Today while at the Buckeye Expo Center in Dalton, Ohio for the Tri-County Health Expo and the Tool Show, I ran across an interesting product being sold uniquely to Amish businesses. It’s called a “word processor”. I remember when word processors first hit the market back in the 70’s, before PC’s existed. The Amish, by desire and design, are way behind the times technologically. There are a couple of companies here at the show promoting and selling these “innovative” systems. The systems are designed to be used for businesseses and, by design, lack any “entertainment” capabilities. It’s interesting that some of the major reasons given for buying the systems would be reasons that non-Amish would not buy them. No music, no video, and no internet! In addition, users who buy the systems cannot install any new software on the computer but must have the company that sells the systems install it. Typical software that runs on these systems is the popular (and free) Open Office Suite which includes spreadsheet, word processing, and a graphics program. Probably the main reason though to purchase one of these state-of-the-art machines is to run Quickbooks accounting software which is used by businesses to automate their bookkeeping and accounting functions. Tight control is maintained on the systems so that technology is not used for personal pleasure and vanity and is not used to waste hours playing video games, surfing the net, etc. The Amish are also well aware of the huge problem with pornography on the internet. For them, refraining from using the internet is the wise course. It’s no different than my dad, who needed to watch his blood sugar level, telling my mom to keep the tempting cookies, cakes, and pies OUT OF THE HOUSE! Once again, we see the Amish going against the grain of popular culture in order to maintain their values and family friendly lifestyle, even if it is more “inconvenient”.
February 19, 2011 by