My mother gave me the following poem, or story of some form by William James:
A New idea is first condemned as ridiculous,
Then dismissed as trivial,
Until it becomes,
What everybody knows.
Being a member of the Net Generation, but surrounded by Baby Boomers and Generation Xers, I know far too much how this is true. I have been treated as an outcast for many things throughout my life, for them then to become the norm. Even as ‘trivial’ as feeling suicidal when my disability support was cut, as many others are facing and feeling. Here are some more examples:
- I was once told by someone that I did the “rudest thing (they) had every seen.” |This was said by a university head between 1998 and 2000 when I answered my mobile in his company, now everyone does it.
- I was bullied, such as being called “Dai Laptop” when I took an Apple tablet to university (i.e. An Apple Newton) and abused more when I had a full laptop (a PowerBook). Now is normal to have both (e.g. iPads, MacBooks).
- I had to fight hard to get to use my laptop places, such as in council meetings, community meetings, etc. Now it is the norm and everyone does it.
- I was called egotistical and many other abusive words for placing my CV and other information about myself online – now all are doing do (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook).
- I was severely criticised when I asked lecturers to make their materials available to me electronically. Now it is them that are criticised if they don’t!
- I was thought of strange when I asked my university to put a Wi-Fi base station in the student common room. Now the whole campus has Wi-Fi!
- I was not good enough to be on the Labour Party’s list of candidates for Parliament because my ICT skills were not relevant. Now they are essential!
- I was told it was wrong for me to use my laptop when watching TV with my fiancee – now it is the norm.
- I was told I would damage my eyes using a band around my eyes with video showing – Google Glass is coming out.
- Being told what do I need a touch-screen monitor for – now many laptops and other devices have them.
So can everyone make sure they do not bully me for the following which will likely become the norm:
- Having a mobile phone watch, which is mostly used with a speaker
- Using retro devices, such as my 7110, as a way of not conforming
- Having a shoulder bag containing all my gadgets that I need
- Having military-grade computers to cope with a demanding life
- Using F1-grade noise cancelling phones so I can hear at train stations
- Using mobile broadband and not having a home connection
- Using multiple SIP or other Voice-over-IP numbers to connect with different localities
- Many more things I do with electronics that others find questionable.