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The Boston Globe

Opinion

CARLO ROTELLA

‘Screen zombie’ and other new words

When it comes to personal technology, I’m a late and grudging adopter who gives in to progress only when backed into a corner. I finally got around to owning a cell phone, for instance, when the assumption became widespread that people no longer had to make definite advance plans to meet and could just arrange something on the fly. Suddenly a reporter had to have a cell phone, so I got one, although I have continued to dig in my heels by sticking to a chunky antique that doesn’t do anything except function as a phone and clock.

But in recent years that stubbornness has obliged me to add another gadget, a tablet, because now people expect me to be able to read their last-second e-mail changing the time and place of an interview, and as long as I was getting a device to deal with that problem I might as well have one on which I could write an article or read a manuscript while I was on the road . . . And so it goes. The machines push on in their conquering march, and I give ground when they force me to.

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