I wrote a post a few years ago about cognitive surplus and how we’re all doing more and more stuff on the web. One of the stories in that post was:
I was having dinner with a group of friends about a month ago, and one of them was talking about sitting with his four-year-old daughter watching a DVD. And in the middle of the movie, apropos nothing, she jumps up off the couch and runs around behind the screen. That seems like a cute moment. Maybe she’s going back there to see if Dora is really back there or whatever. But that wasn’t what she was doing. She started rooting around in the cables. And her dad said, “What you doing?” And she stuck her head out from behind the screen and said, “Looking for the mouse.”
Here’s something four-year-olds know: A screen that ships without a mouse ships broken. Here’s something four-year-olds know: Media that’s targeted at you but doesn’t include you may not be worth sitting still for. Those are things that make me believe that this is a one-way change. Because four year olds, the people who are soaking most deeply in the current environment, who won’t have to go through the trauma that I have to go through of trying to unlearn a childhood spent watching Gilligan’s Island, they just assume that media includes consuming, producing and sharing.
This was 5 years ago. Since then we’ve had some new technology advancements – such as Siri and voice search. I’m seeing the impacts of this on my 1-year old (Hunter) every day.
Both my wife and i have iPhones and we regularly use Siri to compose text messages as we frequently have our son in our arms and no hands free. As a result, he thinks this is just the way you interact with phones. Check these videos out:
These kids are definitely going to have a different experience with technology than the rest of us. It’ll be fascinating to see.