I just wrapped up watching the replay of Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference keynote. Embedded throughout the tech giant's rollout of new operating systems and features is this thread of nature and all things outside. Not only does OS X Yosemite just sound super cool but it's extremely exciting to hear things like hiking and climbing talked about in the mainstream as cool and popular activities to do. It wasn't long ago that if you told someone your hobby was not showering, sleeping on the ground outside and walking in the woods that you might have someone referring you to a good homeless shelter or worse a doctor. Now it seems through inspiring photography, videos, technology like apps and even Apple's techie developer's conference people are getting more and more exposure to the outdoors... and liking it.
Watching Craig Federighi, Apple's senior VP of software engineering, talk about hikes up Half Dome and sending emails about camping trips just puts a smile on my face. It tells me that as much as technology changes, the essence of beauty doesn't lie with our devices but with these natural, real experiences we enjoy.
Part of my job as a writer and producer is working on articles and projects about outdoor adventures and issues. I'm blessed enough to write for magazines that focus on unplugging and having real experiences instead of artificial interaction. Granted do these outdoor focused companies use technology... absolutely! That being said, there's an interesting blend our lives take with a mixture of technology and adventure. Our devices should help us have a better experience but should not be the experience altogether. When I open up maps on my phone or search for a great local place to eat, with Yelp or Google, while on a road trip in California I should use that technology to enable me to have a more rich, real moment. Pictures taken and posted should be as a means to inspire and share with others. I think in an essence that's why Apple gravitates toward nature and outside activities during presentations instead of video games, movies and other activities that involve sitting in front of a piece of tech.
At the end of the day it's a blending of technology and real moments that shapes each of us. That's the world we live in and that's the balance each of us has to make. Still, it feels good to see that hopefully, maybe society isn't gravitating toward just being a group of people sitting in front of a screen, brain dead, instead of interacting with the world around them and the people around them.
Now stop reading this and get outside.