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Here are a few of my favorite things: Nintendo, Penny Arcade, The Legend of Zelda, Mario, Pokemon, Harvest Moon, Fallout, Dungeons and Dragons, books, dice, Professor Layton, Shadow of the Colossus, Minecraft, and so much more. I'm going to talk a lot about video games, I sincerely hope you don't mind.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Information and device overload.

Does anyone else have a difficult time making decisions? Y'know, worrying about price comparisons, buyers remorse and that sort of thing. I do, and in some ways having constant access to reviews, prices and that sort of thing has made decision making so much easier. And in other ways, so much worse.

Can anyone else relate to this? Image via xkcd.

This excess of information can be too much sometimes, and even cause information overload, or analysis paralysis. I like it when things rhyme. 

My smartphone goes wherever I go, so when I encounter something in stores that seems like a great deal I've made it a habit of price checking on Amazon. This has helped me to save money, which is fantastic, but it also has its complications; the largest one being the rating system. A lot of the time the responses seem highly subjective, and they generally doesn't answer my questions. 

Sometimes I end up not making a purchase at all because there's simply too much information, or the reviews are far too mixed. The research I've done makes an object seem desirable, yet the reviews say otherwise. What do I do? It's times like these that I find myself wishing for a lack of connectivity. Or a real conversation with someone about a given product. Is there an application for that? That's another problem: too many apps. Too many ways to access information. On my phone I have multiple applications that all do roughly the same thing, but they have slight differences. Which one do I use?

 So many to choose from! Perfect image via Zdnet.

(I'm still on a quest to find the *best* note application for Android. Currently I use Springpad. I've gone through at least ten other ones.)

And piggybacking off of that, which electronic device should I use? I have a laptop, a smartphone, an iPod and a 3DS. I eventually retired my iPod and I now use my phone for music in the car. My laptop is used on a daily basis, but the 3DS offers many communication and connectivity tools that my phone and computer do as well. Someday I'd like to own an iPad too, but what purpose would it serve? It'd be a sleek combination of my phone and my laptop, so... when would I decide to use the iPad over the laptop?

I came across this video for the iPad application Paper and it looks really fantastic, which only spurs the desire to own one.


I love notes and notepads. I love writing them, crossing things off, doodling, scribbling and just... jotting. It would be great to have this amazing, virtual notepad with me with such a wide array of features. Except... who actually walks around outside like that with their iPad out? Isn't that just asking to be robbed or attacked? All of this technology is great, the ability to use it anywhere is fantastic, but I would be so paranoid.

Anyway, if I ever own an iPad will I end up forsaking my laptop? Or would I just bring the iPad with me out and about as if it were a notebook/sketchbook/planner/calendar? Does anyone out there have a computer AND and iPad AND a smartphone AND an iPod? If so, can you sound off regarding when you use which? Do you ever feel overwhelmed? Did you initially have difficulties figuring out when to use which device?

Just as a note of clarification, I realize the completely frivolous tone of this article. Nothing that I've said is meant to be a complaint, just pointing out the overstimulation of it all. My "issue" is that there are too many incredible things to choose from? What a world I live in!

But seriously. Do you ever find it to be too much? Too many options can paralyze a person.

-MJ

2 comments:

http://www.ted.com/talks/barry_schwartz_on_the_paradox_of_choice.html

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