Don’t Buy Innovation; Make It!

I’m a sucker for wanting to buy the new new (anything). The new Apple whatever, the new Tesla, the (used) Lamborghini, etc.

But ultimately what do we want? We want the excitement and thrill of innovation.

But perhaps it is more effective for us to innovate ourselves (build new things) than to simply buy it.

Every kid should learn how to build their own computer

Some of my fondest memories as a kid: building my own custom PC desktop computers. Why? It taught me to not be afraid of technology. Realizing computers weren’t as scary or “black box” as I once thought.

Modding your own car

Another thought:

The extreme joy of modifying and building up a car.

My extreme joy of modifying my beloved 1991 Nissan Sentra SE-R with the legendary SR20 engine. Installing all the parts myself (intake, header, exhaust) and also changing the interior and exterior. To modify your car is to be a sculptor and artist.

When did buying culture eclipse “hands on” culture?

I believe we are happiest when we are being active and being artistic with our own hands. We humans actually like to do things, not just be passive audio-visual receptacles, and to just tap screens with our things. We like to make, create, sculpt, dance, walk, frolic, and explore.

Modern times have been consumerist for a long time. Consumerism ain’t new.

Yet what is different today? The youth isn’t encouraged to build things themselves. They are encouraged to be studious, and then earn money to buy the things they want later.

But if maximizing joy and fun is our goal, far far far more fun to make and build things ourselves than to simply buy it!

What can we actually build or modify in modern times?

You cannot build or modify an iPhone. You cannot build or replace parts in a (new) MacBook Pro laptop. With the new Tesla cars, you cannot really modify or change them much.

The upside is “everything just works”. The downside: we are more passive consumers than active creators and innovators.

The upside of Android

One of the great things about Android: you can root it, modify it, flash new custom ROMs on it and fuck with it. It’s far more headache and probably not as sexy as a new iPhone, but it is certainly more interesting and unique!