Value of information
I forgot my Palm to work yesterday. I did realize it immediately as I had walked out of the door, but since I have forgotten my PIN code, I couldn't get back in. I even missed my tram. :-(
As I was walking home (not a good idea, since it was over 20 degrees below zero and somewhat windy), I realized that I am not really that annoyed by the loss. First of all, I don't really expect to need it too much over the weekend, since my phone holds the most important phone numbers anyway, and second of all - I have a backup on my home computer.
I have been jokingly (I hope) accused of attaching emotional value to gadgets, but that is not quite true. I do place emotional value on the data that is in the computers - emails, programs I've written, the amount of effort I've put into tuning my system, and the connection it gives me to wonderful people around the world. But not the computer itself. It's just a tool - something that allows me to do nice things, and keep them stored. Sort of a hammer-cupboard combination, with radio :-).
I wouldn't terribly mind if someone even stole my Palm. The value of the data in it is much bigger than the monetary value of the device itself (which would probably be mostly covered by insurance anyway), and while the trouble of getting a new one is annoying, I would probably moan quite a lot more if all of my harddrives were suddenly and completely wiped out.
But then again, hasn't this always been the case throughout the civilized ages: people attach much more value to abstract things like education, or freedom, or social relationships rather than pure, physical objects?
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