Always Treat People With Respect

We don’t need a $3000 computer in order to treat people with respect!

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Videos Games Go Analog!

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Victory!

Today is a day of celebration and relief for many of us Techno Moderators.

You see, there is hope for a more moderate world with technology. Nintendo Corporation just introduced a brand new game console that is fundamentally a blend of electronic- and paper-based video-game accessories.

Listen to Dr. A: Nintendo went low-tech with its latest Nintendo Labo Kit. Even the giant video game-maker is folding to a new trend in society — the idea that we should Techno Moderate and build toys that advance this agenda. If modern video-game accessories can be made of cardboard, then we should use less modern technology in our lives.

It is true the latest Nintendo Labo Kit isn’t the first paper accessory that the company has ever produced in its history. Back in the 1970s, Nintendo invested in low-tech gaming approaches as an attempt to gain marketshare. The difference, at least from what I can see, is that we now live in the age of the smartphone where most of us are connected to a computerized device for hours on end every day, seven days a week.

Back then, people didn’t have social media or anything that resembles what we have today in technology. Even though technological tools and devices existed in the ’70s, they were 25 years behind what we found in the first generation of the internet back in 1995. The tech tools in the ’70s were kindergarten-like when compared to what we have today.

Is Nintendo’s decision to use low technology a good idea? I think it is. Young people these days need to realize that not everything in life, including play, needs to occur online, in social media or anywhere in cyberspace. They need to understand that playing with analog toys is as fun as playing with their latest tech gadgets.

It is OK to play a cardboard piano key and actually feel what it’s like for people to play that key and hear a music note being played outside of the dimensions of a smartphone app.

I know many of you will relate to this. Some of us grew up playing with low-tech toys and such. Many people were raised on toys with little technology.

Do you remember when you used to play with a spinning top? Wasn’t it fun? It was a lot of fun for me too, I must add. It was as fun as building a Revell model car kit with actual paper, plastic and glue.

People without computer chips turned out to be OK in life, you know? How awesome! A little bit of analog playing isn’t bad for anybody. Way to go, Nintendo! You are proving again that nostalgia sells, and that companies don’t have to only develop techie products in order to make a profit in 21st century America.

The idea that kids now can make their own markers and stickers, and combine them to make their accessories in real life, is both a brilliant move made by Nintendo and also a great way to reintroduce the idea of imagination to the millennials.

This new development indirectly conveys that not everybody needs to have the ability to use the latest app in order to have fun and smile. It is OK to foster people’s imagination with paper-based products. It pays off to be a Techno Moderator! I mean, financially, I bet that Nintendo will make a billion dollars on this “new” innovation.

I am happy. One of the most technological companies in the world just decided to invest in paper technology. I must admit that this one, I wasn’t expecting.

Predicting that Nintendo would invest in cardboard would have been like believing that desktop computers would one day return to their “glory days” of the Pentium I with only 24MB of hard drive.

If we really think about it, what Nintendo has done is totally improbable. Well, they have done it, and I love it!

——— (Column published previously in the Cleveland Daily Banner).

(About the writer: Dr. Luis C. Almeida is an associate professor of communication at Lee University and a TEDx speaker. He is the author of the book “Becoming a Brand: The Rise of Technomoderation,” and a devoted Christian. He can be reached via his website at  luiscalmeida.info). 

Technology Overuse Is Eating Our Society’s Soul

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Technology is destroying our society from within. In this world, only a combination of discipline, along with great mentorship and an in-demand collection of skill sets, takes you places.

I am not aware of anybody who truly accomplished anything in life without having these three prerequisites.

Question: What are your grandsons doing right now to develop them? I bet they are not developing these three entry behaviors, because of technology overuse.

Really.

What have your grandsons done lately to develop discipline? I know the majority of them are not joining the military because the armed forces are shrinking dramatically. According to Politico, the U.S. Army is in a 75-year low which can have some serious consequences to the well-being of this country in the near future.

I wonder if our grandkids these days are preferring to stay at home and be on social media versus joining the military to better themselves.

Another question: Are your grandsons being mentored about navigating the intricacies of life? I don’t think so. How do I know this? Well, because only a few come to my office seeking true life mentorship. Most of them are tweeting their lives away and believing the internet can be their doctor, YouTube their teacher and Instagram their social club.

The irony is these same kids will, in the future, lead organizations. What do you think will happen to our systems and institutions 10 years from now? Pretty scary, isn’t it?

When I was 18 years old, I had to serve in an elite unit of the Brazilian Army for a period of time, even though I played on the country’s national golf team the year before.

In my 20s, my father put together a mastermind group to teach me how to win in life in an apprenticeship format. I spoke with the members of that team on a weekly basis, one-on-one. Every time I had a question about life, I was to speak with them. Thinking back, that experience was a university to me. Lucky me, I guess.

Which skill sets have they developed after high school or college? I mean, what are the things they know that will get them jobs? Today, I see kids submitting CVs to entry-level positions.

We hear that 18- to 25-year-olds are computer geniuses, yet I only know a handful who can actually program in C++ or C#.

Look, technology may be making us live longer because of advancements in medicine, but one cannot deny that our new generation’s quality of living is diminishing drastically due to a lack of skill sets. Do I think that technology is the cause for this half tragedy? Absolutely yes.

Let me share one more thing with you. When people come to the United States as foreigners, they need to go through additional hoops in order to find their place under the sun.

Even today, I still experience occasional backfire, especially when I score a big victory. People are jealous, you know? I know it, I ignore it and I live my life.

I have the discipline to write two, sometimes three, columns each week. I am humble enough to seek mentorship still today. Having the ability to handle conflict and strike back with finesse, when required, is a skill set that I have that your grandkids are lacking these days.

Do you know what I think? Technology has been a leading force in making your grandkids very educated, yet having little discipline, few mentors and diminished skill sets.  There are exceptions to the rule, but they are in the vast minority.

Let me end this column by saying this. I am concerned about the future of the United States. Technology has infiltrated our systems too deeply. We are aging. Too many adults are still living in their parents’ houses or are just barely getting by. Many grandkids are growing clueless about life, due to all these technologies that they idolize.

Read this very carefully: Technology overuse is eating our society’s soul. We are starting to see its side effects right now. They will get progressively worse unless we stop believing that technology is always the answer to our problems.

——— (Column published previously in the Cleveland Daily Banner)

(About the writer: Dr. Luis C. Almeida is an associate professor of communication at Lee University and a TEDx speaker. He is the author of the book “Becoming a Brand: The Rise of Technomoderation,” and a devoted Christian. He can be reached via his website at  luiscalmeida.info). 

The Lord Will Meet All Of Your Needs — Thank God For Gardner’s Market.

The Lord Will Meet All Of Your Needs — Thank God For Gardner’s Market.

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“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19); “This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us” (1 John 5:14).  “And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8).

The good God will meet all of your needs if you live your life according to His word and will. Christ gives us water, food, shelter and many blessings from the land when we listen and obey. When we ask, he gives — The Lord blesses His people in a number of ways. One of the blessings you can receive from the Lord is called Gardner’s Market, a very nice restaurant/sandwich shop/deli located in the historic downtown of Cleveland, Tennessee. The food that they sell and serve down there, especially the Cuban Sandwich, is simply spectacular! Their bagels are incredible, the people who work at Gardner’s Market are very nice and to complement it all… the price that we pay for the food that we get is very reasonable. I am definitely going back for round two. My advice? You should do the same!

Perhaps, our next purchase there will be an item from the deli or one of their amazing muffins. Okay… It might be just a cup of tea or all of the above! I can’t say enough great things about them. It is without question a God’s blessing.

 

 

 

Do Not Associate With Him So That He May Be Ashamed.

Do Not Associate With Him So That He May Be Ashamed.

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Prophetic! The Lord’s voice is to be heard in peace through scripture. God is celebrating in heaven as the vessel now carries the prophesy. The seal was opened and can’t be closed anymore, ever again. God, not you… is in control. Remember: We must always be thankful to the Lord. Time is in God’s hands not ours, remember that. We proclaim peace. Why? Because Christ teaches, “May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way” (Thessalonians 3:16). The seal has been broken and shame is quickly approaching your doors. Lazy you were and punishment is your middle name. I leave, you stay. The abysm is deep and sorrow is near. “If anyone isn’t willing to work, he should not eat. For we hear that there are some among you who walk irresponsibly not working at all but interfering with the work of others. Now, we command and exhort such people, by the Lord Jesus Christ, that quietly working, they may eat their own bread… Do not associate with him” (2 Thessalonians 3:10-12).  

God protects the brethren and brings the wicked to justice in His own time. Don’t be revengeful or anxious about the future. God gets the glory! Gossip, malice, laziness, schemes, wicked hearts, and hate I see painted on life’s canvas. God will punish those who are evil doers, soon. You are going to suffer and be ashamed for your vain decisions. The good God is the Lord of the morning and night. He is out of your sight! Good night. You won’t be able to fight. Because of your iniquities. I see the wind blowing the currents of justice and you were not found anywhere near in there. “I called the Lord in my distress and He answered me” (Jonah 2:2). “You threw me into the depths, into the heart of the seas, and the current overcame me” (Jonah 2:3), “But you raised my life from the Pit, Lord my God, as my life was fading away” (Jonas 2:6-7). Goodbye iniquity. You will be judged for your transgressions.

“I am filled with power by the holy spirit of the Lord, with justice and courage, to proclaim to Jacob his rebellion and to Israel his sin” (Micah 3:8). If you have ears listen. The message has been shared and the gnashing of teeth has started. Thy will shall be done in heaven as on the earth.

Read Scripture Daily — It Is Great Food For Your Soul.

Read Scripture Daily — It Is Great Food For Your Soul.

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“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17. 

In this life, we need to read scripture so that we glorify God in everything that we do. This life isn’t about you or me, your cousin or the neighbor across the street. It is 100% about God and His kingdom. Fortunate are those who understand the former early on in their lives. When we were younger, we used to think like the young. Now that we are older, we have to think like a man. We are to live our lives to advance God’s will.

My advice? Read scripture, daily. It is great food for your soul. God is the best teacher. He will tell you what you need. We simply need to be His best students and follow.

God Gets The Glory — Every Time.

God Gets The Glory — Every Time.

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“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” James 1:17.

Despite of what many may believe, a talent given by God is to be used for God’s glorification not for one’s self gain. God gets the glory all the time. In this life, we need to use God’s gift to spread the word of God and bring glory to our father in heaven.  Everything else is in vain.

Who are we without God? Nothing.

The Inevitable Side Effects of Innovation

The Inevitable Side Effects of Innovation

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I don’t care which culture you live in. Whenever a group of innovators decide to design, develop and market a technological product for mass adoption in a society, side effects are very likely to occur and there is little we can do to avoid its unintended consequences to the system. The invasion of newly developed technology in any society can and probably will result in unintended consequences in several subsystems of a macro system because these technologies produce ecological changes, as Neil Postman once said. Technology, by itself, won’t fix too many of our problems but it will surely destroy well established systems of operation. Let me share with you two important systems that have been severely attacked by the advancements of technology: Law and Order and Education.

No orderly society can exist without a strong and dedicated body of police officers. The police exists to prevent uncontrolled chaos from developing and escalating in society as well as to help and guide well-behaved citizens. The police also exists to enforce the laws of a particular society and the rules of a culture. The force is in business to perform their duties to the best of their abilities so order is maintained. To a high degree, the police’s job isn’t to socialize with the public, despite popular belief. The cops are to act as a frontline for order in its essence. The police isn’t in business to abuse citizens, under any circumstance… even though abuse does occur once in a while and we all know it.

The mass adoption of the smartphone in society has had a severe impact in the well established system of law and order in America. Because of technology, the system of police is in jeopardy and I guarantee to you that it will make police change its standard operating procedure.  Why? Because technology has effects that far suppresses its original intentions… technology is “often created” to serve as technique with the “intentions” to make our lives better. The former, in practice, is far from the truth. Don’t believe me?

Let me ask this question, “Did technology make law enforcement operation better or worse since the adoption of the mighty smartphone?” “Which side effects do law and order professionals experienced after smartphones became mainstream? Shouldn’t law and order professionals also carry a body camera (smartphones) in order to defend themselves against litigation? Of course they should but why don’t they? HAAAA, because the judicial system prevents them from using such devices, right? I think so. The judicial system wasn’t created to accommodate the numerous side effects created by the smartphones. How can the police do their job when folks tape them while they perform old analog protocol?

See? when technology is adopted in society, a number of side effects occur across the system. It is ecological. One change here can result in implications up, down, left and right. Ignoring these undeniable facts is to a large degree naive and myopic, in my opinion. The side effects that smartphone technology has done to the police are irreversible. Is it all bad? Not really. Among informal channels of society, violence has occurred against minorities and the poor for years and we all know it. So, to a degree… these changes have done good but at what cost?  The moral of the story, smartphone technology has had impacts in our law and order operational system worth discussing in public domain.

I wish the side effects of technology were only seen in one subsystem of the American macro system. I wish… Smartphone technology has made the life of educators hell on earth since its mass adoption in 2008, despite the ludicrous call for educators to use more technology in the classroom. Let me ask you the following… How can you educate anybody when they are constantly tweeting or chatting about their girlfriend on Facebook? What do you tell the students when they say they are tired and can’t pay attention in class because of sleep deprivation? Experienced professors know they feel this way  because they were constantly on their smartphones until late the day before and minutes prior to classes start. How about the excuse, “but the millennials just don’t like to read” or God forbidden “Let’s use more technology in the classroom to accommodate cliente.” If professors simply grants a F grade for students with inappropriate behavior, students transfer or they (professors) are repremended by their own system for educating the students. Give me a break.

See? Smartphone adoption has caused impacts far beyond its original intentions also in the field of education. Let me share this with you. It has destroyed the system, along with the idea that we should provide customer service to students. Students need to be treated well, of course. In good customer service, the client is always right. Nobody is always right. Mobile Technology has changed the system of education forever and in my opinion for the very worse.

To make matters worse, how can we change behavior when both students and parents are constantly on the smartphone at home, on vacation, in school, in church, at lunch, in meetings, while driving, you name it. It is an epidemic! It is everywhere! We are now robots! Okay, half-robots. The game has changed tremendously because of technology, especially smartphone technology. Only those who are in self denial ignore this fact, in my opinion.

We have a crisis in this culture. A big one, in fact. We have a “too much innovation” crisis (too much technology) along with systems of operation that are dated when associated with all this technology we live with. So, we have two options… 1) Use less technology by regulating use. 2) Change our systems and subsystems to accommodate technology. I choose choice number 1. Why? Because I know it can be done. How about you?