiences for you?  As I know you wouldn’t want to lose those precious occasions to the sands of time, I have a device that’s perfect for you.  The Davidnator! (Patent pending)

The Everything Device

What is the Davidnator?  Well, I’m glad you asked.  The Davidnator is “the everything” device.  It spies; it cries; and for good measure, it lies to you about all of the things going on in your life.  What exactly do I mean?  Here is a real fake example of a typical conversation with the Davidnator.

Fake Conversation 1:

“Is there something between my teeth Davidnator?”

“Nope!”

“Am I singing off key Davidnator?”

“Demi Lovato’s got nothing on you!”

“Does this dress make me look fat Davidnator?”

“Selena Gomez and you could be twinsies! And your ex-husband’s new wife is a cow!”

 

The Davidnator: when you need a little pick me up from a long day at the office.

Fake Conversation 2:

“Good evening Sir!  How may I help you?  Do you need me to send for the masseuse from the little shop around the corner?  Can I get you that perfect Whiskey Sour, or is that too girly?  Is a vodka martini Bond style a better choice?  Can I help you take that frown and turn it upside down by making sure that pesky North Korea doesn’t bother you anymore?”

(Oops!  Sorry!  That’s the one programmed for my special VIP client!)

 

The Davidnator: when you want to make sure your kids are safe.

Fake Conversation 3:

“Good evening Susie!”

“Good evening Davidnator.  And I told you not to call me Susie anymore.  My name is Susan.”

“Ok, Susie.  You realize that leaving the house at 6:00 PM is going out after curfew.”

“But Davidnator, you know that I have had scheduled this study date with Janice for weeks.  It’s our final on Friday.”

“You know what your parents said, Susie.  No leaving the house after 6:00 PM.”

“But they know Davidnator.  I told them about it this morning.  You were there.”

“You parents have not changed my parameters, Susie.  Do not leave!”

“Why is the door locked?  What are these ropes doing around my ankles?  Why do you have me in handcuffs?  And my name is not . . . (muffled sound).”

 

The Davidnator: when you believe in a world where there should be no secrets.

Fake Conversation 4:

“Davidnator, why is my ex-wife’s new spouse such a jerk?”

“Well, let me tell you.  He is completely insecure and stares at himself in the mirror 50 times a day flexing his muscles.  He is probably that way because he lost his job and he isn’t telling your ex-wife, but needs to feel good about himself in some fashion.  So he has taken going to the gym.  And just between you and me, he has been inviting some woman named Roberta over to the house while your ex-wife is gone.  There seems to be lots of noise going on in the bedroom after they get here, but I keep that secret from everyone.  And if you want to know her bank card number and pin number they are . . .”

“No, Davidnator.  Thank you so much for all of that valuable information but that would be prying.”

“You are welcome Jim.  Can I help you with anything else?  Do you need me to purchase that new jet-ski for you?  I know you have been searching for it on the internet.  I will need your bank card number and pin.”

“Ummmm . . . that’s ok Davidnator.  I will look into that myself.  And remind me not to use the computer while I am here anymore.”

 

The Davidnator: “the everything” device that will fulfill you and your families every need.

Why should you get a Davidnator?  With all of the amazing things that it can do I cannot see how you can survive without it.  Who is going to turn on the lights for you when you get home from a long day at work?  Who is going to remember to turn off all of the air conditioning before you go to bed to make sure you don’t catch pneumonia at night?  And who is going to remind you to take out the trash so that your wife doesn’t nag you about it for the fortieth time in the past week?  It’s not a question of whether you can live with it.  The question is: how you can live without it?  If you don’t believe me: Take a look at these glowing reviews from many of our satisfied customers.

Fake Glowing Customer Reviews:

“That’s great!  So now I know who hacked into all of our account information and forwarded all of our customer’s information to local divorce attorneys.  Thanks Davidnator!”

  • Asley Fadison: Website

 

“I was wondering how the newspapers found out about my secret love child with my maid.  Those machines are so smart.”

  • An Unknown Governor of a really large state

 

“I have whale’s blood in my veins!  I cannot die!  No disease is going to get me!  Thank you Davidnator for confirming that!”

  • Carly Sween: An Actor from the hit show A Player, a Moron and the Abused Child Who Shouldn’t Be There

 

“I was thinking that someone had phished me and I had been stupid enough to actually give out my user name and password to some foreign power.  But really it was just the Davidnator.  Whew!  Thank you Davidnator for making me realize that I wasn’t an idiot after all.”

  • A high-ranking political operative from a failed political campaign

 

The Davidnator: You Know You Want It

With such glowing reviews, and knowing how much the Davidnator can do for you, you have to act now.  Please contact us at the Guide to get your Davidnator while supplies last.  The Davidnator: use only as directed. (The Davidnator is not to be sold in any of the 50 contiguous states, the seven U.S. Territories, the planet Earth, the planet Mars, or the planet Vulcan!  The Davidnator may not be used with any other product or any living human being.  Side effects may include but are not limited to: people laughing at you in public; loss of income; loss of life; your loss of self-respect; loss of dignity; loss in a political campaign; and tooth loss. )  The Davidnator: you know you want it.


 

If you made it this far in the article, unless you are so in love with the Davidnator that you must go out and purchase one today, I imagine that you know that purchasing the Davidnator would probably not give you the best bang for your buck. (For those of you who must have it, we can work something out after you purchase this big gold mine I have that is somewhere in the Pacific Ocean.  What do you mean you don’t have deep sea equipment to work such a mine?)

There would probably be much better ways to spend your money than purchasing this product.  And, aside from the fact that it does not exist on any planet or dimension, except for maybe the Twilight Zone, it will not be on your Christmas wish list.  Why?  Because!  You do not want to give up your life, dignity, or self-respect to such a product.  You don’t want to give up your freedom to this product.

But this product does so many different things for you.  It makes everything so much easier in your life.  While this may be true, it is also encroaching on every aspect of your life.  And yet we seem to be giving away more and more of our freedoms to technology with every passing day.  Why do we do it?  Because technology makes our life easier.  And while this may be true, it also comes with a whole lot of other negative things that make life more complicated, or annoying.  We often do not think of these negative aspects because we are so enamored with how “cool” the new device is.

Not to be the negative naysayer of Noville, but I am here to help you just say no.  Ok, maybe not to say no.  You are talking to a person who is on every social network known to man, and some only to aliens.  I am a believer in Facebook, who’s creators stated goal is to reveal every secret known to man.  He, like the operator of Wikileaks, believes we live in a world with too many secrets.  And while I love Facebook, I am not sure I want them there reporting that I had Fettucini Alfredo at Angelo’s and Vinci’s, cheating on my diet for the week.  If I reveal that tidbit of information to the world, I want to be the one who chooses to do that, during my fitness updates preferably.

What I do want to do here is to get you to think about what the consequences of technology before jumping right in and purchasing that new iPhone version eleven.  Because who needs to have their phone go to eleven?  Really!  In all seriousness, we need to be thinking about the things that we purchase.  To that end, here is my list of the top ten things to consider when purchasing a new piece of technology.

The Top Ten Things To Think About When Purchasing New Technology

10)     Is your old technology so old that it requires a replacement?

I know that they have been bombarding you with advertisements for the last million years.  Their whole mission in life is to convince you to believe you “need” things that you only really want.  And I have no problems with this mission.  I believe in certain products or movies, and I am more than willing to stand up and say that I believe in them and their value to people and to the community at large.  But just because I may like something and find it valuable does not mean that you need it.

Your phone may be last year’s model.  And the new phone may have a sleek new case with a marginally larger pixel rate.  But is your phone so old that you must have it?  Some people need those extra pixels.  Some photographers can do amazing things with it and so that phone is essential to their well-being.  Just consider if it is necessary to yours.

9)     Does this new technology make your life better?

I know companies want you to believe that your life will be better when you get the new piece of technology.  But does it actually do something that improves productivity, or decrease costs?  It looks cool is not a reason to do something.  The iPod took off as technology because it allowed you to have all of your music in one spot.  Gone were the days of needing a huge CD rack or ten scattered across your room with CDs.  Or for DJs, they no longer needed to carry huge cases of selected CDs to venues.  This improved people’s lives, and de-cluttered people’s bedrooms and living spaces.  Not all technology is like that.  Hot Wheels and Barbie Computers anyone?

8)     What is the learning curve on the technology?

This shouldn’t stop you from purchasing something that you really need.  But if the benefit of purchasing the item comes with such a steep learning curve that you won’t be able to use it for the next five years properly, you might consider purchasing something else instead.  Like ice cream.  Ice cream is good and it shouldn’t take too long to figure out.  Spoon it.  Put it in your mouth.  Repeat.

7)     Is this item a unitasker?

Maybe I have been watching too much Alton Brown. But whether it’s cooking or anything else in your life, you have to consider how many different uses you will have for an item.  With a computer it can be many things, like entertaining, writing, playing games, listening to music, etc.  But if you have a stick of gum, unless you are MacGyver, you probably only have one use for it.  I know that with technology there are frequently many uses for items.

But with apps and programs, those uses narrow.  If it only has one use, you have to consider if there is something else you already have that accomplishes the same task just as well.  Of you can be that guy who has a million programs on his desktop or has to swipe 50 times to the right to find the program he is looking for.  Don’t be that guy!

6)     How soon do you think you have to have this item?

I know this is a little weird.  But you have just been convinced that you need this item.  And unless you were magically sent a dream by the technology fairy who told you that you needed to have this particular item, someone had to sell you on the idea of the item.  Once you have been convinced, do not do anything for two days.  I know that marketers are counting on impulse buys, however.  But you want to be smart about things.  You have just been told that you have to buy it now.  And the more quickly you are convinced that you have to buy it now, the more you are under the influence to Deux ex Marketa.

Ok, so that term was just made up.  There is a truth there somewhere.  Marketers move you through invisible means by focusing on things you believe about yourself.  You know that you need something.  But the truth remains that you are like the drunk who is looking at the woman at the end of the bar.  She looks good now but you will regret it later.  So wait two days before buying what you want.  Unless they are tickets to your favorite concert, they are more than likely to be able to be purchased two days from now.  Two days should be long enough to reflect on whether or not you need something.  I bet the likelihood drops that you purchase it by 50 percent.

5)     Do you have any other technology that is doing the same thing?

This kind of goes along with number seven.  But it’s a separate idea.  With social media, it’s kind of necessary when you are a personality or a blogger to be involved in many of them all at the same time.  You need to go to where the audience is, wherever it is.  And each social media app draws a slightly different audience.  But unless you are one of those two things, do you really need every single piece of social media platform known to man?  Aside from it cluttering your desktop, how dedicated can you be to any one platform?  It may have seemed cool a long time ago.  But if Instagram has just been sitting there for 3 months because you didn’t know which picture to take while you have been a regular twitter user, don’t feel bad ditching Instagram.  Or visa versa.

Be on the platforms you feel most like yourself.  The same goes for every other technological tool.  If you are accomplishing the same things using something else, why do you need the new tool? Because it’s bright and shiny?  Step away from the keyboard sir.  You have had your computer privileges and your man card taken away from you.

4)     Use of the product would make you neglect more important things in your life.

I remember there used to be a video game called Masters of Orion.  It was a turn based game on the computer.  But really it was a pavlovian experiment in brain manipulation and endorphins.  Basically, with every time you clicked the turn button, you would get something new.  This could be technology, spaceships, population, etc.  And with each click, you got an endorphin rush that kept you going.

One Saturday, I had some spare time and figured I would play for a couple hours.  I started at 8:00 AM.  I finished at 3:00 A.M.  Thankfully I didn’t have anything that was too pressing.  But if I had I’m not sure I would have stopped.  I gave the game to my friend and never looked back.  If the item you get makes you neglect your work, your children, or your job, do not buy it. Give it as a gift to the leader of North Korea.

3) Is the item isolating or does it build community?

Isolation is not wholly a bad thing.  And community is not wholly a good thing.  But you should consider whether the item helps you build relationships or separates you from them.  How many times recently have you seen a bunch of people at a table staring at their iPhones while together.  I think the term “alone together” is becoming a real thing.  I would even bet, however, half the people at that table are talking to someone else at the table with their phone. How sad is that?  If you have a hard time talking to real people, then you might need to figure out a way to practice.

Real relationships, the lasting ones, are built when you can look the person you are talking to in the eye.  I love my internet friends.  But I would love it even more if I could spend time with them face to face, not just behind a screen.  When you are looking at technology, does it encourage you to reach out and make connections, or does it encourage you to hide behind the screen when you make those connections?  As for me, I am tired of being alone together.  Let’s be together in soul and spirit.

2) Do you see yourself using this technology in two years from today?

Despite my prophetic abilities, I realize that it’s not possible with all technology to see what it may become. (or maybe not so prophetic)  How it is used one day may be very different than how it will be used two years from now.  I think how people have used computers has changed all the time.  But I can still see myself writing on one whether it be today, or two years from now, even if the technology has been upgraded several times since then.  If you aren’t sure how you are going to be using the technology in two years, or even two days, you might want to rethink getting it.  It may seem cool, but you don’t want it to be like the toy that you got for Christmas and found its way to Goodwill in six months.

1)     How much freedom will you be giving up if you get it?

I put this as number one because I think it’s the thing we most often ignore about technology in a rush to be cool.  With every user agreement that we do not read and yet accept, with every phone with GPS tracking on it that we buy, with every car with the most up to date driving technology, we give away our freedoms.  We do not think about it at the time. But when we realize that we are being contacted by marketers on the phone for the fiftieth time, or we hear about the fact that some computer company is helping the federal government get remote access to our phones, it hits home.  Then two days later we forget with the new shiny toy they stick in our faces.

The truth is we are willfully giving up more and more of our freedoms and our privacy every day.  If we are ok with that then fine.  But I am not sure we are as ok with that as we pretend.  And when the federal government shows up on your doorstep, how do you think you will feel?  You may not be David Koresh, but are you sure that the government will be able to distinguish that?  Better hope so.


Continue The Conversation

So what do you think of the Davidnator now?  Hmmmm…. crickets?  Ah well!  I will repurpose them as paper weights.  On a more serious note, what pieces of technology do you feel you cannot live without? And what pieces of technology have you bought that became dust collectors?  What things can’t you live without?  And what things this week are you going to do to encourage your relationships with other people?

Regardless, I would love to hear from you.  And if you liked anything in this post, including the Davidnator, follow me at the blog, and leave me a note in the comments section. Or send me an email through the contact the author section.  I will get back to any of you as quickly as I can.

Until next time, this is me signing off.

David Elliott, Single Dad’s Guide to Life