Technology – shaping the body

Posted by jerry on August 12th, 2007 — Posted in Journal, Technology

Years of playing the violin have shaped the ends of the fingers on my left hand. My beard grows slightly thinner where the chin-rest has interfaced with my head and there is a fairly permanent red mark where the shoulder-rest meets the front of my shoulder. And I have retained a high degree of upper-body flexibility as a result. The finger-memory – the body trained over years to land each finger precisely within a tenth of a millimetre enables sounds to be reproduced at the right pitch, and the wrist ensures that at whatever speed, the bow tracks (mostly) straight across the strings. So my body has adapted to the technology.

I still trim my fingernails to interface with technology – both hands to avoid the nail tapping on the keyboard of the computer, the thumb nails just slightly longer to facilitate texting on my phone.

Finger-memory again on the keyboard enables me to type faster than I write (by just a fraction), and perhaps others train their thumb positions for texting.

We wear our clothes in more ways than one – our feet being shaped to the shoes while in turn shaping our shoes.

How much do we shape our body to the technology, rather than the technology to the body?

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