Very Little Was Ever Fixed By Making It Smarter

Do you like stupid technological ideas that don’t fix anything pretending to be the next iPhone? Then We Put A Chip In It is a hilarious joy. You can make any stupid device smart by putting a chip in it and wirelessly connecting it to the internet. Smart mugs! Smart Socks! Smart chopping boards! I literally have no idea which of these are real products and which (if any) are parodies.

These stupid smart products are a natural outworking of today’s hyper-rational culture. The intellect is the supreme authority, and so any problem can be fixed by making the process smarter. Washing not being done? Put a chip in your laundry basket! Can’t be bothered to cook dinner? Write an API for your chopping board! Not spending enough time with your wife? Connect her wedding ring to the internet!

The real problem with you failing to go for a run is not going to be solved by bluetooth enabled sweatbands, because the problem isn’t not knowing you need to go for a run, but knowing you need to go for a run and not wanting to. The reason you don’t cook healthy when you get home and instead want to order pizza is not due to a lack of knowledge and ability, it’s because you can’t be bothered. You want pizza. Buying a chopping board that talks back is just going to make you feel guilty when it tells you the calories of the pizza grease you just spilt on it. Where we used to build shrines to the god of the sea and wonder why the boats still didn’t come home, so now we put bluetooth chips in our shoes and wonder why we still aren’t losing weight.

The problem with people isn’t that they’re not smart enough, the problem is we don’t want the right thing. It’s not that we don’t know too much chocolate is bad for us, it’s that we want to eat it anyway. Or for a more serious example, it’s not that we don’t know loosing our temper and yelling at someone’s a bad idea, it’s that right now we really really want to yell at someone. We don’t need smarter thinking, we need different desires. Or in more biblical language, we need a new heart.

Thanks, then, be to Christ, who turns up and says he will wipe away our sins and give us a new heart. One that slowly will start to desire what is right and good and that one day in heaven will only desire what is good all the time. One freed from dumb decisions you made because at the time you wanted something. The Lord says “And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you.” (Ezekiel 36:26)