Rotary Phone

In 1844 people started working on inventing the telephone. By 1876, Alexander Graham Bell finished the invention and 1915 brought the first coast-to-coast long-distance telephone call. From this invention, we progressively ended up with more and more telephones. From one in every town until there was one in every household and finally, one in every pocket.

Once upon a time, these things were important. When they rang, they were answered. There was almost never a reason to not answer one. If someone was calling, then it was for a reason and a purpose. There was no spam in a phone call for quite some time. The phone ringing has previously meant so much to our culture. People would answer every phone call coming into their homes. People would never make frivolous calls and telemarketers did not exist. It was an importance ingrained into their minds.

Today, phone calls are not so important. The phone is as much for talking as it is watching videos, sending emails, and checking sports scores. Today, when my phone rings, I am about almost more likely to ignore it than answer it. Most everyone who knows me will text or Facebook message me long before they would ever call. Almost no-one will call me anymore. And I am totally content with not being called.

However, what if I did treat my phone the same way people treated phones in 1915. What if everything happening on my phone was as important as it was in 1915. What if, every time my phone beeped, chimed, or lit up, I had to react immediately? What sort of craziness would I be subjecting myself to!? What sort of craziness would I be subjecting the people around me to!?
The brilliance of the phone evolving is actually lost when I treat it the same way it was treated 101 years ago. 101 years ago no-one would even consider calling you for no reason at all.

Do you give your phone a 2016 job to be done or a 1915 job to be done? Do you treat it as if it was developed today or more than 100 years ago? What are you making more important than you should?