Friday, October 17, 2008

The latest and greatest

I've actually got two computers on which I regularly work. One is a big Compaq laptop running an Athlon XP-M at a whopping 1.6 GHz, and the other is a desktop running an Athlon XP at 1.8 GHz. Both computers at this point are probably over 5 years old. For someone who spends so much time working on computers, you'd think that I'd get some new systems. But the funny thing is that both computers suit my needs just fine... ok, at least when I'm not doing serious programming work. Overall though, my computing needs are fairly modest.

Several years ago, I'd be itching to upgrade my systems. Nowadays, I do a little research to price out a new system only to decide a day later that it's not worth the money to upgrade when my computers suit my needs just fine. The only new thing that I want is a new, bigger lcd monitor. Other than that, there's not much else I actually need. I find the same goes for all the gadgets I see on the market. I don't want a fancy-schmancy smart phone. That would mean an expensive phone plan, expensive phone, and being tethered to work more. That seems like a horrible idea to me. My mp3 player needs are also modest. I only really listen to my workout mix at the gym or Mandarin lesson podcasts. The only feature I really need there is a user friendly navigation menu to get to the mp3 I want to play.

I think once I hit my 30s, had to move several times, and got more into mindfulness training, the message of uncluttering has taken a bigger role in my life. I really don't want more stuff in my life unless it serves a well-defined purpose and doesn't just waste time and space. I find I have more peace of mind having fewer material possessions and not wanting stuff. What I want in life isn't more possessions; I rather prefer having more time. Material possessions are a poor substitute for time spent with Gen, with family and friends, and for myself.

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