I have now officially entered the Matrix!
No, I’m not quoting Morpheus from the movie. And just because this is Tipsy Tuesday doesn’t mean I’m actually umm… tipsy. Hehe. But seriously, I got a little toy yesterday (See my Getting Fit, Staying Sane post) that truly makes me understand how far technology has come and how close we’ve gotten to experiencing the realities of that movie. It’s called a fitbit! A little bitty device that tracks your walking habits, calories, sleep patterns, sex life… okay I’m just kidding on that last one, but then, you gotta wonder right? I mean this little baby is so accurate that I can stick it on my wrist and still get accurate descriptions of how many stairs I climbed or the number of times I tossed and turned throughout the night. Very big advancement in fitness technology. Both Neo and Morpheus would be proud.
Why do I say I’ve entered the Matrix? Besides the obvious advancement in the technology, the fitbit provides the ultimate method of discoverability, using blue tooth versus GPS to track your every move. You can even log on to a website that keeps track of your whereabouts. Imagine my surprise when I logged on last night and found my path mapped out for me to see: yoga class, grocery store, gas station. Yikes! Well… I kinda didn’t like it.
You see, I’m very paranoid about becoming Sandra Bullock’s character from that old 90’s movie the Net. Have you seen it? If so, then beware of plugging too much of your life into the Matrix’s illusion of grandeur. Just so happens my job gave us these fancy little high-dollar nuggets. A few of my coworkers are really paranoid about their intentions (remember that little blurb about the sex life I just mentioned, right?). Others have fully embraced the goal of winning the perks that come from logging more and more of your hours into the Matrix’s frame. Wait! I meant to say fitbit software. But guess what? You don’t even have to do that. You can simply let your cell phone do all the logging. It’s pretty neat. I love these toys. Nevermind I was a bit shocked when I woke up and found a big, bright sun on my phone that said good morning. The thing even knew I was awake. But still, in the back of my mind I keep seeing images of Agent X (the dude with the suit and sunglasses in the movie) hunting me down and making a million clones of me (boy we’re all in trouble if that happens LoL) and he’s inserting some weird virus in my mainframe that will send my life spiraling into a mini chaotic version of the Matrix. Okay, I’m probably being dramatic, but you get the point. Enjoy the technology, but also continue to enact safeguards against hackers while you’re exploring the Matrix.
1) For bluetooth, use your smartphone’s smartness to set your signal to receive and give out love only to the paired devices that you indicate. Same with GPS and using your device as a hotspot. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve gone into Starbucks and seen wide open connections on folks’ phones and computers.
2) The more tracking software you have, the easier it will be to get hacked. Make sure to either delete or turn off other apps you no longer use. Foursquare comes to mind for me. Does anyone still use that? Hmm.
3) Turn off the location services attached to your photo software. This is a biggie. There have been numerous reports on the news about how people can find someone just by this info being encrypted inside the photos we take. Creepy right?
4) Perhaps the easiest deterrent of all, and one I’m very guilty of neglecting at times is to passcode lock your phone. All right, I completely understand why you wouldn’t want to do this. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve growled at my phone when I’m in a hurry to make a call or send a text or even when I accidentally hit the sleep button and then… you guessed it, that darn password screen automatically pops up! It’s a necessary evil folks. The Agent X’s do actually exist and the Neos, aka folks like you and me, are always enticing targets.
So what would Neo do?
Ah, but I bet you saw the movie and already know that answer. If not, then we Matrix fans will forgive you. But only if you go watch the movie and tell us what you think. 🙂 Enjoy all this great technology, but follow in Neo’s footsteps by arming yourself against hackers and men in crooked black sunglasses.