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What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
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D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
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11/8/2013 | 3:11:16 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
I have seen every episode of Star Wars again over the last few years at the behest of my (now 12-year-old) son. I'm also living with the generational hyper-space jump into technology dependence. He graduated from Nintentos and Wii to iTouch and iPad. I recently gave him a hand-me-down Blackberry Torch -- his first smartphone -- but within one month he was saying it's "lame." Now he's lobbying for the new iPhone. It's mostly about keeping up with the Joneses, not an actual need for the technology. I'm hoping this, too, will pass.

I take your point on putting the screen down. Just yesterday I caught myself checking email during lunch at a restaurant instead of talking to my wife. That's lame. Live your life in the here and now. Use the tools when you need them.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
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11/8/2013 | 3:16:00 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
Jedi are also makers. You're supposed to be able to construct a new light saber from random parts you find at the galactic Radio Shack. Try that with an iPhone
RobPreston
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RobPreston,
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11/8/2013 | 4:02:39 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
At my son's Confirmation several years ago, a father behind me was chatting on the phone and checking his email throughout this Sacramental ceremony. "Lame" doesn't begin to say it.
WKash
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WKash,
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11/8/2013 | 4:17:15 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
What's striking about revisiting Obi-Wan Kenobi's instruction to Luke in today's context, compared to when Star Wars first blasted its way into our culture nearly 40 years ago, is just how much more dependent on technology -- and addicted to it --we've become. One hopes Obi-Wan's message -- and the suggestion that we all need to look up and see the bigger picture around us -- doesn't fade away as technology becomes an ever-stronger force competing for our mind's attention.
GIGABOB
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GIGABOB,
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11/8/2013 | 6:38:26 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
You missed the point. You first have to feel the force before you can use it. Jedi take technology to the next level - from a cyborg bio-neural interface to being genetically engineered humans attuned to electric, magnetic and gravitational fields that surround us. They can use this awareness to manipulate those fields directly with their brain - thus impacting technological elements around them. They do not repudiate tech, they take it to the next level.
Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
11/8/2013 | 8:33:09 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
I agree, being able to move objects with your mind certainly transcends technology. I wasn't saying Jedis dismiss technology, but rather they integrate it brilliantly with the powers of the mind to fend off evil.
TiB306
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TiB306,
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11/8/2013 | 7:24:28 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
"Impressive. Most impressive." "Search your feelings, you know it to be true."
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
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11/8/2013 | 11:27:34 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
"Search your feelings, you know it to be true." That also sounds like Stephen Colbert and his lead-with-the-gut obsession.
bcox641
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bcox641,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/8/2013 | 7:48:20 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
I've got a bad feeling about this...
mak63
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mak63,
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11/8/2013 | 8:00:45 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
You made my day ;)
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
11/8/2013 | 8:15:49 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
This article should have been started with "Spoilers Alert".
I will watch movie again soon, nonetheless, I agree with the authors' point about balance and to use technology for good. It requires education though. My question shall l be, how soon do we need to start teaching children? and where? In our home? school? special programs?
Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
11/8/2013 | 9:12:02 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
Good point Marcello. The hard work involved in striking this balance should not be underestimated. We're not Jedis (obviously) but we can learn to feel our own force and use it to get in
shape, curb addiction, control emotions etc. I'm not saying it's easy. We all need some Yoda wisdom and guidance. :) As for kids, I say educate them in schools and at home early and often on how to balance their real and digital identities. Most kids will stare at screens all day if we let them. It's up to parents and teachers to set boundaries and encourage face-to-face social interaction.
cbabcock
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cbabcock,
User Rank: Strategist
11/8/2013 | 11:17:00 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
The headline used to read, What Star Trek Teaches Us About Technology. My wife would be glad to explain how we made a wrong turn when we came to Star Wars.
Byurcan
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Byurcan,
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11/9/2013 | 2:26:24 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
Not to sound like too much of a Star Wars nerd, but Han in fact does put a lot of stock in technology, assopposed to Obi-Wan and Luke. He is highly suspicious of the Force, which, remember, he tells Luke is nothing "compared to a good blaster by your side, kid."
Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
11/11/2013 | 2:32:21 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
True, Han Solo is a skeptic. But he does say "May The Force be with you" to Luke before The Death Star battle. His way of saying, I respect your belief even though it's not my belief. Solo didn't put enough stock in tech to upgrade the hunk-of-junk Millenium Falcon! I guess he didn't have the money.
sjacks98202
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sjacks98202,
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11/11/2013 | 11:28:09 AM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
In 1977 Microsoft was selling (pirated?) tiny basic for S-100 systems (Altair et al) and Apple was building knock-offs of the KIM-1. Orwell's "1984" was still 7 years away. Missile guidance systems at the time were prone to jamming. "Top Gun" school was formed to teach dogfighting in response to poor accuracy of missile systems in Vietnam. Also note the vent he was aiming for was not a straight on target like another fighter but had to be "bounced" in. Certainly Tatooine was an odd mix of high tech and low tech.
Kelly22
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Kelly22,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/11/2013 | 8:28:52 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
I'm not a big Star Wars buff, but I completely agree with the idea of putting our devices to the side every once in awhile. A couple years back I broke my phone while on vacation and was forced to be out of the loop for a few weeks. Though inconvenient at times, it was pretty relaxing to take a break from the constant communicating that our society is so used to. I definitely recommend leaving your phone behind when out at dinner or spending time with friends and family; some things are just more important than email.
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
11/14/2013 | 2:09:06 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
I stopped getting email on my phone for this same reason, never found a good reason to put it down when it was going off every few minutes!
SaneIT
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SaneIT,
User Rank: Ninja
11/12/2013 | 1:00:49 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
One thing that you missed is that it teaches us that technology is going to peak one day then head into decline until it is a utility. Look at the Episodes in sequential order not date order and you go from Shiny skinned luxury ships and pretty fighters to dumpy falling apart cargo ships and fighters that look like they are one hard turn away from the junk yard. Eventually we'll get to a point where shiny new phones give way to clunky terminals that just barely give us a flickering green image of the person on the other end.
Chuck Brooks
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Chuck Brooks,
User Rank: Author
11/13/2013 | 10:11:10 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
It is true, we are all becoming addicted to the technology, especially smart phones. As our education institution digitize learning and our children grow up in the new technology age, the addiction will continue and grow stronger. Taking a break and putting the screen down is a good idea for everyone.
J_Brandt
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J_Brandt,
User Rank: Ninja
11/14/2013 | 9:00:50 PM
re: What Star Wars Teaches Us About Technology
WeG«÷ve now got G«£Phantom Vibration/Ringing SyndromeG«• and other obsessive compulsive behaviors associated with our smart phones. It is nice every so often to leave C3PO and R2D2 back in the ship, get outside, smell the banthas, socialize with some friends with some karaoke at Mos Eisley Cantina so simply watch the three moons rise.


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