Smart Phones Are Taking Over the World

Shaw (Watha T. Daniel) Library

Smart Phones Are Taking Over the World

We Gen-X’ers grew up with our lives punctuated by changes in technology. As toddlers, we listened to vinyl records and watched movies on reels, but really we grew up listening to cassette tapes and watching movies on VHS. (“Hey, did you hear the new Guns ‘n’ Roses tape?”) CDs were our first contact with the incredibly dense medium of digital music, which has remained our main source of music even today. DVDs were the video equivalent, being made commercially available in 1997.

That was 14 years ago. Seems like a long time. iPods came out in 2001, I only got one a couple of years ago. Being a musician and music lover, my iPod changed my life. Not only could I create my own life soundtrack, but I could listen to the previous night’s band practice while on the bus the next morning. Now I could listen to graduate-level lectures and famous debates and speeches for free. In the audio realm, I was happy as a clam. What could be better!

Video, that’s what! Despite the iPod’s tiny video screen, I bought a movie from the iTunes store and experienced something remarkable: a huge format art form (silver screen) being reduced to a barely visible two-inch screen—and it worked. I watched a whole movie sitting on the front steps of my house and, just like on a big screen, I found myself getting sucked into the virtual world. The miniature screen was a hurdle at first, but before long I was enjoying a new art form. 

This experience really got me thinking. Give this a few years and some genius kid is going to break it wide open with a movie he made in his bedroom. So now my friend turned me on to just such a young film-maker—a guy who filmed and edited a really impressive series of short films on his iPhone! The technology has been available for anyone to make their own records at home, but now we’ve reached a new height. We’ve all thought, "Man, I could make a movie. I’ve got a story to tell."

Now it’s your turn, once you get the basic skills: