Automation has made it possible to produce so many objects — from bread to shoes — without the intervention of human hands (assuming that pressing a button doesn’t count). What things do you still prefer in their traditional, handmade version?
Automation looks like it might be a hard thing to get around these days. Building machines that can accomplish tasks for us has made everything easier. There are a couple of things that I still prefer to see or hear be done by hand.
Cooking… A homemade meal has a lot of things going into it. Not only the ingredients (those are important), but the time and love put into a good meal is something special. I hear people talk about this quite a bit. It makes sense. When I first started working at a hotel twelve years ago, there was a vending machine that sold hot food. Prepackaged and flash frozen…it served its purpose of being something that I could shovel into my mouth quickly and easily so that I could get back to work. Nothing says love like scalding hot industrial sized microwavable food. The taste and textures and colors… were pretty much nonexistent. A homemade meal may not ALWAYS taste better (I’ve made a few duds to say the least), but the color, texture…everything that comes from the final product…to me is best handmade.
Music… Technology has come a long way in letting anyone create anything. I pick music because being a “musician” (I try anyway)… I like hearing the music come from the person. They have made things where you can manipulate the sounds on the computers in real time. That’s neat… and while I find it fascinating… I still just prefer the sound of actual instruments. You can get so many different sounds these days using just your hands. I can point to guys like Tom Morello… who… with just a guitar… a few stomp boxes… and an amplifier… has made some of the weirdest sound stuff ever… mainly with just his hands. He may not be my favorite, but he definitely was innovative. I picked a guitar player to single out mainly because that is my instrument of choice.
There are probably plenty of other things to write about on this topic, but I think I’ll need coffee first.