Disruptive Technology


When I was stationed at SPAWAR (the Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command), I learned a new term.

Disruptive Technology.

It describes what happens when a new technology touting new features gets introduced into the market. It is so cool and (usually) so cheap that it begins to take over from the big dogs in the commercial world.

Take Facebook, for example. Remember when all the kids were on My Space? Facebook showed up on the block with a few new features and eventually it began to dominate the market. That’s disruptive technology.

Here is a sample graph that illustrates what happens:

hair chart dis tech

This morning, while I was shaving, I realized that there is a new disruptive phenomenon happening in my life. Without really realizing it, my body has changed and I am spending more time on new things that weren’t even a consideration when I was younger.

Of course I am talking about nose and ear hair.

When I was ten years old, I spend zero time on my hair. My only recollections were episodes of crying when my dad gave us our regular butch haircuts.

By the time I was twenty, hair was important to me, and shaving had begun to take a larger percentage of my time.

When the hair on top of my head started falling out, I returned to the butch. But strange little hairs began emerging from the vicinity of my nostrils. Curious. A quick snip and they were gone.

By the time I hit fifty, the little hairs had multiplied (what’s going ON up there?) and my ears began to sprout newbies too. More and more of my time is spent shaving THE OUTSIDE OF MY EARS, and sticking a battery-operated weed whacker up my nose. The remaining hair on my head and the grizzle on my face is almost an afterthought.

I am a victim of disruptive hair growth. It looks like this:

hair chart
(The red line denotes the percentage of time spent on nose and ear hair)

By the time I’m ninety the nose and ear hair will dominate most of my time. I’ll have to give up golf. I’ll eat standing up so I can hurry back to the bathroom mirror and fight back the follicle forest that by then will be growing at a rate of approximately two inches an hour.

The only thing that will decrease the slope of the ear and nose graph is a new disruptive bodily function that will begin almost unnoticed and before I know it will begin taking up a larger share of my time. What that might be is anyone’s guess.

I could go into more detail on this scientific thesis, but I have to go.

I gotta go to the bathroom.


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1 Comment

  1. Scott Stroman on

    Middle age defined: That point in a man’s life when hair stops growing out of the top of his head and starts growing out of his ears and nose.

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