Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Tech Talk

Everyone (well almost) is addicted to technology these days. It's a part of our lives whether we want it or not. Going "off the grid" has come to mean not using your handheld for 24-hours rather than living without a connection to the electrical grid. Even Stick Tail has an iPawd.

Wayne and I were talking this morning about the impact technology has on the quality of life. Laura Newcomer wrote an article that sums up many of our feelings. Our choice of living off the grid (technologically and electrically) makes sense for us. We can have a home embedded in nature where we can enjoy our surroundings and each other.

We have a old flip phone with an external antenna on the roof. No 3G, let alone 4G. That means no Internet (and all the time it consumes). Yes, we could get television, phone, and Internet via satellite, but that isn't something we want in our float cabin lives. We get enough of that when we make our trips to town.

I'm not saying we don't have technology resources at our cabin:
  • Radio (for CBC and local SUN.FM)
  • Satellite radio (Wayne starts the day with CNBC)
  • Cell phone (our old Telus flip phone)
  • Laptops (for writing and movies)
  • Kindles (new titles downloaded in town)
  • iPad (my and Stick Tail's game station)
  • iPod (for individual listening)
For now, it's a perfect compromise. And all of our devices can be recharged using our "off the grid" solar system.

I do have a smartphone for town. Because it isn't a part of my everyday life, I'm not addicted to its many features. I hate seeing so many people in public focusing on their devices rather than the people in their lives, or the experiences available around them. What are your thoughts? -- Margy


  1. What an intriguing lifestyle you have! I'll be reading back through your blog to learn more about it. And by the way, you have more technology than I do living "on" the grid!

  2. In a perfect world, it would be nice if everyone would leave their devices home, when they are out with friends and family. Nothing worse when two people or a group finally get together, to se some glued to their iphone, tablets and such. Is it cheaper to be off the grid? Than paying those high electrical/gas bills?

  3. Cynthia - Thanks, let me know if you have any questions.

    Stephanie - The initial cost to install solar and wind systems can be expensive, but in our case, we wouldn't have any power without them (and our generator in winter). When we are in town we still have power bills, hydro and a bit of gas for our fake fireplace.


  4. Love the picture of Sticktail. My motherinlaw thinks technology is of the Devil (she is reaching 80 and starting to experience some mental issues) and goes a bit crazy when she sees one of us with the phone or the ipad. I could do with a bit less technology or at least a break once in a while from it.

  5. Anonymous5:50 PM

    We all need time away from technology for awhile. I've been doing some reading and knitting tonight before checking out my favourite blogs. Rainy system moving into our area so maybe more reading and knitting tomorrow.

  6. is your cat addicted too?? Kidding. :)

    Well. People chose the internet in front of their kids. NOT GOOD!

  7. I know how you feel, though we do have internet here, albeit extremely limited gigs. It's primarily for my blog posting, which I couldn't live without. Otherwise, I'm good with living off the grid:)

  8. Fun to read about a different world! Agree totally re I phone addiction..hate to see that, especially moms with small children. I could maybe live like you do since you do have kindle and apparently you can blog! Mi wouldn't miss tv or phone.

  9. Cheapchick - Wayne and I tried to get my mother to use email so I could communicate with her and send her pictures. It just never worked out. She wasn't afraid of it, she just couldn't get the hang of it. I gave up.

    NatureFootsept - Sometimes I wonder. If I use my iPad in bed to play a game, he gets right in front of it demanding attention. Funny guy.

    Lise and Sallie - Without the Internet at the cabin I can't blog, but I save up my stories and write them when I get to town. I use the scheduling feature in Blogger to post them in my absence. The down side is I get way behind on my reading and commenting on other people's blogs.


  10. Stick Tail with iPawd... priceless.
    We don't have smart phones... but everyone else in LA does, including the street corner flower peddler.

  11. Tash - Or even worse, young children. They need to grow up with fewer distractions. - Margy

  12. I keep forgetting about that! You are off the grid. I enjoy your life vicariously!

  13. I agree about smart phone addiction. I watched a young mother at the playground who was concentrating on her phone instead of looking at her toddler climbing on the monkey bars. These moments go by quickly...


We welcome your comments and questions. - Wayne and Margy