Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Perils of Face Time

I recently upgraded my iPhone to version 4 (not the version with Suri) and have been loving the new experience. However, one feature that I haven't even been tempted to try is FaceTime. Hell, I don't even like talking on the phone, much less doing it via video.

The FaceTime thing always reminds me of a wonderful riff from Infinite Jest where DFW details the quick rise and demise of video phones. Money quote:
The answer, in a kind of trivalent nutshell, is: (1) emotional stress, (2) physical vanity, and (3) a certain queer kind of self-obliterating logic in the microeconomics of consumer high-tech.
The whole section needs to be read in its entirety - it's easily one of the best portions of that over-long, frustrating, fascinating book - but you can read a brief  excerpt at kottke.org here.

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